Last Updated on October 29, 2022 by Cinthia
Cucumbers are one of the most popular plants people will grow in their garden. However, if you grow these green veggies, you will want to know the difference between pickling cucumbers vs regular cucumbers. Though similar, the two types vary and they each have their own purposes.
Since there are several types of cucumbers, each variety serves its own purpose. Though most are great for eating on their own or adding to salads, not every kind works well for making pickles.
Difference Between Pickling Cucumber Vs Regular Cucumber
Many people don’t know the difference between pickling cucumbers and regular cucumbers. Pickling cucumbers are ideal for making pickles and slicing cucumbers are ideal for salads and cooking. In fact, there are many types of cucumbers that will be either ideal for pickling or slicing.
Gardners of all experience levels enjoy growing cucumbers. Though culinarily cucumbers are often referred to as a vegetable, they are in fact actually a fruit. They are high in nutrients but low in calories, making them a healthy snack.
Cucumbers are also full of antioxidants and may even help lower blood sugar. In addition, since they are mainly water, they are also good for keeping you hydrated. Their crispy texture and mild taste make them highly palatable.
Pickling cucumbers are shorter and bigger compared to slicing cucumbers. They have a thin skin and a black spine that makes them ideal for pickling. They can also be eaten fresh or used for cooking, as they will still provide a wonderful flavor and texture.
There are several varieties that are ideal for making pickles. They provide an excellent crunch and a lovely flavor. Here are some of the best varieties for making pickles.
The Boston Pickling cucumber is one of the most popular varieties for making pickles. They are a seedless variety and offer incredible crispiness and wonderful flavor. They were first developed in the late 1800s in Boston, Massachusetts.
The Boston Pickling grows to be three to four inches long. They mature very quickly, which pickle makers love.
The Bush Pickle is a great variety to plant when you are tight on space and can even be grown in pots or containers. They have a lovely sweet flavor and smooth skin, growing to be about three to four inches long. In addition, they also mature relatively fast as well.
National Pickling Cucumber
The National Pickling cucumber is an excellent choice for making different types of pickles. They grow to be about four to five inches long and have thicker skin, giving them an excellent crunch. This variety does take slightly longer to mature and does need more space than other types.
The Parisian Pickling variety is popular for its thick flesh and few seeds. They mature relatively quickly and are a great choice for your home garden. They have a delicious flavor and a great texture, with a nice crunch.
Read more about Hydroponic Cucumber Nutrient Solution
Slicing cucumbers come in a variety of sizes and colors and are ideal for snacking, cooking, or salads. They generally have thicker skins and are longer than pickling varieties. Since they tend to have softer flesh, they are not an ideal option for making pickles as they can turn mushy.
There are many different types of slicing cucumbers that have many uses. Here are some of the most popular varieties of slicing.
English is one of the most popular types of cucumbers. They are a seedless variety that is long, about 10 t0 15 inches, and thin with dark green skin. Also called seedless or hot-house, they are the most common type at grocery stores and are one of the most popular varieties to grow.
The English variety has a mild, slightly sweet taste. They are most popular for salads, sandwiches, and martinis.
Armenian cucumbers are long and thin, with lighter skin that is a light yellowish-green. They can grow to be an incredible 36 inches long, however, they are best when harvested at 14 inches or less. They have a delicious crunch and flavor with soft seeds, which makes them great to eat raw.
Sweet Success grows to be around 14 inches long and has a dark, smooth skin. They are one of the most popular varieties for salads and savory dishes thanks to their flavor and texture. This variety has a sweet, bitter-free flavor that is resistant to many different diseases.
Muncher cucumbers are a popular slicing option when they grow to be eight to 10 inches long. However, when they are two to three inches long, they can be used for making pickles. They have a thin skin and crunchy texture while being sweet with no bitterness.
Ashley cucumbers were first grown in Charleston, South Carolina in 1956. They are ideal for growing in hot, humid climates as they are resistant to mildew and many other issues caused by climate. They tend to grow to be six to eight inches long and tend to be quite abundant.
The Ashley variety has a rough texture with some bumps on them as well. They are dark green in color and are a popular choice in the southern states of America.
What makes a pickling cucumber?
In the United States, pickles are usually associated with cucumbers and vinegar.
Cucumbers are from the gourd family, and have a long history of being preserved in salt. They are easy to grow, and will tolerate cooler temperatures than most other vegetables.
There are two main varieties of cucumber. The first is the straight-necked type. They’re grown as a vegetable, but you can also find them at farmers markets, or in produce stores. The second variety is called a pickling cucumber. It’s grown specifically for its ability to withstand the salt brine, and its flavor.
Cucumbers were grown in India as early as 5000 BCE, and they were probably first pickedle-pickled in the Indus Valley. Cucumbers were brought to Europe by the Romans in 200 BCE, and they were pickled in vinegar. The pickles were called kalkandji or kalakandi. It wasn’t until the 17th century that the English developed their own version of pickles.
Can you pickle all types of cucumbers?
Yes, you can! The trick is to make sure that they are not too ripe. Pickling cucumbers should be firm and dry to the touch. They should have no soft spots or blemishes. If they are too ripe, they will soften when exposed to air and will spoil. Store your pickles in a cool, dark place.
You can use a glass container with a tight-fitting lid. Keep them away from light and heat. Do not refrigerate your pickles. Wash your jars and lids in hot soapy water. Rinse well. Let the jars dry completely. Place the jars in a canning pot and cover with boiling water. Let stand for 5 minutes. Remove the jars from the water and let them cool completely. Wipe the rims of the jars with a damp cloth. Fill each jar about ¾ full. Using a clean, damp paper towel, wipe down the inside of the jar. You may need to fill the jars ¼ full if they are wide-mouthed. Place a piece of parchment or waxed paper over the top of the jar. This will keep the pickles from floating.
Can you eat pickling cucumbers in salads?
Yes, you can! They're crunchy and refreshing and a great addition to any salad. The vinegar is the secret ingredient that gives them their distinctive flavor. I always make my own pickling cucumbers. They're a lot tastier than store bought pickles, and they keep in the refrigerator for weeks!
What is the best tasting cucumber?
The most flavorful cucumber is a pickling cucumber. They’re available year round and have a slightly sour taste. Pickling cucumbers are ideal for salad mixes, pickles and other pickled dishes. If you can find them fresh, great! If you must buy them from the grocery store, look for smaller cucumbers with a firm texture. You’ll also want to look for those that are picked at the right stage of ripeness. The riper they are, the more watery they’ll be, so you’ll want to choose ones that are still firm. These are best for salads and raw vegetable mixes. Best tasting cucumber: The most flavorful cucumber is a pickling cucumber. They’re available year round and have a slightly sour taste. Pickling cucumbers are ideal for salad mixes, pickles and other pickled dishes. If you can find them fresh, great!
I’ve been a fan of the “Honeycrisp” variety of cucumbers for many years. I know that other people prefer the “Crispin” or the “Sugar Snap” varieties, but they have never tasted as good to me as Honeycrisp. I have also been a fan of the “Tahitian” variety because of its beautiful color and its unique flavor.
The Difference Between Pickling Cucumbers vs Regular Cucumbers
Many people have a preference between pickles vs. cucumbers. However, many people don’t know that there are specific types just for making pickles and specific types for salads and cooking.
Many people grow cucumbers in their gardens. They are healthy and are great for many savory dishes thanks to their mild taste and crunchy, crisp texture.
Pickling cucumbers tend to have thinner skins and black spines. Slicing cucumbers tend to be thinner and longer, with thicker skins and softer flesh. Though they can sometimes be used interchangeably, it is best to stick to the variety that meets your needs.
Do you have any questions about pickling cucumbers vs regular cucumbers? If so, please ask any questions about pickling varieties and slicing varieties in the comment section down below.