My Quick & Easy Refrigerator Pickles are a great way to elevate any savory dish. My No Cook Refrigerator Pickles are the perfect pickles to try out if you haven’t made homemade pickles before. The preparation time is minimal, there’s no need to heat anything in a pot.
Full Recipe Ingredients/Instructions are available in the
recipe card at the bottom of the post.
You can find important tips/tricks in the
As well as adding great crunch and texture, these old fashioned refrigerator pickles bring a lovely balance of sweet, sour and salty flavors that adds a real tang and zing to food.
I love making my own easy homemade pickles, and with this recipe I show you how to prepare pickles in only 5 minutes. Then you just need to leave the pickles in the refrigerator, allowing the flavors to develop, and after 8 hours they are ready to use.
You will sometimes hear refrigerator pickles called bread and butter pickles, because they are so delicious they can be served on top of bread and butter!
I make my refrigerator pickles with onion and cucumber, but this simple process can be used to make a variety of different pickles. I’ve made some suggestions later in the post, however, I do recommend you give my Quick Pickled Onions recipe a try too.
Here’s what you will need to make the best homemade refrigerator pickles:
- Vinegar – I use equal quantities of both hot water and white vinegar to make the pickling liquid.
- Sugar – granulated sugar is added to the pickling liquor for the perfect balance of sweet and sour.
- Kosher Salt – I add salt to balance out the sweet and sour flavors in this pickle.
- Black Pepper – I also like to add fresh cracked black pepper to season the pickle.
- Cucumbers – I use 3 medium-sized pickling cucumbers, like Kirby pickles, thinly sliced on a mandolin.
- Onion – half a sweet onion is added along with the cucumber.
How to make Refrigerator Pickles
Add hot water, white vinegar, granulated sugar, kosher salt, and black pepper into a heat-proof jar and cover and shake to combine until the sugar and salt are dissolved. I use a 32-ounce mason jar.
Add thinly sliced cucumbers and sweet onion to the jar, pushing the cucumbers and onions down into the liquid.
Make sure all the vegetables are covered with liquid.
Cover and store in the fridge for at least 8 hours before serving.
To serve, remove pickles and onions with a fork or slotted spoon from the brine.
These tips will help you make the best refrigerator pickles you’ve ever tried.
- I suggest using a mandolin to get thin slices of cucumber and onion. However, take care when using a mandolin to avoid slicing your hand and fingers.
- If you don’t have a mandolin, a sharp kitchen knife will work well too.
- Always make sure the cucumber and onion are covered in the pickling liquid to stop them from spoiling.
- Always store refrigerator pickles in the refrigerator.
- White vinegar can be replaced with white wine, apple cider, or sherry vinegar.
- Swap sweet onions for white or red onions, or shallots.
- Add some spices to the pickling vinegar, like black or pink peppercorns, coriander seeds, red pepper flakes, fennel seeds, or mustard seeds.
- Add a few sprigs of fresh herbs like dill, tarragon, or parsley.
- If you like pickles, use the same process to pickle other vegetables. Try thinly sliced onions, red chili peppers or jalapenos, carrots, radishes, or zucchini.
These Easy Refrigerator Pickles go with just about any savory dish. I like to eat them alongside my Southern favorites, like Fried Chicken. I also love them over seasoned fish, like my Whole Oven-Roasted Fish.
They’ll add a great zing to your hot dogs, burgers, salads, and sandwiches too. Try them with my Oven-Baked Hot Dogs, Juicy Air Fryer Turkey Burgers, Korean Sloppy Joes, or my Garlic Butter Cheese Steak Sandwiches.
How long will Refrigerator Pickles last?
Store the pickles in an airtight jar or container, fully submerged in the pickling liquid. Keep the container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 weeks for optimal freshness and flavor.
Tools You’ll Want to Use
This handheld mandolin is a dream when it comes to thinly slicing vegetables. It also doesn’t take up much storage space.
Refrigerator pickles are preserved in vinegar and must be stored in the refrigerator to stop them from spoiling. Whereas regular pickles are pasteurized and this process allows them to be stored on the shelves for extended periods of time, without the need to refrigerate until they are opened.
You can use pretty much any vinegar for pickling, it all comes down to the flavors you like. I’ve used white vinegar as I like its strong, sharp flavor. However, you could use red wine, white wine, apple cider, or sherry vinegar too.
If you have tried these Refrigerator Pickles, or any other recipe on my blog, then please rate it and let me know how it turned out in the comments below!
- 3/4 cup hot water
- 3/4 cup white vinegar
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tbsp kosher salt
- 1 1/2 tsp fresh cracked black pepper
- 3 medium-sized pickling cucumbers like Kirby pickles, thinly sliced
- 1/2 medium sweet onion thinly sliced
- Add hot water, white vinegar, granulated sugar, kosher salt, and black pepper into a heat-proof jar and cover and shake to combine until the sugar and salt are dissolved. I use a 32-ounce mason jar.
- Add the cucumbers and sweet onion to the jar, pushing the cucumbers and onions down into the liquid. Make sure all the vegetables are covered with liquid.
- Cover and store in the fridge for at least 8 hours before serving.
- To serve, remove pickles and onions with a fork or slotted spoon from the brine.