If you plan on boiling beets, adding white vinegar (1/4 cup for every 8 cups of water) will help them keep their color. Leave the skin on while the beets are boiling so the juices, which are highly water soluble, won’t bleed into the water. The same goes for baking and steaming—gently rub off the skin under cold running water after these methods of cooking. Beets can be peeled and quartered for oven roasting. You’ll know your beets are fully cooked when you can insert a knife or fork and it is tender all the way to the center.
With no roots attached, beets should last a week to 10 days in the refrigerator. Beets aren’t bashful about sharing their reddish-purple perspective with whatever they come in contact with, whether it’s your kitchen counter, cutting board, hands, other foods, or clothing. In cooking, add beets last to avoid turning the entire dish an unwanted pink hue. Lemon juice or a salt scrub can help remove beet stains from your hands. For fabric and other surfaces, quick attention to soak and scrub is going to be the first and most important step in avoiding a lasting stain.