Garlic Dill Cucumber Pickles

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All that hard work we put in this summer… all the focus, and persistence, imagination, daydreams, lazy chats, and late sunsets…. it’s time to pack all of that up in some vinegar and spices and pickle it for the Fall.  All of that summer goodness doesn’t go away!  It’s just gets salty and tart and puts of a thick scarf for the new season.

I always have a hard time with the transition between Summer and Fall.

Summer is my favorite season, so getting into Fall is always a kicking and screaming endeavor until it’s just cold enough to eat doughnuts and hide in big chunky sweaters.

I’m trying to embrace this farewell to Summer with a little dignity and preservation… ie: pickles.

This is my first time making pickles.  It’s a whole new world!  Veggies in jars with vinegar.  Let’s ease our way in.

Garlic Dill Cucumber Pickles

Even pickles look dreamy in sunlight and Instagram.

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This is a small batch of pickles.

Two pounds of cucumbers and three cups of liquid make three pint jars of pickles.

This feels like a manageable batch considering my amateur pickling skills and the small size of my refrigerator.

Garlic Dill Cucumber Pickles

Spices like dill seed, red pepper flakes, and black peppercorn are added to the bottom of the pickle jars.  Garlic cloves too!  Let’s not forget those!

Cucumbers are packed in the jars and topped with a warm and salty vinegar-water solution.  It’s really quite simple!

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I had so many questions when it came to making pickles.  Am I boiling jars?  Am I boiling cucumbers?  How does this work?

Here are some questions that might come up for you, because they came up for me.  Do I really need pickling salt?  Can’t I substitute with a salt I actually have? (Yes… I sure did.) Also, why can’t I just make Strawberry Jam and call it a day.

Canning can feel a bit daunting, but there are ways to get the canning fix without being entirely overwhelmed.

I’ve found some wonderful recourses are Food in Jars: Preserving in Small Batches Year-Round by Marisa McClellan, and Canning and Preserving by Ashley English.  Love both!

Also… the pickles are spicy and stellar!  Next up: scarf shopping.

Homemade Garlic Dill Cucumber Pickles

makes 3 pint jars

inspired by The Kitchn

Print this Recipe!

2 pounds Kirby or Persian cucumbers

1 1/2 cups apple cider vinegar

1 1/2 cups water

2 tablespoons pickling salt (I used pure sea salt, see notes in the post above)

6 cloves garlic, peeled

3 pinches crushed red pepper flakes

3 teaspoons dill seeds

1 1/2 teaspoons black peppercorns

Wash and slice the cucumbers.  Leave the skin on, but wash well enough to ensure that there’s no dirt on the cucumbers.  Slice into wedge strips or rounds.

In a medium saucepan, bring vinegar, water and pickling salt to a simmer.  Once simmering, remove from heat.

Divide the spices between three clean pint jars.  Add the sliced cucumbers and pack tightly.  You don’t want to pack hard enough to bruise the cucumbers, but make sure they’re as cozy as can be.  Pour warm brine into each jar, leaving about 1/2-inch headspace.

Tap the jars on the counter top to loosen and air bubbles.

Place lids on the jars and let cool to room temperature before storing in the fridge.

Allow to rest for 2 days before enjoying.  Pickles will last up to two weeks.  

59 thoughts on “Garlic Dill Cucumber Pickles

  1. I need to start pickling! I bet homemade pickles are so, so, so good! This recipe sounds awesome and I am all about keeping summer with us as long as possible!

  2. Thank goodness you made pickling something us undomesticated folk can do. I have been to intimated by pickles for ever.
    I think I have to made these to go one one of your pickle sandwiches. Just to taste if it is right of course ;)

  3. I don’t do pickles but I have tons of tomatoes that have to be canned soon. The love of gardening and seeing these beautiful plants growing all summer have now become hard work. LOL But after all the hard work they taste wonderful when making chili or Italian sauce on Sundays and just eating the buggers out of a jar with a spoon when too lazy to make anything is so good.
    Speaking of pickling try green beans with garlis dilled., SO GOOD.
    By the way I do love fall I think better than summer. That’s when I really start to bake and eat and eat. Have fun canning. Paulette

  4. Man! I love fall (Or Autumn as we call it).

    The crunchy leaves under foot, the scarves, boots, jumpers, coats.
    The feeling of being cold and snuggling to get warm. Rosy cheeks, misty mornings, oranges and golds, cinnamon and pumpkin in everything! Need I go on?

    I am sick of being sticky and hot already, roll on autumn I say, roll on.

  5. Errm, Joy. Fall? You’re telling me that people can actually tell the difference between Summer and Fall in Los Angeles?! Or was it an unusual heatwave last September when I first moved and thought I was going to die from the heat? And also, chunky sweaters?! I can only think of one week in January over the past 12 months where one was necessary!!!

    1. Going to have to agree with Rachael here. LA doesn’t have seasons! I lived there for three years. It rains about 1-2 weeks out of the year. I live in SF now and we can barely claim mild seasonal changes :)love pickles and the recipe! Thanks, Joy

    2. Los Angeles has seasons. They’re just more subtle than you’re accustomed to. Also… it was below freezing at the beach here last winter. Don’t make me argue my city’s weather. Please.

  6. I love pickling things. I recently pickled some carrots and parsnips. I love anything pickled or fermented. Vinegar is the best. And so is preserving summer’s bounty. I am like you, summer is my fave season, and even though it’s 90F in the shade in San Diego the past 10 days or so, I love it :)

    Your pickles look awesome. All those jars are just so satisfying to see, right!

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