Quick & Easy Homemade Pickles

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I first tried this recipe as part of the Amish menu for our Amish vs. Cyborgs party. I’m not sure it quite qualifies – it doesn’t involve any arcane traditional canning methods, just a bit of slicing, stirring, and sitting in the refrigerator. The only problem with making this recipe and sharing it is you may find friends asking how often you’re going to make them and how they can get more.

For those of you who don’t work with me or occasionally live with me, here’s a recipe so you can make your own. For those who do, I’ll still be happy to be your “dealer”. I’ve got more than a gallon in my fridge right now (had to use up all the cucumbers coming ripe in the garden at once).

I’ve written out the large batch and small batch quantities below – I usually do larger batches (the bowls here are a double large batch) but it would work just fine to make them one jar at a time. We keep leftover jars from spaghetti sauce or mayonnaise around and wash them out carefully to use for things like this without having to buy jars.

3 Hour Refrigerator Pickles

  • Servings: 2 versions: 10 cups or 2.5 cups
  • Time: 3 hours
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

pickles - ingredients

large batch (makes about 10 cups, or 5 pints):

  • 6 lbs cucumbers
  • 4 medium onions
  • 4 cups sugar
  • 4 cups vinegar
  • 1/2 cup salt
  • 1 tsp celery salt
  • 1 tsp mustard seed
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground turmeric

small batch (makes about 2 1/2 cups) :

  • 1 1/2 lb cucumbers (smaller ones are usually crisper)
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 1 c. vinegar (I like to use apple cider vinegar, if I have it)
  • 2 Tbsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. celery salt or celery seed
  • 1/4 tsp. mustard seed
  • 3/8 tsp. turmeric (one heaping 1/4 tsp. is probably close enough)

Note: This is one recipe where a mandoline will make everything much, much easier, especially if you’re doing a large batch. Check the pictures below to see the one I have – you can find smaller versions at Target, or try using a slicer attachment on a food processor if you have that.

pickles - sliced veggiespickles - cucumbers with mandoline
pickles - madonline outside
Slice cucumber 1/4 inch thick. Slice onions 1/8 inch thick. If it’s nice weather, I sit outside to do the onion slicing to keep from “perfuming” the house unnecessarily. Place both in a large bowl and stir to mix well.

Combine remaining ingredients in a separate large bowl and stir until sugar is dissolved. Pour over cucumbers and onions. Stir well for 5 minutes.

pickles - spices.jpg

Cover and refrigerate 3 hours before serving – if you let it go overnight, you’ll have more juice come out of the vegetables. If you aren’t going to eat them immediately, you’ll want to carefully spoon them into jars and try to make sure they have enough dressing to cover them so they’ll stay crunchier. They keep fine in the fridge for months.

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