Preserving the Harvest: Homemade Claussen-Style Pickles

For many years, I have loved Claussen pickles!  I have had just about every type of pickle out there, but you just can't beat the crunchy-freshness of a Claussen pickle...until now.  Move over Claussen!

A few weeks ago we were given a TON of cucumbers and I decided to experiment.  I set out to make a Claussen-style pickle and it worked!  My family LOVES them and has declared them the. best. pickles. ever.  The steps are so simple and I love that I can have amazing pickles in no time!

You will need cucumbers (small "pickling" variety, not the long, dark "slicing" kind"), pickling salt (I use Ball brand), white vinegar, fresh dill and garlic.

1. Combine water, vinegar and salt in a large stockpot to make your brine and bring to a boil on the stove. Cool to room temperature.

2.  Wash your cucumbers well...they can really hide dirt!

3.  Peel your garlic and leave the cloves whole.

4.  In each jar place 2 cloves of garlic and 1-2 sprigs of dill.


5.  Pack jars with cucumbers.  You can leave them whole, half or quarter them. 

6.  Ladle brine into jars.  Put the lids on and place in the refrigerator to "pickle" for a few days!

I usually make my pickles in old gallon pickle jars.  The jar on the right was made with quartered cucumbers a few weeks ago and the jar on the left was made with whole cucumbers two days ago.  Even after just two days, the pickles taste awesome!

Homemade Claussen-Style Pickles
makes 3-4 quarts or 1 gallon jar

1 1/2 quarts of water (6 cups)
4 cups white vinegar
1/2 c. pickling salt

1. Combine water, vinegar and salt in a large stockpot and bring to a boil on the stove. Cool to room temperature.
2.  Wash cucumbers and peel garlic.
3.  Add two cloves of garlic to each jar and 1-2 sprigs of dill.  (If using a 1-gallon jar, add 8 cloves of garlic and 4-6 dill sprigs.)
4.  Pack jars with cucumbers.  (It's really easy if they are quartered, but you have to experiment more when they are whole.) 

5.  Ladle brine over cucumbers, leaving about 1/2" of space at the top.
6.  Put lids on jars and place in refrigerator to "pickle" for atleast 2 days.  Full flavor is reached after 7-10 days.  Enjoy!

*Tip: If you have never made pickles and are unsure about the amount of cucumbers you have, you can always pack the jars first, and then make your brine so you know if you need to double it.   Also, brine will keep for a looong time, so you can make a bunch of brine, store it in the refrigerator and just make your pickles as you get cucumbers. 


You can read part 1 of this series, "How to Blanch Green Beans" here. 

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  1. Oooohhhh...I love Claussen pickles too!! I will have to try this! Thanks for the recipe! :)

  2. We love Claussens too! Never liked pickles, but got hooked on them when I was preggo with Wade!
    Looks yummy! How cool to make your own!

  3. Laine, I made your pickles and just had to tell you how very good they are! I Googled pickle recipes and yours sounded interesting and easy. I made a couple of minor additions. I added a half teaspoon of pickling spice and a dried red pepper to my pint jars. We opened a jar today to sample and these pickles are..., well..., they are the very best home-made pickles ever! Thank you for posting this recipe. It's a definite keeper for our family. I am blogging about your delicious pickles at www.tintheburg.blogspot.com and will link to your recipe. Come take a look and thanks again!


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