Easy Lemon Cucumber Pickles

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If you have never heard of Lemon Cucumbers, or you know what they are but want to try them, this recipe for Easy Lemon Cucumber Pickles is a great way to eat them. Lemon Cucumbers have a great texture that is perfect for making pickles, and these are so easy to make! 

Fresh From The Garden-

For the first time in my life, I decided this year to take up gardening. I grew everything in containers because I just don’t have the space to dig a garden. One of the things I really wanted to grow were Lemon Cucumbers. 

They have done surprisingly well, and I will be growing some again next year! Not only are the plants producing quite well, but the deer have stayed out of them (I can’t really say the same for my strawberries and tomatoes) so I consider them quite a win for this first round!

Once I had my first harvest, I set about trying to decide how to use them. I love pickles, so that was a given. I experimented with different flavor profiles in the pickling brine to come up with something a little different, and this was the result.

closeup photo of a jar of lemon cucumber pickles

What are Lemon Cucumbers?

Lemon Cucumbers are an heirloom variety, with a round shape and mottled skin in varying shades of yellow and gold. They are often available at Farmers Markets if they are grown in your area. My Farmers Market has them, but I have never seen them in the local grocery store, which is a shame because they are good to eat, and add color to any dish they are used in.

Their skin is thin, and they can be eaten whole just like an apple. The flavor is milder than the cucumbers we normally eat. For more information, you can check out Health Benefits Times to learn more.

fresh lemon cucumbers on a light brown napkin

What I Love About These Quick Pickles

These are not your usual pickles! I wanted to treat these a little differently than an ordinary cucumber, so I decided to add a touch of lemon juice to the brine. It was only fitting, being that the cucumbers look like lemons. 

I love the fresh basil, you really can taste it! The basil adds an herbaceous note that you don’t get from a traditional dill pickle. I really like the brightness of the champagne vinegar in this brine, it’s a different flavor profile than white vinegar.

Refrigerator Pickles

Refrigerator pickles are great because you don’t need to boil large amounts of water, and they only take a couple of days in refrigeration to be ready to eat. They are surprisingly easy and so tasty. Unlike pickles made when you are canning, these have to stay in refrigeration unless they are being used. 

overhead view of a jar of lemon cucumber pickles with three lemon cucumbers

Recipe Tips and Frequently Asked Questions

Could pickling cucumbers be used instead of lemon cucumbers if I can’t find any?

Yes! The flavors in this brine are quite nice with more commonly available cucumber varieties.

Can this recipe be doubled?

Most definitely. You can make these in a large quantity if you find yourself with a ton of lemon cucumbers.

Could another vinegar be used in place of the champagne vinegar?

You can use another type if you need to. I would recommend apple cider or white wine vinegar. I think distilled white vinegar is too strong for the flavor of the cucumbers.

Could these be made using the canning method rather than quick pickling? 

They can, but because canning makes the cucumbers softer, quick pickling is really best here because it helps to preserve the crunch and texture.

Serving Suggestions

I love these right out of the jar, but they are great on sandwiches and burgers as well (meat or veggie). They bring a nice kick to salads and would be great as part of a charcuterie board. 

I would highly recommend using these in any application you would normally serve a standard dill pickle. They really do brighten things up, and they are a little different than your usual pickle. For something else that’s a little different in the world of pickling, check out my Pickled Strawberries with Pink Peppercorn and Rose.

I hope you give these a try, and if you loved this recipe, please leave a rating or comment and share on social media with your friends. Happy Cooking!

closeup photo of a jar of lemon cucumber pickles
Yield: 8 servings

Easy Lemon Cucumber Pickles

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Additional Time: 2 days
Total Time: 2 days 15 minutes

What can you do with Lemon Cucumbers? How about some delicious quick pickles! This easy recipe gets loads of flavor from fresh Basil and Champagne Vinegar in the brine. They are the perfect complement to the flavor of these cucumbers!

Ingredients

  • 3-4 Lemon Cucumbers (how many lemon cucumbers you use will depend on their size. They should fill one pint size jar with the fresh basil leaves, but not be too crowded in the jar.)
  • 1/2 cup Water
  • 1/4 cup Champagne Vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp Lemon Juice
  • 1 Tbsp Granulated Sugar
  • 2 Tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Black Peppercorns
  • 10 Fresh Basil Leaves
  • 16 ounce glass jar with lid

Instructions

  1. Place 5 of the fresh basil leaves in the bottom of the jar.
  2. In a small saucepan, add the 1/2 cup of water, 1/4 cup of champagne vinegar, 1 Tbsp of lemon juice, 1 Tbsp of granulated sugar, and 2 tsp of salt, 1/2 tsp of black peppercorns. Bring to a boil.
  3. Once the mixture is boiling, let it boil for a minute or two. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
  4. While the brine cools, cut the ends off the lemon cucumbers and cut into 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch slices.
  5. Place the slices in the jar, and add the remaining 5 basil leaves on top. The cucumber slices should fit snugly in the jar, but not be crammed in the jar or over stuffed to allow space for the brine. To allow space for the brine in the jar, the cucumber slices should not come all the way to the top of the jar, but be about a half inch from the top. Thanks to the displacement in the jar created by the cucumber slices, the brine should just cover the basil leaves that you place on top. If the brine doesn't come up to the top of the basil leaves at the top of the jar, you may need to remove a few of the cucumber slices until it does.
  6. Pour the brine into the jar, screw the lid on tightly and place in the refrigerator for 48 hours. After this time, they ready to eat!

Notes

All of the lemon cucumber slices may not fit into the jar. If there are some remaining, they are great in a salad to use them up.

These will last up to a month refrigerated. For optimum freshness, they should be used within two weeks. After this time, they begin to lose their crunch.

It is important to note that if you have too many lemon cucumber slices to fit in one jar and you try to make two jars of pickles with the excess, you will not have enough brine for two jars without doubling the recipe for the brine, and doubling the amount of fresh basil leaves for the second jar.

When pickling lemon cucumbers, it is best to use the refrigerator method rather than water bath canning. The lemon cucumbers have a better flavor and crunch using the quick pickling method.

Because this recipe is for refrigerator pickles rather than canning, you don't necessarily have to sterilize your jars unless you choose to.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

8

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 27Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 584mgCarbohydrates: 8gFiber: 2gSugar: 3gProtein: 1g

All information presented and written within this site are intended for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist or registered dietitian and any nutritional information should only be used as a general guideline. Statements within this site have not been evaluated or approved by the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is provided for recipes contained on this site. This information comes from online calculators. Although The Copper Table attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates.

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47 Comments

  1. Just planted some of these lemon cucumbers in our garden this year and wasn’t sure how to use them. I love this idea and will definitely be using it!

  2. Wow! Can’t wait to try this Lemon Cucumbers!:) I love that you added a touch of lemon juice to the brine and fresh basil, its really awesome. Thanks!:)

  3. These lemon cucumbers are so cute. Ive never seen them before, not even at our local farmers market. Hopefully I will get to try to make this recipe someday

    1. I hope you can too Nancy! They are actually really easy to grow, you can find seeds online!

  4. I just had to stop scrolling when I saw your images! I have never heard of Lemon Cucumbers before now and now I have cucumber envy! Good to know I can still make this pickle with normal varieties but I am going to try real hard to see if I can locate some like yours. This is a recipe I know my son with love as he’s pickle mad.

  5. Reckon I’d be eating these straight out of the jar. They look gorgeous indeed and I agree, lemon is a must. I haven’t tasted a lemon cucumber for years, but you’ve reminded me just how good they are. Well done for growing your first crop.

  6. These are so cute and delicious. I love lemon cucumbers and try to grow them every year. I don’t know why I never picketed them before 🤷🏼‍♀️

    1. They are so easy to grow, and this year they are the only thing in my garden the deer didn’t destroy! They really do make great pickles!

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