If you love 5 ingredient recipes, this one is for YOU. Quick Pickled Cucumbers aren’t too sour OR too sweet. There’s no special equipment needed for the pickle brine and you probably have all the ingredients you need right in your pantry. Plus we’ll answer the burning question “are pickles cucumbers?”
Sure you can buy pickles at the supermarket (and I do), but when you want something a little more subtle than a full on garlic-dill spear, this is my go-to 5 ingredient recipe.
Ingredients For Quick Pickled Cucumbers
- English Cucumber
- Kosher Salt
- Apple Cider Vinegar
This is so easy, I really struggle to call it a recipe, but since you’re here and you clearly want to know…
How to make brine for pickles
- In a small bowl, combine the sugar, kosher salt, cider vinegar and water.
- Stir until the salt and sugar have dissolved.
That’s it. Pickle brine.
Now, if you wanted to add other things, you could. Fresh herbs like dill, thyme or tarragon would be good. Chopped garlic would add aromatics and flavor. Crushed red pepper flakes would give heat. Whole coriander and peppercorns would add floral notes and a bit of spice. You could also add a tablespoon of pickling spice. You can absolutely play with other ingredients, but I promised you a 5 ingredient recipe…
Ok, this is a weird question, but it was asked of me and I feel the need to answer.
Are Pickles Cucumbers?
Cumbers can be pickles but pickles aren’t necessarily cucumbers. Confused? Don’t be. That pickling brine isn’t exclusive to cucumbers. It’s also great for lots of other vegetables, like these pink pickled onions.
What Other Vegetables Can Be Quick Pickled?
- Bell Peppers (cut into thin strips)
- Onions (yellow, white, red, vidalia)
- Cauliflower (divided into small florets)
- Carrots (sliced into thin spears or coins)
- Radishes (sliced thin)
- Asparagus (spears)
- Green Beans
…and so many more — essentially any veg that would be a good Bloody Mary garnish can benefit from a quick pickle brine. The nice thing about this brine is that it’s not overly aggressive or sour. The mild flavor won’t make you screw up your face, bracing for impact. As a result of the low vinegar content, however, these pickles should be stored in the refrigerator.
How Long Do Quick Pickled Cucumbers Brine?
You’ll want to let the cucumbers soak in the brine for at least an hour before using, but a longer soak is fine.
Can I Make Quick Pickles Ahead Of Time?
Absolutely. Just let the cucumbers brine, then transfer to a storage container with a tight fitting lid and refrigerate until you’re ready to use them. They will stay good in the refrigerator for up to 10 days or more.
You’ll notice that on the first day in the pickle brine, the cucumbers remain a vibrant green color, but as they sit in the refrigerator, the colors become a bit more muted. That’s ok, they taste amazing and still have a nice snap to them since they haven’t been cooked.
More pickling recipes:
How to use quick pickled cucumbers:
- Amazing Tinga Style Pork Shoulder Tacos
- Tangy Barbecued Pork Sandwiches
- Caribbean Jerk Smoked Pork
- Tangy Garlic Lime Shrimp Tacos
- Muffuletta Sandwich
- Cold Roast Beef Sandwich with Horseradish Cheese
- (In) Authentic Cuban Sandwich
Quick Pickled Cucumbers
- 1 english cucumber very thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/2 cup cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup water
- In a small to medium bowl, combine the salt, sugar, cider vinegar and water. Stir until the sugar and salt are completely dissolved.
- Add the thinly sliced cucumbers (no need to peel, the skins are thin enough).
- Use the back of a spoon to adjust the cucumbers so they are submerged in the brine. Let the cucumbers soak for about an hour, then they're ready to use.
- Store in a tight fitting container, with the cucumbers covered in the brining liquid.
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