How to Make Mustard Pickles - Great-Grandma's Recipe

How to Make Mustard Pickles – Great-Grandma’s Recipe

By Melissa Norris | Food Preservation

Sep 04

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You need to know how to make mustard pickles because this is one of the BEST condiments we’ve ever had. This recipe came from my husband’s Great Grandma and I’ve updated it to make sure it follows safe canning but still has the amazing flavor from her original recipe.

How to Make Mustard Pickles - Great-Grandma's Mustard Pickle Recipe

When my father-in-law found out I was a canner, he started talking about how much he loved Great-Grandma’s mustard pickles and hadn’t had them in years (sadly, she passed from the family long before I met and married my husband). I’d never heard of mustard pickle relish before and thought the recipe was long lost as no one had made it in years. It was one of those family recipes that were the stuff of legends it seemed.

Until my husband’s grandma was going through her recipe books and found a copy of it from decades past. She no longer canned but passed it along to me. Honestly, as I scanned the ingredients for the mustard pickles I wasn’t sure what to expect by the finished product, but man, one spoonful and I was hooked.

It quickly became a yearly staple and makes the best (and easiest) potato salad. All you have to do is add it to eggs, mayo and your potatoes and you’re done. No chopping up pickles or onions, score! Wondering what to eat with mustard pickles beside potato salad, a few of our favorites are on hamburgers, hot dogs, and sandwiches… or by the spoonful.

A few important notes, I used the Ball mustard pickle recipe to calculate the vinegar and amount of ClearJel to update this recipe for canning safety. The original recipe called flour but flour, cornstarch, tapioca, or any other thickener aside from ClearJel are no longer approved or considered safe canning ingredients. Because I don’t have a way of testing safe viscosity when canning a recipe at home, I always use a tested source for acidity and viscosity (aka thickener) ratios.

Great Grandma’s Mustard Pickles Recipes

6 cups washed and diced pickling cucumbers

2 cups diced onion

1 cup canning/pickling salt

8 cups water (or enough to cover the cucumbers and onions for the salt water soak)

4 cups vinegar (you can use apple cider or white vinegar but make sure it’s 5% acidity)

4 Tablespoons sugar

2 Tablespoons ClearJel® (optional, but produces a thicker relish)

6 Tablespoons dry mustard

2 Tablespoons dry turmeric

2 teaspoons celery salt (you can use regular salt, but the celery salt adds to the flavor)

½ cup water

  1. Place cucumbers and onions in a large stainless steel or glass bowl.
  2. Mix 1 cup of pickling/canning salt with 8 cups of cold water (double this as needed if doing a larger batch of pickles). Pour over top of cucumbers and onions, add more cold water if necessary to cover the tops of the cucumbers. Use a clean plate and place on top of the cucumbers to keep them under the surface of the ice salt water.
  3. Fill a pint sized Mason jar with water (use a lid) and set it on top of the plate to act as a weight. Let soak for 1 to 2 hours on the counter or put the bowl in the fridge overnight or for 12 hours.
  4. After soaking cucumbers and onions, pour out salt water and rinse thoroughly with cold water and allow cucumbers to drain.
  5. Prepare water bath canner and begin warming the water.
  6. In a large stainless steel pot, combine sugar, dry mustard and turmeric, celery salt, and ClearJel®, then pour in a ½ cup of water, whisking until combined and smooth. Pour in vinegar and bring to a full boil while stirring.
  7. Once it’s reached a full boil, lower heat to a simmer and stir until it thickens up, then add the cucumbers and the onions and bring to a boil. When it reaches a boil with the vegetables added, keep at a low boil and cook for 15 minutes, stir as needed.
  8. In jars just washed in hot soapy water and rinsed, pack the relish/pickle mixture to a ½ inch headspace. Remove air bubbles and add more product if needed to keep the ½ inch headspace. Clean the rim, put on lid and bands, and screw down to finger tip tight. Place filled jar into your water bath canner. Make sure at least 1 inch of water covers the top of the jars.
  9. Bring water to a full boil, once water is boiling, process pints for 10 minutes.
  10. Turn off heat, remove lid, and let jars sit in canner for 5 minutes. Then remove from canner and let cool and seal on a folded towel.

Mustard Pickle Recipe Notes/Adaptations:

You may safely sub in zucchini in place of cucumbers in this recipe per Ball Book of Complete Home Canning.

You can use either apple cider or white vinegar, just make sure it says 5% acidity (no homemade apple cider vinegar for canning recipes)

If you don’t have ClearJel (you can click here to order it) you can omit it (but don’t add any other type of thickener), the relish will be a little bit runnier, but the flavor will still be fantastic.

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How to Make Mustard Pickles – Great-Grandma’s Recipe

This old-fashioned mustard pickle recipe is straight from Great-Grandma’s kitchen and is delicious on sandwiches, hot dogs, hamburgers and in salads. A must make when the summer bounty is on!

  • Author: Melissa Norris
  • Prep Time: 12 hours
  • Cook Time: 30 min
  • Total Time: 12 hours 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 pints (8 cups) 1x
  • Category: Condiment
  • Method: Canning
  • Cuisine: America
Scale

Ingredients

6 cups washed and diced pickling cucumbers

2 cups diced onion

1 cup canning/pickling salt

8 cups water (or enough to cover the cucumbers and onions for the salt water soak)

4 cups vinegar (you can use apple cider or white vinegar but make sure it’s 5% acidity)

4 Tablespoons sugar

2 Tablespoons ClearJel® (optional, but produces a thicker relish)

6 Tablespoons dry mustard

2 Tablespoons dry turmeric

2 teaspoons celery salt (you can use regular salt, but the celery salt adds to the flavor)

½ cup water

Instructions

  1. Place cucumbers and onions in a large stainless steel or glass bowl.
  2. Mix 1 cup of pickling/canning salt with 8 cups of cold water (double this as needed if doing a larger batch of pickles). Pour over top of cucumbers and onions, add more cold water if necessary to cover the tops of the cucumbers. Use a clean plate and place on top of the cucumbers to keep them under the surface of the ice salt water.
  3. Fill a pint sized Mason jar with water (use a lid) and set it on top of the plate to act as a weight. Let soak for 1 to 2 hours on the counter or put the bowl in the fridge overnight or for 12 hours.
  4. After soaking cucumbers and onions, pour out salt water and rinse thoroughly with cold water and allow cucumbers to drain.
  5. Prepare water bath canner and begin warming the water.
  6. In a large stainless steel pot, combine sugar, dry mustard and turmeric, celery salt, and ClearJel®, then pour in a ½ cup of water, whisking until combined and smooth. Pour in vinegar and bring to a full boil while stirring.
  7. Once it’s reached a full boil, lower heat to a simmer and stir until it thickens up, then add the cucumbers and the onions and bring to a boil. When it reaches a boil with the vegetables added, keep at a low boil and cook for 15 minutes, stir as needed.
  8. In jars just washed in hot soapy water and rinsed, pack the relish/pickle mixture to a ½ inch headspace. Remove air bubbles and add more product if needed to keep the ½ inch headspace. Clean the rim, put on lid and bands, and screw down to finger tip tight. Place filled jar into your water bath canner. Make sure at least 1 inch of water covers the top of the jars.
  9. Bring water to a full boil, once water is boiling, process pints for 10 minutes.
  10. Turn off heat, remove lid, and let jars sit in canner for 5 minutes. Then remove from canner and let cool and seal on a folded towel.

Notes

You may safely sub in zucchini in place of cucumbers in this recipe per Ball Book of Complete Home Canning.

You can use either apple cider or white vinegar, just make sure it says 5% acidity (no homemade apple cider vinegar for canning recipes)

Keywords: mustard pickles, how to make mustard pickles, grandma's mustard pickles

Now you know how to make mustard pickles with Great-Grandma’s recipe. Have you ever made these before or had them?

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About the Author

Melissa K. Norris inspires people's faith and pioneer roots with her books, podcast, and blog. Melissa lives with her husband and two children in their own little house in the big woods in the foothills of the North Cascade Mountains. When she's not wrangling chickens and cattle, you can find her stuffing Mason jars with homegrown food and playing with flour and sugar in the kitchen.

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