Homemade Sweet & Sour Canned Lemon Pickle

There’s something undeniably magical about the art of pickling, especially when it comes to the vibrant and tangy Sweet & Sour Canned Lemon Pickle. This recipe is a delightful dance of flavors, where the sharp tang of lemon meets a symphony of sweetness and spice. It’s not just a recipe; it’s a journey through taste and tradition. Each bite is a burst of sunshine, a reminder of the power of simple ingredients to create something extraordinary.

But this pickle is more than just a treat for your taste buds. It’s a testament to patience and the beauty of slow cooking. The process, though time-consuming, is a labor of love, yielding a condiment that can transform any meal into a gourmet experience. Imagine opening a jar of these pickled lemons – each piece a perfect balance of sweet, sour, and spicy. It’s a culinary adventure waiting to happen. So, let’s embark on this flavorful journey together. Scroll down to uncover the secrets of this exquisite Sweet & Sour Canned Lemon Pickle recipe.

What You’ll Need for This Recipe

Embarking on the journey of making Sweet & Sour Canned Lemon Pickle? Here’s your treasure map of ingredients. Each one plays a pivotal role in creating this pickled delight. Let’s explore them:

Meyer Lemons: The stars of the show. Meyer lemons are sweeter and less acidic than regular lemons. Their thin skin and fragrant aroma make them perfect for pickling. They bring a unique, mildly tart flavor that’s essential for this recipe.

Lime Juice: The zesty sidekick. Lime juice adds a bright, citrusy punch. It complements the sweetness of the Meyer lemons, creating a harmonious balance in the pickle.

Ginger: The spice whisperer. A small piece, peeled and thinly sliced, infuses a warm, peppery note. Ginger’s subtle yet distinct flavor adds depth and a hint of spice that tickles the palate.

Red Chili Powder: The heat element. Just a teaspoon, but it makes a world of difference. It introduces a gentle warmth to the pickle, creating a delightful contrast with the sweet and sour notes.

Sea Salt: The flavor enhancer. Sea salt doesn’t just preserve; it amplifies the flavors. Its coarse texture and pure taste ensure that each ingredient shines through.

White Wine Vinegar: The tangy twist. This isn’t just any vinegar. White wine vinegar has a softer acidity and a slightly fruity note, perfect for balancing the sweetness of the sugar and the tartness of the lemons.

Sugar: The sweet balance. It’s all about creating that perfect sweet and sour harmony. The sugar in this recipe doesn’t overpower; it complements, ensuring every bite is a delightful contrast of flavors.

How to Make Homemade Sweet & Sour Canned Lemon Pickle

Ready to create your own jar of sunshine? Here’s how to bring the Sweet & Sour Canned Lemon Pickle to life. Each step is simple, yet each is crucial in weaving the rich tapestry of flavors.

Prepare the Lemons: Start by giving the Meyer leemons a good rinse under cold water. Patience is key; let them dry completely. Then, slice each lemon in half, and each half into thirds. It’s all about getting that perfect size for the pickle to absorb the flavors.

Juice the Limes: Squeeze the life out of those limes! You’ll need their juice for the pickling liquid. Fresh is best, so squeeze enough to get the zestiness going.

Create the Pickling Liquid: In a small saucepan, combine the fresh lime juice, sugar, and white wine vinegar. Heat it gently. Watch as it transforms into a syrupy consistency. This liquid is the heart of the pickle, infusing every lemon piece with a sweet and sour embrace.

Spice it Up: In a separate bowl, mix together the red chili powder, sea salt, and thinly sliced ginger. This trio is the soul of the pickle, introducing layers of flavor – a hint of heat, a touch of saltiness, and a whisper of spice.

Layering the Lemons: Take a clean jar and start layering the lemon pieces. After each layer, sprinkle some of the sugar-salt-spice mixture. It’s like building a flavor skyscraper, one layer at a time.

Pour and Seal: Once your jar is layered with lemons and spice, pour the syrupy liquid over them. Make sure every piece is submerged in this liquid gold. Seal the jar tightly. This is where the magic begins.

The Waiting Game: Patience is a virtue, especially in pickling. Store the jar in a warm place for a month. Yes, a month! This time allows the flavors to marry, the lemons to soften, and the pickle to reach its full potential.

What We Love About This Recipe

There’s a lot to adore about the Sweet & Sour Canned Lemon Pickle. It’s a recipe that sings a song of simplicity and flavor. First off, the balance of tastes. The sweet and sour notes dance together in perfect harmony. It’s like a melody that lingers on your palate, long after the meal is done. The Meyer lemons, with their unique sweetness, are the perfect canvas for this flavor masterpiece.

Then, there’s the texture. The lemons, softened over time, offer a delightful contrast. They’re tender yet retain a bite, a reminder of their journey from fresh citrus to pickled perfection. It’s a texture that adds excitement to any dish it accompanies.

But what truly sets this recipe apart is its versatility. This pickle isn’t just a condiment; it’s a game-changer. Add it to sandwiches for a zesty twist, or pair it with grilled meats for an unexpected pop of flavor. It’s a jar of possibilities, ready to elevate any meal from ordinary to extraordinary. Similarly, our Homemade Lavender Syrup can add a unique floral twist to your beverages and desserts.

And let’s not forget the joy of the process. Making this pickle is a journey of patience and anticipation. The transformation over a month, the gradual melding of flavors, it’s a culinary adventure. When you finally open that jar, it’s not just about the taste. It’s about the satisfaction of creating something truly special.

Recipe Variations for Homemade Sweet & Sour Canned Lemon Pickle

Diving into the world of pickling, especially with a recipe as versatile as the Sweet & Sour Canned Lemon Pickle, opens up a realm of creative possibilities. Here are some delightful twists to try:

Spicy Kick: For those who love a bit of heat, add a few slices of fresh jalapeño or a sprinkle of extra chili powder. It’ll give your pickle a fiery edge, perfect for spice enthusiasts.

Herbal Notes: Introduce fresh herbs like dill, rosemary, or thyme. They’ll infuse the pickle with aromatic flavors, adding a new dimension to the already complex taste profile.

Sweetness Variations: If you’re inclined towards a sweeter profile, consider using honey or brown sugar instead of white sugar. Each brings its own unique sweetness and depth.

Citrus Twist: Experiment with different citrus fruits. Try adding orange or grapefruit slices for a more complex citrus flavor. It’s all about finding that perfect citrus harmony.

Vinegar Varieties: Swap out white wine vinegar for apple cider vinegar or rice vinegar. Each type of vinegar introduces its own subtle nuances, altering the pickle’s overall flavor profile.

Aromatic Spices: Add whole spices like cloves, cinnamon sticks, or star anise during the pickling process. They’ll slowly release their flavors, creating a pickle that’s rich in aroma and depth.

Ginger Replacement: If you’re not a fan of ginger, try using garlic instead. It’ll give the pickle a different kind of pungency and earthiness.

Salt Swap: For a different kind of saltiness, use Himalayan pink salt or kosher salt. Each type of salt can slightly alter the flavor and texture of the pickle.

Pairing and Serving Suggestions for Homemade Sweet & Sour Canned Lemon Pickle

The Sweet & Sour Canned Lemon Pickle isn’t just a side; it’s a versatile star that can elevate a variety of dishes. Here’s how to pair and serve it for maximum culinary delight:

With Indian Cuisine: It’s a classic! Serve it alongside curries, biryanis, or naan bread. The pickle’s tangy flavor cuts through the richness of Indian spices beautifully. For another unique flavor experience, try our Homemade Saged Pear Butter as a delightful spread for your breads and pastries.

Cheese Boards: Add a zesty twist to your cheese platters. The pickle pairs wonderfully with creamy cheeses like brie or sharp cheddars, offering a delightful contrast in flavors. In the same vein, our Homemade Gooseberry Jam can be a splendid addition to your cheese boards, bringing a sweet and tangy balance.

Grilled Meats: Whether it’s chicken, pork, or beef, a spoonful of this pickle can add a tangy dimension to your grilled favorites. It’s a match made in heaven for barbecue nights.

Sandwiches and Wraps: Elevate your sandwiches and wraps with a dollop of this pickle. Its vibrant flavor complements cold cuts, veggies, and even spreads like hummus.

Salad Dressings: Whisk a bit of the pickle juice into your vinaigrettes. It adds a unique sweet and sour note to your green or pasta salads.

Fish and Seafood: Pair it with grilled or baked fish. The lemon pickle’s acidity and sweetness enhance the delicate flavors of seafood.

Rice Dishes: Mix it into plain rice or pilafs for an instant flavor boost. It’s a simple way to turn a bland dish into something extraordinary.

Breakfast Bowls: Yes, even breakfast! Add it to your avocado toast or egg bowls for a tangy start to your day.

Cocktails: Get creative and use a splash of the pickle juice in your cocktails. It works wonders in a Bloody Mary or a savory martini.

FAQ – Homemade Sweet & Sour Canned Lemon Pickle

Can I use regular lemons instead of Meyer lemons?

Absolutely! Regular lemons work, but they’re more tart. Just remember, the flavor profile will be slightly different. It’s all about your taste preference.

How long can I store the canned lemon pickle?

Properly stored, it can last up to a year. Keep it in a cool, dark place. Once opened, refrigerate to extend its shelf life. It’s all about keeping it fresh!

Is it necessary to use white wine vinegar? Can I substitute it?

White wine vinegar is preferred for its mild flavor. But, feel free to experiment! Apple cider vinegar or even rice vinegar can be good substitutes. Each brings its own unique twist.

Can I make this recipe less sweet or less sour?

Of course! Adjust the sugar and lime juice to suit your taste. It’s all about finding your perfect balance. Remember, it’s your pickle, your rules.

What’s the best way to sterilize the jars for pickling?

Cleanliness is key. Boil the jars and lids in water for about 10 minutes. Let them air dry. This step is crucial for food safety and longevity of the pickle.

Can I add other spices to the recipe?

Definitely! Feel free to add spices like mustard seeds, coriander seeds, or even a cinnamon stick for a unique flavor profile. It’s a great way to make the recipe your own.

Is this pickle suitable for a gluten-free diet?

Yes, it is! The ingredients are naturally gluten-free. Just ensure that all your ingredients, especially vinegar, are certified gluten-free.

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Homemade Sweet & Sour Canned Lemon Pickle

  • Author: Brianna
  • Total Time: 35 minutes + 1 month resting
  • Yield: 1 jar


Discover the perfect blend of tangy and sweet with our Sweet & Sour Canned Lemon Pickle recipe. A delightful mix of Meyer lemons, spices, and a hint of sugar, this pickle is a must-try for any culinary enthusiast. Ideal for enhancing your meals with a burst of flavor.


  • Meyer Lemons
  • Lime Juice
  • Ginger
  • Red Chili Powder
  • Sea Salt
  • White Wine Vinegar
  • Sugar


  1. Prepare and slice Meyer lemons.
  2. Juice limes and create pickling liquid with lime juice, sugar, and vinegar.
  3. Mix red chili powder, sea salt, and ginger.
  4. Layer lemons in a jar with the spice mix.
  5. Pour pickling liquid over lemons and seal.
  6. Store for a month before using.


Substitute Meyer lemons with regular lemons for a tarter taste.

Adjust sugar and spices according to preference.

Ensure jars are sterilized before use.

  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Category: Condiments
  • Method: Pickling
  • Cuisine: International


  • Serving Size: 1 tablespoon
  • Calories: 20 kcal
  • Sugar: 2g
  • Sodium: 150mg
  • Fat: 0g
  • Saturated Fat: 0g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 0g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 5g
  • Fiber: 0.5g
  • Protein: 0.2g
  • Cholesterol: 0mg

Keywords: Lemon Pickle, Sweet Sour Pickle, Canned Lemon Recipe, Vegan Pickle, Homemade Pickle

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