Gluten Free Pickled Cauliflower & Carrots Recipe

by Carol Kicinski on December 15, 2011

Gluten Free Recipes - Easy Pickled Cauliflower and Carrots

I never thought of myself as the type of person who makes pickles. I’m not exactly sure what kind of person that is, but I probably thought it was someone with a green thumb and abundant garden, who lives 8,000 miles from the nearest store and has a huge farmhouse kitchen with a pantry the size of a walk in closet.

It seems to me most pickle making would probably take place in the summer when no one is thinking about holiday gift giving (OK… there are people who are thinking about holiday gift giving in July but I don’t associate with those sort of uber-organized folks).

I have a black thumb; after weeks of hard work and hundreds of dollars, my garden harvested 2 tiny eggplants, 5 watermelons, 2 tomatoes that never ripened and a handful or so of the hottest peppers on earth. There are at least 5 major grocery stores within 5 minutes of my house, my kitchen is the size of a broom closet and procrastination spontaneity is more my thing than planning and executing ahead of time.

However, make pickles I did! I just love to have piles of homemade goodies hanging around waiting to be given out to people who stop by during the holidays or to take for hostess gifts. Every year I make cookies, marshmallows and simple candies. This year I decided to add to my repertoire and do something different.

What I love about these pickles is that they are fast and easy! Plus they make pretty inexpensive gifts; cauliflower and carrots are not gourmet, fancy-schmancy veggies that come with a high price tag, white vinegar is downright cheap and I bought about a thousand dried peppers from the local fruit and veggie stand for a couple of dollars. I have a little bit of a jar fetish, so those were on hand but if you are not a crazy jar collecting person, they can be purchased very inexpensively from the hardware store or places like Ikea. Even if it had been necessary for me to purchase jars I still would have made 6 adorable jars of pickled cauliflower and carrots for under $15.00!

I didn’t “can” these pickles for years of storage – they need to be kept in the fridge but will last up to a month. If you are interested in a longer term method of preserving, you could certainly go to all that trouble – but why?

These pickles are crisp and tangy with a bit of sweet and the tiniest hint of heat. They make a great accompaniment to all the rich meats and other dishes we serve this time of year.

Never thought of yourself as a pickle maker? Maybe you are!

Gluten Free Recipes | Easy Pickled Cauliflower and Carrots

Gluten Free Pickled Cauliflower & Carrots Recipe


6 cups white vinegar
2 cups water
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons kosher or fine sea salt
2 teaspoons peppercorns
12 bay leaves
12 dried chilies
1 large red onion, cut in half and thickly sliced
1 head of garlic, separated into cloves and peeled (about 12 cloves)
2 large cauliflower, broken into florets
4 cups sliced carrots


Scrupulously wash and dry 6 one pint jars and lids.

Bring the vinegar, water, sugar, salt, peppercorns and bay leaves to a boil in a large pan. Boil, stirring, until the sugar has dissolved, about 3 minutes.

Add the chilies, onion, garlic, cauliflower and carrots, bring back to a boil and let cook for 5 minutes.

Carefully spoon the veggies into the prepared jars – trying to get 2 bay leaves and 2 chilies in each jar, top with the hot vinegar mixture, secure the lids and let cool. Once cooled, refrigerate for up to 1 month.


Makes 6 – 1 pint jars

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Categories:    Condiments & Sauces

{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

Kalinda December 15, 2011 at 12:26 pm

I kind of went pickle crazy this year. Cucumbers, green beans, beets, turnips, even pickled eggs. I love the idea of pickled cauliflower. I like how you added red onion to add that little hint of pink.


Carol Kicinski December 16, 2011 at 3:59 pm

Wow! I guess YOU are the type of person who makes pickles! I am envious of your bounty, your pantry must be full of wonderful pickled treats!


Anita December 15, 2011 at 8:52 pm

I never thought of myslef as someone who would make pickles either but always wished I was – this looks so easy! Thanks!


Carol Kicinski December 16, 2011 at 3:59 pm

Yep Anita, easy peasy!


Donna December 15, 2011 at 9:01 pm

How cute!


Carol Kicinski December 16, 2011 at 3:59 pm

Thanks Donna!


Wendy @ Celiacs in the House December 16, 2011 at 7:36 am

From this dinnerware hoarder to the woman with a jar fetish, what a great idea. I have done some canning in my day, but this makes so much sense, especially this time of year for a fun gift or to add some zing to winter menus.


Carol Kicinski December 16, 2011 at 4:00 pm

I have seen some of your envbiable dinnerware collection. If I started hoarding dinnerware and jars I think my hubby would have me committed :)


Ricki December 16, 2011 at 8:15 am

They are so pretty! I have grown to love pickled veggies since first making sauerkraut. These look great. :)


Carol Kicinski December 16, 2011 at 4:01 pm

Me too Ricki – I love every kind of pickle! And thanks!


Maggie December 16, 2011 at 10:32 am

I love how pretty these look! And they’re much easier than one might think!


Carol Kicinski December 16, 2011 at 4:01 pm

Thanks Maggie!


Sheri @ Humbled Lliving December 16, 2011 at 1:52 pm

Hi Carol. I love your site. I have never pickled but this looks really good. Do you think it would work with apple cider vinegar or rice vinegar? I cannot use white distilled vinegar because it is made from corn and I am allergic to corn. Let me know. Thanks.


Carol Kicinski December 16, 2011 at 3:11 pm

Yes Sheri, it works great with any type of vinegar (except maybe balsamic) – I was trying to keep these budget which is why I used white vinegar but apple cider vinegar or rice vinegar would be perfect!


InTolerant Chef December 18, 2011 at 4:28 am

What great gifts fo Christmas! Lovely, yumm…


Carol Kicinski December 30, 2011 at 10:56 am

Thank you!!


Gina December 9, 2012 at 10:32 pm

Hi Carol,

First time you website and I love it. What kind of “chilies” did you use. I not a big fan of hot spicy so should I leave them out? Thanks!


Carol Kicinski December 10, 2012 at 1:21 pm

I used jalapenos but if you are not a fan of hot, just leave them out! Still delicious. Or you could try just using green bell peppers if you like.


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