How to Make Garlic-Dill Okra Pickles

Growing okra in my home backyard garden has made me feel like I’m the best gardener ever! God has blessed me with an abundance of okra. I really can’t take the credit. I plant the seeds and God makes them grow. Even though I live in hot Central Texas with clay soil, by the end of the season my plants are usually 8 feet tall and have produced many pounds of okra with very little watering and no fertilizer….all organically grown.

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We eat okra raw, fried, grilled, stewed and pickled. I want to walk you through, step by step, the process of making my Garlic-Dill Okra Pickles recipe. They are a crunchy, flavorful treat. If you are not so blessed with a garden full of okra, you can buy okra at a local farmers market and try pickling some for your family. It’s quite easy and rewarding.

Honestly, I must confess that I plant okra because it’s so rewarding to have such large plants in my garden. Such beautiful plants that have elegant yellow flowers each day! They also bring pleasure to the birds. I often find birdies tucked away in the branches.

I only have 5 okra plants in my garden this year. I learned 3 years ago when I first planted okra to never plant 30 okra plants again! I plant two okra seeds 3 inches apart in each location and after the plants have reached about 6 inches tall, I select the best one to keep and sadly pull up the other. With only 5 okra plants, I’m able to reap plenty of okra each week…enough for chopping, battering and frying; freezing for future recipes (like shrimp or chicken gumbo), pickling to store in the pantry and grilling for summer suppers. (Be sure to sign up for our blog to be alerted when I post my gumbo recipe!)

picking okra

When you harvest okra, wear gloves to avoid their hair-like spines and prickly-ness. Using scissors, I cut pods from the plants when they are about 3 inches long and around 1/2 inch in diameter. This is when they are young and tender. Okra can grow quite large, quite fast, but they will be woody and tough when left to get longer than 4 inches.

WHAT YOU NEED FOR PICKLING OKRA:

  • Fresh washed okra (about 10 pods per jar)
  • Distilled white vinegar
  • Dried dill
  • Granulated sugar
  • Garlic cloves
  • Water
  • Large pot for boiling jars

My recipe below is for pickling 3 jars of okra pickles, but I usually triple it and do 9 jars at a time because of the abundance of okra that I pick. If this is your first try at pickling, I suggest starting with 3 jars so you’ll need about 30 okra pods, or roughly 1 1/2 lbs. by weight.

tongs sterilize jar

1. Sterilize jars and bands in simmering water for 10 minutes.

wash lids for pickling

2. Wash lids in warm soapy water. Lay on paper towel to dry.

wash okra

3. Wash okra.

trim okra tips and cap ends

4. Trim tip ends and cap ends off okra. Discard ends.

5. Place 1 tbsp. dried dill, 1 tbsp. sugar, and 1 large peeled garlic clove into each jar.

pack okra in jar

6. Pack trimmed okra tightly (so they don’t float) into each jar. 

7. On stovetop in a saucepan, stir together water, vinegar and pickling salt and bring to a boil.

8. Ladle hot vinegar mixture into jars, filling each to within 1/4 inch of top edge.

9. Working with one jar at a time, use a damp to towel wipe the edge of the jar, then seal jar with a lid and band.

boil okra jars to seal

10. To finish the sealing process, you must boil these filled jars in a water bath for 10 minutes. Make sure the water level is 1 inch over the jars in your pot.

sealed pickled okra jars

11. Remove from the bath and allow to cool on the counter.

12. Once cooled, check to make sure the center ‘button’ of lid is flat so that you know it properly sealed.

The packaging for canning lids usually says they will last for 18 months. I’m still finishing up pickled okra from 3 years ago and as long as the seal is still good, the okra pickles are still edible and delicious. I recommend storing a jar in the fridge to serve them cold, but the rest are good on the pantry shelf. I would not open a jar for at least 2 weeks to make sure the flavors have fully developed. Just be sure to put a date on the jars. My FREE label file allows you to add a date and print it on the label.

Pickled Okra - Canning Label

ALL DONE FOR THE CANNING….NOW ONTO THE FUN LABELS!

As a gift to you, I’m offering a FREE printable download of my Garlic – Dill Okra Pickles labels that I designed. This PDF download can be opened in Acrobat Reader. The date area is editable so that you can type in the date for your okra pickles. Order these Avery 22830 2 1/2 inch round labels to use with my file to print.

Pickle Label Avery 22830

If you enjoy gardening as I do, you might enjoy perusing some of my garden artwork that we sell on our store for your home. I was inspired by my garden to paint a very large painting that hangs in my living room. I sell small canvas prints of it in our store.

Let me know if you try this recipe, or if you have any questions. I’d love to hear from you about your pickling, cooking and gardening adventures!

Be blessed,
Momma

Garlic Dill Okra Pickles

An easy to follow pickling process for okra. Makes a crunchy, delectable snack!

Course Appetizer, Snack
Cuisine American
Keyword Pickled Okra
Servings 3 jars
Author Abigail Aars

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp dried dill
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 3 cloves garlic peeled
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 2 tbsp canning & pickling salt
  • 1 1/2 lbs fresh okra (approx. 30 pods)

Instructions

  1. Sterilize jars and bands in simmering water for 10 minutes.

  2. Wash lids in warm soapy water. Lay on paper towel to dry.

  3. Wash okra.

  4. Trim tip ends and cap ends off okra. Discard ends.

  5. Place dried dill, sugar and large peeled garlic clove into each jar.

  6. Pack trimmed okra tightly (so they don’t float) into each jar. 

  7. On stovetop in saucepan, stir together water, vinegar and salt and bring to a boil.

  8. Ladle hot vinegar mixture into jars, filling each to within 1/4 inch of top edge.

  9. Working with one jar at a time, use a damp towel to wipe the edge of the jar, then seal jar with a lid and band.

  10. To finish the sealing process, you must boil these filled jars in a water bath for 10 minutes. Make sure the water level is 1 inch over the jars in your pot.

  11. Remove jars from the bath and allow to cool on the counter.

  12. Once cooled, check to make sure the center ‘button’ of lid is flat so that you know it properly sealed.

  13. Apply dated labels to the lids.

Recipe Notes

The packaging for canning lids usually says they will last for 18 months. I’m still finishing up pickled okra from 3 years ago and as long as the seal is still good, the okra pickles are still edible and delicious. I recommend storing a jar in the fridge to serve them cold, but the rest are good on the pantry shelf. I would not open a jar for at least 2 weeks to make sure the flavors have fully developed.

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