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Spicy Cucumber Pickles

These Spicy Cucumber Pickles are simple to prepare and elevate the flavour of many dishes through hints of chilli and ginger!
Course Pickles, Preserves, Side Dish
Cuisine International
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Fridge Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 25 minutes
Servings 1 700ml (23 fluid oz) Jar
Calories 955kcal
Author Alexandra


  • 400 g baby/pickling cucumbers See Note 1
  • 1 ½ tablespoon coarse salt See Note 2 and 3
  • 1 small red onion
  • 1 cup (250 ml) rice wine vinegar See Note 4
  • 1 cup (225 g) sugar
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 tablespoon chilli/red pepper flakes See Note 3
  • 1 tablespoon ginger, freshly grated See Note 3


To Sterilise the Jars:

  • Sterilise the jar or jars you'll be using to store the pickles. Choose glass jars with an airtight, metal lid and ensure they have been washed by hand in hot soapy water then rinsed well. Check that the metal lids do not have rubber inserts.
    Preheat the oven to 130 Degrees C (270 F) and place the jars in the oven for 15-20 minutes.

For the Pickled Cucumbers:

  • Wash and dry the cucumbers. Remove the top and end.
    Thinly slice - approximately ½ cm thick.
  • Peel a red onion, and remove the tip and root end. Cut the onion in half, and thinly slice into half moons.
  • In a large bowl, add the cucumbers, onion and salt. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and place in the fridge for 4 hours.
  • Tip the cucumbers and onions into a colander and drain the excess liquid.
  • In a non-reactive pan, place the vinegar, sugar, chilli flakes, star anise and ginger. On a medium heat, stir to dissolve the sugar.
    Once the sugar is dissolved, simmer the liquid for 3 minutes.
  • Remove the saucepan from the heat, and add the cucumbers and onions to the pickling liquid, and allow them to sit in the saucepan for 5 minutes.
  • Pour the pickles and liquid into your sterilised jars, and cool on your kitchen bench before refrigerating.


  1. I have used baby Lebanese Cucumbers in this recipe. Baby/pickling cucumbers are best to use for the size and crispness. 
  2. Ensure you use cooking salt or coarse sea salt, as regular table salt may contain caking agents and is much stronger. 
  3. The Australian tablespoon is 20ml or 4 teaspoons. In most other countries the tablespoon is 15ml or 3 teaspoons. Please adjust your measurements accordingly.
  4. I have used rice wine vinegar in this recipe, however, you can also use apple cider vinegar or distilled white vinegar.
  5. Non-reactive saucepans are those which are ceramic, stainless steel, glass or enamelled cookware. Copper, iron and aluminium pans are reactive. Acidic foods, such as lemons, may take on a metallic taste and discolour if cooked in such pans.
  6. Please note, the nutritional information is based on the entire jar, and you will not be consuming the pickling liquid. 


Calories: 955kcal | Carbohydrates: 231g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 10616mg | Potassium: 905mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 212g | Vitamin A: 2792IU | Vitamin C: 19mg | Calcium: 131mg | Iron: 3mg