Can it up! Pickles…a how to.

Canning is a wonderful way to keep summer fruits and vegetables for use in the winter. It’s an especially great thing to do if you are trying to live frugally and make use of in-season produce.

My bloggy friend Allie of Forgotten Beast and I are going to be writing some very detailed, step by step canning “how to” posts. We plan to do this twice a month for a few months. If you would like to take part in our bi-monthly canning link up please contact me at

Some of the posts will be jams or jellies. Some of the posts will be pickled items. I can not speak for Allie, but I do not have a pressure cooker, so I will not be doing any recipes that need one.

All of my recipes posts will be “do-able” with a large stock pot.

Once you’ve read my post please check Allie’s site. She has a jam recipe for you.

Beware, there are A LOT of pictures in this post. A LOT.


Let’s get our Can on!

Garlic-ey Dill Pickles

slightly adapted from a recipe in Put ’em Up! by Sherri Brooks Vinton

You will need:

  • 4 pint sized canning jars
  • 6-8 small-medium sized cucumbers
  • 8 plus garlic cloves or 8 plus tsp diced garlic (fresh or jarred) How garlic-ey do you want it?
  • 4 cups white vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons of sea or Kosher salt
  • 2 Tablespoons of sugar or 4-5 Tablespoons for less zesty pickles
  • 2 Tablespoons plus of fresh or dried Dill
  • 1 teaspoon peppercorns
  • 1 tablespoon celery seed
  • 2 cups water
  • a large stock pot
  • a pot to cook the liquid ingredients in
  • Optional ingredient : Ball® Pickle Crisp® Granules I did not use this, but if you want crisp pickles you could add it.

What to do:

  • fill the canning jars with water, place them into the stock pot and fill the pot with water. Fill the pot until the jars are covered with water. Place the pot on the stove, turn the stove on and set the temperature to medium-high heat. This will warm your jars and your canning water.
  • I roasted my garlic in olive oil for about 6 minutes

  • In a separate, non-reactive pot combine the vinegar, water, sugar, salt, garlic, dill, celery seed, and peppercorns. Bring to a low boil.

  • While your jars are warming and your brine is coming to a boil, wash and thinly slice your cucumbers.

  • Once the canning water is boiling, use tongs to remove the jars: one at a time, pouring the hot water that was in the jars back into the pot. Leave the canning pot heat on. Repeat with the 3 remaining jars. Carefully dry the jars. They will be hot.
  • With a slotted spoon, remove the dill, garlic and peppercorns from the brine and place them into the jars. Reserving a few to add on top of the cucumber slices.

  • Fill the jars up with the sliced cucumbers, add remaining garlic, dill and peppercorns.

  • pour hot brine over the cucumber slices, leaving 1/2 inch head-space between the liquid and the top of the jar. I use my thumb as a space tester.
  • If I can place my thumb just inside the lip then I have left enough room. I had extra brine left. I could have made a 5th jar of pickles. Make an extra jar if you want to, I just tossed the rest of the brine.

  • I use a chop stick to remove air bubbles from the jar

  • wipe the lip of the jar

  • place the lid on the jar

  • place the band on the jar, tighten finger tight

  • repeat on the 3 remaining jars
  • use tongs to place the jars into the still bubbly canning pot, add more water if necessary. Make sure the water level is over the top of the jars. I use my chop stick to check the water level.

  • once the water returns to a boil set the timer for 10 minutes and cover the pot with the lid.

  • Process in boiling water for 10 minutes.
  • turn off the heat
  • let the jars sit in the pot for 5 minutes
  • use tongs to remove from the pot and place them on a towel on the counter-top
  • Allow the jars to cool. They will make a pop noise as they cool, this is totally normal.

  • Allow to set for 24 hours. Remove bands and check the seal on the lids. I pick them up by the lids to check the seal, be careful just in-case the jar is not sealed…you do not want to wear pickles!

  • If the jar is not sealed, you can reprocess the jar (clean the lip, replace the lid and band, boil for another 10 minutes) or place it in the fridge. Fridge=use within 3 weeks.
  • Label the sealed jars, and place the jars in a cool, dark place. You can store them for up to one year.

Your pickles will be good now, better in 2 weeks. Enjoy!

Stay tuned for another canning link up post and a canning linky in 2 weeks!

Get ready, Get set, Get canning!

Don’t forget to go check out check Allie’s post for a sweet jam recipe.





  1. Great post Jamie. I also don’t have a pressure cooker, so I love your canning recipes. Also, because they’re tasty of course.

    • Thanks Greg. I considered buying one, but they’re a little pricey…and They scare me a little. If I ever get to a point where I want to put up soups I may have to buy one.

  2. Fantastic post – think I´m going to give this a go with some of my little cucumbers. I also have some long green chillis which I´ll soon need to think about preserving…so any tips on this would be most welcome as I have never done this before! Love the sexy black & white photo by the way 🙂

    • I’ll be on the look out for a green chilli canning recipe Tanya. I’ve got a few canning books, so I’ll see what I can find. The picture is due to the wonders of photobucket. It’s amazing what you can do.

  3. Looking good 😀 I think I’m going to try pickling for my next adventure–I’ve made bread and butter pickles many times (a favorite) but it just might be time to branch off into something unusual.

    • Pickling is pretty easy, that’s why I picked it. Your jam looks amazing!

  4. I just read the joint post over at forgottenbeast! Great tutorial!

    • Thanks! 🙂 I was really excited to work with Allie!

  5. as I am sucrose intolerant I have to make all my own pickles etc. so these posts will be very helpful indeed 🙂

    • I’m glad you enjoy them! 🙂

  6. Definitely following along this one! I am ‘putting up’ my first tomorrow. Pickled peppers. I must be insane! LOL

    • Oh awesome! If you post about it, be sure to link up with us in 2 weeks! Can’t wait to hear about your peppers!

  7. I love pickles and have never tried to vamp them up! Great idea! Thank you so much for linking up at Savvy HomeMade Monday. We are partying again and I hope you will stop by! 🙂

    • Thanks for the comment Erin! What a great link-up you’re hosting!


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