Guys, have you tried making refrigerator pickles before?!?
I know, I know, I’m a little late to the party on this one. Frankly, I’m late to the entire liking-pickled-foods club in general. They’ve just never really been my thing. And some of those soggy, sour, store-bought pickles I tried as a kid were definitely not my thing.
But earlier this summer, my mom mentioned that she has been making refrigerator pickles non-stop, and insisted I give them a try. And somewhat to my surprise, I loved them. Like, made one batch, and then another, and then another loved them. Like, started buying English cucumbers in bulk loved them. Like, where-the-heck-have-these-crisp-and-garlicky-and-freaking-irresistible-guys-BEEN-all-my-life loved them.
So of course, I had to share them with you, in hopes that you might love them too. ?
The brilliant thing about refrigerator pickles is that they only take about 5 minutes to prepare, and require ZERO steps of the traditional canning process. Which is great, because I discovered a few years ago that canning is not my thing. (Although who knows, maybe that will change someday like being a pickle-eater.) 😉
Simply slice up an English hothouse (seedless) cucumber into rounds or spears.
Mix up a simple brine with water, vinegar (white or apple cider), kosher salt, garlic cloves (the more the merrier, if you ask me), lots of peppercorns, a bay leaf, and a pinch or two of crushed red pepper flakes (if you’d like some heat).
Then add some fresh dill and the cucumbers to the brine. Place the lid on the jar, and give it a good shake. Then pop it in the refrigerator for about 2 days to let all of those flavors “pickle” those pickles. Well, wait 2 days if you have the patience. I usually find myself reaching for a pickle to “taste-test” the second they get nice and chilled in the fridge…
Then voila — with literally just about 5 minutes of prep time and a few days marinating in the fridge, these delicious pickles will be yours to enjoy! I love them because they’re nice and crisp (not soggy), perfectly vinegar-y (feel free to experiment with more or less vinegar to find your preference), definitely garlickly (my favorite), and they have a hint of a kick from the black and red pepper. Absolutely delicious.
And bonus — since cucumbers are on the “Dirty Dozen”, one of the benefits of making pickles homemade is that you can use organic cucumbers and ingredients in this recipe if you’d like to, and then feel even better about enjoying this healthy snack.
Anyway, I’m clearly fairly new to the world of refrigerator pickles, so if any of you have any more tips or favorite add-ins, please be sure to share in the comments below! This is my favorite recipe that I’ve tweaked so far, but I’ll share more later if I have any new flavor discoveries too. 😉
Happy pickling, friends!
Yield: 8 servings
Easy Refrigerator Pickles
This Easy Refrigerator Pickles recipe only takes about 5 minutes to prep, and makes perfectly crisp and delicious pickles that you’ll LOVE!
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 3 tablespoons white vinegar or apple cider vinegar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons kosher or pickling salt*
- 2 teaspoons black peppercorns
- 5 cloves garlic, peeled
- 6 large sprigs fresh dill
- 1 bay leaf
- (optional) 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, or more/less to taste
- 1 large English hothouse seedless cucumber, sliced into rounds or spears
- Add the water, vinegar, salt, peppercorns, garlic, dill and bay leaf to a large (1-quart) jar — or divide the mixture evenly between two small (1-pint) jars — and stir to combine.
- Add the sliced cucumbers to the jar(s). Then place the lids on the jar(s), and shake to combine.
- Refrigerate ideally for at least 2 days before eating, although you can totally dive in before that time. The pickles will keep in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
*Do not use iodized table salt for this recipe.
**Feel free to stir in some sweetener (honey, sugar, etc.) if you’d like sweeter pickles.