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Dill Pickle Relish – {Canning Relish}

A simple and easy recipe for canning amazing Dill Pickle Relish. This tangy dill pickle relish is perfect for anyone new to canning. Enjoy it on burgers, hot dogs, in potato or chicken salad.

Three jars of homemade dill relish with cucumbers and a pepper

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This dill relish is not sweet relish! I believe we have previously established that sweet relish is the spawn of cucumbers that satan grew in his garden of lost souls.

There is a little bit of sugar in here (much less than the original recipe calls for), but feel free to leave it out if you’d like. I find it brightens up the other flavors without making it sweet. Because, gross.

A woman wearing a shirt that says baller in a canning jar

What is Relish Made Of?

cucumbers, a pepper, canning salt and spices for making dill relish

This dill relish has fresh cucumbers, onion, pickling salt, onion, red pepper, turmeric, dill seed, and a little sugar.

It is important to use pickling salt in this recipe as regular salt has anti-caking agents in there which can impact the appearance of your relish.

What kind of cucumbers should you use for this dill relish? The basic answer is whatever you have on hand! I used a mix of slicing cucumbers and pickling cukes as that is what I grow in my garden.

Cucumbers from the store tend to have a wax coating on them which impacts their pickling ability. It is best to use homegrown or farmer’s market cukes in this recipe.

Try a few tablespoons of the finished relish in this Instant Pot Potato Salad.

Canning Supplies for Dill Pickle Relish

Check out this in-depth post for a complete list of canning supplies.

For canning relish, you’ll want:

Do You Peel Cucumbers For Relish?

For this recipe I have you leave the peels on. It adds more depth to the finished recipe. If your cucumber skins are tough, peel a few strips off (tiger stripes) to reduce the toughness.

How Do You Make Dill Pickle Relish

Wash cucumbers using a vegetable scrub brush.  Cut the cuke butts off, slice into 8 sections. Cut the seeds out of each section. Cut into 1-2 inch chunks.

In a food processor, pulse (use “pulse” instead of “on”, else you’ll end up with cucumber sauce) the cuke chunks in batches until the pieces look “relishy”. (That is a real term. Insert fart noise here).

Three photos of cutting cucumbers for homemade dill relish

Put the cucumber pieces in a bowl, sprinkle with salt and turmeric, and then pour the water over it. Cover, and let stand for 2 hours.

Three photos showing the process for making dill relish

After 2 hours, put the cukes in a colander, and rinse thoroughly. Let drain and squeeze the cukes to release excess water.

In your food processor, dice the onion and pepper, or dice by hand. Add to a heavy-bottomed saucepan.

Add the cukes, sugar, dill seed to the onion/peppers. Pour the vinegar over everything, and bring to a boil (this will create a liquid called brine). Reduce the heat, and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Pro tip: It’s a good idea to start your water in the canner at this point.

Making dill relish in three steps

Ladle the hot relish into your jars. Top with the hot brine (excess liquid from the pot). Leave 1/4 inch of headspace (the amount of space between the top of the food in the jar and the top of the jar).

Filling jars for making homemade dill relish

Wipe the rim with a clean damp towel, and place your sanitized lid on top. Secure the ring.

Three photos showing filling jars for homemade dill relish

Place the jars in the boiling water bath canner, and put the lid on. Process 15 minutes.

canning tongs putting dill relish into a water canner

Remove the canner from the burner when the time is up. Let sit for 5 minutes, then remove the jars and place on a thick towel. Let the jars cool completely, check the seal, and store for up to one year in a cool dark location.  Makes about 7 pints.

Jars of homemade dill relish on a board with cucumbers, a pepper, and a cloth

Dill Pickle Relish Pro Tips/Recipe Notes:

  • If you would prefer to use fresh dill for this recipe, substitute the dill seed with 8 heads of fresh dill.
  • Don’t want to add onion to this dill relish? Feel free to leave it out!
  • I like to peel half of the cucumbers that I use and leave the skins on the other cukes. It gives the texture and color a fun variety.
  • You can use zucchini instead of the cucumbers if you’re knee-deep in zukes right now. Processing time remains the same.
  • Leave the bowl of cucumbers, salt, turmeric, and water at room temperature during the brining process. This time is important for drawing out extra moisture from the cucumbers. Cold temps will slow that process.
  • Wait one week after canning before opening to give the flavors a chance to meld.
  • Upon opening, store the jar in the fridge for up to four weeks.
  • If you don’t have enough jars to fill the canner, consider Canning Water in a few jars to stock your emergency drinking water supplies.

How Long Does Homemade Canned Relish Last?

Store sealed jars in a cool dark place for up to 12 months.

More Simple Canning Recipes Like This

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Three jars of homemade dill relish with cucumbers and a pepper
Print Recipe
5 from 11 votes

Dill Pickle Relish - {Canning Relish}

Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Brine time2 hrs
Total Time40 mins
A simple and easy recipe for canning amazing Dill Pickle Relish.

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Wash cucumbers using a vegetable scrub brush.  Cut the cuke butts off, slice into 8 sections. Cut the seeds out of each section. Cut into 1-2 inch chunks.
  • In a food processor, pulse (use "pulse" instead of "on", else you'll end up with cucumber sauce) the cuke chunks in batches until the pieces look "relishy". (That is a real term. Insert fart noise here).
  • Put the cucumber pieces in a bowl, sprinkle with salt and turmeric, and then pour the water over it. Cover, and let stand for 2 hours.
  • After the 2 hours, put the cukes in a colander, and rinse thoroughly. Let drain and squeeze the cukes to release excess water.
  • In your food processor, dice the onion and pepper, or dice by hand. Add to a heavy-bottomed saucepan. 
  • Add the cukes, sugar, dill seed to the onion/peppers. Pour the vinegar over everything (to create the brine), and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Pro tip: It's a good idea to start your water in the canner at this point.
  • Ladle the hot relish into your jars. Top with the hot brine (excess liquid). Leave 1/4 inch of headspace (the amount of space between the top of the food in the jar and the top of the jar).
  • Wipe the rim with a clean damp towel, and place your sanitized lid on top. Secure the ring.
  • Place the jars in the boiling water bath canner, and put the lid on. Process 15 minutes for pints or half-pints.
  • Remove the canner from the burner when the time is up. Let sit for 5 minutes, then remove the jars and place on a thick towel. Let the jars cool completely, check the seal, and store for up to one year in a cool dark location. Makes about 7 pints.

Notes

Adapted from Ball Blue Book of Preserving
 
If you would prefer to use fresh dill for this recipe, I would substitute the dill seed with 8 heads of fresh dill.
 
Don't want to add onion to this dill relish? Feel free to leave it out!
 
Leave the bowl of cucumbers, salt, turmeric, and water at room temperature during the brining process. 
 
Wait one week after canning before opening to give the flavors a chance to meld.
 
Upon opening, store the jar in the fridge for up to four weeks.
 
Store sealed jars in a cool dark place for up to 12 months.
Nutrition Facts
Dill Pickle Relish - {Canning Relish}
Amount Per Serving (1 tbsp)
Calories 3
% Daily Value*
Fat 0g0%
Saturated Fat 0g0%
Cholesterol 0mg0%
Sodium 60mg3%
Potassium 24mg1%
Carbohydrates 0g0%
Fiber 0g0%
Sugar 0g0%
Protein 0g0%
Vitamin A 15IU0%
Vitamin C 0.8mg1%
Calcium 4mg0%
Iron 0.1mg1%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

This recipe was originally published in September 2012. It has been retested and updated with reader feedback. New photos have been added and the recipe has been made printable. For reference, this is one of the photos from the original post:

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42 comments on “Dill Pickle Relish – {Canning Relish}”

  1. Is that a regular red bell pepper or is it a spicy red pepper?

    • The sign at the grocery store was “red pepper”. Helpful, right? It’s not a bell pepper for sure; a bit smaller than a jalapeno. It wasn’t very spicy (sad), but I just added it for color. Any pepper would do or feel free to leave out.

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  3. You may be interested to learn that you don’t have to sanitize jars if they are going to be processed for at least 10 minutes, according to the National Center for Home Food Preservation. You just need to keep them hot enough to not break when the hot food is put into the jars. I wash my jars, then just fill them with hot tap water in the sink, where they are out of the way.

  4. I work at two junior high schools and they don’t even call it home ec anymore–it’s Career Portals something and such. What’s wrong with home ec?

    I think instead of teaching in a school, you should get a little shop where you could SELL canned goods and teach workshops for all of your customers. They wouldn’t make fun of you or text during class!

  5. Wow…we complain every year that we need a larger stove…but never thought to eliminate the pan of sanitized jars or bubbling lids. LOVE the idea, thanks! We put a chopped up red pepper in our relish – doesn’t add much for flavor, but the color is too fun!

  6. can i go to the toilet miss? lol but seriously… that looks really good. i love a good relish and you just can’t get it here :/ will have to make some. thanks!!

  7. lol, i have been canning my whole life and love to do it!! looking at shelves with all those full colorful jars of scrumptious goodness is like looking at stained glass windows. and i just love the look on friends faces when i tell them i am enjoying something for a snack or meal when it is totally out of season….like blackberry cobbler at xmas time or roast turkey in july…many of my friends are asking me to show them how to do these things now that the economy and food prices are tanking and inflating.

  8. Nicki Minaj just called and she wants in on that song with Kanye. I’ll begin drafting it RIGHT NOW. SO cool.

  9. Yep, Anne is right, they’d make fun of you.

  10. I’m not one for relish, but watching this step by step made me hungry. And BRILLIANT idea on keeping jars hot!! I usually just run them through the dish washer and then keep repeating the heat dry cycle until they’re needed. LOVE yours a little more!