When pickles come to mind, I think of summers in North Carolina, standing beside my mom and grandmother at the steamy canning area in our basement. While it would be fun to revisit the conversations and family secrets shared over hot jars and bubbling brines, I confess that today I cringe at the thought of how much work it would take to make those pickles--especially with my 6- and 7-year-old daughters at my side.
Related: 33 Southern Pickle Recipes to Relish
That's why I'm abandoning traditional canning methods and embracing the recipes here. Savvy cooks have munched on refrigerator or freezer pickles for years, but this particular batch of recipes is tailored for every busy Southern cook. We've updated flavor profiles with spicy peppers, aromatic garlic, and fresh dill. And the amounts aren't overwhelming. You can enjoy these small-batch pickles for a few days and have some to spare for the cookout this weekend. Be sure to use pickling cucumbers, which are short and stubby and mainly available in the summer. The results are terrific, and only you will know how easy they really are.
Pack a Pickle With Style
- Turn Pickled Asparagus into stirrers for Bloody Marys.
- Peppery Texas Pickles and Hot-and-Sweet Freezer Pickles invite your basic burger to pucker up. Offer these choices at your next burger bash.
- Liven up your Deviled Eggs by adding chopped pickles. Be sure to pat the pickles dry with paper towels before chopping and folding them in.
- Add pickles to savory chicken salad. Or garnish your salad luncheon plate with a skewer of deviled eggs and pickles.