Brine Cured Dilly Beans

dilly beans in jars
These jars are not processed, just stored in the refrigerator until we eat them.

Brine Curing Dilly Beans

Last year my Mom gave us some quart jars of canned Dilly Bean Pickles and they were fantastic! I think I like them better than canned dill pickles, to be honest. We ate all of those Dilly Beans and I wanted more so I figured I would make my own this year.

Fast forward to our current kitchen remodel and the deconstructed mess that we are living in right now and you probably won’t be too surprised if I don’t get any dilly beans canned this year. Not to worry, I’ve started making Brine-Cured Dilly Beans in my refrigerator!

Read my post How to Make Brine-Cured Pickles for more brine-cured pickle recipes.

dilly beans
Brine-cured dilly beans after 5 days.

Brine curing doesn’t have to be done in your fridge, you can use a crock or glass bowl on your counter. This is how people made pickles in the old days. They didn’t have refrigeration and canning wasn’t common until the early 1900s. A large crock was kept in a cool place and pickles were dipped out for meals and more veggies were added as the harvest allowed. Many people these days are interested in learning to preserve their own food to save money and become more self-reliant. Who knows, someday we might need to relearn the skills our ancestors took for granted.

Brine-Curing in the Refrigerator

Our house is pretty dusty from removing drywall right now, and I’m a little busy so don’t have time to check and make sure the beans are staying under the brine, so I filled three-quart jars with beans, onions, dill weed, zucchini, and brine then stuck them in the fridge to keep them clean and prevent bacteria from colonizing any veggies that work their way up above the brine solution. After five days I pulled some beans from the jar and taste-tested…they are delicious! Rest assured, when the dust clears and I have more time, I’ll be using an old crock my parents gave me to make more of these yummy dilly beans!

dilly beans
Mmmm, dilly beans!

Brine Cured Dilly Bean Recipe

Makes 3 quarts of pickles

  • green beans snipped and washed
  • onions, sliced
  • dill weed, fresh
  • 4 cups vinegar (I used distilled white vinegar, but you can use apple cider vinegar)
  • 4 cups water
  • 1/2 cup sea salt (or any non-iodized salt)

Loosely pack three quart-sized canning jars with beans, onions, and dill weed (I used several bunches of leaves for each jar). Set aside. Boil water and add salt. Stir until salt dissolves. Add vinegar, stir and pour into jars of beans. Make sure that veggies are covered with brine solution. Use plastic lids to close jars and store them in the refrigerator.

Notes: I added some sliced zucchini to my dilly beans. You can add any veggies that pickle well. You don’t have to refrigerate these if they are covered and the veggies are kept under the brine solution. It takes a few days for the flavors to mature and for the beans to assume the texture of crisp pickles. When they taste good, put them in the refrigerator and eat them up! You could can them if you’d like to keep them long term, but it will kill any good bacteria that are present. I have some brine-cured dill pickles in my refrigerator that I made almost a year ago and they are still good. However, I can’t say that this will be your experience if you choose to keep brine-cured pickles in your refrigerator long-term.

Do you make brine-cured pickles? What is your favorite kind? Do you keep a crock of brine-cured pickles going all season long? Have you ever had trouble with the pickles going bad?



  1. Laurie
  2. Bethany
  3. Debbie Y

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