Finnish Potato Salad with Apples & Beets

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The saltiness of your pickle brine will determine whether to salt your final dish more thoroughly. Though it may seem a touch laborious to prepare all the roots in this dish, the result is a worthwhile crowd-pleaser. Don’t bother peeling organic potatoes or carrots; the skins are rich in nutrition! Use a crisp snacking apple, such as Mutsu, Honeycrisp, or Granny Smith.


  • 6 medium potatoes, such as russet
  • 4 large carrots
  • 4 medium beets, any variety
  • 3 apples, cored and diced
  • 1 leek
  • 8 dill cucumber pickles, diced
  • 1/2 cup minced dill
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup pickled beet brine or dill pickle brine
  • 1 teaspoon salt, or more to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  1. Scrub the potatoes and carrots clean. Chop them into 1/2-inch cubes so they are roughly uniform in size. Place the potatoes and carrots in a large pot of cold water, cover, and bring to a boil. Reduce to a gentle boil and cook for 15-20 minutes, until fork-tender but not mushy. Drain in a colander and set aside to cool.
  2. Scrub the beets clean and trim the roots and stems. In a separate pot submerge the beets in cold water, cover, and bring to a boil. Boil for about 35 to 40 minutes, until a fork can easily pierce the beets. Drain and rinse with cold water. Set aside to cool. Once cool, use your hands to peel the skin–it will come away easily. Chop into 1/2-inch cubes.
  3. Halve the leek and rinse meticulously between the leaves, where grit and sand like to cling. Slice thinly and add to a large serving bowl.
  4. Add the potatoes, carrots, beets, diced apples, diced pickles and minced dill to the same bowl, combining with your hands. Cover and chill until ready to serve.
  5. Just before serving, prepare the dressing: In a small bowl, whisk together the heavy cream, pickle brine, salt, and pepper. Fold the dressing into the salad and serve chilled.
  6. Store leftovers in a sealed container for up to 7 days.


Adapted from Fire + Ice, by Darra Goldstein