Spicy Garlic Carrot Pickles

These spicy garlic carrot pickles are full of flavor and perfect for snacking or serving alongside (or inside of) sandwiches.

Spicy Garlic Carrot Pickles

At the end of last year, when we first got wind of the fact that we might be moving cross-country, I pretty much halted my canning efforts altogether. I hated to do it; I was missing out on raspberry, apple and pear season (though I still made an exception for my pear ginger preserves!), but I knew that moving full jars of preserves is a lot more complicated than moving a bunch of empty jars.

Full jars of preserves can’t go on the moving truck, for one thing. At least not if you are moving in the middle of winter – since the trucks aren’t temperature-controlled, the preserves could freeze and break their seals or jars. So of the two cars we drove to Minnesota in December, about 3/4 of the storage space in one of them was taken up by ten boxes of finished preserves, jams and jellies. It was a bit of a pain, but every jar arrived intact, so it was worth it.

Now that I have all my jars, canning pots and other necessary tools unpacked, I was able to embark on my first canning project since September this weekend. I started with something easy: these spicy garlic carrot pickles. They are so, so quick to make – the most time-consuming part is waiting for the water in the canning pot to come to a boil. Beyond that, the process is slice carrots, boil brine, pack jars. Process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes, and boom! You’re done!

I thought about making dilled carrot pickles, but seeing as I still have four large jars of dill pickles left from summer, it seemed unnecessary. I wanted to mix up my flavor profiles!  So I went with a red pepper flake and garlic combination for a spicy, aromatic pickle. These carrot pickles will be perfect for serving on or alongside sandwiches, or just eating straight out of the jar when we want a crunchy, flavorful snack.


If you aren’t a fan of spice, you can cut back on the red pepper flakes a little bit – you’ll still get lots of garlic flavor. However, you can not safely increase the amount of garlic in each jar.

You may use distilled white vinegar in place of apple cider vinegar here. The color of your brine will definitely be clearer, though the vinegar flavor will also be stronger. I like using apple cider vinegar because it has a more mellow flavor. Do not substitute another type of vinegar unless you know for sure it is at least 5% acid.

Spicy Garlic Carrot Pickles

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Yield: 3 pint jars

Spicy Garlic Carrot Pickles

These spicy garlic carrot pickles are full of flavor and perfect for snacking or serving alongside (or inside of) sandwiches.


  • 4 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup pickling salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 3 cloves garlic, halved
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 2 pounds carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2” thick sticks and trimmed to fit your jars


  1. Prepare for canning: Wash the jars and flat lids. Put the jars in the canning pot and cover with hot water. Heat over high to bring to a boil and keep the jars hot.
  2. In a medium saucepan, bring the vinegar, water, salt and oregano to a boil.
  3. Line the hot jars up on a folded towel.
  4. Put 1/2 teaspoon pepper flakes, 2 garlic clove halves (so a full clove) and a few peppercorns into the bottom of each jar.
  5. Pack in the carrot sticks, leaving a generous 1/2" of headspace.
  6. Pour the hot brine over the carrots, again leaving 1/2" of headspace.
  7. Use a clean towel to wipe any vinegar off the rims, then top each jar with a lid and a tightened ring. Place the jars back in the canning pot and make sure they are covered by at least 1 inch of water. Bring to a boil and process for 10 minutes.
  8. Remove the lid from the canner and turn off the heat. After 5 minutes, transfer the jars to a folded towel and allow to sit, undisturbed, for 24 hours. Check the seals of the lids after 1 hour. If a seal has not formed, refrigerate the jar immediately.

PS: New to canning? Here are all the tools you’ll need. And here’s how to get started with hot water bath canning, step-by-step!

PPS: I also made this creamsicle jelly from Food in Jars this weekend. Dan loves the orange + vanilla combo, so the jelly was a big hit!


    • Julie says

      Try it – it isn’t difficult, and the results are tasty! Plus, these are crunchier than regular pickles. 🙂

  1. Alicia Slaughter says

    Thank you for sharing this recipe! I could only find super fancy, over the top recipes when all I wanted was a good ol pickled carrot!

  2. Jenn says

    Hi there, I made these and they are SO GOOD! I was wondering, can I substitute Green Beans instead of Carrots? or a mix of the 2?
    Thanks again!

    • says

      I haven’t tried it, but if you plan on canning them, I’d look for a recipe specifically geared towards green beans, for safety. Glad you enjoyed the carrots!

  3. says

    I’ve recently discovered a love for spicy foods. Cayenne and carrots are like peanut butter and jelly! Can’t wait to try this new recipe soon. Thanks!

  4. Darlene says

    Hi Julie,
    I am admiring your beautiful pickled carrots. Can you assist me perhaps? I would like to make these but prefer white vinegar. Can I substitute 4 cups of white for the 4 cups of apple cider vinegar without any other changes?
    Thank you

  5. Roslyn Barthelette says

    In the step number two is says ” In a medium saucepan, bring the vinegar, water, salt and oregano to a boil” my question how much water? There are no measurements of water in the ingredients or even directions for water. Is there an actual measurement for water? Unless I missed it. Thanks in advance..

  6. says

    I love that you went the spicy route with these pickles! I think alot of people think you have to go the dilly route – but there are so many different ways to make pickles! Thank you so much for sharing your recipe!

  7. says

    Thank you for sharing this recipe!
    Can you please tell me if we don’t want to add garlic then what we should add???


  1. […] You can use pickled radish or onion if you have it, and then just use normal carrot. Or you can add 1-2 tsp of apple cider vinegar, 1/2 tsp sugar and 1/2 tsp of chili powder to the salad dressing; be sure to mix well. Additionally, there are lots of quick-pickled carrot recipes available, here is a good garlicky-spicy one. […]