This recipe for dilled green beans was adapted from a Mississippi Cooperative Extension Service recipe. These classic pickled green beans are always a hit, and they go with any meal. If you have a surplus of garden-fresh green beans this is an excellent way to use them.
This recipe calls for about 1/2 teaspoons of dill seeds per jar, but if you have fresh dill heads, use one or two per jar, depending on the size. Unless you grow the dill, the heads can be difficult to find. Look for them at farmers' markets. They can be frozen for use later in the season.*
- 4 pounds whole green beans (about 4 quarts)
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed hot red pepper (per pint jar)
- 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds (per pint jar)
- 1/2 teaspoon dill seeds (or 1 to 2 fresh or frozen dill heads) (per pint jar)
- 1 small clove garlic (per pint jar)
- 5 cups vinegar
- 5 cups water
- 1/2 cup pickling salt
- Sterilize the jars and keep them in the hot water until you're ready to fill them.
- Put the flat lids in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring just to a simmer. Reduce the heat to the lowest setting and keep them hot until you are ready for them.
- Fill a large canner with water and bring to a boil.
- Meanwhile, trim and wash the green beans thoroughly. Drain them and cut into lengths to fill 1-pint jars (preferably wide-mouth jars).
- Pack beans into sterilized, hot jars. Add the hot pepper, mustard seed, dill seed, and garlic to each jar.
- In a large saucepan combine the vinegar, water, and salt and bring to a boil. Pour the boiling liquid over the beans, leaving 1/2-inch of headspace. Clean the jar rims and threads with a damp clean cloth or paper towel. Center the lids on the jars and screw on the bands. Do not over-tighten.
- Place the jars in the canner rack and lower into the gently boiling water. If the water does not come up to at least 1 inch above the jars, add more hot water.
- When the water returns to a boil with jars in it, cover the canner and boil gently for 5 minutes.** Remove the cover and let the jars stand for 5 minutes.
- Remove the jars from the canner to a rack or heavy towel and let them cool. Do not tilt, tighten, or turn them over.
- After 24 hours, check the jars to make sure they sealed. Remove the bands, wipe the jars clean, label and store in a cool, dark place. Refrigerate any unsealed jars and use within a few days. Alternatively, unsealed jars may be reprocessed by heating the liquid again following recipe instructions and canned in sterilized jars with new lids (discard the old lid that didn't seal properly).
Makes 8 to 9 pints.
*To freeze fresh dill heads, break the heads off the stems. Place the heads (unwashed) in containers. Freeze and use for pickling when your cucumbers or green beans are harvested.
**For altitudes of 1001 to 6,000 feet, process the jars for 10 minutes.
Over 6,000 feet, process for 15 minutes.