Get your Can on….Candied Jalapeños and a canning link up

Once you’ve read my post, please check out Allie’s post she’s made a  vegan tomato sauce! Also, link up with us! We’d love it if you did!

Two weeks ago, I was standing in the kitchen wearing latex gloves, staring at 6 pounds of jalapenos wondering what I got myself into.

I’ve worked with jalapenos before, we’ve done the slice and de-seed dance, but I have never candied jalapenos before.

Candied Jalapenos, also known as Cowboy Candy, are a sweet and spicy treat…or so I’ve read.

Why am I making sweet, spicy jalapenos? For another recipe. I’ll go into that later. So, an internet search lead me to Foodie with Family. Seriously, if you have not already…check Rebecca’s site out. She is AMAZING! Seriously….


I made two different batches of these little beauties. One batch where I followed Rebecca’s instructions * and one where I went a little wild and made a less spicy version.

*I did not have ground cayenne pepper so I substituted crushed red pepper flakes.

Here is what you will need to make these lovely, spicy-sweet little rounds.

Cowboy Candy By Rebecca of Foodie with Family….gently adapted

  • 3 pounds of fresh jalapeno peppers
  • 6 cups of sugar
  • 2 cups of apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon of celery seed
  • 3 teaspoons of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon of ground cayenne pepper I used crushed red pepper flakes

Okay…Please, please wear gloves. You’ll be sorry if you don’t. Trust me.

  • Remove the stems from the jalapenos and slice the jalapenos in somewhat uniform slices (rounds). Set the jalapeno slices aside
  • In a large-ish stock pot, combine the sugar, vinegar, turmeric, celery seed, garlic and cayenne red pepper flakes, bring the brine mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat and allow the mixture to simmer for 5 minutes. Add the jalapeno slices and this is important…allow the mixture with the jalapenos to simmer for 4 minutes…no more, no less.
  • Remove the jalapeno slices from the brine with a slotted spoon. Place the jalapeno slices into clean, sterilized canning jars. Be sure to leave enough head space. If you’ve read my previous canning posts, you know that I use my thumb as a space tester.
  • Turn the heat up on the liquid brine/syrup mixture and bring it to a full, rolling boil. Boil on this high setting for 6 minutes.
  • Using a ladle, pour the VERY HOT syrup into the jars. Leave enough head space so the jars will process properly. You need to use a chopstick or something else to release any trapped air pockets in the jars. I use a wooden chop stick. Add more syrup to the jars if necessary.
  • Wipe the rims of the jars, place the lids and bands on the jars, process the jars in a hot water bath for 10 minutes for half-pints and 15 minutes for pints. The water level should be at least 2 inches above the top of the jars. Do not begin your time countdown until the water is at a full rolling boil.
  • Remove jars from pot after processing, allow to cool on the counter top for 24 hours, then check the jars seals. Wipe, label and store in a cool dry place for up to a year.

  • I know you want to eat them as soon as possible right? Yep, I figured. Allow the jalapeno slices to “mellow” for at least 2 weeks before you crack the seal and gobble them up.
  • Rebecca recommends that you save any left over brine/syrup to use as a marinade or a sweet spicy kick in dishes.

The second batch I made were diced and low spice. Let me tell you peeps….

Oh. My. Goodness.

I love these. I think I’ve said before that I’m not a super spicy lover.

If I have not said it yet…I’m a spice wimp. I like my jalapenos seeded.

I know, I’m a bad Texan.

So for us, the

Diced-Candied-Wimpy-mostly de-seeded-Relish was the winner!

although, very long to say, so we’re going to call it….

Candied Jalapeno Relish (mild) …very much adapted from Rebecca‘s recipe.

  • 3 pounds of fresh jalapeno peppers
  • 6 cups of sugar
  • 2 cups of apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon of celery seed
  • 3 teaspoons of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice

The only difference, besides the pumpkin pie spice, is how I prepped the jalapenos.

  • Wash the jalapenos, remove the stems, slice and seed the jalapenos. I left very few seeds in the jalapenos.
  • Place the jalapenos into a food processor and dice them.
  • follow the above directions for syrup and processing.

I’m planning to make more of the candied jalapeno relish. It is sooooo good!

Now that you have sweet and spicy jalapenos…what ya going to do with them? I am making something crazy. Details later this week.

Now is the time to link up your post with Allie and me! We’ll be back again in two weeks to get our can on once again!

I’m also linking up with



  1. These sound SO GOOD, although I’d be going for the spicy version 😀 I have RIDICULOUS amounts of serranos (yeah, peppers do love growing in the south), so I might have to give this a go with them–although I’d definitely be de-seeding those babies, even for me and my love of hot hot. Have you tried these on ice cream? I feel like spicy candied goodness would be amazing on frozen treats…

    • Oh! My mouth is burning, just thinking about how hot those would be Allie!

  2. Wow – this is another new one to me! I´d have to go for the spicy version (maybe I have Texan blood?!) and I´m looking forward to finding out what you do with them….very curious 🙂

    • 🙂 I think you’ll enjoy it. 🙂

  3. Bad, bad Texan! But you’re still quite the canner!

    • I know 😦 I’m a wimpy Texan. Go ahead, take away my horse and hat… 😉

  4. This is such a great idea! I’ll have to give it a try, as my garden won’t stop growing peppers.

    • Thanks for the comment Megan! They are very tasty, the sliced and the diced versions. Spicy and sweet. What a wonderful combination!

  5. I make jalapeno jelly using a standard Certo packet and the included directions. Great on pork and chicken, toast, ice cream… whatever. You can leave the seeds out, and can substitute cayennes or if you’re really ignorant like me, habaneros. This recipe of yours sounds good too.

    • Eek! That sounds super spicy! Thanks for the comment and the info! 🙂

  6. What a fun idea, these look great! Good thing you wore gloves…that wouldn’t have been pretty without them!

    • The first time I worked with jalapeños I forgot the gloves. Never will I forget them again. Never.

  7. Thanks for hosting this awesome linky! I’m so glad you guys kicked my butt into gear about canning, it REALLY wasn’t as hard as I thought. 🙂

    I love spicy, but sweet and spicy combined?? Even more awesome. I really want to try these.

    • Thanks for the comment! Also, thanks for being awesome & participating in the linky! Allie and I could not have a link up with out all of you!

  8. I love the name of the dish! I make a seriously hot one as well that I cannot touch! I would love to participate – I must apply some thought to this for next time 🙂

    • I’m excited that you’d like to participate. Can’t wait to see what you come up with!

  9. Love the name! I just finished canning my very first recipe! As soon as I post it – hopefully in the next few days – I’ll ink up with you!

    • That’s awesome Andrea! I can’t wait to hear about it!

  10. Beverly

    I am going to make this recipe today! Did you have problems straining the chopped jalapenos before you cooked the syrup? It sounds so much faster to chop in food processor than to slice by hand. But i wanted to make sure! Thanks

    • Hi Beverly!

      I use a slotted spoon to remove the diced jalapenos from the brine. It works very well. I pack the jars with the cooked jalapenos, then I fill the jars with the brine/syrup.

      Did that answer your question?

  11. I did a search for jalapeno relish recipes and came across this one. I did everything you said, but I added a few more spices from a bread & butter jalapeno recipe I made recently: 6 whole cloves, 1 cinnamon stick, 1 star anise, and 1 T of mustard seed. For everything else, I followed your instrux to a T–the “exactly 4 minutes” made me feel incredibly safe.

    Thanks for posting this!

  12. This is amazing! We both loved it.

    • I am super thrilled that you enjoyed the jalapeno relish!


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