Grandma’s Quick Pickled Cucumbers – Refrigerator Pickles

4.96 from 66 votes

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These Quick Pickled Cucumbers with green onion are made in the refrigerator for a simple summer snack!

Try these recipes if you’re looking for more pickling options: Quick and Easy Refrigerator Pickled Banana Peppers, Quick Pickled Cucumbers and Onions and Sweet and Spicy Cucumbers and Vinegar

refrigerator pickles that are quick and easy
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Quick Pickled Cucumbers (Refrigerator Pickles)

When all the hard work of tilling, planting, weeding, watering, and more weeding a garden starts to pay off, I’m always astounded and thrilled by the buckets of fresh vegetables we get to play with! We usually have no shortage of green beans, basil, zucchini, summer squash, tomatoes, peppers, sweet corn, and cucumber. So, with all that fresh goodness, you’ve got to get creative in preserving some of it!

My grandma was a wiz in the kitchen and always created the most incredible recipes for her family of 13 kids (11 of whom were boys!), and I got this recipe for quick pickled cucumbers from her. She is an incredible woman, and thinking about her makes me happy. She’d create a simple brine and throw anything from the garden in — not just cucumbers, but onions, bell peppers, and whole cherry tomatoes, too.

It tastes like summer in a jar, and whether you’re an avid gardener or more of a grocery store frequenter, anyone can make these easy refrigerator pickles in no time.

Quick and easy pickled cucumbers with onion made in the refrigerator; our favorite way to use summer cucumbers!

Tips and tricks for making quick pickled cucumbers:

  • White vinegar is the traditional vinegar for this recipe and a great place to start. If you know that you like apple cider or rice wine vinegar they are also good.
  • These are delicious on our favorite pulled pork sandwiches (made easy in the slow cooker!), as a side for everything summer, and to eat for a snack. You can’t go wrong with this simple dish all summer long.
  • Want to add a little spicy? Toss in a jalapeno cut in half (delicious!).
  • I love these glass containers with lids to have things like this in my fridge. I also use a mason jar and one of these reusable lids really often.

What is the best vinegar for pickling?

Most recipes call for distilled white vinegar — it’s clear, colorless, and has a mellow aroma and tart acidic flavor. But you can really use whatever vinegar you like and have on hand, like apple cider vinegar or rice vinegar. This recipe is flexible!

What can I pickle at home?

If you ask my grandma, you can pickle any vegetables you like! A few common ones to pickle are cucumbers (of course!), radishes, carrots, red onions, asparagus, jalapenos, cauliflower, and green beans.

How do you pickle something quickly?

To pickle something, you simply need to soak the vegetables in a vinegar brine. My brine calls for water, vinegar, sugar (optional), and salt, and you simply let the cucumbers rest in the brine in the fridge until you’re ready to eat them. Letting them sit longer helps the flavors develop more, so an overnight soak is ideal, but they’re also fine to eat right away!

How long do pickled cucumbers last?

These pickled cucumbers will last about a week in the fridge. The longer they stay in the fridge the less crisp they become. 

What is the best cucumber for pickling?

You want to choose a cucumber that has thicker skin.The thick skin helps the cucumber to stay crunchy. Stay away from the English cucumber because the skin is too thin.

Quick and easy pickled cucumbers with onion made in the refrigerator; our favorite way to use summer cucumbers!

More cucumber recipes:

If you’ve tried this pickled cucumber recipe or any other recipe on Bless this Mess, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave me a comment below! I would love to hear about your experience making it. And if you snapped some pictures of it, share it with me on Instagram so I can repost on my stories.

The most delicious cucumber recipes on the web, all in one place including easy refrigerated pickles, cucumber salad, green Detox juice and more!
4.96 from 66 votes

Quick Pickled Cucumbers – Refrigerator Pickles

Quick and easy pickled cucumbers with onion made in the refrigerator; our favorite way to use summer cucumbers!
Prep: 5 minutes
Total: 5 minutes
Servings: 12 cups of pickles


  • 1 cup water
  • 1/3 cup vinegar, (apple cider, white, and rice wine are all good)
  • 2 tablespoons sugar, optional
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons salt
  • sliced garden cucumbers, (about 2 cups)
  • sliced onion or green onion, (about 1/2 cup)
  • additional vegetables as you like, (bell pepper, whole cherry tomatoes, etc.)
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  • In a small bowl add the water, vinegar, sugar, and salt. Stir to combine and until the sugar and salt have dissolved. Add the cucumber and onion. Taste and adjust the ingredients to your liking.
  • All the cucumbers should be covered in the brine, if you have lots of cucumber or are making a big batch, make more brine.
  • Let the mixture rest in the fridge until you are ready to eat. The flavors develop over time, so an overnight soak is great but mine are normally gone by dinner.



  • I love adding the sugar and my mom does too, but my grandma doesn’t add that much (she only adds a few teaspoons). I say try it and see what you like.
  • White vinegar is the traditional vinegar for this recipe and a great place to start. If you know that you like apple cider or rice wine vinegar they are also good.
  • You really can’t mess this up. Just adjust to taste and enjoy!
  • The pickles will last at least a week in the fridge but get less crisp as time goes on.
  • You can reuse your brine a time or two, just add more cucumbers!


Serving: 1 of 12 servings, Calories: 14kcal, Carbohydrates: 3g, Protein: 0.2g, Fat: 0.05g, Saturated Fat: 0.01g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.002g, Monounsaturated Fat: 0.002g, Sodium: 196mg, Potassium: 40mg, Fiber: 0.3g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 16IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 6mg, Iron: 0.1mg
Like this recipe? Rate and comment below!

Other pickle recipes you’ll love:

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Aren’t my baby onions cute?! They were the first I pulled and they are tiny… I think I’ll wait another month or two before I pick any more so they aren’t quiet so itty-bitty.

You’ll be in pickle heaven with this quick pickled cucumber recipe that comes together quickly in the fridge with minimal effort!

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Recipe Rating


  1. Chef Lambert says:

    5 stars
    Thank you! I was searching for a basic base to start for my own recipe and your grandma’s was perfect. I had to tweak it though. For some reason your grandmother forgot the fresh cracked whole black peppercorns! I add pepper to almost everything so I may be biased but the pepper in the brine gives it a real pepper punch! Beyond amazing flavor!

    1. Melissa says:

      Ohhh that sounds delicious! I’ll try it next time, thank you for the suggestion!

  2. Angie Angel says:

    5 stars
    Absolutely Amazing! I tried this just this last summer with my garden veggies and it turned out amazing! I even gifted some and everyone was begging me to give them more! Only thing I need to know is if this is able to be canned? And if so how would one go about doing it? Hot water bath version?

  3. Susan says:

    I tried this. I like how it says you can’t mess it up. I followed the instructions. And 24 hours later they are still hard cucumbers, they’re not pickles. I think this recipe is faulty.

    1. Melissa says:

      They stay crunchy and not mushy, that’s why people love them!

  4. Janet says:

    Made it last night and brought it to work to share. Everyone loved it. Some went for second serving. Left the onions out and still came out delicious. Making it again tonight

  5. meya says:

    sounds perfect
    going to try it today

  6. Ron says:

    5 stars
    I made this tonight and loved it! I increased the apple cider vinegar to 1/2 cup, used kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper in addition to the sugar that I added.
    I ate 1/3 of it fresh and think the remainder may not last the night. 🙂

  7. Linda says:

    5 stars
    I took these to a church small group party – they were an instant hit!!!!

    1. Patty says:

      I made it just the way it says we loved them…

  8. JIHAD BILAL says:

    I made this recipe two weeks ago for 3x portion for the quantities and followed the instructions verbatim. I used white vinegar 5%. My cucumbers remained “raw” and they never got pickled. I tossed out the brine and made a fresh brine using a one-to-one ratio of water and white vinegar 8%. This time the cucumbers got pickled and we were able to consume them after 48 hours. I was very happy I was able to salvage the cucumbers from my garden.

    1. Susan says:

      Mine also remained raw. Sad.

  9. SharonFromMichigan says:

    5 stars
    I just made this recipe (we like sweet, so I put in an additional tablespoon of sugar). I used cucumber, radishes & green onions. Plan on having these with our grilled BOCA burgers tonight for supper. The brine tasted good to me, so I’m sure they will be a hit! They’re chillin in the fridge right now 🙂

  10. Angel D says:

    5 stars
    Oh my goodness! These are AMAZING!! I made them a couple of days ago and then bought a cucumber on the way to my sister’s house so that I could make them for her too – she also loved them! This is going in The Recipe File – although it’s so easy that I’m making it by heart already. And cheap! Thank you so much 😁

    1. Melissa says:

      You’ve totally discovered all the reasons to love this! Cheap, easy, and delicious!