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Pickled Sweet & Sour Mustard Cucumbers

Sweet and Sour mustard cucumbers

Here is another childhood memory: Pickled Sweet & Sour Mustard Cucumbers! It’s a very traditional North German recipe. My grandmother used to make them all summer and we’d eat them as a side with many meals like Bauernfrühstück or just for dinner with some salami bread. I’m usually not very much into pickles but THIS is different!

It’s no secret that I have a sweet tooth and there is quite a bit of sugar in the vinegar mixture. It gives the cucumbers a slightly sweet taste and takes away some of the sting from the vinegar. No wonder, my kids and my husband like it very much, too. As stated in the video: My cucumbers in the garden can’t grow as fast as my family is eating these Pickled Sweet & Sour Mustard Cucumbers.

Video Instructions for Pickled Sweet & Sour Mustard Cucumbers

Pickling for Beginners

Let’s be honest: Who is still pickling when there is the invention of freezers? I am usually not up for the pickling challenge and making jams is as far as things in jars go for me. But the taste of these cucumbers is worth making an exemption and maybe – just maybe – I will do more pickling in the future so I don’t have to freak out every time we have a longer power outage here in Houston.

pickles sweet and sour

So, since I am not into the whole “can it, boil it, use a preasure pot …” thing, this is a surprisingly easy canning project that even a total beginner can manage. And in fact, the result is edible after just a few days and has the most delicious taste! All you need to do is preparing the cucumbers (peel and remove seeds) and then bring the mixture from vinegar, water, sugar, salt, and spices to a boil and put everything into jars. Done! It’s so easy, it almost feels wrong.

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Easy Pickled Sweet & Sour Mustard Cucumbers
Sweet and Sour mustard cucumbers

Pickled Sweet & Sour Mustard Cucumbers

Easy Pickling
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 25 minutes
resting time 6 hours
Course Side Dish, Sides, Snack
Cuisine German


mason jars, 16 oz


Preparing the cucumbers

  • 2 tbsp salt


  • 1 kg cucumbers
  • 250 g sugar
  • 250 ml white vine vinegar
  • 250 ml water
  • tsp salt
  • ½ tbsp mustard seeds
  • 1 large onion
  • some dill, optional
  • some pickling spices, optional


Preparing the cucumbers

  • Peel the cucumbers, cut them lengthwise into halves and remove the seeds.
  • Cut the cucumbers into smaller, bite size pieces and put them into a large bowl.
  • Use the 2 tbsp. salt and mix it into the bowl. Stir, cover, and let sit in the fridge over night.


  • Remove the liquid from the cucumber bowl and wash off the salt from the cucumbers.
  • In a saucepan, mix the vinegar, water, sugar, salt, mustard seeds and optional other spices and bring to a boil.
  • Let boil for three minutes.
  • Cut the onion into chunks.
  • Layer the onion and cucumber alternating into the jars. If dill is used, put it in, too.
  • Fill the vinegar mixture into the jars, all the way up to the rim.
  • Close the jars, place upside down and let cool completely.
  • Store in teh fridge and start eating after a couple of days or up to 6 month later.
Keyword pickling, vegan, vegetarian
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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5 thoughts on “Pickled Sweet & Sour Mustard Cucumbers”

  1. Thank you for sharing. I have the same memories, but the name Zumphgurken is stuck in my mind. My Oma used to cut the cucumbers lengthwise . I remember the small round yellowish seed and the sweet-sour taste. So happy to find your recipe online. Would you have a recipe for Zülze

    1. Let me think about it. I don’t like Sülze … so, I haven’t made any video for it … yet. But it might come.

  2. I’m sharing a recipe that came from my German great grandparents, originally from north Germany near Bremen. Note the large quantities! They had 8 children so I guess they always had to cook for a crowd; And probably they had to make this while pears were in season, and enough to last til the next. According to the recipe it makes 8 pints. Also, I’m sharing it exactly as written.

    Sweet Mustard Pear Pickles

    1 qt cabbage, shredded
    1 qt onions, shredded
    2 qts pears, cubed

    2 C boiling water
    1/2 C salt

    Soak overnight

    1-1/2 C vinegar
    1/2 C dry mustard
    1/2 C flour

    Combine all sauce ingredients and bring to a boil.
    Drain water from cabbage mixture- Add to sauce and boil for about 5 minutes or until completely heated. Put in sterilized jars- wipe lip good and cool.

    I have had these, and they are really good. However I haven’t made them myself and I’m going to attempt it this week.
    Wish I knew how much tumeric to add.
    Also- 2 1/2 C salt water hardly seems enough to cover 4 quarts of produce!
    I would welcome any feedback or ideas before I attempt this. :)

  3. 5 stars
    Looks good. Ive been pickling for about a month.

    What i wanted to say Was if your eyes water while cutting onions just place a pencil between your teeth. Or you can use any other wooden object.

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