It has been proven that incorporating more fermented and pickled foods into your diet is great for maintaining a healthy gut. The “good” bacteria in fermented foods is (literally) what the doctor ordered. No need to pay extra for pickled food at the grocery store. The best part about this healthy gut suggestion is having the ability to do it from home using a couple of ingredients combined with your favorite veggies.
- Your favorite vegetables like cucumber, pickles, tomatoes, carrots—you name it!
- 3-6 cups of vinegar to make your choice of sweet, sour or both brines
- 6 pint-size (2-cup) canning jars with lids or something similar
Step 1: Clean and Prep Veggies
Cut up your favorite vegetables in whatever shape and size you see fit. Just make sure they can fit in the jar.
Step 2: Add Seasonings and Vegetables to Jars
Divide your veggies up and place them into canning jars or any type of heat-proof plastic containers that come with lids.
During step 2, if you want to be a little fancy, feel free to add your favorite seasonings to your veggie jars. Try chili powder for a little spice—garlic, cayenne pepper, salt, or whatever your heart desires.
Step 3: Brine Time!
Courtesy of EatingWell.com, we have two brine recipes below. After making your choice of brine, add the mixture to your jars. After filling them, place the lids on the containers and refrigerate for 24 hours.
Sour Brine Recipe (makes 6 cups):
Combine 3 cups of distilled white vinegar (or cider vinegar), 3 cups water, 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons sea salt, and 2 tablespoons of sugar into a large saucepan. Bring to a boil and stir until the salt is dissolved. Let boil for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat.
Sweet Brine Recipe (makes 6 cups):
Combine 3 cups of distilled white vinegar (or cider vinegar), 3 cups water, 1 1/2 cups of sugar, and 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon sea salt in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil and stir until the salt and sugar are dissolved. Let boil for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat.
Step 4: 24 Hours Later… Eat and Enjoy!
After refrigerating for a minimum of 24 hours, eat and enjoy your pickled veggies. Pickled food can keep in the refrigerator for up to a month.