Bread and Butter Pickles

"This was my husband's grandmother's recipe. It is so good. Store-bought pickles don't even come close. This is a good recipe for anyone who would like to try pickling, but hasn't done it before. It's quite straight forward, not a lot of ingredients."
photo by wordslinger photo by wordslinger
photo by wordslinger
photo by Janet W. photo by Janet W.
photo by DEBRA D. photo by DEBRA D.
photo by Anonymous photo by Anonymous
photo by Out of Africa photo by Out of Africa
Ready In:
3 quarts




  • Combine cucumbers, onions, salt and ice in a large bowl.
  • Mix well.
  • Put a weight on and allow to stand 3 hours. (For a weight, I use a plate with a gallon bottle of vinegar or water on top of it).
  • Rinse and drain thoroughly.
  • Combine vinegar, sugar, turmeric, celery seed and mustard seed in a large pot.
  • Add drained cucumbers.
  • Place pot on medium low heat.
  • Bring almost to a boil, but DO NOT ALLOW TO BOIL.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Seal in sterilized jars, 10 minutes in a hot water bath.
  • Easy way to sterilize jars: Wash them well in hot soapy water.
  • Dry them off.
  • Put on a cookie sheet, right side up, at 225°F for 15 minutes.
  • Turn off oven and leave them in there until you need them.

Questions & Replies

  1. Hi there, How long do you recommend waiting before opening and eating the pickles? I've seen other hot-canning recipes that recommend waiting 4-6 weeks. Thanks!
  2. Can I just put in sterilized jars and put in fridge without boiling in water bath?
  3. I've made these and they are fabulous but do have one question. What is the point of the weight on top of the plate that sits on the bowl with ice? Mine fit in a large bowl that has a lid, and while I did set something on top (because I follow rules - lol) I'm not sure what the point is. Anyone? Thanks!
  4. Do these soak in the refrigerator or just set on the counter? The recipe doesn't specify and someone asked a question if they could leave in the fridge longer than the 3 hours, so I was confused. Thank you.
  5. I've never done any of this before so of course don't have all the equipment that I'm reading about on various sites. I'm sorry to say that the more I read... the more intimidated I am!!! 3 main questions.... #1 - do I need a "rack" in the bottom of my pot for the 10 minute hot water bath? I have a glass top stove but yes, I do have a flat bottom pot with a lid, large enough to place my pint jars. I do not have a rack. Can I just place my jars inside my pot not using a rack? #2 - when I do the 10 minute hot bath, do I boil the entire time with my filled jars completely emerged? If the lids a somewhat on the loose side, doesn't the liquid seep into the jars? #3 - since I do not have a jar gripper, after the 10 minutes are up, can I just pour out enough water to expose the lids and use a hot pad/glove to lift and remove the jars?


  1. This was a great recipe. My girlfriend and I made these pickles on Saturday, and we ate two jars at Sunday supper with the family. Even just a day later, they were great! We also used the same recipe to make a couple jars of relish (same recipe and process, just cubing the cucumbers nice and small and cooking it all down in a pot before canning).<br/><br/>The only problem we had with this recipe was that we were using pint jars instead of quart jars. I anticipated that if this recipe (specifically the brine/syrup of it) would fill 3 quart jars, it should nearly fill 6 pint jars. I had extra cucumbers, enough to fill 8 pint jars, but had to end up making 3 batches of syrup to fill 8 jars. It may be that our 500ml jars here in Canada are slightly different sizes than your imperial pint jars. Or it may be that I didn't pack enough cucumbers into each jar (which would displace the liquid and make it go further). Either way, I'll be making this again (perhaps with some of my own variations, as well). Thanks for the recipe!
  2. Can't believe I didn't rate these last year! <br/>I made my first attempt at canning anything last year with this only difference in the recipe...I added a sprinkle of pickling spice to my liquid.<br/>Entered these pickles in the county fair and won 1st PLACE!!! These are great and easy!!!
  3. This was the first time I've canned. These turned out so well, that I made them 3 times to rave reviews. The recipe was detailed enough for a newbie to follow. I also like there are a few ingredients.
  4. Awesome recipe. I have made 2 batches with rave reviews. One friend wanted to buy them to give as Xmas gifts. I made one batch very Spicy by adding cayenne & crushed red pepper , jalapeno pepper red & green cut in rings and a seeded diced habanero. You only need a small amount of habanero they are really hot.Use gloves when handling habaneros. I used 1 in my whole batch. I bought some dried Tampico red chili peppers & hydrated them in hot water before putting one in each jar. I also cut an orange bell pepper & put it in as well. Pickles looked great & definately had a kick- THANK YOU!
  5. WOW these were not only easy but so good! I have been making pickles for years and have a ton of cucumbers in the garden this year (not pickeling) so I decided to slice them up and make these, this reccipe is my new go to. I even brought some to work and gave them to a couple of customers who said I should sell them, who doesn't love a compliment! Thank You MaeEast, my family will be stocked up on Bread and Butter Pickles for the year now.


  1. More onions and I make a hot and sweet variety with hot peppers in them.
  2. I have noticed that when making pickles with onions, that using white onions or yellow onions, or the onions that are made for storing over the winter makes for a crispier onion in the pickles. Using onions like Walla Walla sweet or other varieties of sweet onions end up being soggy onions in the pickle jar.
  3. This recipe made four quarts. That said, you really need to double the pickling liquid (vinegar, sugar, etc.). That said, I got rave reviews on the flavor.
  4. I noticed the liquid only fills half way up, so I added a cup more vinegar and sugar and sprinkled a bit more celery seed, and mustard seed before I water bathed them. We'll see what happens after I open one.
  5. I use sweet vidalia onions and add sweet mini peppers cut in thin sticks. Yum! I also up the vinegar and water to 3 cups each and add a touch more of the spices to compensate and ensure I have enough brine.



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