These tangy and vinegary pickled jalapeños will definitely give you some delicious heat and can be made in under 30 minutes. If you love some heat in your food, make sure you keep a jar of these jalapeños on hand to spice up any meal and make everything hotter and better. Naturally gluten-free and vegan.
Bring on the Heat!
Those of you who know me know that I love spices and heat in my foods. In fact, I can’t live without my homemade sriracha sauce, and love to add a bit of heat even in sweet foods, such as this gluten-free jalapeño cornbread.
Back home in Singapore where I’m grew up and spent the first 25 years of my life, it’s very common for restaurants to serve a few different options of hot sauces as well as pickled chilies to go along with our food. Naturally, pickling chilies or peppers has been an idea I’ve thought about for a while, and when I found fresh jalapeños at my vegetable grocer recently, I decided it was time to pickle some peppers!
What is Vinegar Pickling (or Quick Pickling)?
Given that it was my first time making pickled anything, I researched a little on what it meant. According to Food and Wine, vinegar pickling (a.k.a. quick pickling) is a simple and straightforward process which involves combining and heating a mixture of vinegar, water, salt, and sugar, and then submerging the vegetables you wish to pickle in this mixture once it’s boiled, let it cool, and then store it in the refrigerator.
The amount and type of ingredients used can vary, but the process is basically that – simple, easy, and quick.
Vinegar pickling doesn’t include any fermentation, unlike the process of fermentation pickling , which is a way longer and more tedious process.
The good thing though is the vinegar pickling helps to preserve some fresh produce which might otherwise go bad easily. In this case, we’re going with jalapeños, because a little bit of heat (or plenty of it) always makes anything taste better.
Only 6 ingredients needed:
You’ll need just 6 ingredients for these pickled peppers, so make sure you get the best and freshest ingredients you can get your hands on.
To make a 16oz jar of these, the recipe requires 15 large or 20 medium fresh jalapeño peppers, fresh garlic, distilled white vinegar, water, salt, and sugar. That’s it!
Be careful while slicing the jalapeño peppers:
It’s best to use gloves while slicing the jalapeño peppers because the seeds can sting (plenty of heat packed into them)! But if you don’t have gloves on hand, which was my case, simple use a fork to hold down one end of the jalapeño and then slice the peppers thinly.
If you aren’t using gloves, make sure not to touch the seeds of the peppers, and absolutely do NOT rub your eyes with your fingers as that might cause your eyes to sting. Other than that, slicing jalapeños are pretty much a breeze.
How to Make Pickled Jalapeños:
Start off by combining the halved garlic cloves with the vinegar, water, sugar, and salt in a skillet or medium pot and bring the mixture to a boil, mixing well to dissolve the sugar and salt.
Once the pickling mixture comes to a boil, add the sliced jalapeños to the skillet and press them down to submerge the peppers fully in the liquid.
Switch off the heat and let the peppers soak in the liquid for the next 10 to 15 minutes, until they turn from their original bright green to the familiar olive green color that most pickles have .
Vary the Heat According to Your Taste Preferences:
In this recipe, I use 2 tablespoons of sugar, which you can vary depending on how much heat you like.
Generally speaking, the more sugar you use, the less heat and vice versa. For less heat, you can use up to 4 tablespoons of sugar, and if you like your food extra hot, use 1 tablespoon of sugar.
How long do jalapeño pickles last?
I’d say to treat homemade jalapeño pickles the same way you would treat an opened jar of store-bought pickles – so it should keep for approximately 2 months in an air-tight jar in the refrigerator.
Also, try not to double dip. Use clean spoons or utensils when scooping out the pickles to ensure it stays fresh and is preserved for as long as possible.
What to Eat with Pickled Jalapeños:
I know some people like to eat pickled jalapeños from the jar, but I personally find that it could be too hot without any other food to buffer the heat. Here are some other ways you could eat these jalapeños:
- On top of pizza (check out our gluten-free pizza crust!)
- Added to a burger to add some spice
- Added to a sandwich to bring on some extra flavor
- Heap them on a taco to oomph up the heat
- Roll the jalapeños in a burrito
- Eat with fried rice or lo mein or stir-fries
If you enjoy this, you’ll also love these other recipes:
- 5-Minute Homemade Sriracha Sauce (Gluten-Free, Vegan)
- Pico de Gallo (Gluten-Free, Vegan)
- Gluten-Free Jalapeño Cornbread (Dairy-Free)
- Easy Garlic Aioli Recipe (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free)
These tangy pickled jalapeños will definitely give you some delicious heat and can be made in under 30 minutes. If you love some heat in your food, make sure you keep a jar of these jalapeños on hand to spice up any meal and make everything hotter and better (also make sure to check out our 5-minute homemade sriracha chili sauce!). Naturally gluten-free and vegan.
- 15 large (or 20 medium) fresh jalapeños, washed, stems removed, and sliced
- 4 large garlic cloves, peeled and halved
- 1 cup distilled white vinegar
- 1 cup filtered water
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons salt
- Combine the halved garlic cloves, vinegar, water, sugar, and salt in a large pan or medium pot and bring to a boil, stirring to make sure the water dissolves.
- Once the mixture starts to boil, add the sliced jalapeños and press them under the pickling liquid. Switch off the heat and let the sliced jalapeños sit in the liquid for the next 10 to 15 minutes until they are no longer bright green but have turned olive green.
- Use tongs or chopsticks to transfer the jalapeños to a sterilized glass jar, before pouring the pickling juices over. Let cool at room temperature before covering with the lid.
- Store in the refrigerator for up to two months.
Don’t Touch the Seeds with Bare Hands: Make sure you don’t touch the jalapeño seeds with your bare hands of they can get really hot. Best to use gloves of a fork to hold the jalapeño peppers down while you slice down. If not using gloves, make sure NOT to rub your eyes with your fingers after cutting them or they might sting.
Heat Level: You can adjust the heat level depending on how much heat you like and can tolerate. If you don’t want that much heat, use 4 tablespoons of sugar instead of 2, and if you like it really hot, you can even go down to 1 tablespoon of sugar.
Barely adapted from: Simply Scratch
- Category: Sauces
- Method: Stovetop
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: pickled jalapeños