A few years ago, Russell and I took a southern road trip. We visited Hilton Head Island, Savannah, and Charleston – and in Charleston, we ate at a little place called Jestine’s Kitchen. This tiny restaurant had the best pickles, served in cute little dishes, at every table. They were perfectly sweet and vinegar-y and I’ve wished many times that I had the recipe since.
Our garden has been producing tons of cucumbers this year, so many that the two of us can’t keep up with them. But I haven’t been feeling the need to can for real yet, since it’s time-consuming, so I thought refrigerator pickles (quick!) would be a good solution. After searching the net for recipes, this is my attempt at creating tasty refrigerator pickles.
Easy Refrigerator Pickles Recipe
- 4-6 medium cucumbers
- 1 medium sweet onion
- 8 tsp white sugar
- 2 tbsp kosher salt
- 1 tbsp peppercorns
- 3 cups white vinegar
- 3 cups boiling water
- canning jars
- Rinse and dry cucumbers. I peeled every other strip, to leave a little color and add dimension.
- Slice cucumbers in thin, round shapes.
- Add cucumbers to bowl, and mix with sugar, salt, and peppercorns. The salt will pull a lot of water from the cukes, but keep it.
- Slice onion into thin rings, then quarter into half-moon shapes. Mix with cucumbers in bowl.
- Boil the water and vinegar together; I used a tea kettle to easily pour.
- While water boils, prepare canning jars. I ended up with 7 or 8 from this recipe. Place equal amounts of the cucumber/onion/sugar/salt/peppercorn mixture to each jar, filling a little more than 3/4 full.
- Then pour boiling water over each jar, until filled. Cucumbers and onions should be covered.
- Seal and refrigerate immediately. These kept for up to three weeks for us.
I will say that these weren’t quite as good as Jestine’s – maybe I needed more sugar? Or there’s a missing secret ingredient? – but I wasn’t disappointed in them, either. It was a nice way to get rid of our garden’s produce, and we gifted a few jars to family.