Quickles. Swift Sours. Brisk Brines. Whatever you call them, it’s time for their debut. (Cue the herald’s music.)

One problem for us, though. Remember that big, splashy garden The One and I had? Well, that’s history. Now, it’s a big splashy pool we’ve dreamed about for years. We’ve traded tick repellent for sunscreen, wrinkled fingers for green thumbs, and ankle-deep manure for cool water over our heads.

Our local farmer’s market in New Milford is now the center of our veggie adventures. We transform our haul into all kinds of crunchy bites of summer. Below are some of our favorite quick pickle recipes. My faves of all faves? The pickled red onions and pickled zucchini. (They’re awesome on burgers.)

The word "David" written in script.
Three and a half quick dill pickles, dill seed, and a sprig of dill on a decorative white plate.
Claire Winfield
1 of 6

Quick Dill Pickles

These quick dill pickles–or, as we like to say, quickles–are made with Kirby cucumbers, vinegar, sugar, garlic, coriander, mustard, and, of course, tons of dill. No canning involved. How easy is that?
Recipe

These quick dill pickles are simply the best! I’ve been searching for the perfect pickle recipe, and I will look no further.

I’ve done canned pickles in a water bath for long term storage, and I find them too vinegary. I’ve tried the making the fermented kind, and I find them too funky or salty. These pickles are just right.

They stay crunchy and taste delightfully fresh. Best of all you can make them all year round.

Linda m.
A canning jar overflowing with pickled red onions and a fork resting on the jar.
Ted Axelrod
2 of 6

Pickled Red Onions

Pickled red onions are a life-saver when it comes to amping up Taco Tuesdays. Or Sandwich Saturdays. Tangy from lime juice and flavored with cumin and oregano, they're packed with taste.
Recipe

Obsessed!! I love all pickled onions and these are sooooo good. I added a little extra Mexican oregano and they were perfect on our street tacos and even the kids loved them.

alysa
Three jars of Israeli pickles, one with cauliflower, one with cucumbers, and one with red onion.
Quentin Bacon
3 of 6

Israeli Pickles

These Israeli pickles boast a Middle Eastern flair and turn out lovely pickled cauliflower, cucumbers, and red onion. Each ingredient is preserved in a different spiced vinegar mixture.
Recipe
A close-up of a glass jar, filled with sliced, pickled zucchini and a few slices of onion.
David Reamer
4 of 6

Pickled Zucchini

These pickled zucchini, preserved with Champagne vinegar, celery seeds, tumeric, onions, are easy to make, not too sweet, and can be used just like cucumber pickles.
Recipe
A Mason jar filled with pickled shallots, submerged in brine.
Maura McEvoy
5 of 6

Pickled Shallots

These pickled shallots are appealing not just because they’re quick and easy but because they’re pretty and pink and lend a burst of welcome acidity to just about anything. Just rice wine vinegar, sugar, and a pinch of salt make them a cinch to whip up, too.
Recipe

This is a great recipe for pickled shallots! Its so nice to have a recipe for something pickled that only takes six hours from start to ready-to-eat.

billy
Pickling liquid being poured into a full jar of pickled jalapeno peppers.
Quentin Bacon
6 of 6

Pickled Jalapeno Peppers

These fast pickled jalapeno peppers, a Korean staple, are made with soy sauce, garlic, and rice vinegar. The perfect condiment for just about anything–tacos, grilled chicken, home fries, machaca, eggs. Takes only 20 minutes to toss together.
Recipe

This is one of the most delicious things ever made or tasted. Ive made it over the last few years regularly and is always worth it, so much so that my friends have got me making it for them too!

An absolute must have all through the year.

anahita s.

Quick Pickle FAQs

how long do quick pickles keep?

Refrigerator pickles should be consumed within 3 weeks of making.

what’s the best way to store quick pickles?

After preparing your pickles and letting them cool to room temperature, stash the jars in the refrigerator.

What’s the difference between refrigerator pickles and traditional pickles?

While both types of pickles are made with vegetables in a brine solution, refrigerator pickles are made and refrigerated immediately, with the intention of consuming them within a period of a few weeks.

Traditional pickles are water bath canned to be preserved for long-term storage. They are shelf stable and can be stored at room temperature for up to a year before opening.

how do you serve pickles?

Besides snitching them directly from the jar, there are many uses for pickles. So many, that you’ll likely find yourself making your favorites on repeat. Here a few suggestions:
– Stuff them into sandwiches or classic cheeseburgers.
– Offer them as an easy cocktail nibble or as part of a charcuterie board.
– Punch up the flavor of your go-to grain bowl.
– Scatter them atop white pizza.
– Add a new dimension to a simple green salad.

Are you still looking for ways to use up an overabundance of summer produce? Perhaps to allow you to enjoy it all year long? Try these ratatouille pickles, or these pickled green tomatoes. Come February, you’ll be so glad that you did.




About David Leite

I count myself lucky to have received three James Beard Awards for my writing as well as for Leite’s Culinaria. My work has also appeared in The New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, Saveur, Bon Appétit, Gourmet, Food & Wine, Yankee, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, and more.


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4 Comments

  1. Do you have a recipe for bread starter.
    Can you share it please.
    Thank you.
    Maria Jones.

  2. Question – if I want to make the quick dills and eat them within a few days, do I still have to boil the jars? I was planning on using square glass containers with plastic locking lids. Am not a canner so I wasn’t sure.

    1. From a food safety perspective, Rachel, yes, we’re always going to tell you to sterilize your jars. That said, it tends to be far more important for long term canned food storage than a quick pickle that will be consumed within a few days. As long as you’re comfortable with it, and you start with very clean jars, you should be fine.