Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Remove stalks/leaves from washed beets, add beet roots to the pot of boiling water. Boil for 30-45 minutes, or until fork tender. Submerse beets in very cold water, allow to cool enough to handle easily.
Remove the skin from the beets: you can use a vegetable peeler if you want, I prefer to sort of rub the skins off – they come off easily.
Fill your LARGE pot with at least 6″ of water, put on medium or high heat to bring it to a boil as you prepare your brine. In another large pot (not the canning pot!), combine all brine ingredients. Stir well and bring to a boil.
While the brine comes to a boil, slice your beets. I like to aim for a little thicker than ¼″ thick, cut into half circles. If the beet is too big for a half circle to fit into a jar opening well, I’ll cut them into quarter circles.
Once brine comes to a boil, add beet slices and allow to cook for 5 minutes.
Once beets have cooked, use a slotted spoon and canning funnel transfer beet slices to sterilized jars. Shake the jars as you go, letting the beets settle in tightly – you want these to be packed! Once jars are filled with beets, use a clean ladle and the canning funnel to pour brine into prepared jars, leaving about ½″ head space.
Wipe off the top edges of the jar with a clean, wet towel, top each with a new, sterilized lid, and carefully screw on a clean lid ring. I like to use a kitchen towel for this, the jars are HOT! Carefully place your jars of pickles into the boiling water pot, allow to process for 30 minutes. CAREFULLY remove them, allow to cool overnight.
The next morning, check to make sure that all of the jars achieved a proper seal – try to push down in the middle of each lid. If it “pops”, it did not seal. Any jars that didn’t seal should be put in the fridge and used in the next few weeks.
Store in a cool, dark area (ideally) for up to 1 year, chill well before eating.