Bread and Butter Pickles

by BC Farms & Food  -  Permalink
July 28, 2020


This is a traditional tried-and-true sweet pickle—wonderful on burgers, sandwiches, mixed into chicken or tuna salad, or eaten straight out of the jar.

Sliced pickling cucumbers, peppers and onions with salt and ice in bowls. Bread and Butter pickles.

We searched in the stores and never found sweet pickles as good as these. Which is why it’s worth it to spend a few hours on a summer day, canning up enough Bread and Butter Pickles for winter.

This recipe takes advantage of freshly harvested pickling cucumbers to preserve fresh summer flavours. You can usually find small pickling cucumbers (sometimes called “pickling dills”) in bulk at farm markets. Always use the freshest pickles possible.

If you’ve never canned before, this is a straightforward recipe for pickling. You’ll need a water bath canner and dedicated canning jars with rings and new lids.

Bread and Butter Pickle Recipe

Jars of Bread and Butter PicklesYield: 6 pints (about 6 500-ml jars)

15 cups sliced pickling cucumbers (about 2 kilos/4.65 lbs)
3 small onions, thinly sliced
1/2 red pepper, thinly sliced
1/4 cup coarse pickling salt
4 cups ice cubes

3 3/4 cups apple cider vinegar
3 3/4 cups sugar
3/4 teaspoon celery seed
1 1/8 teaspoon turmeric
1 1/2 tablespoon mustard seeds

• Wash the vegetables. Cut the cucumbers crosswise in thin slices (in a food processor if you have one). Thinly slice the onions and red pepper.

• Combine the vegetables with pickling salt and ice in large glass or ceramic bowls. Mix well. Place a weight on top of each bowl and let stand for 3 hours. (You can use a plate, weighted down with a can or bottle to keep the vegetables from rising.) This step is important to ensure that your pickles come out crisp.

• Discard the ice. Rinse and drain the chilled cucumbers, onions and peppers thoroughly.

Prepare the pickling jars:

• Sterilize your canning jars and canning lids, following the manufacturer’s safe canning instructions. Keep jars and lids hot until ready to use.

Prepare the brine:

• In a large pot, mix together the apple cider vinegar, sugar, celery seeds, turmeric, and mustard seeds. Add the drained cucumbers, onions and peppers. On medium heat, warm the brine until the mixture is just below boiling. Do Not Boil. The pickles sink down into the brine as it warms.

Remove the pickles and brine from the heat.

Fill and seal the sterilized canning jars, and process for 10 minutes in a hot water bath canner, following the manufacturer’s safe canning instructions.

Canning Resources:

Preparing and Canning Fermented Foods and Pickled Vegetables – National Center for Home Food Preservation (USDA)

Bernardin How-to-Guide

Canning Foods: Your Guide to Successful Canning – published by First Nations Health Authority (West Vancouver, BC)

More recipes:

Cucumber Dill SaladCucumber Dill Salad

5 Classic Salad Dressings5 Classic Salad Dressings

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