Pickled Jalapenos – Immaculate Bites


Pickled Jalapenos – Enjoy a quick and easy way to preserve your jalapenos deliciously. Delightfully tart and crunchy, you only need eight ingredients and less than 20 minutes! The combination of tart, sweet, and spicy flavors is highly addicting. A versatile condiment you can add to almost any dish, from tacos to sloppy joes.

Pickled jalapenos in a jar with jalapeno peppers scattered around the jar

The perfect condiment to spice up your meal! Pickled jalapenos have always been my favorite condiment. The tangy and spicy combination with a hint of sweet blends wonderfully with almost any dish and makes it more enticing and exciting.

Also, the sourness and mild sweetness from the pickling juice add a new layer of flavor and balance the heat. So, if you adore spicy food like me, you’re definitely gonna love this one. Add it to your tacos and burritos, and you’ll surely be craving more. 

Plus, it’s a great way to preserve jalapenos if you “accidentally” bought too many. Only a spicy food lover like me can relate. 😉 

What You Need to Pickle Jalapenos

What you need to pickle jalapenos

Although basic pickling only needs water, vinegar, and salt. Adding more complex flavors like cumin and garlic is undoubtedly a game-changer.

  1. Water – Vinegar is pretty strong on its own. So the water dilutes the vinegar’s sourness, so it’s not so overpowering.
  2. Distilled White Vinegar – I used distilled vinegar because the neutral taste allows the jalapenos and garlic to shine through. Of course, you can use apple cider vinegar for more depth.
  3. Sugar – This one balances the vinegar’s acidity. You can totally omit the sugar if you prefer tart jalapenos. You could also use honey if you’re staying away from refined sugar. And erythritol replaces sugar in an almost equal ratio for a keto-friendly concoction.
  4. Non-Iodized Salt, Sea Salt, or Kosher Salt – Make sure to use the salt with no added iodine to prevent your pickled jalapenos from darkening. Salt with anti-caking agents like table salt may cause the pickling liquid to be cloudy.
  5. Spices – Garlic, whole peppercorns, and cumin kick this recipe up a notch for a non-boring spicy mix.
  6. Jalapeno Peppers – I like this pepper because it packs quite a bit of heat and unique taste. Preserving them through pickling saves me from extra grocery trips since I like adding them to my dishes.

How to Pickle Jalapenos

Sliced jalapeno peppers and pickling liquid

Preparing the Pickling Liquid

  1. Wash and Dry – Make sure to wash and dry the jalapenos. 
  2. Slice into Rings – Cut the stem and slice the jalapenos into rings. Don’t forget to wear gloves to prevent burning your skin or accidentally touching your eyes while handling these spicy peppers. (Photo 1)
  3. Combine all the Ingredients – In a medium pot, combine the water, vinegar, sugar, salt, garlic, peppercorns, and cumin. (Photo 2)
  4. Boil the Pickling Solution – Heat on medium-low, stir until the sugar and salt dissolve, then bring to a boil. Remove the pot from heat.
Transferring the sliced jalapeno peppers and pickling liquid into the jar

Brine and Store

  1. Transfer to Jar – Transfer the jalapeno slices into a clean jar using tongs, then pour the pickling liquid into the same jar. (Photo 3)
  2. Stir and let it sit – Stir and make sure everything is submerged in the pickling liquid. Let it sit for 10-15 minutes. (Photo 4)
  3. Cool – Let it cool at room temperature before sealing the lid.
  4. Refrigerate for longer shelf life.
Slices of sliced jalapeno peppers on a spoon and in a jar

Recipe Variations

  1. Swap out the jalapenos for any hot pepper, like scotch bonnet peppers, habaneros, or even milder peppers like banana peppers.
  2. Add other veggies, such as carrots, celery, red bell peppers, cauliflower, etc., for a spicy giardiniera.
  3. Red jalapeno peppers are beautiful and spicier with a hint of sweetness.

Tips and Tricks

  1. Use fresh jalapenos that are plump and firm to the touch with shiny skin.
  2. Be sure to wear gloves to prevent burning your hands from the jalapeno pepper oils.
  3. If you prefer whole jalapenos, poke them or pierce them with a paring knife so the pickling liquid can get in.
  4. Do not use aluminum, copper, brass, galvanized, or iron utensils or containers. They can create a chemical reaction with salt and vinegar during the pickling process. I recommend glass jars or ceramic containers.
  5. You can also add bay leaves and coriander seeds if you want to add more flavors to your pickling liquid.
  6. Don’t forget to refrigerate to maximize the shelf life.

FAQs

Pickling vs. Fermenting

Both processes preserve food and prolong its shelf life. Natural preservatives such as vinegar and salt are ideal for these processes. Frequently, they are interchangeable, but they are different.
Pickling usually involves submerging food like fruits or vegetables into vinegar or water and vinegar to produce a sour flavor like what they do in canned pickled jalapenos. Here are my pickling recipes you can try: pickled onions and pickled eggs.
Fermenting, on the other hand, doesn’t usually use vinegar. Salt or salt with water creates an environment for good bacteria to grow. There is no need to add vinegar because the salt draws the liquid out through osmosis, and the resulting lactic acid gives it a sour taste similar to vinegar. The lactic acid then reduces the pH level enough to preserve the vegetables. Kimchi, sauerkraut, and miso paste are popular fermented foods.

Are pickled jalapenos hotter than fresh?

Actually no. The vinegar tones down the spiciness. If you taste the pickling liquid, you’ll notice it is as hot as the pepper because the vinegar absorbs its spiciness. Therefore, the peppers are less spicy.  

How long do pickled jalapenos last?

I recommend consuming homemade pickled jalapeno peppers within two months to be on the safe side. Store them in a glass or ceramic jar with a lid and refrigerate them to maximize their shelf life.

An opened jar full of pickled jalapeno peppers

What to Serve With Pickled Jalapenos

Adding sugar, garlic, pepper, and cumin to this pickled jalapeno peppers makes it more flavorful and savory—a perfect complement to spice up the dishes below.

More Flavorful Homemade Condiments

Conclusion

Spice up your life with this super-quick pickled jalapeno recipe. How do you use pickled jalapenos? Leave a comment below, and if you’d like more great recipes coming into your inbox, sign up for my newsletter. ❤️

Pickled Jalapenos

Pickled Jalapenos – Enjoy a quick and easy way to preserve your jalapenos deliciously. Delightfully tart and crunchy, you only need eight ingredients and less than 20 minutes! The combination of tart, sweet, and spicy flavors is highly addicting. A versatile condiment you can add to almost any dish, from tacos to sloppy joes.

Instructions

  • Make sure to wash and dry the jalapenos. 

  • Cut the stem and slice the jalapenos into rings. Don’t forget to wear gloves to prevent burning your skin or accidentally touching your eyes while handling these spicy peppers. 

  • In a medium pot, combine the water, vinegar, sugar, salt, garlic, peppercorns, and cumin.

  • Heat on medium-low, stir until the sugar and salt dissolve, then bring to a boil. Remove the pot from heat.

  • Transfer the jalapeno slices into a clean jar using tongs, then pour the pickling liquid into the same jar. 

  • Stir and make sure everything is submerged in the pickling liquid. Let it sit for 10-15 minutes.

  • Let it cool at room temperature before sealing the lid.

  • Refrigerate for longer shelf life.

Tips & Notes:

  • Use fresh jalapenos that are plump and firm to touch with shiny skin.
  • Be sure to wear gloves to prevent burning your hands from the jalapeno pepper oils.
  • If you prefer whole jalapenos, poke them or pierce them with a paring knife so the pickling liquid can get in.
  • Do not use aluminum, copper, brass, galvanized, or iron utensils or containers because they can create a chemical reaction with salt and vinegar during the pickling process. I recommend glass jars or ceramic containers.
  • Red jalapeno peppers are beautiful and spicier with a hint of sweetness.
  • You can also add bay leaves and coriander seeds if you want to add more flavors to your pickling liquid.
  • Don’t forget to refrigerate to maximize the shelf life.
  • Please keep in mind that the nutritional information is a rough estimate and can vary significantly based on the products used in the recipe.

Nutrition Information:

Serving: 23g| Calories: 6kcal| Carbohydrates: 1g| Sodium: 354mg (15%)| Fiber: 1g (4%)| Sugar: 1g (1%)| Vitamin A: 98IU (2%)| Vitamin C: 10mg (12%)


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