Quick & Easy No Cook Refrigerator Pickles

These homemade Quick & Easy No Cook Refrigerator Pickles are so good! They are the perfect condiment to transform a sandwich that might have once been ho hum into an exciting experience! A bowl of crisp, cool, tangy pickles can set the stage for a fabulous meal. These quick pickles make a light, healthy snack, and they are also great treats for picnics or other outdoor activities or events. No need to invest a lot of time in labor or equipment, either.

No Cook Refrigerator Pickle Recipe

I’ve always been a fan of pickles and to be honest, been drinking pickle juice straight from the jar too! I’m one of those people who just really enjoy that tart and tangy taste that only pickles can provide.

What are Refrigerator Pickles?

Essentially No Cook Refrigerator Pickles pickles are marinated cucumbers in a salt and vinegar brine. Instead of making pickles using a fermentation process or a hot water bath to can cucumbers in a pickling brine, this recipe for Refrigerator Pickles is easier and quicker since their is no cooking involved and the results are always consistent.

I have made countless versions of old fashioned fermented pickles and traditional shelf stable canned pickles, both yielded too soft of a pickle for my taste. And nothing is more wasteful that making or preserving foods in a way that you won’t eat!

I do make other fermented relishes that is absolutely amazing–> Fermented Sweet Pickle Relish, Fermented Cranberry Orange Relish, & Lacto-Fermented Horseradish Beet Relish

So several years ago I started experimenting with making quick pickles recipe and it was amazing that even after a full year in the fridge, they were still crispy and delicious. I can’t find any reason to go back to using methods that produce a product that I don’t enjoy.

What type of cucumbers are best for No Cook Refrigerator Pickles

I’m going against the popular (and old fashioned) opinion, that you should only use pickling varieties of cucumbers when making refrigerator pickles, instead feel free to use ANY fresh and young cucumber.

With an emphasis on Fresh and Young.

While I know that we all don’t have backyard gardens growing cucumbers, nearly everyone of us has access to a local farmer’s market or farmer who sells fresh picked produce in the summer months. Or at the very least, a grocery store that carries different types of cucumbers.

We want small cucumbers with the least amount and the smallest seeds, along with a thin, edible skin when making No Cook Refrigerator Pickles. I don’t recommend the wax coated dark cucumbers at the grocery store, however you can absolutely use baby English cucumbers, that’s what we grow in our garden instead of pickling or Kirby cucumbers.

And of course traditional pickling cucumbers work great too, but again, you want the smallest ones, since even the large pickling cukes are mostly seeds and don’t produce the best No Cook Refrigerator Pickles.

And by fresh, you don’t want any cucumber that’s soft or wrinkly. You want them to be crispy and firm.

What I love about this no cook refrigerator pickles recipe is that I can make small batches several times a week (or just keep adding to one big jar) as I pick the freshest, small, homegrown cucumbers from our garden. That means less waste and more pickles for later!!

How to make No Cook Refrigerator Pickles

To make the BEST No Cook Refrigerator Pickles you only need a few basic ingredients:

  • Cucumbers
  • Vinegar
  • Water
  • Salt
  • Sugar

No Cook Refrigerator Pickles optional spices:

No Cook Refrigerator Pickle Recipe

Although we are not preserving these No Cook Refrigerator Pickles via canning, we still want to make sure that our jars or other air tight container(s) are throughly washed to remove all dirt and bacteria.

Next you’ll want to make your refrigerator pickle brine (aka the pickling liquid) on the stove, heating it just enough to melt the salt and sugar.

And get those cucumbers washed and cut as desired. Today I’m making 1 jar of each; Pickle Spears and Pickle Slices.

No Cook Refrigerator Pickle Recipe

Next place your spices into the bottom of your clean jars; I use & suggest mustard seeds, black peppercorns, garlic and dill.

No Cook Refrigerator Pickle Recipe

Of course I give you suggested amounts in the recipe card at the bottom of this post, but I never ever measure, so don’t feel like you need to either. And of course feel free to customize your flavoring.

I make a few jars every year without any garlic to share with our friend who (gasp) doesn’t like garlic. (I know, crazy right)

You may want lots of garlic or lots of dill for dill pickles, or just a plain brine… you do you!

Then pack your jars tightly with your cucumbers, but don’t damage them. And pour your brine overtop.

No Cook Refrigerator Pickle Recipe

Seal your jars up with air tight lids, I personally prefer to use Weck Jars #743 (3/4 liter capacity) because of their wide mouth that is very easy to get the pickles out of them later — and duh they look so cute!

No Cook Refrigerator Pickle Recipe

Any regular canning jar will work just fine, so don’t feel pressure to buy something special just for this recipe. You can even recycle an old pickle jar as long as it has an air tight lid. Heck you can even make these in a large bowl; any vessel with an airtight lid will work!

How to make Spicy Refrigerator Pickles

To make a spicy refrigerator pickle, you simply need to add hot pepper(s) to your jar. My favorite options are a few slices of fresh Hungarian wax peppers or 1/2 of a small Jalapeño pepper, both with the seeds removed, so that they get that spicy punch without being TOO HOT. If really spicy is your thing then feel free to add 1 whole hot pepper that you like, a cayenne or Serrano would be awesome, too!

How long do Refrigerator Pickles Last

As I type this I am eating the last of our refrigerator pickles from last year – yes that’s a full year (aka 365 days ago) that we made them and they are still 100% delicious and safe to eat.

The key to such a long shelf life in the refrigerator is keeping unopen jars cold and sealed up in an air tight container or jar. Don’t open the jars until you are ready to enjoy your pickles.

Refrigerator pickles are a food that you only need to make once per year and if you plan it out correctly, you’ll have plenty to enjoy!

Of course you always want to look for signs of spoilage since there isn’t an expiration date 🙂

What to eat with Refrigerator Pickles

I’m pretty sure we all KNOW things that go well with pickles, right?? I mean personally I most often enjoy them as a snack right out of the jar, sliced on a grilled burger or even as the ‘bread’ in my Ruben Sandwich Pickle Bites!

No Cook Refrigerator Pickles Recipe FAQ

Can I add onions to my Refrigerator Pickles?

Yes you can add onions to your refrigerator pickles; yellow, white or red onion all work great! Specifically if you like a pickled red onion, this recipe is nearly identical using only cucumbers instead of onions!!

What type of vinegar is best for Refrigerator Pickles?

I prefer to use distilled white vinegar with 5-6% acidity for making refrigerator pickles, but you can also use apple cider vinegar, white wine vinegar, or red wine vinegars. The only vinegar I do not recommend is balsamic vinegar or malt vinegar. If you are looking for an asian style refrigerator pickle using rice vinegar, try my Marinated Asian Sesame Cucumber Salad.

What is the best way to cut or slice cucumbers for refrigerator pickles?

Of course a knife will work perfectly fine for cutting cucumber slices, however mandoline slicers will help to ensure your slices are a consistent thickness for more even pickling.

Can I use this brine to pickle other vegetables?

Absolutely, this brine recipe will work for a wide variety of other vegetables to transform them into refrigerator pickles too – either on their own or as a mixed jar (Gardena) such as green beans, carrots, asparagus, peppers, onions, garlic and/or cauliflower.

Can I add other spices to this Refrigerator Pickle recipe?

The sky is the limit for customizing the spices in this no cook refrigerator pickle recipe, as I mentioned previously. Other options for additional are bay leaves, coriander seeds, pickling spices, etc.

Can I can this refrigerator pickles to make them shelf stable?

This recipe can be preserved for your pantry at room temperature using canning jars and a water bath canning process. In fact that is what I adapted this recipe from. However, your pickles will not be as crispy as this refrigerator version will be. Can it be done? Yes. Do I recommend? No.

If you like these No Cook Refrigerator Pickles, try these other refrigerator pickle recipes next:

No Cook Refrigerator Pickle Recipe

Quick & Easy No Cook Refrigerator Pickles

These homemade Quick & easy No Cook Refrigerator Pickles Recipe are so good! They are the perfect condiment to transform a sandwich that might have once been ho hum into an exciting experience! A bowl of crisp, cool, tangy pickles can set the stage for a fabulous meal. They make a light, healthy snack, and they are also great treats for picnics or other outdoor activities or events. No need to invest a lot of time in labor or equipment, either. 
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Servings: 32 servings



Spices & Seasonings, optional but recommended

For Spicy Refrigerator Pickles

  • 1/2 whole Fresh hot pepper, seeds removed if desired Jalapeno, serrano, Hungarian wax pepper, etc


  • In a small sauce pan combine water, vinegar, salt and sugar. Heat until the salt and sugar are melted. The brine can be used hot, warm or chilled*. Turn off heat and set aside.
  • Throughly wash your jars & lids. Even though we are not canning these pickles it's important to make sure there is no bacteria on the jars or lids. Place spices in the bottom of your jars.
  • Prepare fresh picked cucumbers by washing and removing the blossom and stem end. Cut into desired shape (length wise spears, slices, etc) or leave baby cucumbers whole. Set aside
  • Tightly pack your cucumbers into the jars (with the spices on the bottom).
  • Pour brine over top and seal with an air tight lid.
  • Store your Refrigerator Pickles in the Refrigerator. Depending on the size of your pickles and your desired depth of flavor, you can start using your pickles in roughly 2-3 weeks and they will keep in the fridge for up to 1 year!


Any salt CAN be used for refrigerator pickles, If I don’t have canning & pickling salt I will just use sea salt or kosher salt. 
You can experiment with different vinegars, if desired. Apple Cider Vinegar works great in this recipe too. 
If you used hot or warm brine, allow your pickles to cool before refrigerating.
Brine can be made in advance (or extra be saved for later) in the refrigerator and used cold. You can also add more cucumbers into your jars if they were not full. 


Calories: 7kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 0.2g | Fat: 0.1g | Saturated Fat: 0.01g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.01g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.01g | Sodium: 437mg | Potassium: 42mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 24IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 0.1mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @hayley_inthekitchen or tag #hayley_inthekitchen!

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