These quick zucchini pickles are simple to make and delicious. Zucchini are sliced and pickled with dill and spices for an easy refrigerator pickle that takes only 10 minutes to make. Use this small batch recipe for making crunchy pickles this summer.
When it comes to pickles most people think of cucumbers, but many other vegetables are delicious when they are pickled! And that includes the cucumbers close relative, zucchini.
This easy refrigerator zucchini pickle recipe is a great way to use zucchini, which always seem to be over abundant in the summer. I love zucchini, but my family is less enthusiastic and doesn’t appreciate eating it five nights a week during peak season!
Why You Will Love These Zucchini Pickles
- These are quick, refrigerator pickles, so there is no canning or special equipment necessary.
- This is a small batch recipe that makes one jar of pickles, which is easy to fit in the refrigerator and use up in a few weeks.
- Zucchini pickles are similar to cucumber pickles but are firmer and more crisp, which gives these pickles a nice crunch.
Making refrigerator pickles means your kitchen will smell like vinegar for a few hours! So you might as well make a few different types of pickles – try quick pickled green beans or bread and butter pickles.
- Zucchini – Chose a fresh and firm zucchini for making these pickles.
- Vinegar – I like to use white vinegar for pickles. It is clear and colorless, so it doesn’t affect the color of the brine and lets the vegetables and spices shine through.
- Salt – Salt is essential for pickles. Use kosher salt or pickling salt and don’t use regular iodized salt.
- Dill and garlic – Some sprigs of fresh dill and cloves of garlic give these pickles great flavor.
- Spices – I used mustard seeds, peppercorns and dill seed in these pickles.
I like to make my pickles in 8 ounce half pint jars. This gives me enough pickles for a few weeks, but not so many that my refrigerator fills up with pickles.
Glass jars like Mason jars or Weck jars are perfect for pickles. The vegetables and spices show through the glass and look gorgeous.
Since these pickles aren’t being canned or heat processed you don’t have to use canning lids. I frequently use simple reusable plastic lids on my Mason jars.
Zucchini Pickles vs Cucumber Pickles
If you haven’t had pickled zucchini before it is natural to wonder how they differ from more common cucumber pickles! While the two vegetables look similar zucchini contain less water than cucumbers.
This means the zucchini will release less water as they pickle. So they stay crisp and crunchy longer than cucumber pickles. There isn’t a lot of taste difference, because the taste is more influenced by the spices you include in the brine.
In my experience most people don’t even notice the difference and assume they are eating cucumber pickles, unless you tell them otherwise.
Step by Step Instructions
1. Fill the Jar
Wash and dry the zucchini and slice it into rounds. Put the zucchini rounds into the half pint jar until it is mostly full.
Then add some sprigs of dill and a clove of minced garlic to the jar. Filling the jar before making the pickle brine is the easiest way to make sure you don’t end up with a lot of extra sliced zucchini.
2. Make the Brine
Combine the vinegar and spices with water in a small saucepan. Then heat the saucepan until the salt dissolves.
You don’t have to boil the water for these pickles. The heat dissolves the salt and helps the other spices release their flavor, but it doesn’t have to reach a boil for that.
Take the brine off the heat and pour it into the jar over the zucchini slices. Then put the lid on the jar and let it cool to room temperature on the counter.
Once it is cooled put the jar in the refrigerator and let it rest for 1 day to let the flavors develop and infuse the zucchini. They keep for about 3 weeks in the refrigerator.
How to Serve
These quick pickles are perfect for serving any place you’d serve pickles. Put them on a burger, use them to top off hot chicken or just put a jar out during a picnic.
If your brine doesn’t quite cover the zucchini just add more water to top the jar off. Since these are refrigerator pickles the water/vinegar ratio is not critical.
You can use the same recipe to make yellow squash pickles. Alternating zucchini and yellow squash pickles would look amazing on a veggie tray!
Add some crushed red pepper or a small hot pepper to give these pickles a spicy kick!
These refrigerator pickles will keep in the refrigerator for about 3 weeks. They will get less crisp as time goes on.
Iodized salt will make the pickle brine cloudy. In terms of pickling it works fine and the pickles are safe to eat. But it makes the pickles less attractive and less appetizing.
Find More Quick Pickle Recipes
- 1 zucchini
- 2 sprigs dill
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 3/8 cup water
- 3/8 cup white vinegar
- 1/2 Tablespoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon peppercorns
- 1/4 teaspoon dill seed
This recipe is not suitable for canning, it is for making refrigerator pickles.
- Slice the zucchini into rounds about 1/8 inch thick. Slice enough to fill an 8 ounce jar and place the slices in the jar.
- Add the dill sprigs and minced garlic to the jar with the zucchini.
- Combine the water, vinegar, kosher salt, mustard seeds, peppercorns and dill weed in a saucepan. Heat, stirring until the salt dissolves.
- Pour the contents of the saucepan into the jar over the zucchini.
- Put a lid on the jar and let it cool to room temperature, then place in the refrigerator. The pickles will be ready to eat after being refrigerated overnight.
If your brine doesn't quite cover the zucchini just add more water to top the jar off. Since these are refrigerator pickles the water/vinegar ratio is not critical.
You can use the same recipe to make yellow squash pickles.
Add some crushed red pepper or a small hot pepper to give these pickles a spicy kick.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 8Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 398mgCarbohydrates: 1gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 0g
Nutrition facts are estimates.