Reusing Leftover Beetroot Pulp
Updated: Feb 8
It's about time that we start including more vegetables in our cocktails, not just in the form of juice, but also in the form of pulp!
There are only so many directions to take when it comes to using leftover pulp for cocktails.
The options are usually one of the three:
Salt or Sugar Rim
I find that beet pulp is best used for turning into a powder, not because I want to use it as a rim, but rather because it can be used for cocktails and quick on the spot infusions!
Beetroot is usually used for its juice and can provide sweet and earthy flavors in drinks. Once juiced it leaves behind its solid pulp which is still packed with flavor and color!
If you want to get more out of your beetroot and prevent waste, save the pulp and dehydrate it. Once dried, it can be ground and used as a powder for adding into hot or cold cocktails and mocktails.
The slightest amount of powder can completely change the color and flavor of a cocktail, and the small particles can be strained out by double filtering. Because this powder is extremely flavorful, you'll only need a small amount for each cocktail!
While the juice carries lots of sweetness and earthiness, the powder will have mostly just earthy notes.
That difference in flavor can serve as a great option when it comes to building drinks and balancing flavors.
Using Beetroot in Cocktails
Of all the vegetables out there, beetroot is by far one of the most used in drinks and has become a top choice amongst many bartenders.
Now that we're in winter, beetroot can be easily found everywhere at affordable prices.
Not only is it affordable, but it also contains lots of juice and pulp that can be used for a wide array of dishes and drinks.
In cocktails, beetroot (in the form of juice or powder) works really well with Scotch, Bourbon, and other types of Whisk(e)ys to complement its earthy and sweet notes.
When used with Gin or Tequila, its vegetal notes are more enhanced.
Beetroot juice only needs somewhere between 15 to 45ml to give enough flavor for any drink!
Using both beetroot juice and pulp can result in a very cost-effective and sustainable option for your business as well as the environment.
You can juice a beetroot in two different ways:
1. With a Juicer, or
2. With a Blender and some Water.
A juicer is by far the easier way because the machine separates the solid from the liquid part of the vegetable.
If you don't have your own, you can still use a blender. Just make sure to chop the beets finely into pieces and pour some water over them in a blender.
Give it a whirl and then separate everything using a cheesecloth or strainer.
Regardless of which method you use, you'll always be left with two ingredients:
The Solid (pulp)
and the Liquid (juice)
The Juice can be added directly into cocktails, made into a cordial/liqueur, or even used as shrub, foam, etc.
The Solid Pulp can instead be transformed into a powder. It doesn't require any additional ingredients making it easy to execute. Just be aware that you might have to clean up a bloody looking mess made from the color of the beets.
Dehydrate and Blitz
After having juiced your beetroot(s), you'll find yourself with plenty of leftover pulp that needs to be used. Collect it and pop it in your dehydrator or oven at around 160F for 5 hours, or until it is completely brittle.
Once it is brittle and crispy, all you need to do is crush it using a spice grinder, coffee grinder, or a mortar and pestle.
Grind it up into a powder without adding anything to it, and you'll notice its deep ruby red color.
Once your powder is done, it's ready to be used.
Isn't that easy? Literally any bar team or home can accomplish this in a quick and efficient way without any measuring, additional ingredients, or heavy prep required.
Using both the juice and powder can be very affordable behind the bar and kitchen. Even the smallest amount of either one can pack a lot of flavor!
How To Use
Simply add 1 to 2 Barspoons of your powder into any cocktail. Shake it up with the rest of the ingredients and double filter it to remove any of the solid particles. Your drink will be infused just from the slightest contact it makes with the other liquids and can be a quick option for anyone who wants an earthier or slightly more vegetal drink.
Why not use a winter vegetable with a winter cocktail that can warm you up!?
Try using the powder in a Beetroot Hot Toddy! Simply use the beetroot powder like if you were to make a cup of tea. Let it sit and brew with hot water.
Add 1 or 2 barspoons-worth per drink, just like you would do with a cold cocktail.
Once brewed and infused, separate with a fine mesh filter or tea strainer, and quickly add your other ingredients to the mix (Whiskey, Lemon, Honey, etc), stir, and serve.
The result will be a blood-red Hot Toddy with added complexity and earthiness!
Say Warm & Stay Sustainable! 🌱
(a cocktail from Evelina in Brooklyn)
60ml Japanese Whisky (Scotch also works)
20ml Ginger Syrup
30ml Lemon Juice
1 Barspoon of Beet Powder
150ml of Hot Water
Garnish with Dehydrated Lemon Wheel
Process: Let the hot water steep with the beetroot powder while you prepare the rest of the cocktail.
In the cocktail glass, combine your Whisky, Ginger Syrup, and Lemon Juice.
Pour your Beetroot infused Hot Water through a fine-mesh strainer to combine with the rest of the ingredients.
Give everything a quick stir and garnish with a dehydrated lemon peel!