Lacto-Fermented Sweet Pickle Slices


 I’ve got a great recipe for all the sweet pickle lovers out there! These are fermented and are both sweet and spicy. They’re wonderful on a grass-fed burger!

You don’t need any special equipment to ferment other than a wide-mouth mason jar with lid. I use a quart sized for these pickles. Air-locks are used by a lot of fermentors but are not a requirement. 

Fermenting pickles requires a salt brine instead of vinegar. It is simple to make.

Simply combine 6 TBS fine sea salt – I like Real Salt –  (or 9 TBS coarse) with 8 cups of water and stir to dissolve. You’ll need about 2 cups of the brine for this recipe.  

Either start with freshly picked cucumbers or soak older cucumbers for 30 minutes in an ice water bath. This helps retain crispness. 

You’ll need something with tannins in it to add to the jar. This will also help keep the pickles crisp. I like to add a clean oak leaf to mine as they are prevalent in my yard. A grape leaf or black tea leaves will also work. Also, be sure to cut at least 1/16 of an inch off the blossom end (the rough outtie belly button looking bump not the smooth indented one) off each cucumber. If you don’t, the pickles will be mushy and that’s not fun.

Lacto-Fermented Sweet Pickle Slices



  1. Cut ends off cucumbers and slice 1/4 inch.
  2. Layer sliced cucumbers and onions in quart jar.
  3. Blend remaining ingredients (except brine) and add to jar.
  4. Add brine, filling to 1 inch below jar top.
  5. Lid tightly and leave at room temperature for 3 days.
  6. Test for desired fermentation and store in refrigerator.


Are you more of a sweet pickle or dill pickle fan?

For more information, I recommend the following books: Wild Fermentation, and The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Fermenting.

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    • says

      It is and it depends on who you talk to as to whether it will hinder fermenting or not. The traditional recipes I have all contain honey and it’s never been a problem for me with these recipes. I wouldn’t use it with kombucha or water kefir because those cultures are reused. With lacto-fermenting you are not reusing the cultures so they just need to work well for you the one time. Hope that helps!

  1. Jennie says

    Could I use kombucha instead of water kefir? What is the reason behind using the water kefir? Also, how much black tea leaves do you recommend to put in to retain crispness?

  2. Joni says

    How much sweetener do you need? It might just be my phone, but it only says 1/2 honey or syrup, no unit of measurement.

    Silly question, but do these really taste good? Do they taste at all like store pickles? I tried making fermented dill pickles, but they ended up tasting like feet (so gross!), I had to throw them all away, and my brother is afraid to eat at my house anymore and tells everyone I tried to poison him with pickles! So I’m a little nervous to try again.

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