If you’re like me and foolishly planted more than 1 zucchini plant, you’re probably wondering what to do with all those fresh zucchinis that just won’t stop growing. One way of being creative with zucchinis is by making them into pickles. There are bread-and-butter zucchini pickle recipes on the USDA canning guiderecipe along with lots of good technical information about canning. This recipe is for dill-flavored zucchini pickles, but feel free to modify it for yourself!
5-8 fresh zucchini, sliced into 1/4″ rounds (or quarters if it’s a monster zuke)
1 onion, thinly sliced into quarter circles
several garlic cloves
dill clumps (flowers and/or leaves)
2 T. mustard seeds
1 T. coriander seeds
4 c. water
1 c. vinegar
2 c. sugar
1/2 c. pickling salt (plus more to sprinkle)
Take the zucchini and onions and sprinkle with pickling salt. Toss together in a bowl or saucepan and cover with ice cubes. Put about an inch of cold water into the pan and set aside to sit an hour or two.
While that’s soaking, sterilize the canning jars by putting them (clean) into a 250 F oven for 10 minutes (without lids).
Mix the water, vinegar, salt and sugar together in a pot and heat until the sugar and salt dissolve. This is called the brine.
Once the zucchini have soaked long enough, drain them but don’t rinse much. Place into a stockpot along with the dill, garlic, seeds and brine.
Bring to a boil and let boil a few minutes. Also get the canning lids in some hot water to soften the seal.
When the zucchini have changed color but are still firm, remove from heat. Using a slotted spoon, ladle them into the sterilized canning jars. Pour enough brine in to fill to the top (but leave about 1/2″ of headspace). Hand-tighten the lids and place the jars into a canner full of hot water.
Let the jars sit in the boiling water of the canner for at least 10 minutes (check out the USDA’s site for times adjusted for elevation). Remove when the time is up and set aside to cool. At some point the lids should “pop!” down, sealing the jar. If they do, you can store the jars for at least a year. If they don’t seal, you can try to re-can them or store them in the refrigerator.
And there you go!
You have zucchini pickles! This recipe is a dill-flavored one that makes pickles similar to the cuke kind, but go ahead and try other flavors! That’s the great thing about making your own homemade pickles – you get to make them exactly as you like them!
If your cucumber plants are producing as much as a zucchini does, check out my homemade dill pickle recipe with cucumbers!
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