Spicy, sharp, sweet, this quick pickled chillies recipe takes just 15 minutes to make. The chillies are a delicious spicy addition to so many dishes; from salads to noodles, soups and curries.
Why we love this recipe
- It’s a quick and easy pickle recipe, with just 8 basic ingredients you can pickle chillies in just 15 minutes.
- Chilli pickles are so versatile – they can be used in salads to noodles, on soups or burgers.
- A useful condiment to add heat and spice – cooking the same meals for young kids and adults often means things are less spicy than often would like. Having a jar of these pickled red chillies in the fridge means you can easily add some spice.
- Preserved chillies are a great recipe to use up a lot of chilli peppers.
- They are a pretty edible gift – and make a change from sweet treats as gifts.
Ingredients notes and substitutions
- Fresh chillies – I often buy ‘red chillies’ which, here in Australia, are the most common chillies. These long red chillies that can vary a little in heat. I would suggest cayenne pepper, or for a more a milder heat, use bullhorn chillies. You can also pickle green chillies.
- Vinegar – I use either apple cider or rice wine vinegar.
- Sugar – granulated white sugar. You can substitute honey for the sugar, honey adds an extra layer of flavour whereas sugar is a more neutral sweetness.
- Pickling spices – You can choose what you like to flavour your pickling liquid, my favourite additions are bay leaves, yellow mustard seeds and fennel seeds. You can add black peppercorns, black mustard seeds, or dill seeds to name a few!
How to make this recipe
- Sterilise your glass jar. (If you are unsure how to sterilise jars please see ‘My recipe Tips’ below.)
- Thinly slice the chillies.
- In a small saucepan place the vinegar, sugar and pickling spices. Gently heat.
- Place your sliced chillies in the sterilised jar.
- Pour over the hot liquid, making sure the vinegar covered the chillies.
Pickled chillies are sharp, sweet, spicy and, depending on the type of chilli pickled, hot!
Yes you can freeze fresh chillies. Wash and dry the chillies, slice the chillies in to rings, place on a baking sheet and freeze for 20-30 minutes. Transfer to a container or bag and freeze for up to 3-4 months.
My recipe tips
- To sterilise glass jars: Preheat the oven to 120 ˚C / 230˚F. Wash your jars and lids in hot soapy water, but don’t dry them. Whilst still wet, place jars and lids upright on a baking sheet and place in the oven for 20 minutes. Fill immediately.
- Make sure the vinegar always covers the chillies to prevent air from getting to them. Top the jar up with vinegar if you have to.
- Dissolve the sugar before adding the bay leaf and spices.
- You can easily double of triple the amounts of this recipe to make more jars.
Serving ideas for pickled chillies
These pickled red chillies keep in the fridge for up to 2-3 weeks.
- Whole chillies – you can pickle whole chillies instead of sliced (I find sliced easier to serve). To pickle whole chillies prick them with a pin then proceed as per the recipe.
- Mix up the spices – use coriander seeds, cumin seeds or black mustard seeds.
- Herbs – rosemary or oregano.
- Use the same amount (¾ teaspoon) of honey instead of the sugar. Place in the pan with the vinegar. Using honey adds a distinctive taste to the pickles.
- Add ¾ teaspoon of soy sauce instead of the salt.
These easy recipes are great additions to the dinner table!
Quick Pickled Chillies
- 150g (5¼ oz) red chillies
- 120ml (½ c) water
- 120ml (½ c) white vinegar
- ¾ teaspoon white sugar
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
- ½ teaspoon fennel seeds
- Wash and dry the chillies.
- Slice the chillies width ways and discard the stalks.
- Pack the chillies into a sterilised jar.
- In a small saucepan, combine the water and white vinegar with the sugar and salt. Add the bay leaf, mustard seeds and fennel seeds and heat over a gentle heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar and salt have dissolved.
- Pour this over the chillies in the jar – the liquid should cover the chillies to prevent the air from getting to them.
- Store in the fridge for up to a week.