Pickled radish is a year round staple in our fridge. Radishes are one crop that grow quickly, and abundantly in our balcony garden. I do try to stagger the planting so we don’t have huge volumes arrive all at once. Without fail though – we get to a point of having masses to deal with and pickling is one of the best ways to preserve them.
There are so many ways you can enjoy pickled radishes once they’re made. They’re great to add to salads or into lunch bowls like mine above here. They’re delicious when added to avocado toast with a poached egg too. I think though, one of my favourite ways to eat them is straight from the jar!
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Ingredients for pickled radish
You’ll likely already have everything you need in your pantry to make this recipe. The mustard seeds add flavour so if you don’t have them, choose another whole spice you enjoy. You could try some chilli flakes, cumin seeds, fennel seeds etc. Anything at all you love the taste of. If you do like things spicy though, the chilli is a great addition.
- Radishes – Absolutely any kind will do, but small-ish varieties are best. This is just for ease of slicing and getting them into a jar. I used French breakfast radishes in this recipe, but have also made it with watermelon radish (seen in the pic here), small white, and small black radishes. The little red ones found in most supermarkets are perfect too.
- Apple cider vinegar – This is my preferred vinegar for flavour but it is also helping to protect the radishes from spoilage (please see important safety note below if you’re thinking of canning this recipe).
- Maple syrup – This is just adding a little sweetness to round out the flavour but if you would prefer yours very tart, omit it.
- Mustard seeds & peppercorns – These also add flavour and are optional inclusions. If you don’t have them, experiment with any whole spices you have in your cupboard.
- Salt – This helps to protect against spoilage too, but ensures your radishes stay a little crunchy.
- Water – This is helping to dilute the vinegar so the resulting pickles are not super acidic.
How to make these pickled radish
This should take you ten minutes tops if you’re making a relatively small batch and have a mandolin. Once cut I had roughly 2 cups of radishes to work with.
- Wash and dry your radishes. Be thorough about this, and remove any green tops if they’re still attached. These can go to the compost or you can make radish leaf pesto with them!
- Slice the radishes. I used a mandolin to do this so it was relatively quick and the slices were uniform. You can also do it by hand of course. Just go for thin slices a couple of mm thick (~1/8th of an inch or less). Not paper thin though or you’ll lose that crunch.
- Quickly boil the apple cider vinegar, water, maple syrup, and salt in a small saucepan. Take it off the heat and let it cool for a couple of minutes.
- Add radish slices to a jar (mine was 1 litre / 2 pints), then add the mustard seeds and peppercorns (or your chosen spices) on top.
- Pour over the brine and let sit on the bench to cool for 10 minutes if it’s still very hot.
- Put in the fridge and leave for a couple of days before digging in. This just helps all the flavours combine. If you can’t wait though – you can start eating them the next day.
Important safety note
This recipe is not suitable for canning, as the acidity is far too low. Brine requirements for shelf stable pickles are much more stringent to ensure bacterial growth (such a botulism) is kept at bay. Once made, these pickles should be kept in the fridge and consumed within a month or two.
They won’t last long because they’re delicious! But do be sure to consume them within a month or two. It’s for this reason that I tend to make smaller batches.
No, this is essential. As with the vinegar it helps keep the pickles free of bacteria, but also keeps the radishes crunchy. We want that!
This is a yes. Maple syrup is really only in this recipe to add flavour so if you want to omit it you can.
Watch how to make these pickled radish
- 1 very clean jar (mine was 1 litre / 2 pints)
- 2 bunches small radishes (Once cut I had 2 cups filled to the brim).
- 1.5 cups apple cider vinegar
- 1.5 cups water
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup
- 2.5 tsp salt
- 1-2 tsp mustard seeds (yellow are great)
- 1 tsp whole peppercorns
- Thoroughly wash and dry the radishes to ensure they're free of any dirt. Cut off the green tops, trim the bottoms and discard.
- Thinly slice the radishes with a mandolin or by hand. Mine were a couple of mm thick (~1/8th of an inch or less). Don't go paper thin though or you'll lose that crunch.
- In a small saucepan, add the apple cider vinegar, water, maple syrup, and bring to a quick boil. Remove from the heat straight away and let it cool for a couple of minutes.
- Add radish slices to a jar then add the mustard seeds and peppercorns (or your chosen spices) on top. The jar I used was 1 litre / 2 pints.
- Pour the brine over the radishes and let the jar sit on the bench to cool for 10 minutes if the liquid is still very hot.
- Put a lid on and place in the fridge. Leave it for a couple of days to allow the flavours to meld together, then dig in! If you're impatient like me you can just start munching on them the next day too.