Making Cold Pickles

David Trammel's picture

I haven't tried it but I have seen several recipes for making pickles by just storing them for a period in a cold briny pickling solution. Here's one such recipe:


- 35 to 40 small to medium pickling cucumbers
- 1 gallon cold water
- 1 cup cider vinegar, preferably raw
- 2/3 c. coarse canning or kosher salt Do NOT fine or use iodized salt!
- 4 cloves garlic or more to taste
- 4 fresh dill heads ~or~ 4 tablespoons dried dill seed not weed!
- 2 tablespoons mixed pickling spices

- Wash cucumbers but do not scrub them.
- Trim 1/8-inch from the blossom end of each cucumber and slice in half lengthwise or into quarters, depending on how large your cucumbers are and how big you want them to be when they’re done.
- In a gallon jar (or large, wide-mouth, food-safe container) layer the dill heads or seed, garlic cloves, pickling spices and sliced cucumbers.
- In a separate pitcher or bowl, stir together the remaining ingredients until the salt is dissolved.
- Pour the brine over the cucumbers, taking care to make sure all of them are fully submerged. If needed, place a plate or mug or other non-reactive heavy item on the cucumbers to weigh them down and keep them under the brine!
- Cover lightly with a lid just perched on top or secure a piece of cheesecloth over the jar with a rubber band to keep fruit flies away.
- Leave out of direct sunlight on the counter for two to four days*, or until the cucumbers taste like pickles throughout.
- Fix your lid onto your jar or container and chill. These can be stored in the refrigerator for up to six months provided you keep them covered with brine.

- If at any point in the proceedings “fuzz” or “foam” develops on top of the brine, use a spoon to remove it. If there is “fuzz” attached to any of the cucumbers, remove the ones affected and be sure the others are still fully submerged.

Please remember to check your pickles every day to test for doneness!

Have you tried this?

Add your recipes to this thread.

David Trammel's picture

Here's one to use the variety of veggies from your garden this Spring.

"Refrigerator Pickled Salad (Bread and Butter Style)"

Sweet and sour like a classic bread and butter pickle, but with lovely thin strips of pickled vegetables and a little kick of spice, these are simply wonderful. Bonus: no canning required and they're ready to eat in 3 days! Serve this simple pickled salad with grilled meats, on sandwiches, on tacos, with cream cheese in tortilla wraps, over cottage cheese for an afternoon pick-me-up, or just on their own. Recipe very gently adapted from and used with the permission of the wonderful Meseidy of The Noshery.

- 2 seedless English cucumbers also known as English Cucumbers
- 1 large red onion
- 2 pounds baby multi-colour sweet bell peppers or the equivalent poundage of red, yellow and orange bell peppers.
- 8 large or 10 medium cloves of garlic
- 3 cups cider vinegar
- 1 1/3 cups raw or granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons salt
- 2 cups water
- 1 cup ice cubes
- 2 ounces 1/3 cup by volume whole yellow mustard seeds

- Combine the vinegar, sugar, salt and water in a saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Stir until the sugar and salt are fully dissolved, remove the pan from the burner and set aside to cool while you prepare your vegetables.
- Cut the English cucumbers into three pieces each, then cut each piece in half. Thinly slice each of those halves. Transfer the sliced cucumbers to a large mixing bowl.
- Cut the blossom and stem end off of the red onion, peel it and cut in half. Slice each of those halves paper thin. Add the onions to the cucumbers in the mixing bowl.
- Remove the stem and seeds from the bell peppers and thinly slice them lengthwise and transfer to the mixing bowl.
- Peel and slice the garlic cloves as thinly as possible. Add those into the mixing bowl along with the mustard seeds and toss to distribute everything evenly. Pack into a glass gallon jar (or into 3-4 glass quart jars.)
- Add the ice cubes to the partially cooled brine, stir until the ice is melted, then pour the brine over the vegetables in the jar(s). Tightly lid the jars and store in the refrigerator for at least 3 days before eating. Lasts for at least a month when refrigerated.

You can reuse the brine for a second batch of pickled salad by pouring the leftover brine over a freshly sliced batch of veggies in the mixing bowl, toss to distribute the mustard seeds, then use tongs to transfer the veggies to clean jars and pour the remaining brine over them. Again, refrigerate for 3 days before eating.

We slice cucumbers, sprinkle them with a bit of sugar and a tiny dash of salt, then mix rice vinegar and water to pour over them (no measurements, go by taste). Sometimes we'll add sliced carrots or ginger, too. Meant to be eaten the same day, so they're not really pickles for preserving.

kma's picture

I love these fancy recipes!

I do the lazy version when I get a cuke:

mandolin slice cuke and a red onion
layer in jar
put salt and a pinch of dill in as I layer.
Cover with Apple Cider Vinegar

I think they last for about a week in the fridge.