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Why Do Beets Taste Like Dirt? (Plus 4 Ways to Make Them Taste Better)

Why Do Beets Taste Like Dirt? (Plus 4 Ways to Make Them Taste Better)

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Beets can be good to eat for many different reasons. There are actually some benefits to eating beets that will make you want to consider making them an occasional part of your diet.

For example, beets are known to help people who have issues with constipation. It has even been found that beets help with eye health and that they might be a good food for fighting heart disease.

There are some negatives to eating beets as well since they aren’t good for people who are worried about gout. However, it’s still nice that beets can be a good food for many people to eat.

That doesn’t mean that beets taste great, though. Have you ever tried to eat a beet only to discover that it tastes like dirt?

This is why many people avoid eating beets, but you might be curious about why beets taste like dirt in the first place. Read on to learn more about why beets taste like dirt as well as some ways that you can make them turn out tasty.

Beets Contain Geosmin

The reason why beets taste like dirt is that they contain a compound known as geosmin. Geosmin is something that some organisms such as fungi produce naturally.

Humans are known to be sensitive to geosmin concentrations, and you can easily smell it coming up from the soil after it rains. When geosmin is present in water or in foods, it’s going to be easy to tell and you’re not going to enjoy it.

Beets contain geosmin, but the jury is out about whether it comes directly from the soil or if it’s something that beets produce. Many researchers feel that there is enough evidence to say that beets produce geosmin naturally, but it’s not conclusive at this point.

Regardless, the important thing to know is that beets taste like dirt because of the geosmin. What you’re really tasting when you’re eating beets is the geosmin, and it’s normal not to like it.

1 – Pickle the Beets

Picking the beets can significantly alter the flavor, and many people will find them to be more palatable this way. It won’t be difficult to pickle beets, and it’s going to turn them into a rather tasty treat.

It’ll take a little while to do this, but if pickled foods are something that you enjoy, then it’s worth doing. Find a good pickled beets recipe and follow it to a tee so that you can finally enjoy your beets.

2 – Cook Them with a Cream Sauce

Cooking beets along with a type of cream sauce is going to make them taste much different. When you bite into the beets, the cream sauce is going to overpower the dirt flavor of the beets.

Some people make sauteed beets with a cream sauce as a standalone dish. You could also serve beets along with pasta with a type of cream sauce.

It really depends on what you want to do and what you think will go well with the beets. Cream sauce seems to go well with beets, and many people find this to be an ideal way to enjoy beets.

3 – Eat Them as Part of a Salad

Making a salad and putting beets in as one of the ingredients will help you to enjoy beets more. You won’t just be eating beets by themselves, and this means that you’ll be tasting other ingredients along with the beets.

To add to this, you’ll be using some type of salad dressing that will help to alter the flavor of the beets. Biting into beets when they’re diced up and placed in a salad is much different than eating them in other ways.

4 – Serve Beets in Borscht

Borscht might be something that you enjoy and it has certainly become a staple meal in many families. You can put beets in borscht if you so desire, and it’ll do a good job of hiding the dirt taste.

All you’ll need to make a standard beet borscht recipe will be some type of meat or bone stock and some sauteed vegetables. There are a number of different vegetables that you can use for this, and you should just pick ones that you think will go well in beet borscht.

Carrots, onions, and cabbage are among the most common things used in borscht recipes. If you like borscht, then this might be the best way to add beets to your diet.

Some People Like the Taste of Beets

It’s also important to know that some people out there really enjoy the taste of beets. They say that beets have an “earthy” taste, and that’s a nice way of saying that they sort of taste like dirt.

There are those who grow to appreciate beets for how they taste naturally. Some beet enthusiasts say that you shouldn’t bother to try to alter the natural taste of beets.

It’s true that you might not like beets if you feel that you need to change how they taste. Beets aren’t a uniquely nutritious food, and this means that forcing yourself to eat them seems kind of unnecessary.

If you really loathe the dirt taste that beets have, then why not just eat other vegetables? You don’t have to eat beets if you feel as though they aren’t a good fit for your tastes.

Final Thoughts

Now that you understand why beets taste like dirt, it’ll be easier to figure out what you want to do. There are things that can be done to alter the taste of the beets, but you have to ask yourself whether or not it’s worth the effort.

Some people grow to love the taste of beets and don’t think they’re bad at all. If you’re not one of those people, then it might be better to just find other vegetables that have a good nutritional value.

You could choose to make all sorts of different dishes that will help to alter the flavor of beets, though. Some people use cream sauces while others will pickle beets to make them tastier.

Making borscht seems like a good idea when you’re trying to enjoy beets, too. Just know that you don’t really need to force yourself to eat beets.

Even though beets can be a beneficial thing to eat on occasion, it isn’t necessary to force yourself to like them when the taste doesn’t appeal to you. There are plenty of other vegetables out there to consider.

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