Want to can jalepenos but don't want mushy

sundrops(Z6 SW Indiana)July 22, 2010

Hi everyone,

I have done a search for this so, before I start please don't harass me for not doing some homework before asking. (I lurked on here for years and am aware of what happens if you ask questions that have been covered before.) So, if anyone has asked recently about this subject I apologize for duplication. We all know that the search option on here isn't the greatest!

I have canned jalepenos in the past and ended up with mushy peppers that are really gross. I am wanting something along the lines of what you buy in the store. Sliced jalepenos to use on tacos, nachos, etc.

Does anyone have a recipe or suggestions to can them without them ending up being mush.

I am sure Linda Lou may have some suggestions. Anyone else who has had success in this please help.

Thank you in advance.

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Linda_Lou(SW Wa.)

You will need to pickle them and add Pickle Crisp or try pressure canning them adding Pickle Crisp. The pickled ones will be vinegary, but will be more firm than pressure canned ones.
I canned potatoes with the Pickle Crisp and they stayed firm.
If you check the cans in the store they have calcium chloride added, which is Pickle Crisp.
See, I wasn't mean, LOL !!
We know the search here is not the best.
If you will go to pickling on the left side of the link you will find how to pickle the peppers, but just add the amount of Pickle Crisp called for on the jar.
Then, if you want them plain and pressure canned you will need to check on how to "can" then find the vegetables.
Same thing, follow the directions for canning then add the amount of Pickle Crisp called for on the jar.

Here is a link that might be useful: NCHFP canning recipes.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2010 at 5:55PM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Sundrops - how did you can them in the past? No point in giving you directions if they are what you have already tried, right? ;) Did you pickle them or try canning plain and PC them.

Could you live with just a big jar of them in the fridge (a fermented recipe) or do they have to be processed for shelf storage? Different methods for both.

Have you ever tried Pickle Crisp (calcium chloride)? Have you ever done any liming of them or any lime pickles for crispness? This is how we do ours only we add lots of ice to the lime soak and sock for 24 hours. Then rinse and soak, rinse and soak 3 times over the next 2 days. Willing to invest that much time into making them or is this what you have already tried?


    Bookmark   July 22, 2010 at 6:47PM
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simplicitygardens(z8 pacific N.W.)

I was on a mission last year to produce exactly what you are looking for and I did end up with great results. I followed the recipe on the NCHFP website for Pickled Jalepeno Rings. They turned out wonderful.

I did do the soak in lime and rinse routine that everyone thinks is so not worth it and on and on..... but the results were stellar. Crisp, and just like the ones from the store.

I got the lime at a Hispanic grocery store, they call it Cal and use it for soaking corn before making masa.


Good luck if you decide to go the distance you won't be sorry.


    Bookmark   July 22, 2010 at 8:41PM
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sundrops(Z6 SW Indiana)

Thank you everyone for your responses.

Linda, you could never be mean. I certainly didn't mean to imply that you would be. I have been reading yours and Daves comments for years and have always found that you are more than willing to help people. However, I do know of others who fuss at folks if they think they haven't done their homework. I think they sometimes forget that not everyone can read posts everyday and may miss things.

Dave-I did just can them in the past and that is how I got the mushiness. I did not pickle them realizing now that is what I should have done. It was a couple of years ago and was not that experienced in canning. I just didn't want to repeat the same mistakes. Thank you for the link and I will definately go to the work of doing it correctly because I want to store them on the shelf.

Simplicitygardens - thank you for all of your help.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2010 at 1:19PM
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Linda_Lou(SW Wa.)

You are welcome !
See, we like helping someone with a name like sundrops !
Sounds so cheerful.
Nice to have you here ! Glad you decided to start posting. Let us know how the peppers turn out. I really like the Pickle Crisp for keeping things firm. Are you going to add it ?

    Bookmark   July 23, 2010 at 8:01PM
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I'm just curious. When you pickle jalapenos, do they have a pickled or vinegar flavor? How do you use them? What kind of canning would make them similar to a jar of jalapenos that I would pick up in the store?

    Bookmark   July 26, 2010 at 2:58PM
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Dave, I'd be interested in the fermenting idea. I am harvesting serranos a handful at a time....don't know what to do with them. Certainly can't eat them all that fast and I don't have enough to do a big batch of anything. Any other thoughts besides fermenting would be welcome as well.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2010 at 10:01AM
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sundrops(Z6 SW Indiana)

Hi all,

Well, I wanted to report what I done. I went with the NCHFP recipe using the lime soak. It was a bit of trouble but the peppers were certainly very crisp when I put them in the jars. I processed 7 pints late last night. I haven't moved them but they look very good. So much nicer that the ones I canned years ago. Now, the taste test will tell the story. I will wait a few weeks to let them rest before I try them. The recipe included mustard seed and celery seed. I am not sure what that flavor will be with the jalepenos. My end goal is to get like the store bought ones. We'll see.

Linda, I had already been to the store and bought the lime by the time I read your recommendation on the Pickle Crisp. I am going to try that next as soon as I get another batch of peppers from the plants. I am anxious to see the difference and results in the two processes.

Thanks everyone for your help.


    Bookmark   July 28, 2010 at 12:01PM
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readinglady(z8 OR)

It's always interesting to hear about comparisons of different agents and methods. I'm glad you're planning to post and let us know how your jalapenos turn out.


    Bookmark   July 28, 2010 at 4:07PM
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I found this using the google site:gardenweb.com search methodology and wondered if there was any follow-up to crispness in the jalepenos. I'll go to my garden plot in town tomorrow and pick more hot peppers! At this point in time, I've got too many hot peppers for salsa. My tomatoes need to catch up!

    Bookmark   August 6, 2012 at 12:09AM
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The best thing I ever did with jalapenos was to smoke them on the grill over a cool applewood fire until they were just done. Then I froze some and dried some. Both were faboulous. Drying smoked peppers will stink up your dehydrator, but I think they are worth it.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2012 at 9:32AM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

wondered if there was any follow-up to crispness in the jalepenos.

Do you mean between the lime vs. the Pickle Crisp?

IME they end up about the same crispness but the Pickle Crisp is about 10x easier to use and work with and doesn't have the associated risks the lime has.

But if you can't get Pickle Crisp for some reason the pickling lime soak does result in much crisper pepper rings than using nothing.


    Bookmark   August 6, 2012 at 4:24PM
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Yes, thank you for answering about the crispness using lime or Pickle Crisp. I believe a local Walmart had some; I'll have to go check to see if they still have it.

Thanks for the responses!

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 12:49AM
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cayoder - My favorite way to use them is chopped up into the cornbread batter, with the addition of chopped onion, whole kernel corn, and grated cheese. Perfect to serve with beans or a southwest soup.

Second choice would be to use on nachos.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 1:04AM
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david52 Zone 6

Huh. I've been making jalapeno slices for a few years here with a fairly simple method- put 1/2 teaspoon salt, a garlic clove, few sprigs of tarragon into a pint jar, fill with pepper slices, push down with fingers, add cider vinegar, and BWB for 15 minutes. The're not mushy at all, and firmer than the 'nacho slices ' stuff I buy in the store (by the #10 can)

As for fermenting peppers, I've half a dozen varieties of peppers, sweet and hot, and I've been picking anything that turns red and putting them in the freezer, and when the end of the season rolls around, I'll thaw them out, pull off the stems, chop 'em up and ferment the whole lot just as I would sauerkraut. Then later, run that mash through a food mill to remove seeds and skins, then flavor it up with vinegar and what not, then can it in quarts.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 12:05PM
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My husband has been fermenting a jalape�o pepper mash. He does a brine by adding salt to the mash ( not sure how much he adds). It sits for 4-6 weeks. Then he adds a bit of organic red wine or apple cider vinegar to taste and we store it in the fridge. It continues to change and become more complex as it ages. It is the best hot sauce if ever tasted.
After it ferments, he runs it through a food mill and divides the thick and thin stuff into separate sauces.
Good stuff!

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 3:11PM
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Would it be safe to use the Ball Blue Book Brined Dill Pickle recipe to brine-ferment jalapeno peppers. I would omit the dill and spices. 2 cups vinegar 2 gallons water and 1 1/2 cups canning salt. These would be in the fridge after fermentation. If not, could someone suggest a good recipe for non bwb peppers.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2014 at 11:19AM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

I don't think safety would be the issue but I would question the quality of the end results based on my fermentation experience.

1 1/2 c salt for 2 gallons of water it a very high salt ratio and that much vinegar isn't going to allow for much actual fermentation to take place. Flip the page over and look at the variations offered. Consider the one using that reduces the canning salt to 1/4 cup. That is the one NCHFP recommends.

Otherwise if what you really are after is Pickled Peppers (since you want to leave out the dill and such) then I'd use the NCHFP instruction for Pickled Hot Peppers or the one for Jalapeno Pepper Rings.


Here is a link that might be useful: Pickled Hot peppers

    Bookmark   August 10, 2014 at 4:42PM
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