Pickled Okra from our Backyard Garden

Pickled Okra from our Backyard Garden

Okra was readily available at street markets in the land of my childhood.

It is also commonly grown and eaten in the South, so Roger and I both grew up eating okra. We like it fried, stewed with  tomatoes, in gumbo soup, and pickled.

   Just this past year, Roger grew long rows of it in our backyard garden and it thrived. At the peak of the season he nearly had to get on a step ladder to pick from the woody stalks that towered way over his head.  Now that winter is setting in, the stalks and pods are still standing tall and refusing to hide under the covers of mulch.

   I’ve pickled up jars and jars of okra from our backyard bounty to enjoy all winter. What I love about this recipe is that you can make one jar at a time or ten—depending on how much you pick.



 Here is the recipe I use to pickle our okra harvest.


Rinse fresh-picked small okra pods with cool water and lay out on clean towels.

Stuff clean sterilized mason jars with whole clean okra pods. Do not trim off ends or stem. Pack as tightly as possible leaving 1 inch headspace.

For each quart jar filled with fresh okra pods, add in:
     1 t. dill seed

     1 garlic clove

     1 small piece hot pepper

     1/2 t. dry mustard 

[Cut recipe in half for pint-size jars. May substitute minced garlic for garlic clove and 1/8 t. red chili flakes for hot pepper.]

     1 pt. apple cider vinegar

     1 qt. water

     1/3 c. sea salt 

Bring brine to a simmering boil in a stockpot and ladle hot brine into stuffed jars to cover okra. Adjust brine recipe to make enough to cover all. 

Wipe rims clean and adjust new lids and tighten on outer rings. Process jars in water bath for 10 minutes. Remove from water bath and allow to cool undisturbed. Check for a tight seal and store in the pantry. Refrigerate after opening. 


If you have extra brine—store it in a quart jar—no need to refrigerate it and when more okra is ready to harvest, you will already be one step ahead!


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  • Martha Greene
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