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This dilly beans recipe is full of tangy flavor and a pop of dill! It’s quick and easy to whip up a jar of pickled green beans.

Dilly Beans
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Are you a pickle lover? Here’s a jar you’ll fall hard for: Dilly Beans! These slender, crunchy pickled green beans pack a vinegary, herbaceous punch. They’re irresistible to snack on out of the jar, and make the ideal condiment to a picnic lunch, pitch in or cheese plate. Guess what: this old fashioned recipe doesn’t even require any fancy canning equipment! All you need is 20 minutes, a jar and some beans to whip up this quick pickles recipe: and you’ll be glad you did.

Ingredients for dilly beans

Dilly beans are pickled green beans that are preserved with garlic and dill seed (or fresh dill), which infuse the flavor of a classic dill pickle. You can make dilly beans as a classic canning recipe or as quick pickles or refrigerator pickles, where the jar is stored in the refrigerator immediately after making them. Quick pickles don’t require any special canning equipment, so it’s our preferred method for homemade pickles. They last for 1 month in the refrigerator (but are not shelf stable). Here’s what you’ll need to make dilly beans:

  • 1 wide-mouth pint canning jar
  • Green beans: the thinner the better! Look for very thin beans or even French green beans
  • Garlic
  • Bay leaf
  • White vinegar
  • Sugar
  • Salt
  • Peppercorns
  • Dill seed: not dried dill weed! (see below)
  • Fresh dill: you can omit if desired, but we like using both fresh dill and dill seeds
Dilly Beans

Dill seed versus dill weed: what’s the difference?

The key to this dilly beans recipe? Dill seed. But don’t confuse this with the similar but also important dried dill weed! Use dill weed here and you won’t be able to detect a dill flavor at all. Here’s why:

  • Dill seeds are small, brown flat seeds of the dill plant that are used in canning. The seeds infuse a very strong dill flavor into preserved foods, but they’re not often used in cooking.
  • Dried dill weed is the dried green leaves and stems of the plant. This spice is often used in cooking (it’s what gives Ranch Dip it’s signature flavor). But if used in canning, it has a very mild flavor that doesn’t penetrate the jar.
Dilly beans

How to make dilly beans: basic steps

This dilly bean recipe takes just 20 minutes to assemble the jar. Once it’s done, refrigerate for 24 hours for the best flavor and texture. The hardest part of this recipe is the waiting! Here are the basic steps (or jump right to the recipe):

  • Trim the green beans: Trim the beans so they fit into a wide-mouth pint jar. Add the garlic cloves, bay leaf, and fresh dill.
  • Bring the brine ingredients to a boil: Place white vinegar, water, sugar, salt, peppercorns, and dill seed in a pot and bring to a boil (see the recipe below for the exact quantities).
  • Pour in the jar and wait until it cools (about 1 hour). 
  • Refrigerate 24 hours. This helps to infuse the flavor into the beans and soften their texture. Very thin or French green beans pickle the best because their flavor is tender and crunchy right away! Some types of very thick green beans can still taste slightly tough after 1 day: so you may want to wait 48 hours if your beans are very thick.

Want to make more than 1 pint? It’s easy to double or triple this recipe. Head to the recipe below and press the 2x or 3x buttons next to the word Ingredients.

Storage info

How long can you store dilly beans? Store homemade dilly beans refrigerated for up to 1 month. This type of pickles are not shelf stable, so don’t attempt to store them in your pantry. Keep them in the refrigerator and you can eat off of them for days.

Dilly beans

Ways to serve dilly beans

We love dilly beans best right out of the jar! There are loads of ways

More green beans recipes

Love green beans? Here are more great green beans recipes for using this tasty veggie:

This dilly beans recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free and gluten-free.

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Dilly Beans

Dilly Beans

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5 from 2 reviews

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 1 pint 1x


This dilly beans recipe is full of tangy flavor and a pop of dill! It’s quick and easy to whip up a jar of pickled green beans.


  • 8 ounces green beans (thin or French beans are best)
  • 2 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 4 sprigs fresh dill*
  • ½ cup white vinegar
  • ½ cup water
  • ½ tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
  • ½ tablespoon dried dill seed* (not dried dill weed)


  1. Wash a wide-mouth pint mason jar and and its lid in hot soapy water. Then rinse and let air dry.
  2. Trim the green beans so they fit in jar with about 1/2” of space remaining at the top.
  3. Add the green beans, garlic and dill sprigs into the jar, squeezing them in as tightly as possible.
  4. In a small saucepan, combine the white vinegar, water, sugar, kosher salt, peppercorns, and dried dill seed. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally to dissolve the sugar and salt (this will take only a few minutes).
  5. Once boiling, pour the brine into the jar. Tap the jar on the counter to release any air bubbles. 
  6. Discard any remaining brine, or top off the jar with extra water if any green beans are exposed at the top.
  7. Screw on the lid tightly and allow to cool to room temperature (about 1 hour). Refrigerate 24 hours for best flavor. Keeps up to 1 month refrigerated (this recipe is not shelf stable).


*Dill seed are small, brown flat seeds of the dill plant that are used in canning. Don’t use dried dill weed, which is the dried green leaves of the plant. Here we used dill seed in combination with fresh dill; if you can’t find fresh dill you can omit it.

  • Category: Pickles
  • Method: Pickling
  • Cuisine: Pickles
  • Diet: Vegan

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes for memorable kitchen moments! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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  1. Sabrina says:

    great alternative snack for me, love pickled stuff for the tart flavors, thank you

  2. judee says:

    Such a delicious looking idea for the fresh green beans! We are not fans of vinegar and am curious if I could use lemon juice in this recipe instead.

  3. Sonja Overhiser says:

    Let us know if you have any questions!

    1. Anonymous says:

      This looks delicious! Just to clarify… you still keep the beans in the brine even after 24 hours right?

      1. Alex Overhiser says: