Perfect Pickles

There’s more to pickles than cucumbers and dill

There’s more to pickles than cucumbers and dill. All over the world you’ll find a huge range of pickles, from fruits like peaches and pineapple to vegetables like okra and onions to even shrimp. We’ve rounded up our favorite tart, vinegary pickle recipes.

Dill pickles are classic for good reason. A cucumber dill pickle with fennel, coriander, and mustard seed is perfect for adding crunch and acidity to a sandwich—use them to balance the richness of homemade pimento cheese. Dill pickles don’t have to be cucumber, though. We also love using dill to flavor our spicy okra pickles with habanero or Scotch bonnet chile.

Pickles are popular across the world. In India, a spicy lemon pickle is a common condiment. Nectarine murabba is a sweet-savory jam pickle common in Indian and Pakistani cuisines that’s equally good on grilled meat and ice cream. Cauliflower, cabbage, and carrot come together in a Malaysian-style pickle flavored with turmeric, peanuts, tamarind, fish sauce, oil, chile sauce, garlic, and ginger.

Hot peppers are frequently pickled in South America. Pickled serranos with cumin, oregano, and allspice are a versatile condiment, as are our Brazilian pickled chiles. To make them, use a mix of Scotch bonnets, habaneros, jalapeños, and whatever other chiles you choose. Leaving the seeds in will make for extra-hot pickles.

Pickles can go beyond produce. Pickled shrimp are a Southern staple. Flavored with Old Bay, celery seed, bay leaves, and more, they are briny and just spicy enough.

Find all of these preparations and more in our collection of pickle recipes.

D.I.Y. Pickles

D.I.Y. Pickles
Whether crunchy topper, tangy relish or simply on the side, no sandwich plate is complete without them. Get the recipe for D.I.Y. Pickles » Joseph De Leo

Watermelon Rind Pickle

Watermelon Rind Pickle
From the school of waste-not-want-not eating comes pickled watermelon rind: a spicy, tangy, tender treat from a something more often discarded. Get the recipe for Watermelon Rind Pickle » Matt Taylor-Gross

Quick-Pickled Cauliflower

Quick-Pickled Cauliflower
A quick pickle of cauliflower, peppers, and golden raisins is a simple, perfectly acidic counterpoint to a rich main dish like flank steak. Get the recipe for Quick-Pickled Cauliflower » Laura Sant

Cauliflower, Cabbage, and Carrot Achaar (Malaysian-Style Pickle)

Cauliflower, Cabbage, and Carrot Achaar (Malaysian-Style Pickle)
This Malaysian-style mixed vegetable pickle is made with a rempah, or spice paste, stirred into the brine for an extra boost of flavor and texture. Get the recipe for Cauliflower, Cabbage, and Carrot Achaar (Malaysian-Style Pickle)» Khushbu Shah

Pickled Cranberries

Pickled Cranberries
Pickling takes the natural sweet-tart nature of the cranberry and amplifies it. Get the recipe for Pickled Cranberries » Nicole Franzen

Pickled Radishes and Green Onion

Pickled Radishes and Green Onion
Crisp, spicy radishes get a dose of toasty warmth from sesame oil in this quick pickle, brightened with scallions and sesame seeds. Get the recipe for Pickled Radishes and Green Onion » Maxime Iattoni

Mixed Baby Vegetable Pickles

Mixed Baby Vegetable Pickles
The recipe for this lacto-fermented mixed pickle is flexible: Use whatever vegetables happen to inspire you at the market, and feel free to tweak the seasonings. The benefit of using baby vegetables is not only aesthetic; because of their small size, they cure faster. Also because of their small size, and their sweet, mild flavor, we don’t want to use too much salt in the brine: As a safeguard, we add just a bit of white wine vinegar. Get the recipe for Mixed Baby Vegetable Pickles » Todd Coleman

Yucatecan Pickled Red Onions (Escabeche de Cebolla)

Yucatecan Pickled Red Onions (Escabeche de Cebolla)
Red onions soak up the flavors of oregano and cumin in this classic pickle relish. Get the recipe for Yucatecan Pickled Red Onions (Escabeche de Cebolla) » Todd Coleman

Brazilian Pickled Chiles (Conserva de Pimenta)

Brazilian Pickled Chiles (Conserva de Pimenta)
These Brazilian pickled chiles are a classic condiment alongside rice and beans, roast pork, or fish. Get the recipe for Brazilian Pickled Chiles (Conserva de Pimenta) » James Oseland

Pickled Ramps

Pickled Ramps
Pickling is a great way to preserve ramps, the wild spring onions that overflow at the market for a few weeks each spring. Their garlicky flavor combined with a vinegar kick adds a bright punch to all sorts of dishes. Get the recipe for Pickled Ramps » Anna Stockwell

Pickled Bananas (Guineos en Escabechea)

Pickled Bananas (Guineos en Escabechea)
Unripe, green bananas pickled in a garlicky brine make a refreshing condiment alongside the roast pork shoulder. Get the recipe for Pickled Bananas (Guineos en Escabechea) » Penny de los Santos

Indian Lime Pickles

Indian Lime Pickles
Tangy, tender lime pickles are a flavorful staple of India, a condiment that adds sour, spicy punch to meals. Get the recipe for Indian Lime Pickles » Todd Coleman

Pickled Tomatoes

Pickled Tomatoes
These quick pickles will improve as they sit; make them ahead and keep them in the fridge for up to two weeks. Get the recipe for Pickled Tomatoes » Todd Coleman

Javanese Cucumber and Carrot Pickle (Acar Timun)

Javanese Cucumber and Carrot Pickle (Acar Timun)
This relish is an easy-to-make version of Indonesian pickle. Get the recipe for Javanese Cucumber and Carrot Pickle (Acar Timun) » Todd Coleman

Sour Pickles

Sour Pickles
Most commercial pickles are preserved with vinegar, which is the product of one kind of fermentation. But sour pickles develop their complex flavor thanks to lactic fermentation, the process by which the naturally occurring bacteria Lactobacillus transforms and preserves foods, usually in a brine. The balance of salinity is key: You want enough salt to get a nice, crisp pickle and to prevent the growth of pathogens or mold, but not so much that the pickles are unpleasant to eat. Get the recipe for Sour Pickles » Todd Coleman

Watermelon Rind Pickles

Watermelon Rind Pickles
Crunchy, sweet watermelon pickles offer a bright contrast to smoked meats. Get the recipe for Watermelon Rind Pickles » Todd Coleman

Piquant Pickled Pineapple

Piquant Pickled Pineapple
Garlic and Sriracha balance the sweetness of pineapple in this Southeast Asian-inspired pickle; a splash of fish sauce adds a robust savory edge. Get the recipe for Piquant Pickled Pineapple » Helen Rosner

Spicy Lemon Pickle

Spicy Lemon Pickle
A salt and spice cure transforms fresh citrus into tart, briny pickles that perk up many Indian meals. Smita Chandra uses them as a condiment to punch up soft naan flatbreads and steamed white rice. Get the recipe for Spicy Lemon Pickle » Ingalls Photography

Nectarine Murabba with Cardamom, Lemon and Rosewater

Nectarine Murabba with Cardamom, Lemon and Rosewater
Ripe nectarines and a touch of rosewater transform into a fragrant condiment that’s equally good topping ice cream as it is accompanying grilled meat or fish. Nectarine Murabba with Cardamom, Lemon and Rosewater Laura Sant

Pickled Asian Pears with Lemon

Pickled Asian Pears with Lemon
Developed by cookbook author Karen Solomon, this tangy, piquant Asian pear pickle tastes great on its own, on a chicken sandwich, in an arugula salad, or paired with blue cheese. If you can’t find Asian pears, any kind of pear can be subbed in here; just look for specimens that are on the small side and rather firm. Get the recipe for Pickled Asian Pears with Lemon » Helen Rosner

Vegetables Pickled in Kelp Vinegar

Vegetables Pickled in Kelp Vinegar
Dashi, an enhanced kelp stock with rich umami flavor, is a staple component of Japanese cooking; it has the remarkable effect of accentuating the flavors of anything cooked in it. Here, it adds depth to a pickle brine from award-winning cookbook author Hiroko Shimbo. We use radishes, but any sturdy vegetables, such as peppers, cauliflower, or onions, will do. Get the recipe for Vegetables Pickled in Kelp Vinegar » Andre Baranowski

Pickled Shrimp

Pickled Shrimp
Briny, faintly spicy pickled shrimp are a staple of Southern cuisine. In this Georgia-inspired version, frozen raw shrimp are a fine substitute for fresh. Get the recipe for Pickled Shrimp » Todd Coleman

Spicy Okra Pickles

Spicy Okra Pickles
Based on a recipe from Eastern Shore musician William “Pooh” Johnston, these spicy pickles are a delicious accompaniment to summertime meals. Get the recipe for Spicy Okra Pickles » Helen Rosner

Pickled Peaches

Pickled Peaches
These peaches are a pleasure to eat in autumn—but make them only in summer peach season, with fruit that’s fully ripe but not too soft. Get the recipe for Pickled Peaches » Helen Rosner

Pickled Serrano Chiles

Pickled Serrano Chiles
Pickled serranos make a versatile condiment that adds tartness and heat to all sorts of dishes; for the tastiest results, allow the pickled peppers to sit in the refrigerator for at least a week before you use them. Get the recipe for Pickled Serrano Chiles » André Baranowski

Pickled Blueberries

Pickled Blueberries
Chef Tyler Kord of No. 7 Sub Shop in New York City created these sweet-tart pickled blueberries for his sandwich of brie, pistachios, and chervil. Get the recipe for Pickled Blueberries » Michael Kraus