Dill Pickles

Learn how to make pickles at home! This easy 8-ingredient recipe yields crisp, tangy dill pickles that are a delicious snack or sandwich topping.

Homemade pickles

The first time I tried this dill pickle recipe, I wondered why on earth I’d spent so many years buying pickles at the grocery store. Sure, store bought pickles can be tasty, but these little guys take dill pickles to a whole new level. They’re super easy to make (the refrigerator does most of the work for you!), and they taste awesome. They’re crisp, tangy, and refreshing, with an addictive garlic-dill flavor. Most often, I eat them as a snack right out of the fridge, but they’re delicious on sandwiches and veggie burgers too. If you like dill pickles, you’re going to love this recipe.

Pickle recipe ingredients

How to Make Pickles

My method for how to make pickles couldn’t be simpler! Here’s how it goes:

  • First, slice the cucumbers. I usually make this recipe with Persian cucumbers, but small pickling cucumbers work here too. Slice them lengthwise into quarters to make spears, or thinly slice them horizontally to make dill pickle chips.
  • Then, fill the jars. Divide the cucumbers among 4 8-ounce or 2 16-ounce jars, and add fresh dill, halved garlic cloves, mustard seeds, and peppercorns to each jar of pickles.
  • Next, make the brine. I use a mix of water, white vinegar, sugar, and salt. If you’re not a sweet pickle person, don’t worry! The sugar doesn’t actually make the refrigerator pickles sweet. Instead, it balances the pungent vinegar and salt to create an irresistible sour pickle flavor. Heat the brine on the stove until the sugar and salt dissolve and pour it over the jarred cucumbers. Then, set the jars aside to cool to room temperature.
  • Finally, chill! This is the hard part! These guys aren’t ready right away – they need some time in the fridge to soak up the brine and become really flavorful. Dill pickle chips will be ready in 24 hours, while spears will take at least 48. They’ll keep in the fridge for several weeks, and they get better as time goes on. For best flavor, wait about 5 days.

Find the complete recipe with measurements below.

Pickle recipe ingredients

Dill Pickle Recipe Serving Suggestions

These homemade pickles taste great on sandwiches, burgers, and more! Pile dill pickle chips onto veggie burgers, mushroom burgers, cauliflower po’ boys, black bean burgers, or BBQ jackfruit sandwiches at your next cookout. Alternatively, serve spears alongside one of these sandwiches for a deli-style lunch:

If you’re not in the mood for a sandwich, try adding your refrigerator pickles to a salad. I love to toss diced dill pickles into my Easy Macaroni Salad.

Last but not least, they’re delicious on their own! Enjoy them straight out of the fridge for a tangy, refreshing snack.

dill pickles

More Favorite Homemade Pickles

If you love this dill pickle recipe, try making pickled jalapeños, pickled red onions, or banh mi pickles next!

Dill Pickles

rate this recipe:
5 from 90 votes
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 1 min
Chilling Time: 1 d
Serves 16
Learn how to make pickles at home! They're crisp, tangy, and refreshing - a perfect snack or sandwich fixing.

Ingredients

  • 12 to 14 Persian cucumbers or 8 to 10 pickling cucumbers
  • 4 garlic cloves, halved
  • 2 teaspoons mustard seeds
  • 2 teaspoons peppercorns
  • a few good-sized dill sprigs, per jar
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups distilled white vinegar
  • ¼ cup cane sugar
  • 2 tablespoons sea salt

Instructions

  • To make dill pickle spears, slice the cucumbers lengthwise into quarters. To make dill pickle chips, thinly slice them horizontally.
  • Divide the cucumbers among 4 (8-ounce) or 2 (16-ounce) jars. Divide the garlic, mustard seeds, peppercorns, and dill sprigs among each jar.
  • Heat the water, vinegar, sugar, and salt in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir until the sugar and salt dissolve, about 1 minute. Let cool slightly and pour over the cucumbers. Set aside to cool to room temperature, then store the pickles in the fridge.
  • Pickle spears will be lightly pickled in 2 days, but their best flavor will start to develop around day 5 or 6. Pickle chips will be lightly pickled in 1 day, and will become more flavorful every day after that. Store in the fridge for several weeks.

Notes

Pictured are these Weck jars.

139 comments

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Rate this recipe (after making it)




  1. Elaine Morecraft
    08.27.2021

    Can these be canned?

  2. Andy
    08.27.2021

    Is that white wine vinegar? or white vinegar?

    • Kelly
      08.27.2021

      Plain White Vinegar! 🙂

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      08.27.2021

      Hi Andy, just regular white distilled vinegar.

  3. Sandy
    08.25.2021

    5 stars
    First attempt at homemade pickles. Delicious. So much better than store-bought.

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      08.25.2021

      I’m so glad you loved them!

  4. Susan
    08.18.2021

    Can you use coconut sugar or honey instead of cane sugar

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      08.18.2021

      Hi Susan, you can use coconut sugar since it’d dry. I wouldn’t use honey or it’ll throw off the wet/dry ratios.

  5. Dora
    08.15.2021

    The recipe we use for pickled beets says we can reboil the brine and use it again. Can we do that with this brine for pickling cucumbers? (P.S. we used dried dill and ground mustard and the first batch was delicious.)

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      08.16.2021

      You can – you’re right, just not with the fresh herbs.

  6. Candy
    08.15.2021

    The recipe looks great. Wonder where you got those beautiful jars, all I have ever seen was the mason jars.

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      08.15.2021

      Hi Candy, they’re Weck Jars, I love them – you can get them on Amazon and many other places, there’s a link to them at the bottom of the recipe card.

  7. Pat
    08.14.2021

    Can you leave them out of the fridge for a few hours? I want to give them as gifts for a party.
    They sound wonderful!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      08.15.2021

      Hi Pat, that’s fine – they should be stored in the fridge pretty quickly after that since they’re not shelf stable.

  8. Debbie
    08.03.2021

    My recipe is pretty close to this one. I don’t heat my brine. I mix the water salt and vinegar, no sugar, and then just pour over the pickles. I figure with no heat they will stay crunchy longer. Seems to work. I had some in my fridge that I found WAY in the back. 2 years old. Still pretty crunchy. I just couldn’t bring myself to throw them away, so I tried them. They were still good and I am still alive. So pickles will keep for a very long time.

  9. Stephanie Jamerson
    07.26.2021

    Hi! These look awesome and I’m excited to make them! Does anyone know if I put the lid on the jar right after pouring the brine in the jar then let them cool to room temp? Or cool to room temp first? Thanks!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      07.26.2021

      Hi Stephanie, let them cool to room temp before putting the lid on. I hope you enjoy!

    • Debbie
      08.03.2021

      You can put the lid on right away.

  10. Bonnie from theirisandthelily.wordpress.com
    07.21.2021

    5 stars
    OMG I made this exactly except for subbing dry mustard for seeds since I didn’t have any. I was concerned because there dry mustard expanded and settled on the bottom of the jar. I did a hot water bath, refrigerated one and waited 10 days before opening. I’m not a dill pickle fan but I couldn’t believe the taste! My husband thought it was a store purchased refrigerated pickle. Thank you so much for sharing and your dedication to providing the best recipes ever!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      07.22.2021

      Hi Bonnie, I’m so glad you loved them!

    • Tabatha from schreckhomestead
      08.02.2021

      Bonnie, I’m attempting to use this recipe for canning, but am having a hard time converting. This recipe uses 4 cups of liquid for just two pint jars(which seems to leave no room for the cucumbers). If I adjust this to do 7 quarts, I’m using 28cups of liquid, as opposed to my old recipe which only uses 10 2/3cup liquid to make 7 quarts of pickles. To say I’m confused is an understatement! Any help?

      • Bonnie Pancoast
        08.03.2021

        5 stars
        Looking back on the recipe I used 4 16 oz jars the first time and 2 quart the second(never 4 oz) The second time I actually needed a bit more liquid and just quickly made additional, maybe half a cup. I would say for 7 quarts you’d need 14/15 cups as I needed 2/+ for my two. Hope this helps, . Bonnie

  11. Sam
    07.04.2021

    This recipe looks so amazing! I was fortunate enough to find the cutest little pickling cucumbers at the farmers market. Will this recipe work if I keep them whole?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      07.05.2021

      Hi Sam, it will, it’ll just take much longer for them to pickle.

  12. Jan Leazer
    06.28.2021

    5 stars
    EXCELLENT!!
    And EASY…

  13. Eddy Cole
    06.21.2021

    Can this recipe be put in a hot water bath to seal for a longer shelf life?

    • Tami
      07.21.2021

      I am wondering the same thing. Have you tried it?

      • Eddy
        07.21.2021

        5 stars
        Because of the jars I put directly into the refrigerator, I have not yet opened a jar that was put in the hot water bath.

  14. Dan
    06.14.2021

    Can’t wait to make these pickles! My grandmother is 97 years old and has dementia. When I was younger she always made the best pickles, but she doesn’t remember how she made them. The only thing she does remember, is that she added currant leaves to the dill before canning them. So I’m just going to follow your recipe and add Currant Leaves at the end. Thanks!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      06.14.2021

      I hope you enjoy them!

  15. Marge
    05.10.2021

    I just made these and did a taste test after 3 days. They are too sweet!! Is there anything I can do to save this batch?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      05.11.2021

      Hi Marge, you can add them to a larger jar and add more vinegar and salt.

  16. Lisa D MANVILLE
    05.08.2021

    5 stars
    Words can’t describe how delicious these pickles are. There is nothing I would change about them. My husband and I can hardly stop eating them. I will keep this recipe and use it over and over. Thank you for sharing!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      05.08.2021

      Hi Lisa, I’m so glad you’re both loving them!

  17. Megan Gubler
    04.11.2021

    Can you make these with dried dill seasoning? I can’t find fresh anywhere!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      04.11.2021

      Hi Megan, I haven’t tried them with dried dill. Now that it’s spring, I’m sure dill will be showing up soon.

  18. denise
    02.21.2021

    Can you make these spicy? What would you all suggest for that? Crushed red pepper? We love spicy pickles/peppers….these sound great! Thanks 🙂

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      02.21.2021

      Yep! Crushed red pepper flakes would work or some sliced jalapeños (or any spicy pepper).

  19. Holley
    02.08.2021

    Have you used this recipe for other veggies like asparagus or okra?

    • Cathy
      06.25.2021

      Holley you can use this same vinegar/water/sugar/salt combination to create “refrigerator pickles” of loads of veggies! And add whatever seasonings you like. I pickle roasted beets like this, and have used garlic, tarragon, thyme, and lemon thyme (in 4 different jars, one seasoning in each). Tarragon is most amazing. I’ve pickled red onions like this YUM (you’ll be surprised how pickling takes the ‘bite’ out of the onions). I pickle radishes like this too, especially watermelon radishes and other large radishes (slice them thin with a mandoline). I haven’t tried carrots yet, but I bet they’re amazing too.

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Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.