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Quick pickled cucumbers recipe

We love to make quick pickled cucumbers at our house. We actually find ourselves creating this pickled cucumbers recipe several times a week. 

We tend to eat pickled cucumbers as a snack or as a side with salmon or burgers for dinner. Honestly, we eat them with pretty much everything because they are so darn yummy.

Pickling cucumbers are a quick and easy way to transform the flavor into something unique and delicious. 

It is also nice that pickling cucumbers only takes a few minutes and is really easy to do. Sometimes we will pickle onions and cucumbers together but honestly, we tend to just pickle cucumbers by themselves quite often. 

Now you may be wondering am I just making pickles here? The answer is no. Coincidentally, I am eating a pickle as part of my lunch as I work on this article today. That is not the same thing as pickled cucumbers. 

A pickle is a cucumber that has soaked in a brine for usually at least 30 days and fermented before being sold. Addimtingly it is confusing. 

The way that I think about it is that pickled cucumbers are cucumbers something that I marinate in a brine for a few minutes or an hour. I wouldn’t put a quick pickled cucumber on a hamburger but I would put a pickle on a hamburger. 

This isn’t an exact science. Experiment with the pickled cucumber recipe below and then let me know what you think. 

Tips and tricks

  • We tend to stick with white vinegar when we are doing a quick pickled cucumber. While you can experiment with apple cider vinegar or other fancy vinegar flavors we feel like the tastes start to compete.
  • The thinner that you slice the cucumber the faster that they will pickle.
  • Feel free to experiment with adding in green onions or jalapenos to kick up the spice level.
  • You can serve these at room temperature.
  • We normally only pickle our cucumber for about 15 minutes before eating them but you can pickle them for up to an hour prior to serving. 

What is the best kind of vinegar for pickling?

We much prefer to use white vinegar when pickling cucumbers. White vinegar doesn’t compete with the flavor of the cucumber in the same way that apple cider vinegar tends to do. There is no wrong answer though and we highly recommend that you do a bit of experimenting to see what you like best. 

What kind of cucumber works best?

We generally pickle English cucumbers but you can also use any kind of cucumber that you prefer.

Do you need to peel the cucumber?

We don’t peel the cucumber before we pickle it. If you don’t like the texture of cucumber skin you can absolutely peel the cucumber.

How long does it take to make pickled cucumbers?

We tend to let the cucumbers soak in the brine for anywhere from 15 minutes to 1 hour prior to serving.

Quick pickled cucumber recipe

Quick pickled cucumber recipe

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 17 minutes

How to make quick pickled cucumbers with just 4 ingredients in 15 minutes.


  • 1 cucumber
  • ½ c vinegar
  • 1 T sugar
  • ½ t salt


  1. Thinly slice the cucumber
  2. In a small non-reactive bowl mix together the vinegar, sugar, and salt. 
  3. Add the onion slices to the bowl and stir to coat the cucumber.
  4. Allow the cucumber slices to marinate for up to 1 hour at room temperature.
  5. Serve at room temperature or chill for later use.

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