Classic Bread and Butter Pickles With Red Bell Pepper

Classic bread and butter pickles recipe

The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

Prep: 30 mins
Cook: 5 mins
Brine Soak: 3 hrs
Total: 3 hrs 35 mins
Servings: 32 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
89 Calories
0g Fat
21g Carbs
0g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 32
Amount per serving
Calories 89
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 1782mg 77%
Total Carbohydrate 21g 8%
Dietary Fiber 0g 1%
Protein 0g
Calcium 7mg 1%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

These sweet and tangy bread and butter pickles are always a favorite, and they're easy to prepare and can. If you have your jars and equipment clean and in place, it's a snap! This version makes 7 to 8 pints. The addition of sweet red bell peppers makes these jars both colorful and tasty.

Slice the pickles and other vegetables about 1/8 to 1/4-inch thickness. The key to good pickles is consistency. You want all the vegetables to look and taste the same. This is achieved with evenly sized veggies. The vegetables are soaked in brine for about 3 hours, so plan your time accordingly. You should also make sure that you have plenty of ice ready to cover the vegetables while brining.

If you enjoy the taste of pickles, try bread and butter pickles with no bell peppers. Once you get the hang of it, try pickling other vegetables, like asparagus, green tomatoes, or anything else. Another option is to vary the pickling spice and seeds used in the recipe. Try celery seeds, cumin seeds, coriander seeds, or others for a different flavor profile.

Since this recipe produces shelf-stable pickles, these make a great gift. Add a cute bow, label your jars, and add a recipe hang tag for the perfect gift for friends and family.


Click Play to See These Sweet and Tangy Pickles Come Together


  • 4 quarts pickling cucumbers (sliced)
  • 4 medium white onions (quartered and sliced)
  • 2 large red bell peppers (sliced into 2-inch lengths)
  • 1/2 cup pickling salt
  • 4 cups cider vinegar
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons mustard seeds
  • 2 teaspoons celery seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Gather the ingredients
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  2. Place the cucumbers, onions, and peppers in a large stainless steel, ceramic, or glass bowl. Sprinkle with the salt, toss lightly, and cover with ice. Let stand at room temperature for 3 hours.

    Place ice and cucumbers in stainless steel bowl
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  3. Prepare and sterilize jars, lids, equipment, and workspace.

    Prepare and sterilize jars
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  4. Drain the vegetables in a colander and rinse well with cool water.

    Drain the vegetables
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  5. In a large stainless steel pot, combine the vinegar, granulated and brown sugars, mustard seeds, celery seeds, cloves, and turmeric. Bring to a full boil. Add the drained cucumber mixture and bring back to a boil.

    Combine vinegar, sugar
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  6. Fill the hot sterilized jars with the mixture, leaving 1/2-inch headspace. Wipe rims, place lids on the jars and seal.

    Fill hot sterilized jars
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  7. Process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes. Follow the boiling water processing guide for specific instructions for filling jars and processing.

    Process in a boiling water bath
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

High Altitude Time Adjustments

  • 1.001 to 3,000 feet: Add 5 minutes to the processing time.
  • 3,001 to 6,000 feet: Add 10 minutes to processing time.
  • 6,001 to 8,000 feet: Add 15 minutes to the processing time.