Quick Pickled Green Tomatoes

Quick Pickled Green Tomatoes

These quick pickled green tomatoes require no special canning equipment or process

If you have some green tomatoes on your vines now, chances are that some of them won’t ripen red before the first frost.

Quick pickled green tomatoes

Try making some homemade pickled green tomatoes

Quick Pickled Green Tomatoes

Late season green tomatoes? Try quick pickling them!

So this might be a good time to pluck those green babies from the vine and make some quick pickled green tomatoes!  Some people call these refrigerator pickled green tomatoes.

Quick Pickled Green Tomatoes

Green tomatoes are awesome when quick pickled

No matter what you call them, you’ll end up with some crunchy, briney, tangy condiments that are way better than store-bought. These homemade quick pickled green tomatoes will complement burgers, sandwiches, and pretty much anything else where you would use regular pickles. Stay tuned, because tomorrow I’ll be posting a rad recipe for shrimp spring rolls made with these tasty quick pickled green tomatoes!

Quick pickled green tomatoes

Green tomatoes awaiting the vinegar brine

Yes, this is a quick pickling recipe, so no special canning equipment or tedious sterilization process is needed. Simply slice your green tomatoes 1/4th to 1/3rd inches thick. Then grab some clean jars and lids (I used recycled condiment and jam jars that I previously ran through the dishwasher) and gently pack your green tomato slices in the jars.

Quick pickled green tomatoes

Cover green tomatoes with brine, add lids and refrigerate for these quick pickled condiments

Because I love onions, I added some of those sliced, but the onions are totally optional. To your jars stuffed with sliced green tomatoes, add your vinegar brine. The brine is where you can get a little creative. I made this brine simple, mixing just white vinegar with kosher salt, a bit of sugar, black peppercorns, and a few bay leaves. But you could use cider vinegar, herbs like tarragon or dill, and additions like mustard seed. I saw this recipe that calls for some bourbon, and this post written by a gardener obviously drowning in green tomatoes mentions a recipe made with curry powder and another with Szechuan peppercorns…I am intrigued.

Quick pickled green tomatoes

Use up green tomatoes at the end of the growing season by quick pickling them

The quick pickled green tomatoes shown above had just been made, and you can see are still a bright green. The photo below shows the same jars after they were in the refrigerator for eight days.

Quick pickled green tomatoes

Say yes to pickled green tomatoes, which are simple to make

As you can see, the tomatoes have lost their bright green color, but I promise that they’re still just as crunchy…not at all soggy like most store-bought pickled condiments. The salty tanginess and crunchiness of these quick pickled green tomatoes makes them addictive. They’ll keep for up to six weeks in the fridge, but because they’re so good, they’ll probably all be eaten before then!

Quick pickled green tomatoes

Refrigerator pickled green tomatoes

Here’s the recipe:

5.0 from 3 reviews
Quick Pickled Green Tomatoes
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Sliced green tomatoes are made into quick pickles with a vinegar and salt brine mixture that requires no special canning equipment or methods
Recipe type: Condiment
Cuisine: American
  • 2 to 2 and ½ pounds green tomatoes, washed
  • 2 cups vinegar, either distilled white vinegar or cider vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 tablespoons kosher salt (or 1 and ½ tablespoons regular table salt)
  • 3 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons black peppercorns
  • 4 dried bay leaves
  1. Slice green tomatoes ¼th to ⅓rd inch thick
  2. Gently pack and wedge sliced tomatoes into clean jars that have lids
  3. For the vinegar brine, combine all ingredients except tomatoes and bring to boil in medium saucepan, stirring until salt and sugar are dissolved. Remove brine from heat and let steep for ten minutes.
  4. Carefully pour brine over tomatoes in jars to within ¼th inch of top.
  5. Screw on jar lids and refrigerate.
  6. Wait at least three days before eating.
  7. Quick pickles green tomatoes will keep in the refrigerator for six weeks.

Quick pickled green tomatoes

I hope you’ll give quick pickled green tomatoes a try!



  1. RUTH KLAR says


    • says

      For whatever reason, my tomato plants just quit producing any tomatoes this fall, so alas, no quick pickled green tomatoes for me this year! I do hope that you’ll dig yours! –G

    • says

      Yes, absolutely you could make these quick pickled tomatoes without sugar, but they’ll be extremely tart, because of all the vinegar. To offset that tartness, you might want at least a teaspoon of sugar, or you could you use a sugar substitute, like stevia. –G

  2. says

    I am excited to try this recipe. I grew up eating these and have never had my grandfathers recipe that I loved so much. I am anxious to try yours! Thanks for sharing. I was wondering what I was going to do with all my green tomatoes!

        • says

          What a great question, and I honestly don’t know! I dug around a little on the internet checking, and came up with some people saying that their quick pickles turned mushy after being frozen and then later thawed, but I also found others saying that their frozen and then thawed quick pickles were crunchy and tasty, and lasted about a week after thawing. Now I’m curious too, so if you decide to freeze a jar, please let me know how they turn out once thawed, taste-wise and texture-wise. And thanks for stopping by! –G

    • says

      Hmmm, now that’s a question that I can’t answer. Why? Because I actually haven’t tried making “real” pickled condiments, which last longer than these featured quick pickled green tomatoes (months or years, even), but which also require a longer and more tedious sterilization process. –G

  3. Della Veilleux says

    Can you not put them in the refrigerator after you have processed them? I really don’t have the room for them in my fridge.

    • says

      Quick pickles like these are sometimes called “refrigerator pickles” because they must be refrigerated to remain safe to eat. Because the time-consuming process of sterilization to make regular pickles was skipped, these quick pickles would not keep very long at all sitting on the shelf and out of the fridge. As I mentioned in the post, these quick pickled green tomatoes are perfectly fine to eat for up to six weeks, if kept in the refrigerator. –G


    Hi Ginger,

    I’m looking for a sweet pickled green tomato recipe. Do you have one? Could I just add more sugar to your recipe?


    • Sandi says

      Hi, I like my pickled eggs on the sweeter side with a little kick so I use rice wine vinegar and red pepper flakes. They are delicious.
      I just did the green heirloom pickles using this recipe as a guide. We’ll see!!
      Nice to see this is in the present, and not 3 years old for a change… 😉

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