Michigan State University Extension
Preserving Food Safely - 01600131

Canning Bread and Butter Pickles

GUIDE 6:19

6 lbs of 4- to 5-inch pickling cucumbers
8 cups thinly sliced onions (About 3 pounds)
1/2 cup canning or pickling salt
4 cups vinegar (5%)
4-1/2 cups sugar
2 tbsp mustard seed
1-1/2 tbsp celery seed
1 tbsp ground turmeric
1 cup pickling lime (optional - for use in variation
below for making firmer pickles)

YIELD: About 8 pints

PROCEDURE: Wash cucumbers. Cut 1/16 inch off blossom
end and discard. Cut into 3/16-inch slices. Combine
cucumbers and onions in a large bowl. Add salt. Cover
with 2 inches crushed or cubed ice. Refrigerate 3 to 4
hours, adding more ice as needed.

Combine remaining ingredients in a large pot. Boil 10
minutes. Drain and add cucumbers and onions and slowly
reheat to boiling. Fill jars with slices and cooking
syrup, leaving 1/2-inch headspace. Adjust lids and
process as below or use low-temperature pasteurization
treatment described on page 5.

Variation for firmer pickles: Wash cucumbers. Cut 1/16-
inch off blossom end and discard. Cut into 3/16-inch
slices. Mix 1 cup pickling lime and 1/2 cup salt to 1
gallon water in a 2- to 3-gallon crock or enamelware
container. Avoid inhaling lime dust while mixing the
lime-water solution. Soak cucumber slices in lime water
for 12 to 24 hours, stirring occasionally. Remove from
lime solution, rinse, and resoak 1 hour in fresh cold
water. Repeat the rinsing and soaking steps two more
times. Handle carefully, as slices will be brittle.
Drain well.

Recommended process time for BREAD-AND-BUTTER PICKLES
in a boiling-water canner

Process Time at Altitudes of

Style Jar 0- 1,001- Above
of Pack Size 1,000 ft 6,000 ft 6000 ft

Hot Pints 10 min 15 20
or Quarts

STORAGE: After processing and cooling, jars should be
stored 4 to 5 weeks to develop ideal flavor.

VARIATION: Squash bread-and-butter pickles. Substitute
slender (1- to 1-1/2 inches in diameter) zucchini or
yellow summer squash for cucumbers.

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