Hamburger Pickles

by Amy

Well, it’s finally time to make pickles! I didn’t plant my cucumber seeds as early as I usually do this year, so I just picked my first bunch of cucumbers yesterday.  I weighed them out and ended up with a little more than 7.5 lbs.  I also gave some to my mother-in-law, so there may have been about 8 lbs all-together.

This post originally started out as a step-by-step guide for processing hamburger pickles, but I got so caught up in getting them in the water bath, I forgot to take pictures! So, instead of a list of steps, I’ll share the recipe and some tips I’ve found helpful.   Note: Most of the canning recipes I’ll be using on this site will come from the Ball Bluebook of Preserving.  I still consider myself relatively new to canning, as I’ve only been doing it for a few years now.  I find it’s best to stay with safe recipes from the professionals.  I do have a homemade pizza sauce and spaghetti sauce recipe that you’re sure to love that I’ll be sharing in the coming weeks once the tomatoes are ripe and ready to go!

Hamburger Pickles (This will make 12 pint jars)
7 lbs cucumbers, sliced or cut into spears
1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp + 1 1/2 tsp canning salt
7 3/4 cups + 2 Tbsp water
7 cups vinegar
Bring the above ingredients, except cucumbers, to a boil and maintain boil.

Per pint jar, add: (This measurement stays the same whether you make 3 pints or 12 pints)
Rounded 1/8 tsp of pickle crisp
2 heads fresh dill
2 whole peppercorns
1/2 tsp mustard seed

Rinse your cucumbers with cool water and if there are still little bumps, use a NEW, clean scrub sponge.  (I DO NOT recommend using a previously used sponge on your cucumbers.  This could lead to cross-contamination and could make you VERY ill.)  I have VERY sensitive skin and break out with hives if those bumps touch my skin, so the scrubbing is a must for me.  (You could where gloves and long sleeves when you pick, but when it’s hot, that’s not much fun either.)

Next, remove the ends off the cucumbers and cut into 1/4″ slices or if you prefer, spears.  Once all the cucumbers are cut, pack them into the hot pint jars and add the spices listed above.  Add boiling salt/vinegar/water mixture and remove air bubbles.  Leave 1/4″ headspace between liquid and top of jar and wipe the top of the jar clean.  Add the two-piece caps and process in a boiling waterbath for 15 minutes.  After 15 minutes, remove lid of canner and allow jars to cool for 5 minutes before removing from the water.  This allows them to adjust to the cooler air and will help to ensure that the jars don’t crack.

It’s at this stage that you will begin to hear the tell-tail sign that your canning was a success….the wonderful “POP” sound of the lids being sucked down, creating the seal that will allow you to keep those hamburger pickles for years to come!





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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Timothy Brucker June 28, 2013 at 8:48 pm

How do I enter a picture of my canned deer meat?


Amy June 29, 2013 at 7:57 am

I don’t actually accept pictures from readers on the blog. Sorry!


Patty Castles July 6, 2013 at 4:40 pm

Hey Amy,
What kind of vinegar are you using? white or apple cider? Are you growing your own dill? It is hard to find fresh dill with the heads. The stuff I find is the dill stripped from the stems. Nice picture.


Amy July 6, 2013 at 8:39 pm

Hi Patty!
I use white distilled vinegar in all my canning, unless the recipe calls for apple cider vinegar. If you don’t have fresh dill available, you could substitute 1 tsp of dill weed and 1 tsp of dill seed for each head of dill . I have done that successfully in the past. Thanks for stopping by! Happy canning!


Patty Castles July 8, 2013 at 1:00 pm

Hey Amy,
Thank you for your response and the advice. This is my first year in canning. So far I have made bread and butter pickles, two batches of sweet pickles and sweet dill pickles. Pickled cherry tomatoes and basil jelly. The results are 50/50, half the family likes the taste and the other half of the family puckers and gags.

I am wondering if apple cider vinegar changes the taste of the pickles and if I use apple cider vinegar can I cut back on the sugar. Have you made any pickles using apple cider vinegar?


Amy July 8, 2013 at 1:43 pm

Hi Patty,
I just went through my canning book to see if I made any notes on the recipes where I may have substituted cider vinegar for distilled white vinegar and I didn’t see any. So, I don’t believe I’ve used apple cider vinegar in my pickles, at least not that I can recall. I believe the only difference in them is what they are fermented from and the cider vinegar is a little less powerful, as far as flavor goes. If I were you, I would NOT change the amount of sugar in the recipes. If you do, you would be changing the ratios that have been determined safe for canning. (If you are using a recipe from an approved source.)

Here is a link to the Ball Canning website, I’m sure they might have more information on this. I just always heard that if you make changes in the ratios, you can increase the likelihood of food poisoning.

Hope that helps!


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