Barbecue Pickles

Barbecue pickles. Yep. And you’re going to be astounded at just how easy they are to toss together. Wait’ll you try them.

A pile of barbecue pickles next to some barbecued meat and a fork.

These barbecue pickles are essentially just jazzed up store-bought dill slices from a jar of everyday classic pickles doused with hot sauce. The everyday staple is quickly and easily transformed into a sweet and hot and tangy pile of crunchy goodness that we simply can’t stop thinking about. One taste and neither will you. And we bet you already have everything you need in your pantry.–Angie Zoobkoff

Barbecue Pickles

  • Quick Glance
  • (3)
  • 10 M
  • 10 M
  • Makes 32 servings | 1 quart (946 ml)
5/5 - 3 reviews
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Grab a liquid measuring cup and pour off 1 cup pickle juice from the jar of pickles. Place a colander in your sink and dump the rest of the pickles and juice in the colander. Rinse with cold running water for about a minute.

In the measuring cup or a bowl, stir together the reserved pickle juice, sugar, hot sauce, garlic, and cayenne pepper. The sugar won’t completely dissolve and that’s okay.

Return the pickles to the pickle jar in batches, shaking lightly between batches to evenly distribute the pickle slices. Pour the sugar mixture over pickles. Screw the lid back on and refrigerate for at least 3 days before serving, giving the pickle jar a quick flip a couple times a day to be certain all that sweet and spicy goodness doesn’t settle to the bottom of the jar.

Serve the barbecue pickles cold, whether you spear them straight from the jar with a fork or plop them alongside a pulled pork sandwich.

Print RecipeBuy the The South's Best Butts cookbook

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Recipe Testers' Reviews

These little firecrackers are a nice touch of sweet and sour heat that work well to break through other heavy flavors such as the barbeque I enjoyed them with. This barbecue pickles recipe is a great way to dress up and bring a new dimension to a jar of pickles you probably already have sitting in your fridge. While I found the flavor to be a bit strong to enjoy strictly as a side dish, I did find that they worked well accompanied by other dishes with strong personalities. They play well together!

Who woulda thunk a jar of regular old supermarket dill pickle chips could become something that can make your eyeballs sweat? I used a jar of my favorite shelf-stable pickles (not the refrigerated fresh-pack kind) that are already quite briny and garlicky so adding some heat just makes sense. Be sure to return the barbecue pickles to the jar in small batches shaking the jar gently so they lay nicely in the jar. There won’t be enough juice to cover all the pickles if you don’t. I shook the jar nearly every time I opened the fridge over those 3 days just to make sure all the pickle chips got their due. If you eat these pickles by themselves, you’ll notice a building and lingering heat. But if you put these little dudes on a sandwich, the heat is slightly tempered and the sweetness comes out. They’re the perfect balance of sweet, spicy, and salty, so it’s hard to stop!


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  1. These are fantastic. My kids (9 and 11) love them on sandwiches and burgers. They also put a chicken nugget between 2 pickle chips for a weird yet tasty bite sized appetizer.

    1. Laughs! They may be on to something, Chris. So glad that they’re such a hit at your house.

  2. I love BBQ pickles because they are the best things combined. It’s pickles and BBQ if you couldn’t tell by the recipe. It’s awesome. Even better with ranch. I love whoever made this.

  3. I forgot to mention that Vlassic brand pickles (the Ovals) make a crisper and more evenly sliced end product than do Mt. Olive pickles; however, they are still also very good.

  4. These pickles are wonderful on any type of sandwich. A plate of cheese and a bowl of BBQ pickles make a great snack while watching a favorite soap…er…cooking show. I have to keep 2 jars going (one to snack from while the other is making friends with the spicy brine). When I start on one jar, I prepare another so I won’t run out. You might enjoy chopping some and using it as a relish for hot dogs or other sausages. I’m thinking of trying this method with bagged sauerkraut. Has anyone done this yet?.

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