How to Pickle Cauliflower

recipe for pickled cauliflowerDon’t you just love the more unusual pickled vegetables like cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, asparagus and beets? I know I do, but it’s nearly impossible to find commercially canned varieties on the grocery store shelf. So what’s an aspiring foodie to do? Make it ourselves. Luckily, pickled vegetables are super simple, making them a good first canning project. That’s exactly what we did at last week’s Water Bath Canning Class. Cauliflower was on sale and my first choice – asparagus – wasn’t, so we each made a jar of cauliflower pickles while learning the canning basics. It was a great group and we all had a lot of fun.  I hope to see you at the next class! (Note: Sign up for our newsletter to stay up-to-date on scheduled classes.)

Recipe: (adapted from the Heinz Successful Pickling Guide)

  • 10 cups cauliflower florets (about 2 large heads)
  • 1 medium onion, sliced thinly
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 cups vinegar (I used cider vinegar, but white vinegar works too)
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 Tbsp pickling salt
  • 1 Tbsp mustard seed
  • 1/2 Tbsp celery seed
  • 1/2 Tbsp dill seed

In a large saucepot, combine all ingredients. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium and cook for 10 minutes. Immediately fill pint jars with mixture, leaving ½ inch headspace. Carefully run a nonmetallic utensil down inside of jars to remove trapped air bubbles. Wipe jar tops and threads clean. Place lids on jars and screw bands on firmly. Process in boiling water canner for 15 minutes. Makes 4-5 pints. Let pickles sit for 3-4 weeks before enjoying!

by Renee Pottle

Renee Pottle, a freelance writer and Home Economist, is fanatic about all things food. She blogs about canning and food preservation at Find her professional food writing info at

May 2, 2013

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  1. Tonya

    Hello. I’m trying to find just a good plain and simple Pickled Cauliflower reciepe. I want it kind of strong vinegary tasting. Not sweet and not spicy just kinda strong vinegar tasting. Do you have one? Thanks. Tonya from WestVirginia…oh and p.s I want to make it in quart sized jars…

    • admin

      Tonya, you might be able to find a pickled Brussels sprouts recipe that doesn’t use sugar and can be done in quart jars. Just use cauliflower instead (the recipes for these two pickles are usually interchangeable). I did a quick search through my recipes and didn’t find anything for quarts, but I am sure there must be a way to do so. Maybe your local Cooperative Extension office would have a recipe. Good luck.



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