Old Fashioned Beet Balls In Sweet And Sour Sauce


Beet Ball

Beet Ball

Sometimes I’m not quick. My friend, Dot, who owns Silverbrook Farm near Leesburg, VA, gave me some recipes from the 1940’s that she found in an old trunk. The first one was for beet balls in sweet and sour sauce.

I read the name again. Beet balls. Like meatballs, I wondered?

I pictured myself grinding up beets to make balls. What would hold them together? I couldn’t imagine why I’d even want to.

 It wasn’t till the next morning that it hit me. Beets ARE balls! Here’s the recipe – I love the differences in words. I never hear people say cupfuls or tablespoonfuls these days.


1940's recipe for beeets in sweet and sour sauce

Recipe from the 1940's

Start by cooking the beets — she doesn’t say how, but that’s why we have Google.

3 cupfuls of cooked beet balls
Make a sauce by mixing together 
¼ cup cupful of sugar, 1 Tablespoonful of cornstarch,
½ cupful of vinegar, ½ cupful of water.
Cook till slightly thickened, add the beet balls 
and simmer five minutes
then add two tablespoonfuls of butter.
Serve sprinkled with shredded almonds



  1. Marcia Wheatley says:

    Not sure why you’d want to make beet balls but I’m sure they are delicious if you like that kind of thing…. cupfuls as opposed to full cups? I wonder…

  2. Ruthi Postow says:

    Spellcheck said cupfuls is correct — old fashioned but correct.

  3. Eric says:

    Maybe you should take the original beet ball, smash it up, then create a whole New beet ball. It could be held together with elmers glue, which any second grader will tell you is simply delicious.

  4. Liz Swanson says:

    Just realized I am listed on your blogroll. I’m honored! Thank you for your interest my posts…I’m happy to have found your blog!

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