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pickled cherry tomatoes in mason jars on a barn board backgound

Pickled Cherry Tomatoes (With Canning Instructions)

Delicious little bursts of flavour, cherry tomatoes are not very commonly pickled, but never the less, very easy to make at home. Pickling them is a great way to preserve a bumper crop of cherry tomatoes, or simply to add some extra flavour to your salads or salad dressings!

over head shot of pickled cherry tomatoes in an opened mason jar on a wood background

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Why Pickle Cherry Tomatoes At All?

If you’ve ever purchased cherry tomatoes at the store, you may have encountered bland, flavourless tomatoes in their prime. Anyone who’s grown their own tomatoes at home will know how much ore flavour homegrown produce has.

Regardless of if you are using your own homegrown cherry tomatoes, or store-bought ones, this easy pickling recipe will add a delightful burst of flavor to your cherry tomatoes.

If you did grow your own cherry toms and simply have so many you are getting sick of them, pickling any excess is a great way to preserve them and enjoy some of their fresh flavor during the long winter months.

Do You NEED To Can The Pickled Cherry Tomatoes?

While this post does include instructions on how to can the jars after pickling the cherry tomatoes, you don’t nesecarily need to do so.

Quick Pickling

If you choose not to can the jars, you are making what is called a quick pickle recipe, and will need to store the finished product in the fridge until you consume them all.

Note: By not canning the recipe, and instead only quick pickling the cherry tomatoes, the cherry tomatoes will stay brighter red, firmer, and retain more of their original texture.

Did You know you can quick pickle other vegetables as well? Try our quick pickled bread and butter pickle recipe or try quick pickling green beans, zucchini, or even cauliflower!

Hot Water Processing (Canning)

If you do choose to can the pickled cherry tomatoes, the jars, and their contents will be safe to store in a cool pantry unopened for about a year.

Note: By canning the pickled cherry tomatoes, you are fully cooking them in the pickling liquid, resulting in a softer fully cooked end product.

canning pickled cherry tomatoes in a hot water bath

How Do You Eat/Use Pickled Cherry Tomatoes?

These pickled cherry tomatoes add a delicious pop of flavour to any salad that you would add tomatoes to. They can also be added to pasta salads, used in salsa’s, as a condiment on charcuterie trays, or turned into a delicious vinaigrette.

To turn the pickled cherry tomatoes into a vinaigrette, simply strain the tomatoes from the brine, and puree them with olive oil. How much oil you’ll need depends on the number of cherry tomatoes you plan on pureeing. You can adjust the tartness of the vinaigrette by adding a little of the pickling brine to the vinaigrette or adding in a little brown sugar.

Equipment You’ll Need:

To make these pickled cherry tomatoes at home, you’ll need clean, sterilized mason jars and lids, as well as several pots. One pot to mix and boil the pickling liquid in, as well as another larger pot filled with boiling water and a trivet if you plan on canning the jars.

Canning tongs are also a helpful tool to have, to prevent burning yourself or dropping any hot jars.

Our Pickled Cherry Tomato Recipe

Before you begin, have your mason jars and lids washed and sanitized. I sanitize my jars and lids by setting them in the large boiling pot of water while I measure out and mix my pickling brine.

Note: The below recipe will make 6 half pint jars of pickled cherry tomatoes. You can easily scale this recipe as needed to pickle larger amounts of cherry tomatoes if you wish.

The ingredients you’ll need are:

  • About 4 pints freshly picked cherry tomatoes
  • 3 fresh cloves of garlic
  • 6 sprigs of fresh dill weed (1 per mason jar)
  • 2 tsp dried dill seed
  • 1/2 tsp dried mustard seed
  • 1/8 tsp chili flakes (leave out chili flakes of you prefer absolutely no heat in your end product)
  • 1 tsp whole black peppercorns
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 tsp salt

Instructions

1.Simmer the washed mason jars and lids in the large pot of water to sterilize the jars before filling them.

2.As the jars are simmering, wash and dry the cherry tomatoes. Remove any leaves that may be attached. Using a clean knife, needle or skewer, prick each cherry tomato to allow the brine to penetrate the tomatoes. Peel the garlic cloves and cut them in half.

pricking cherry tomatoes with a toothpick prior to pickling

3.Measure out all the dry ingredients listed above. In a dry pan over medium heat, gently toast the dill seed, mustard seed, black peppercorns, and chili flakes. Be careful not to burn the spices, and keep the pan moving in a swirling motion to ensure all the spices are evenly toasted. Once the spices are toasted remove the spices from the pan and set aside.

4.Measure out the vinegars, water, sugar and salt, and bring them to a boil in a small pot.

5.As the mixture heats up, remove the mason jars and lids from the large pot of water. Gently place the jars on a dishtowel. Carefully fill each hot jar with an equal amount of the toasted spice mix, 1 half garlic clove, and one sprig of garlic. Pack the jars with the pricked cherry tomatoes. Make sure to really pack them in, as they will shrink slightly once they are canned.

Related:  Growing Cherry Tomatoes In Pots
mason jars filled with spices and cherry tomatoes prior to pickling

6.When the jars are filled and the pickling liquid has come to a boil, carefully pour the hot liquid into each jar, leaving a 1/2 inch of space to the rim of the jar. If you spilled a little, wipe the rims of the jars with a clean cloth to ensure the jars seal properly. It is ok if the cherry tomatoes float up a little.

7 a. If you are quick pickling the cherry tomatoes, place 1 lid on each mason jar, and let the jars completely cool on the counter. Once room temperature, store the quick pickled cherry tomatoes in the refrigerator.

7 b. If canning the pickled cherry tomatoes, place 1 lid on each mason jar, and just barely hand tighten the lids. Using canning tongs, gently place each jar into the large pot of boiling water, making sure there is at least 1 inch of water above the lids after all the jars are in. Bring the water back to a boil, and process the jars for 15 minutes (start the time when the water boils). Once processed, remove the canned jars from the water and gently place on the dishtowel to cool. Let cool completely.

pickled cherry tomatoes in mason jars on a wood board surface

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pickled cherry tomatoes in mason jars on a barn board backgound

Pickled Cherry Tomatoes

Chef Markus Mueller
Delicious little bursts of flavour, cherry tomatoes are not very commonly pickled. Pickling them though is a great way to preserve a bumper crop of cherry tomatoes for winter, or simply to add some extra flavour to your salads and salad dressings!
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 35 mins
Course Condiment
Cuisine Canadian
Servings 6 half pint mason jars
Calories 118.6 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 4 pints cherry tomatoes freshly picked and washed
  • 3 whole cloves of garlic
  • 6 sprigs fresh dill
  • 2 tsp dried dill seed
  • 1/2 tsp dried mustard seed
  • 1/8 tsp chili flakes leave out or reduce the chili flakes if you prefer less heat in your end product
  • 1 tsp whole black peppercorns
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 tsp salt

Instructions
 

  • Simmer the washed mason jars and lids in the large pot of water to sterilize the jars before filling them.
  • As the jars are simmering, wash and dry the cherry tomatoes. Remove any leaves that may be attached. Using a clean knife, needle or skewer, prick each cherry tomato to allow the brine to penetrate the tomatoes. Peel the garlic cloves and cut them in half.
    pricking cherry tomatoes with a toothpick prior to pickling
  • Measure out all the dry ingredients listed above. In a dry pan over medium heat, gently toast the dill seed, mustard seed, black peppercorns, and chili flakes. Once the spices are toasted remove the spices from the pan and set aside.
  • Measure out the vinegars, water, sugar and salt, and bring them to a boil in a small pot.
  • As the mixture heats up, remove the mason jars and lids from the large pot of water. Gently place the jars on a dishtowel. Carefully fill each hot jar with an equal amount of the toasted spice mix, 1 half garlic clove, and one sprig of garlic. Pack the jars with the pricked cherry tomatoes.
    mason jars filled with spices and cherry tomatoes prior to pickling
  • When the jars are filled and the pickling liquid has come to a boil, carefully pour the hot liquid into each jar, leaving a 1/2 inch of space to the rim of the jar. If you spilled a little, wipe the rims of the jars with a clean cloth to ensure the jars seal properly.
    quick pickled cherry tomatoes on the counter

Optional – Quick Pickling The Cherry Tomatoes

  • If you are quick pickling the cherry tomatoes, place 1 lid on each mason jar, and let the jars completely cool on the counter. Once room temperature, store the quick pickled cherry tomatoes in the refrigerator.
    quick pickled cherry tomatoes on the counter

Optional – Canning The Pickled Cherry Tomatoes For Long Term Storage

  • If canning the pickled cherry tomatoes, place 1 lid on each mason jar, and just barely hand tighten the lids. Using canning tongs, gently place each jar into the large pot of boiling water, making sure there is at least 1 inch of water above the lids after all the jars are in. Bring the water back to a boil, and process the jars for 15 minutes (start the time when the water boils). Once processed, remove the canned jars from the water and gently place on the dishtowel to cool. Let cool completely.
    placing pickled cherry tomatoes in a hot water bath to can them

Notes

  • When toasting the spices be careful not to burn them, and keep the pan moving in a swirling motion to ensure all the spices are evenly toasted.
  • When packing the cherry tomatoes into the jars, make sure to really pack them in, as they will shrink slightly once they are pickled and canned.
  • It is ok if the cherry tomatoes float up a little when pouring in the hot pickling liquid. Just make sure to leave 1/2 inch of headspace from the liquid to the rim of the jar.
Keyword how to preserve cherry tomatoes, pickled tomatoes, quick pickled cherry tomatoes,, unique pickled vegetables

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