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Cold Beet Soup Svekolnik (Свекольник)

Cold Borscht - Svekolnik (Свекольник)

Popular in Russia, Svekolnik (Свекольник) is a vegan cold borscht recipe, much loved and full of vitamins. Like Holodnik, Okroshka, or Gazpacho, cold summer soups are perfect on a hot summer's day. A refreshing lunch or dinner. In Russia, it's all about the beets.
Course Lunch, Soup
Cuisine Russian, Slavic, Ukrainian
Keyword cold borscht, svekolnik
Author Peter's Food Adventures


  • 4 medium beets with leaves if available
  • 2 potatoes
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 green onion sliced
  • 2 pickling cucumbers fresh not pickled
  • 2 tablespoons vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • sour cream omit for vegan
  • 4 tablespoons chopped dill
  • 2 hard boiled eggs optional, omit for vegan


  • Peel the beets, chop into thin long straws or julienne them. Finely chop the beet leaves and set aside. Peel and chop (julienne) the potatoes. Place beets and potatoes in a saucepan with around 1.5 litres of water (6 cups), minced garlic and vinegar. Bring to a boil and allow to simmer for about 20 minutes, until the beets and potatoes are tender. Add the beet leaves, sugar and salt and continue cook for 2 minutes. Set aside to cool.
  • Slice the cucumbers into thing long straws, about the same length and size as the beets. Set aside.
  • Peel the hard boiled eggs and cut in half. Set aside to be used as garnish for each bowl when serving.
  • Add sliced green onion, sliced cucumbers, chopped dill to the cold Svekolnik soup. Taste and add extra sugar or salt if necesary.
  • Allow Svekolnik Soup to be chilled in the refrigerator for a few hours before serving. Soup best when served cold. Serve with hard boiled egg half, sour cream and Russian rye bread.


The vegetables can be diced or even grated for the recipe. If recipe isn't sour enough, then add a small splash of rassol or the juice of dill pickles for extra flavor. If you can't find fresh pickling cucumbers, then use half a long English cucumber.