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Add big flavor to your meals with these easy homemade pickled jalapeños! With only 10 minutes hands on time, they add a tangy kick to tacos and chili.

Pickled Jalapenos
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Ever made your own pickled jalapeños? Now’s the time to start! This recipe is so easy: it takes only 10 minutes of hands on time. And the flavor? Explosively good! These pickled jalapeños have a tangy pop; they’re like a heightened version of the ones you can get at the store. Alex and I made these to go on our Ultimate Vegan Chili, and were surprised when we tasted them. “How are these so good?” If you’re obsessed with pickles (like we are) and love spicy food (like we do), you’ll need to make these, stat.

Jalapeño peppers

How to make pickled jalapeños (the basic steps)

You don’t need any canning equipment at all for this recipe! These pickled jalapeños are quick pickles or refrigerator pickles, meaning that they’re fast to make and not shelf stable. This recipe takes 10 minutes of active hands on time, then you’ll wait 1 hour for the pickling brine to work its magic. Here’s the basic method for how to pickle these spicy peppers:

  • Prep the veggies: Thinly slice the jalapeños. (Take care not to touch your face, and wash your hands afterwards!) Place the slices in a wide-mouth pint jar.
  • Make the brine: The jalapeños are pickled by pouring on a hot “brine”, which is a salty sweet liquid. To make it, heat vinegar and water on the stove with sugar, salt, peppercorns, garlic and a bay leaf. Heat just until the sugar and salt dissolve, a few minutes.
  • Pour it in! Pour the brine in the jar and put the top on. You’re done! Let the pickles come to room temperature before diving in, about 1 hour. Then you can store them in the fridge.

Love jalapenos? Try more Irresistible Jalapeno Recipes.

Pickled jalapeños

How long do they last?

Once you’ve got your beautiful jar of bright green pickled jalapeño peppers, here’s where the magic happens. They’ll pickle as you let them cool down from room temperature, and the bright green color fades to a duller yellow green. You can eat them immediately, or refrigerate them if you prefer them cold.

How long do pickled jalapeños last? Store them in the refrigerator for 1 month. At our house they don’t last that long!

Pickled jalapeño peppers

10 ways to use pickled jalapeños!

Here’s the best part: how to eat them! If you love these spicy peppers, we’re sure you have no end of ideas on how to use them. But here are all our favorite ways to use pickled jalapenos:

  1. Chili: Use to garnish our Vegan Chili or other chili recipes!
  2. Quesadillas: Throw them in a Veggie Quesadilla.
  3. Baked Potatoes: Use to top Mexican Sweet Potatoes or a Baked Sweet Potato.
  4. Nachos: Add to our Sheet Pan Nachos or Vegan Nachos.
  5. Tacos: The tang works on Quinoa TacosShrimp Tacos, or any of our tacos recipes!
  6. Burrito bowl: Add a kick to this Quick Burrito Bowl.
  7. Pizza: They give Mexican Pizza the perfect kick!
  8. Bean Dip: Use them as a garnish on Refried Bean Dip or 5 Minute Bean Dip.
  9. Cheese Dip: Or amp up this Skillet Mexican Cheese Dip.
  10. Sandwiches: Try them on Jackfruit BBQ Sandwich or Vegan Sloppy Joes.
Vegan chili
They’re perfect on chili!

More quick pickles recipes

There are so many vegetables to pickle! Alex and I are pickle fiends, and have been known to snack on them right out of the fridge. (Sometimes you just need that tangy crunch, right?) I didn’t grow up liking pickles, so I think I’m making up for lost time! Here are a few of our favorite homemade pickles recipes:

Love canning? Also try our Homemade Sauerkraut: tangy, tasty, and filled with probiotics!

Jalapeños pickles

This pickled jalapeños recipe is…

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

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Pickled Jalapenos

Pickled Jalapeños (Made in 10 Minutes!)

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4 from 4 reviews

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 1 pint jar 1x
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Add big flavor to your meals with these easy homemade pickled jalapeños! With only 10 minutes hands on time, they add a tangy kick to tacos and chili.


  • 5 to 6 medium jalapeño peppers
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • ½ cup white vinegar
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf


  1. Wash a wide-mouth pint mason jar and and its lid in hot soapy water. Then rinse and let air dry.
  2. Thinly slice the jalapeño peppers. (To make a milder heat level, you can remove some of the seeds as desired.) Fill the jar with the slices.
  3. Peel the garlic cloves, leaving them whole. In a small saucepan, combine the garlic, vinegar, water, sugar, kosher salt, peppercorns and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally to dissolve the sugar and salt (this will take only a few minutes).
  4. Once boiling, pour the brine into the jar (including the bay leaf). Tap the jar on the counter to release any air bubbles. Discard any remaining brine, or top off the jar with extra water if any peppers are exposed at the top.
  5. Screw on the lid tightly and allow to cool to room temperature (about 1 hour). Eat immediately, or refrigerate until serving. Keeps up to 1 month refrigerated.
  • Category: Essentials
  • Method: Pickled
  • Cuisine: Pickles

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 and the joy of cooking! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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  1. Tom says:

    I have made these before, they were outstanding and I will be making them again soon. I had a thought about whether adding some honey to the brine would be good. Would it result in a spicy sweet honey jalapeño or would it be bad? If you think this would be good, how much honey would you add?

  2. Christine Richter says:

    I did not know what to do with the beautiful jalapeno peppers I picked up at the grocery store. I did remove the seeds. Wonderful taste. Added the pickled peppers to refried beans, onions, tomatoes, celery for a wonderful taco filling. I cut the peppers in half lengthwise and removed the seeds. Then cut them horizontally thin. Next time I’ll use gloves as my fingers felt the sting for two days even after washing. My husband, who avoids spicy peppers really liked the flavor.

  3. Annette Sweetser says:

    Thank you for your pickled jalapeño recipe. They were on sale and looked beautiful but I didn’t know what to do with them. Now I have a month to enjoy!

  4. Dana B says:

    Thank you for this recipe. I have a ton of jalapeños in the garden right now and I don’t want any of the sweet type of pickled peppers. I’m off right now to go pick them and get started.

  5. Cathy says:

    I’m trying the jalapeño pickling recipe today as my boss is bring me some from her garden. Is the sugar a requirement? I don’t like sweet things. Thnx

    1. Alex Overhiser says:

      Hi! It doesn’t make a sweet pickle; it just balances the flavor. If desired though, you could definitely leave it out!

  6. Mary says:

    I found these too spicy (and I love spice!) to be edible. I read other online recipes after I made them I see that I should have removed some of the seeds to control the heat level. I picked your recipe because the pictures were deceivingly bright green as if they retained their freshness. I suppose it was fancy food styling or photoshop because in reality they turn a subdued green like pickles usually look. I would be unlikely to try any other recipes on this site as a result.

    1. Sonja Overhiser says:

      Hi Mary! Thanks for this feedback. Jalapenos can vary in spice level, so it’s possible yours were spicier than ours! We like the heat level, but we can add a note to remove some of the seeds if you’re worried about them being too spicy. In terms of the bright green color, there’s no sneaking food styling: the photo was taken right after we pickled them! You are correct, the color does start to fade immediately – -that is true for all jalapeno pickles. I will add a note for people who might not be expecting this. Thanks for your feedback.

  7. Susan Lucas says:

    These are fabulous! Thanks for sharing.