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Homemade Mustard Pickles from Germany


If you have a soft spot for "Senfgurken" then try this homemade pickle recipe with mustard, dill and other spices. Use pickling cucumbers for canning, which keep their shape, or English cucumbers to make refrigerator pickles that will keep for a couple of weeks. Also known as Spreewälder Gurken, these homemade pickles are famous as a specialty of Berlin.

Makes 2 to 3 quarts

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Prep Time: 35 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Yield: 3 quarts


  • 4 1/2 lb. pickling cucumbers
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • Fresh dill weed
  • 2 c. white wine vinegar
  • 2 c. water
  • 2 1/2 c. sugar
  • 1 T. yellow mustard seed
  • 6 juniper berries
  • 1/2 tsp. whole coriander
  • 1/2 tsp. whole black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. whole caraway
  • 1/4 tsp. whole dill seed
  • 1/2 tsp. whole allspice
  • 1 crumbled bay leaf
  • 4 cloves
  • 1/8 tsp. powdered ginger
  • 2 T. salt


Peel the cucumbers, cut in half, scrape out the seeds, then cut into 1/2 inch chunks.

Layer them in clean, canning jars together with the fresh dill and the onion slices.

Bring the remaining ingredients to a boil and cook for three minutes or until sugar and salt is dissolved. Pour the hot brine over the vegetables to 1/4 inch of the rim of the glass. Close immediately. Store in a cool spot or refrigerator.

Note: Some people say that the pickles made this way (raw pack) keep for several months without further processing. As they cool, a vacuum creates a seal, much like cooking in a water bath.

Generally, I prefer to process or can anything I do not want to refrigerate. If you want to can these pickles they will become softer but keep for months on the shelf. If you do not want to process further, keep them refrigerated and they should last for a couple of weeks.

They are ready to eat after 24 hours but the flavors get stronger as they age.

Related Video
How to Make Pickles
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