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Canning is in my blood. For as long as I can remember, I’ve been in the kitchen with Mom and my grandmas, learning and preserving. Now, you can learn the same way right along with me!
Dill beans may be a new idea for you. Or, maybe you’re like me and have enjoyed them throughout your entire life. Either way, these are a quick and easy way to preserve beans, using a simple, vinegar brined pickle. Dills seeds give them that instant nostalgic flavor but the bean itself gives the best crunch.
Dare I say it? Maybe they’re even better than a traditional pickle!
What makes a pickle a pickle?
A pickle does not have to be made with cucumbers. That’s the most traditional but numerous vegetables can be pickled.
There are two types of pickles:
- naturally fermented
- vinegar brined
Since these dilly beans use vinegar, water, and salt, they’re a vinegar brine pickle. The vinegar mixture is heated together then poured over the beans along with seasonings. After being processed in a water bath, they’re shelf-stable and taste like a perfect briny, sour dill pickle!
Why not use dill flowers to flavor?
Often in pictures for dill pickles, you’ll find beautiful flower heads in the jar. And don’t get me wrong: they can work great. But I find that you need to pick them at just the right stage for the seeds to impart the necessary flavor. Depending on the size and age, each flower could have a varied amount of flavor. Also, we don’t all grow dill.
Instead, I use dill seed, which can be easily found in the spice aisle of the grocery store. Dill seeds always have the same, even flavor. And when added to each jar, you can control the exact flavor you’re getting!
Watch how to make these dilly beans
How to Can Dilly Beans
For the jars
- 3-4 lb fresh green beans cleaned and washed
- ½ medium onion cleaned and thinly sliced
- 3 tsp dill seeds separated
- 3 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
For the brine
- 3 cups water
- 3 cup white distilled vinegar (5%)
- 1 tbsp canning salt
- Prepare lids and rings, water bath, and brine. Bring water bath and brine to a boil as the jars and beans are prepared.
- Divide sliced onion in the bottom of each sterilized jar. This can be adjusted to personal preference. Take a bean and using the jar as a guide, trim the bean to within a half-inch of the top (leaving ½ inch for headspace). Trim all the beans using the "guide" bean for the length.
- Place beans in jars, standing them upright and packing them slightly until the beans are tight in the jars. Add dill seeds on top of the beans. Optional: If a spicy bean is desired, add crushed red pepper flakes to each jar.
- Once the water bath and brine are boiling, ladle brine on each jar, leaving ½ inch of headspace. Place prepared lids and rings on jars and place them in the water bath. Process for 12 minutes once the water starts to boil again.
- After processing, use a jar lifter and set jars out of the water. Let rest for 12-24 hours before removing the rings. These should sit at least two weeks before being enjoyed but will last up to a year in a cool, dark place.