Sweet Pickled Peaches (or Nectarines)
This is my great-grandmother Shaw’s recipe for sweet pickled peaches. I remember my mom making these from the tiny white peaches that grew around our house when I was growing up, even if she doesn’t remember that.
So when my grandma (other side of the family) showed up with a 10-pound bag of not-quite-ripe nectarines picked from her tree, I knew immediately what I would do with them. This recipe is a great way to use not-quite-ripe fruit. As soon as the syrup started boiling, filling the kitchen with a very familiar sweet-sour cinnamon smell, I knew I made the right decision.
These are best if you can let them cure in the jars for a couple of days before eating them on their own (mind the pits!) or serving alongside barbecue. Try the pickling syrup added to a gin and tonic or a rum and juice cocktail.
Pickled Peaches Recipe — Printable!Print
Sweet Pickled Peaches (or Nectarines)
- 7 pounds peaches or nectarines
- 3 3/4 pounds sugar
- 1 quart (4 cups) white vinegar
- 2 ounces whole cloves
- 2 ounces cinnamon stick
- Pare the peaches if you want (not necessary with nectarines).
- Poke a whole clove into each peach; use two cloves per peach if they’re big’uns.
- Combine sugar, vinegar, and cinnamon in a large pot and bring to boil, covered, over high heat. Boil 5 minutes.
- Add fruit and cover. Set timer for 10 minutes. The pot should be boiling again after 5 minutes. Allow fruit to boil another 5 minutes.
- Scoop fruit out and into wide-mouth jars.
- Boil syrup another 5 minutes, then pour over fruit.
- Seal and cool.
- Makes 10 quarts
Would this recipe work with Apple Cider Vinegar? Do you think the flavor would be too much or overwhelming? I usually don’t keep white vinegar on hand, except for cleaning.
I think the flavor would work very well, Ashley!
I noticed you said just let cool after filling and capping the jars. Do you not put them in a water bath, or did I read past something? I would want to process in a way that I could keep them several months. I’m not a fan of pressure cookers
I haven’t ever tried to water process these. I just pour the boiling syrup over, then cap and cool. They usually pop down as they cool, but they would not be shelf stable. I keep them in the fridge.
Thank you, refreshing site. Will try to stay connected thru recipes or something. Our peaches didn’t
turn out to good, but first time for making pickled peaches. I now know why Grandma always used whole peaches. These peaches were small, the recipe was for a two day ordeal, and they would have been perfect but were over ripe Clings, so they didn’t ring properly when we cut them in half. Used the smashed parts for jam, so we didn’t waste anything. Anyway thank you for your recipe, that I will use later when the other tree of clings get ripe. We have an abundance of garden and fruit. Froze yellow crookneck squash with cornmeal, and shredded zucchini today. Need to can tomatoes and freeze 2 ft. long green beans ( love these Chinese beans). Thanks again, kind of long winded once I get started.
Oh yes, Carolyn, that’s a great point about small peaches being too much trouble to section. Thanks for reminding me of this recipe 🙂 I’ll have to make them soon with some local peaches.
Do these jars need to be processed like traditional canning requires? If not, how long will these last for if kept in a refrigerator?
We always just poured the hot liquid in and sealed them. As long as they pop down, they are good on the shelf for a couple months at least but I bet you will eat them faster than that 🙂
Did you know a peach can be blanched and peeled like a tomato? No loss of glorious peachy goodness
Yes! 😀 I don’t think I would peel pickled peaches, though, since they would probably disintigrate
The recipe says to pare the peaches but you say you wouldn’t peel pickled peaches. Im confused. Sorry…Do I peel the peaches before pickling them?
Sorry for the confusion. I don’t peel them, but the original recipe from my great-grandmother said to peel them. I double-checked with my mom and grandma and they both agree peeling is optional and the peaches stay together better when left unpeeled.
Oh, the recipe card!!! I have an abundance of not quite ready peaches (still!) so I’m going to try this. This will be our last year with the peach tree- selling the house after losing mom in January- I’m trying to make use of every peach possible…and it has been a record year for them! Thanks for this <3
When you add your fruit and cover, you actually only have the fruit in the syrup for 10 minutes, correct? Always loved my Grandmas! Giving this a try with my small peaches!
Right! Basically, once the syrup starts boiling, you want to let it boil for 5 minutes. It takes about 5 minutes to come to boil, usually, so 10 minutes total. Enjoy these pickled peaches! I should make some again, too!
Thanks, can’t wait to make them!
I have a bunch of green peaches that are small and are not going to ripen. Can I use them in this recipe and whole?
I think this recipe is perfect to use those last peaches. I’ve done it with small green nectarines and they were great
Great! I cant wait to get started. One more question. Can I water bath can them. I have so many I cant possibly eat them all in a couple of weeks
Can I water can them?
Sure! I don’t see any reason you couldn’t, but I have not tried it
Im happy to report I just finished water bath canning my first batch of these. They came out fabulous! Thank you for sharing your recipe. I think these would be great with a little ice cream. Yummy! My bf has a peach tree that produces peaches. However the peaches never get very large and they fall off the tree before they can truly rippen. A fantastic way to make the best of the fruit. No waste here! Yayyyy
Marvelous! Thanks for letting me know, Ann. So happy you like these. They’re one of my favorite things. If you drink alcohol, add a little of the syrup to a gin and club soda, too 🙂
I’m thinking the syrup would be a fantastic addition to a vodka peach martini
I have prepped the fruit for this recipe.But question -is it to be served as a dessert dish or savoury -with meat etc?