Do you love relish? Here’s how to make an easy, homemade pickle relish without dyes, corn syrup, or unnecessary ingredients!
Who doesn’t love hot dogs or bratwurst topped with fresh pickle relish? I personally love mixing in sweet relish with my tuna salad. But my biggest pet peeve is reading labels at the grocery stores and seeing things like artificial flavors and colors listed on the label. Luckily making relish at home is super easy to do using your fresh garden cucumbers!
This easy pickle relish is quick to make and easily canned for longer storage. It’s a great way to preserve your cucumber harvest to enjoy later!
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You may be asking what’s in relish? Well, for the most part- cucumbers, onions, vinegar, sugar, and spices. Basically, think about your sweet pickles, but all chopped up into tiny pieces and that’s what relish is. So if you’ve ever made your own pickles, you can make relish!
Please note that this recipe make a sweet pickle relish and does not include dill seed.
How to Make Easy Pickle Relish
You will need:
3-4 lbs fresh cucumbers (less if using pickling cucumbers, more if using regular cucumbers or slicers)
1 large onion (~1 cup chopped)
1/4 cup pickling salt
1-2 cups sugar- depending on how sweet you want the final relish to be
3 cups white vinegar
4 cloves garlic- minced
2 tsp Celery Seed
2 tsp Mustard Seed
Dash turmeric powder
Trim ends of the cucumbers and cut lengthwise.
Remove any seeds and cut into chunks.
Dice the cucumber into small pieces. I use my food processor for this step. Just be sure not to over process of you will end up with mush. (But if you do, you can use that mush for cucumber muffins!)
Dice the onion (Again, I use the food processor)
In a large bowl or pot, combine the cucumber, onion, and salt. Cover and set aside for 2-3 hours.
In a mesh sieve or cheese cloth lined colander, drain the cucumbers and onions.
You want to remove as much moisture as possible. If you are making a large batch then you might need to work in batches here. Press to remove any excess liquid.
Related Reading: How to Make (and Can) Homemade Ketchup
Make the Relish Brine:
To make the brine combine sugar, vinegar, garlic, mustard seed, celery seed, and turmeric powder in a large non-reactive pot.
Bring to a boil.
Add the drained cucumber mixture.
Return the brine to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes.
And your relish is done! You can either store it in the refrigerator or can it using the instructions below.
How to Can Pickle Relish:
This sweet relish can be preserved for a longer shelf life using the water bath canning method. Here’s how to can your sweet pickle relish:
Fill pint sized jars with pickle relish, leaving 1/4 inch of headspace. Make sure you are using hot sterilized jars as this ensures that the final product is clean and reduces the chance of your jars breaking.
Run a knife or spoon along the edge of the jar to remove any air bubbles.
Wipe the rims of the jars with a clean, damp cloth.
Place on canning lids and tighten the rings finger-tight.
For tips on canning, check out these 12 Canning Mistakes
Place the filled jars in a large canning pot filled with boiling water. If you don’t have a canning pot, you can use any large stock pot, but if you plan on home canning I suggest investing in a good water bath canner- it’ll pay for itself in no time!
Process the jars in a water bath canner for 10 minutes. Don’t start your timer until the pot is at a rolling boil.
Remove the relish from the canner using a jar lifter and let sit, undisturbed, until cool.
Check for a good seal before storing.
This recipe should yield approximately 7- half pints of relish.
Get more ideas to preserve cucumbers on 10 Ways to Preserve Cucumbers That Every Home Gardener Should Know!