A simple and easy recipe for canning homemade Dill Pickle Relish. This tangy dill relish recipe is perfect for anyone new to canning. Enjoy it on burgers, hot dogs, in potato or chicken salad.
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This dill pickle relish is tangy, packed with flavor, and tastes amazing on burgers, hot dogs, and in potato salad.
Looking for a relish recipe that uses zucchini? Check out our Zucchini Relish recipe.
Dill Relish Ingredients
How To Make and Can Dill Relish
I’ll walk you through the process here in photos because it really helps, especially if you’re new to canning. At the bottom of the post, you’ll also find a printable and detailed recipe card.
Wash the cucumbers using a vegetable scrub brush. Cut the ends off and slice them 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”, or else you’ll end up with cucumber sauce) the cucumber chunks in batches until the pieces look “relishy”.
Put the cucumber pieces in a large bowl, sprinkle with canning salt and turmeric, and then pour the water over it. Cover, and let stand at room temperature for 2 hours.
After 2 hours, put the cucumbers in a colander or fine mesh strainer, and rinse thoroughly. Let drain and squeeze the cucumbers to release excess water.
In your food processor, chop the onion and pepper, or dice by hand. Add to a heavy-bottomed saucepan.
Add the cucumbers, sugar, and dill seed to the saucepan with the onions and peppers. Pour both kinds of 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.
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).
Wipe the rim with a clean damp towel, and place your sanitized lid on top. Secure the ring.
Place the jars in the water bath canner, and put the lid on. Processing times will vary based on altitude. See the chart below.
Processing Times for Dill Pickle Relish
|Processing Times for Dill Pickle Relish|
|Processing Times at Altitudes of|
|Style of Pack||Jar Size||0-1,000 ft||1,001-6,000 ft||6,000 ft and above|
|Hot||half-pint or pint||10 min||15 min||20 min|
|*Source: National Center For Home Food Preservation|
Remove the canner from the burner when the processing time is up. Let everything sit for 5 minutes, then use a jar lifter and remove the jars from the canner. Place the jars on a thick towel. Let the jars cool completely (at least 12 hours), check the seal, and store for up to one year in a cool dark location.
Dill Relish Variations
Dill seed can be hard to find in normal grocery stores. I have to buy it online (I use this brand).
But, if you would prefer to use fresh dill for this recipe, substitute the dried dill seed with 8 heads of fresh dill.
You can use zucchini instead of cucumbers to make zucchini relish if you’re knee-deep in zukes right now. Processing time remains the same.
Sweet relish – it depends on how sweet you prefer your relish, but you can add 3-4 cups of sugar per 8, 8 oz jars. I recommend that you start with a minimum amount and add additional sugar in 1/2 cup increments until it has reached your perfect sweetness.
Spiced/hot dog relish – Include 1 cinnamon stick, 1 cup of brown sugar, and 1 tsp of cloves in the saucepan while simmering the base recipe.
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:
- Water bath canner
- Jars – I recommend 8 oz jam jars unless you REALLY love relish and need it in bigger quantities
- New lids and rings
- Canning funnel
- Saucepan (I used my dutch oven)
- Food processor (optional, but highly recommended)
- Mixing spoon
- Cutting board
- Comfy shoes because nobody has time for a sore back or knees!
Storage for Homemade Relish
Once the jars have sealed, remove the rings. Label and store sealed jars in a cool (best results are 50-70˚F) dark place for up to 12 months.
If you have the space available, do not stack the jars on top of each other more than two jars high.
How to Use Dill Relish
In addition to using it on top of hamburgers, Air Fryer Turkey Burgers, or hot dogs.
It’s also an important ingredient in our Homemade Tartar Sauce.
Dill Pickle Relish Pro Tips/Recipe Notes:
- 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.
- 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.
Frequently Asked Questions
Not exactly, but the flavor is similar.
Dill relish starts with fresh ingredients that are similar to pickles (cucumbers, pickling salt, spices, etc.,) and goes through the pickling process while everything is already in small pieces.
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.
I used a mix of slicing cucumbers and pickling cukes as that is what I grow in my garden.
Yes. It is important to use pickling/canning salt in this recipe as regular salt has anti-caking agents which can impact the appearance of your 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 per cucumber to make tiger stripes. This will reduce the toughness.
To give the flavors a chance to meld, wait one week after canning before opening.
It all comes down to taste preference!
Traditional sweet relish contains a lot of sugar, whereas this dill relish recipe has a scant 1 tbsp. Hot dog relish is a spiced version of dill relish but has over 1 cup of sugar.
More Canning Recipes You’ll Love
Dill Pickle Relish
Making Dill Relish
- Wash cucumbers using a vegetable scrub brush.9 pounds pickling cucumbers
- Cut the ends of the cucumber off, slice into 8 sections.
- Cut the seeds out of each section, and then cut the sections into 1-2 inch chunks.
- In a food processor, pulse the cucumber chunks in batches. No food processor: grate or finely chop the cucumbers.
- Put the chopped cucumber in a large bowl, sprinkle it with salt and turmeric, and then pour the water over it. Cover, and let stand at room temperature for 2 hours.1/2 cup pickling salt, 2 tsp turmeric, 4 cups water
- After 2 hours, put the chopped cucumber in a colander, and rinse thoroughly.
- Let drain and squeeze the cucumbers to release excess water
- In a food processor, dice the onion and pepper (or dice by hand). Add to a heavy-bottomed saucepan.1.5 cups diced white onion, 1/4 cup red pepper, chopped
- Add the chopped cucumber, sugar, and dill seed to the saucepan with the onion/peppers.1 tbsp sugar, 2 tbsp dill seed
- Pour both vinegars over everything, and bring to a boil for 1 minute.3 cups white vinegar, 1 cup apple cider vinegar
- Reduce the heat, and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Canning Dill Relish
- Prepare water bath canner by filling it with water, so that there will be at least 1 inch of water over the tops of the jars.
- Wash and clean your jars. Fill with hot water or keep them warm in a clean dishwasher or oven.
- Wash your lids and set aside in clean place.
- Place a lid on the canner and set it on the stove with the burner set to high.
- Ladle the hot relish into your jars. Top with the hot brine (excess liquid from the saucepan). 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).
- Using a wet clean rag, wipe the rim to make sure there isn't any residue on the jars.
- Place a clean lid on the jar and then a ring. Tighten the ring to fingertip tight.
- Using canning tongs, add jars to the boiling water, and put the canner lid on. Pro tip: you must have at least 1 inch of water over the tops of the jars for safe canning.
- Process pints and half-pints based on the elevation guide below:*0-1,000 ft = 10 minutes*1,001-6,000 ft = 15 minutes*6,000 ft+ = 20 minutes
- Remove the canner from heat, and let sit for 5 minutes.
- Remove the jars using canning tongs and place them on towels on the counter undisturbed for 12-24 hours.
- After everything has cooled, check the seal by pushing down on the middle of the lid. If it doesn't give way, it's sealed. If the lid bows a little bit, put that in the fridge and use it within 3 weeks.
- Wait one week after canning before enjoying the relish. It will give the flavors time to meld.
- Label the sealed jars, and store in a cool dark place for up to a year.
- Turmeric is mainly used for color and a bit of flavor. It is optional to add.
- Makes about 7 pints or 14 half-pints.
- If you would prefer to use fresh dill for this recipe, substitute the dill seed with 8 heads of fresh dill. Add them to the jars before ladling in the hot relish.
- Upon opening, store the jar in the fridge for up to four weeks.