Klamath River Spicy Pickled Green Beans

by | Aug 24, 2011
Pickling Green Beans

Pickling Green Beans

The first time I really appreciated the art of pickling was at Slow Food Nation here in SF back in 2008. I thought a pickle was a pickle, but when I tasted the variety, complexity and depth of pickled vegetables at the SFN Taste Pavilion, I realized how naive I had been.

This weekend I tweeted out that we were pickling some green beans and several people asked for the recipe. Though this is my first pickling experiment we are using a well-tested family recipe, so it should be good. It sure looks good!

The pickling process takes 45 days, but green bean season will be over by then so I figured it would be best to post the recipe now for whomever wants to try it.

A few notes on successful pickling:

  • Though pickles have rather high acid levels, botulism is still a risk. Be careful to use sterile materials, and be sure to follow the protocol exactly.
  • You can get mason jars for canning at any cookware store or order them online.
  • The Exploratorium Science of Cooking page has more awesome pickling tips.

Klamath River Spicy Pickled Green Beans

Makes 4 pints

Pickled Beans

Pickled Beans


  • 2 lbs green beans (blue lake is best)
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 4 heads fresh dill (approx. 4 heads per tied bundle)
  • 1/4 c. salt
  • 2-1/2 c. white vinegar
  • 2-1/2 c. water

In each pint jar, put in the following:

  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 head fresh dill
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

Vertically pack each pint jar with green beans until fairly packed (1/2 inch from the top).

In a pot bring to a boil the brine (salt, white vinegar, and water). Pour over the beans (1/4 inch from the top). Seal jars with lids and rings.

Place jars in a boiling bath of hot water for at least 10 minutes. Carefully remove jars and let sit until cool.

Store 45 days before eating.

Thanks to Kevin Rose for sharing his dad’s recipe. Originally published August 16, 2010.

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5 Responses to “Klamath River Spicy Pickled Green Beans”

  1. joanna says:

    Just a note on pickled green beans — my Dad entered a batch in the fair and got a blue ribbon, BUT we were contacted later by the Extension Office after the recipe ran in the newspaper. These days, the risk of botulism has resulted in a change in recommended procedures to include pressure canning rather than just using than the water bath method. Although there is vinegar in the recipe, green beans are low in acid and vinegar acidity varies from batch to batch. When I was in school, several members of a family in the small farming town where I lived died from botulism from home-canned chili peppers. It’s not worth the risk.

    • Jason says:

      Pressure canning is a good precaution. Proper sanitation of all the canning utensils with a mild bleach solution should be fine. Botulism is anaerobic and thrives without oxygen. This is why it can survive in sealed containers and in unpasteurized honey. An anaerobic microbe colony will create a foul smelling gas that will pop the lids off any bad jars if you take the rings off after they have fully cooled. Avoid any jars that have lost the vacuum seal and you should be fine.

  2. Nicole says:

    I just made these with fresh cayenne and poblano peppers…turned out awesome!
    Thanks for posting, I will definitely re-post!

  3. Papa G says:

    I’ve been making these beans for over 10 years, exactly according to the recipe. Perfect every time. Thank you 🙂

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