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Sweet and Spicy Zucchini Pickles

These sweet and spicy zucchini pickles are the perfect way to use up all that summer squash. They are slightly sweet with just a hint of heat from the crushed red pepper and super easy to make! Just pour over the brine and let them cool in the refrigerator. No special canning needed! Plus you can add them to a summer vegetable and hummus board and you have the perfect party appetizer!

sweet and spicy zucchini pickles in a glass canning jar

This post is sponsored by Sabra. All opinions are 100% my own.

It’s that time of the year where we are all swimming in zucchini and other random summer squash.

So. Much. Squash.

Usually, I’m all about slicing it up, sauteeing it with butter and eating it by the forkful OR throwing it in a delicious chocolate batter, and calling it cake.

However, this time around I’m doing something a little different. I decided it was high time to jazz up my preserving skills and make some zucchini pickles.

BUT just not any old zucchini pickles. Sweet and spicy zucchini pickles!

Can I get a HECK YES!

They are so simple to make and require ZERO canning skills. 

I promise you can make these vegetable pickles!

sweet and spicy zucchini pickles on snack board with hummus and vegetables

What type of zucchini should I use?

If you have a garden right now it’s probably exploding with zucchini and yellow summer squash. 

Welcome to the world of gardening. It’s bountiful but it can be overwhelming when you’re staring at pounds of squash. 

For this recipe, I used both green zucchini and yellow summer squash. 

Sometimes people call yellow squash yellow zucchini so whatever you find will work. 

You’ll just want to make sure you don’t use a super large squash because as they get larger they lose flavor. Plus, a giant sliced zucchini is going to have trouble fitting in a typical mason jar. 

sweet and spicy zucchini pickles in a glass jar with the lid off

Do I need to hot water bath can these zucchini pickles?

Nope! There is no need to get out all of your canning equipment. 

You’ll be making what they call “refrigerator canning” or sometimes you’ll see it called “refrigerator pickles” when you use cucumbers. 

This is a super easy process that just involves some clean jars with lids, a warmed “pickling” liquid, and some fresh vegetables. 

sweet and spicy zucchini pickles in small single serving glass jars

How do I store these vegetable pickles?

In the refrigerator! 

Seriously, that’s it! 

Since you’re not hot water bath canning these sweet and spicy zucchini pickles you can’t leave them at room temperature. So they’ll stay nice and crisp right in your fridge. 

The longer you leave them to sit the more “packed” full of flavor they will become. 

However, you don’t want them sitting for too long so I like to eat these up within 2 weeks. 

sweet and spicy zucchini pickles in a jar sitting on a hummus snack board

What do I need to make this recipe?

You’ll need some clean jars, clean lids, and all the ingredients below! 

Now, you can always swap out a few ingredients but don’t mess too much with the liquid amounts. You want to make sure you make enough brine to cover and “cure” the zucchini pickles. 

The sugar I added to this recipe brings in just a touch of sweetness but I would not consider this a “sweet” type of pickle. It’s still very tart with just a little hit of heat. 

What should I use zucchini pickles on?

Anything and everything! 

I especially love them on salads, sandwiches, charcuterie boards, and just eating them plain as a snack. 

Think of them as just like a pickle. 

sweet and spicy zucchini pickles on snack board with hummus and vegetables

Love these sweet and spicy zucchini pickles?

Why not try a few of my other delicious recipes!

sweet and spicy zucchini pickles in a glass canning jar

Sweet and Spicy Zucchini Pickles

Yield: 4 8-ounce jars
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Pickling Time: 12 hours
Total Time: 12 hours 25 minutes

These sweet and spicy zucchini pickles are the perfect way to use up all that summer squash. They are slightly sweet with just a hint of heat from the crushed red pepper. Add them to a summer vegetable and hummus board and you have the perfect party appetizer!

Ingredients

For Zucchini:

  • 1-1/2 pounds zucchini, green or yellow, sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 8 sprigs fresh dill
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and halved
  • 2 teaspoons peppercorns
  • 2 teaspoons brown mustard seeds
  • 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper

For Brine:

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup white vinegar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt

Instructions

For Zucchini:

  1. Set out 4 clean 8-ounce canning jars.
  2. Place zucchini into the clean jars making sure to pack the zucchini but leaving room for the spices and the brine.
  3. Add 2 pieces of dill, 2 garlic halves, 1/2 teaspoon peppercorns, 1/2 teaspoon brown mustard seeds and 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper into each jar.
  4. Pour hot brine over the pickles making sure the zucchini is fully submerged. Leave about 1/2 inch headspace at the top of the jars, place lids on the jars, screw shut, flip over the jars to let the spices evenly disperse through the jars, let jars cool on the counter and then add to the fridge and let the zucchini pickles cool.
  5. Eat within a month.

For Brine:

  1. Add all the ingredients to a small saucepot over medium-high heat. Whisk to combine.
  2. Bring the mixture to a boil and make sure both the sugar and kosher salt are dissolved.

Notes

You can also make these pickles in 2 large wide mouth 16-ounce jars. Just double up the ingredients into 2 jars instead of dividing by 4.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 100Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 3218mgCarbohydrates: 20gFiber: 3gSugar: 15gProtein: 3g

This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.

Did you make this recipe?

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Wednesday 22nd of July 2020

[…] Sweet and Spicy Zucchini Pickles […]

Les

Monday 19th of August 2019

Does this work with cucumbers?

nutmegnanny

Friday 6th of September 2019

I have yet to make it with cucumbers but I don't see why it wouldn't work. It's just a quick pickling process.

Erin | Dinners,Dishes and Dessert

Thursday 30th of August 2018

This couldn't look any more perfect!

Toni | Boulder Locavore

Wednesday 29th of August 2018

I will definitely try this! Looks so easy and really good!

Paula

Wednesday 29th of August 2018

What a great way to use up summer squash!

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