Want to pickle my Cherry Peppers....please help me be successful!

lthj75August 18, 2007

Ok, so I am a pickling newbie. I want to try and pickle some homegrown cherry peppers. I found a few good sites with instructions on how to pickle various peppers. I do have some questions though.

Specifically for pickling WHOLE CHERRY PEPPERS (like the ones sold in store that are used fo stuffing, etc.):

1) Do I need to blister & peel the skins before I pickle them?

2) Do I need to put slits in whole peppers? I thought doing so would make them limp and they would lose their shape. But what do I know? haha

3) Can I use kosher salt as a replacement for pickling salt? I can't seem to find pickling salt readily available.

4) What other tips and advice do you have for me?!?


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you should ask all pickling questions at the harvest forum. That is where the experts are located. We grow them. They deal with everything after the harvest like pickling.

Also why not try a GW search on pickling hot peppers. This has been discussed lots of times. I got over 300 threads discussing this issue.


Look for the ones with lots of responses. They usually have more to say.

I tried pickling cherry peppers and got well over 100 threads.


Good Luck

I never grow cherry peppers. I prefer other peppers.

Here is a link that might be useful: Harvest Forum

    Bookmark   August 18, 2007 at 9:37AM
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shelbyguy(z5 IL)

pickling salt is in the green and white box, found right next to the kosher salt. someone is buying it out from under you because its harvest/canning season.

you dont need to peel them. you do need a slit in the bottom to let the brine through - you dont want air bubbles in the bottoms of your peppers.

use distilled water. not filtered tap water, not 'drinking water' but distilled water.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2007 at 9:54AM
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I NEVER use water. I use only 100% vinegar. Safer that way. They also stay crisper much longer. I see no sense in diluting down the vinegar. The vinegar is what preserves it, keeps it safe, and it stays crisp longer.

When the hot peppers are all gone. I use the hot spiced up vinegar. Seems like a win win situation, I get pickled hot peppers and hot pepper vinegar.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2007 at 10:18AM
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ardnek710(z6 stlouis)

You only need atleast 1/2 vinegar and can dilute up to 1/2 with water.
That being said, we use all vinegar also. This year with our cherry bombs, we are cutting them in half (although you could also just put a hole/slice in the bottome) and packing them in 100% red wine vinegar. Then we add garlic and basil and oregano from the garden into the jars. In about 6 months we will start to crack into these and use them as a sort of pepperoncini with cheese and crackers or on sandwiches or just right out of the jar. These may not be as firm as you would like and you can try to obtain a product called "pickle crisp" which is added to the jars and may help retain firmness.

Also if you can't find pickling salt, kosher would be your next choice, although keep in mind that you don't need to add ANY salt. Salt added in modern pickling recipes is for taste alone and does not have anything to do with the actual preservation of the food.

While balsamicv is correct in that this topic has been addressed and search of the site will yield lots of results, I disagree that all cooking/using questions should be asked in the harvest forum. People on this forum don't just grow the chiles, we also eat them and preserve them for the future. Alot of people on harvest forum cannot tolerate heat and may not be able to give you all your answers. Please feel free to ask any question about peppers here, whether it is propogation, production, or consumption..:)


    Bookmark   August 18, 2007 at 7:41PM
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shelbyguy(z5 IL)

actually the salt kills listeria. the vinegar is for botulism.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2007 at 12:59AM
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balsamicv - I tried the search several times before posting, and although the search yields 200+ results, 90% of them are not related to the search topic.

Thanks to all who took the time to reply & help!

    Bookmark   August 19, 2007 at 6:48AM
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ardnek710(z6 stlouis)

actually shelbyguy, that is not true. Vinegar, or more appropriately acidity, is for bacteria including the C.botulinim bacteria, heating to a certain temp for a certain amount of time is for the spores and toxin of botulism (which are not killed by acidity alone). Salt has nothing to do with it. Listeria is just another bacteria that the acidity deals with.
Get a Ball Blue Book (the canning bible) or go onto the USDA canning site for details. Nevertheless, salt added in the quantities it is used in pickling recipes is for TASTE only.


    Bookmark   August 19, 2007 at 9:27PM
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