If you have a vegetable garden, you know how hard it can be to eat all those fresh veggies. Pickling is a great way to preserve them, and it’s easy! The best part about pickling is that you can use any vegetables you like and add your favorite herbs and spices to customize the flavor of your pickles. Play around with flavor pairings to make DIY pickled veggies that are perfectly suited to your tastes. You can’t go wrong, though! Any spice combo you use will leave you with tangy, tasty veggies that you’ll be able to enjoy for weeks.
1. Prepare the jars
Wash your jars thoroughly with soap and water and dry them by hand, or allow them to air dry.
2. Choose and cut your veggies
Decide which veggies you’re going to pickle. The choices are endless–carrots, beets, cherry tomatoes, green tomatoes, green beans, asparagus, cucumbers, and onions are all delicious pickled. Peel and slice cucumbers and cut the rest of the veggies into whatever size and shape you like.
3. Blanch veggies (optional)
Blanching green beans and asparagus can help preserve their color, and blanching beets and carrots can help enhance their flavor. To blanch, put your veggies in a pot with water, and bring the water to a boil. After two minutes, plunge the veggies in ice water.
4. Add desired herbs and spices to jars (optional)
You don’t have to add herbs and spices, but they add tons of flavor.
You can use any combination of fresh herbs and spices you like! Black peppercorns, ginger, turmeric, basil, dill, thyme, mustard seeds, jalapenos, and dried chili peppers are all great options.
5. Pack in the veggies
Pack the veggies tightly into the jars, leaving roughly 1/2 of space at the top.
6. Prepare the brine
The brine is made with salt and equal parts water and vinegar. You can also add sugar if you like. We don’t recommend using aged vinegars, such as balsamic, but red wine vinegar, rice vinegar, apple cider vinegar, and white vinegar all work well.
If you’re using one pound of veggies, make your brine with one cup each of vinegar and water, and one tablespoon of salt. If you’re adding sugar, use one tablespoon. Add the ingredients to a saucepan, bring to a boil, and stir until the salt and sugar are dissolved.
7. Add the brine to the jars
Fill the jars with brine, leaving a 1/2 of space at the top of the jar.
8. Refrigerate and enjoy!
Pickled veggies should keep for one to two months in the refrigerator. Let them sit and marinate for at least 24 hours before you dig in.
Leave a comment and let us know how your refrigerator pickles turned out!