Easy and sweet pickled banana peppers are one of life’s fine delicacies. This recipe is so fast and easy it’s silly. It’s tangy and salty and sweet and vinegary all at the perfect levels. When your pepper plants are loaded down with fruit this brine is a quick and easy way to get them put up fast.
We had a great harvest of banana peppers this year. They are pretty consistent plants for us no matter where we have lived. Although in Oregon we did have to start covering them pretty early as the season is so short there. We also got to experience our first real harvest of Jalepenos and Serrano peppers which was super exciting….we have done up many of the Jalepenos in this same brine and have even done a few mixed jars to kick up the spice factor of the banana peppers.
The other thing that was totally unique here in Georgia was that because the season is so long we actually had banana peppers turn a beautiful array of colors for us.
Everything from light light yellow to deep orange and reds. The look absolutely stunning mixed together in the jars.
We eat these pickled banana peppers on everything, salads, sandwiches, if I’m feeling bold I even enjoy a few on a slice of pizza. One of my favorite things to do with them is mix them up with some tuna and mayo and eat them with saltines. They also make great bribes and gifts for friends. We have to keep it hush hush how good they are or we wouldn’t have any left for ourselves.
This brine also works lovely for a quick sweet and tangy refrigerator pickle! Just slice up the cucumbers, cover with brine, and place them in the fridge.
4 cups white vinegar
1 1/3 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 teaspoon celery seed
1 lb banana peppers, seeded and sliced in rings (or just pack 4 pint jars worth)
- Sterilize 4-pint jars by washing and then placing them in a 250 degree oven for 20 minutes. Do not allow them to touch each other. If unable to assemble immediately, leave in oven to stay hot.
- Sterilize lids and rings with hot water and leave in pot to keep hot.
- Bring the vinegar, sugar, mustard seed and celery seed to a rolling boil.
- Pull a jar from the oven with mitts and quickly place peppers in the pint jars and pour on the pickling juice.Bring brine to within 1/2" of the top.
- Wipe off the rim and pull a hot lid and ring out of the pot, drying them and immediately place them on top. Do not allow them to cool between steps.
- Seal jar by tighten ring.
- At this point you may do 1 of 2 choices. Allow to seal down by themselves (lends a crunchier pepper) or process them in a water bath canner. We have personally stored on the shelf after allowing to seal themselves with no adverse reactions but to follow the USDA guidelines you should use a water bath or store these in the fridge continuously.
- Jars should seal themselves and audibly make a pop as they cool over 1-2 hours. After 3 hours test by pressing down center of lid, it should be solid and not pop up and down. Any that do not seal properly should be placed in fridge and used first.
- If you are concerned you can process in a water bath for the recommended times.....10 mins (0 - 1,000 ft), 15 min (1,001 - 6,000 ft) or 20 min (Above 6,000 ft elevation). You can also immediately refrigerate them if that makes you more comfortable.
- Leave for 1 week or longer (if you can stand it!)
Keep in fridge after opening. Stores basically indefinitely after opening.
Note: I am not a food safety expert and make no claims that this is a completely by the books safe way of canning. Most canning recipes require processing in a water bath but this cooks the pepper and takes away much of the crunch in my opinion. Our family has never used a water bath on these peppers and we have never had any problems with it since we use very hot sterilized jars and very hot sterilized lids to form a complete seal. These are also extremely high in vinegar content.
If you are concerned you can process in a water bath for the recommended times…..10 mins (0 – 1,000 ft), 15 min (1,001 – 6,000 ft) or 20 min (Above 6,000 ft elevation). You can also immediately refrigerate them if that makes you more comfortable. Cheers!