Hot and spicy pickled carrots are Pioneer Dad’s favorite winter snack. A great way to preserve the garden harvest, they will last a year in a cool dark cabinate.
Prep Time: 15 min. Total Time: 1 hr.
Servings: 4 pints, 16 servings
Time: 1 hour
2-3/4 pounds of peeled carrots (approx. 3-1/2 pounds when purchased)
4 whole, dried chipotle or jalapenos peppers
5-1/2 cups of white distilled vinegar (5% acidity) or apple cider vinegar
1 cup water
2 tsp. sea salt (non-iodized)
8 tsp. whole mustard seed
4 tsp. whole celery seed
4 tsp. whole coriander seed
4 tsp. whole fennel seed
4 tsp. whole fresh garlic cloves
24 black peppercorns
1-1/2 cups sugar
4 pint canning jars (wide mouth jars work best)
1. Prep the carrots
Wash, drain and peel the carrots. Trim the ends. Cut the carrots into sticks slightly shorter than the 1-inch headspace measurement. Cut carrots into sticks of common thickness. Don’t pack carrots into jars yet.
2. Make the pickling solution
In a large pot, 8 quart or larger, combine the vinegar, sugar, salt and water for the pickling solution. Heat to a boil, stir to dissolve the sugar and salt and keep at a low boil for 3 minutes.
3. Prepare the jars
Wash and rinse the 4 jars; submerge in boiling water and keep hot until ready to use. Prepare lids and bands according to manufacturer’s instructions.
4. Filling the jars
Remove the jars from the boiling water and place on a towel, not on a kitchen counter, which may crack the bottom of the jars.
Fill each jar with 2 tsp. of mustard seed, 1 tsp. celery seed, 1 tsp. coriander seed, 1 tsp. fennel seed, 1 whole chipotle pepper, 6 black peppercorns and 1 clove of garlic in the bottom of each clean, pint jar.
5. Pack the jars with carrots
Pack the carrots sticks upright in the jars fairly tightly. Stand the chipotle pepper on its end if possible. The carrots should be short enough to maintain the 1-inch headspace in each jar. Headspace is needed for expansion during the water bath processing.
6. Filling the jars
Pour the hot pickling solution into the jars over the packed carrots with a ladle or Pyrex™ measuring cup. The solution should cover the carrot ends and still maintain the 1-inch headspace inside the jars.
Remove any air bubbles by sliding a bamboo skewer or thin knife between the carrots.
Put the lids and rings in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer; turn off heat and let them remain in the hot water until needed. Wipe the rims of the jars with a damp paper towel. Apply the lids and rings then tighten.
7. Water bath process
Heat a large water bath canning pot so that it is boiling and ready when the carrots are packed into jars. Start with adequate water to submerge the jars by at least an inch.
Process the jars in boiling water for 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and let the jars sit in the bath for an additional 5 minutes before transferring to a dishtowel on the counter. Let the jars sit un-disturbed for 24 hours. Check the lid seals. If any jar failed to seal, refrigerate immediately and consume those carrots first. Properly sealed jars can be stored in a cool, dark place for up at a year.
8. Nutritional Information
Serving size: ¼ jar
Fat Total: 0.8 g
Protein: 1.4 g
Cholesterol: 0 mg
Carbohydrates: 21.1 g
Sodium: 336 mg
Dietary Fiber: 2.3 g
Calories from Fat: 7
Handy tools for canning
Water bath canner
Pint jars with new lids and rings
Pyrex measuring cup
Magnetic lid lifter
Process times for canning at different altitudes
Pint jars sea level to 1,000 ft. 15 minutes
Pint jars 1,001 ft. to 6,000 ft. 20 minutes
Pint jars above 6,000 ft. 25 minutes
Pickling caught my interest several years ago and finding information was a challenge. Now two of the books that I use often for pickling reference are:
Saving the Season: A Cook’s Guide to Home Canning, Pickling and Preserving a 544 page book by Kevin West about $22.00 on Amazon ISBN-10: 0307599485. This is my favorite book on pickling and home canning.
The Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving by Judi Kingry and Lauren Devine, 448 pages of tips on pickling, canning and preserving, considered by many to be the Bible on home preservation, available on Amazon ISBN-10: 0778801314 about $14.00 in paperback.