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Pickled Zucchini (No Canning Required)

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It's zucchini season! If you are like me and always end up with too many zucchini in your garden (or your friend shares their zucchini with you), you are probably looking for some way to use up that extra zucchini.

Using extra zucchini to make zucchini bread is always an option, but that gets old after awhile. This recipe for pickled zucchini is a definite must-try recipe. Even if you aren't into canning, you can make up a couple of jars and just put them in the refrigerator.

In case you are wondering what pickled zucchini tastes like, it is very similar to sweet bread and butter pickles, but with zucchini instead. It definitely has the slight flavor of zucchini (or summer squash), but they definitely taste like pickles.

Below I have included instructions for making refrigerator zucchini pickles, as well as a recipe for canning them for long term storage.


1 small zucchini
1 small yellow squash
1 half small onion (optional)
1 c. vinegar
2 c. sugar
1 tbsp. salt
1 tsp. celery seed
1 tsp. mustard seed

This recipe makes approximately 1 quart of pickled zucchini. First prepare the dressing by placing vinegar, salt, sugar, celery seed, and mustard seed in a sauce pan.

cucumber salad

Heat until the sugar dissolves and the mixture begins to boil. Remove the pan from the heat and cool.

While the vinegar mixture is cooling, slice the zucchini, yellow squash, and onion. If the squash are small, just slice thinly. If the squash are bigger, slice and then cut the slices in half or in quarters. You can even cut the zucchini into long spears to resemble pickles, if you desire.

*Note: The vegetable measurements don't have to be exact. Use what you have. You can leave the onions out, use just zucchini, just summer squash, or even add bell peppers.

Place the sliced vegetables into a clean quart sized canning jar (or any airtight container). Pour the cooled vinegar mixture over the vegetables, completely filling the jar with the liquid. Place the lid on the jar and place in the refrigerator until ready to serve. Pickled zucchini can be stored in the refrigerator for several weeks or even a month or more.

If you want to can your pickled zucchini for long term storage, then use the following recipe.

Zucchini Pickles

14 c. sliced zucchini or yellow squash
1/2 c. pickling salt
6 c. white vinegar
4 c. sugar
4 tsp. mustard seeds
2 tsp. celery seeds
2 tsp. ground tumeric

Place the zucchini or yellow squash in a large glass or stainless steel bowl and sprinkle the pickling salt on top. Cover the zucchini with water and let the squash sit in the bowl on the counter for about 2 hours.

Transfer the zucchini from the bowl to a colander like this one and rinse the zucchini to get most of the salt off.

In a stock pot combine vinegar, sugar, mustard seeds, celery seeds, and turmeric. Bring to a boil and simmer until sugar is dissolved. Add sliced zucchini to the stock pot and boil for 5 minutes.

Sterilize six pint canning jars, rings, and lids. Fill boiling water canner with water and bring to a boil.

Pack hot zucchini into sterilized jars, leaving 1/2 inch head space. Ladle hot pickling liquid into jars, leaving 1/2 inch head space. Wipe rims of jars with a damp paper towel or dish towel. Place lids and rings on jars.

Place jars in boiling water canner, making sure they are covered with water by at least 1 inch. Bring to a boil and process for 10 minutes. Remove from boiling water canner. Make sure jars are sealed before storing.

Yield: 6 pints

Copyright 2017, Creative Homemaking, LLC. This article may not be reprinted.

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Rachel Paxton
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