7 Ways to Use Leftover Pickle Juice
The juiciest secrets for upcycling brine
Midnight munchies hit and before you know it, you’re left with no pickles and a jar filled with brine. So, what should you do with the pickle juice when you reach the bottom of the jar? You can be kind to the Earth by recycling the glass, but it’s a sin to pour pure liquid gold down the drain. If you’ve ever repurposed pickle brine (or chugged it straight from the jar), you probably won’t be surprised to learn that at least one devotee has even written a song about pickle juice. Salty, tangy, sweet vinegar infused with dill, garlic, and mustard seeds has a long lifeline and you can use every last drop of pickle juice to enhance your breakfast. Because like the song says, pickle juice is yummy.
Make more pickles
Pickle brine is a gift that keeps giving. When the last pickle is eaten, just throw a handful of your favorite vegetables—including but not limited to celery, carrots, beets, okra, and tomatillos—into the jar at night and in the morning you’ll wake up with new quick-ish pickles. Now, you’ll always have garnishes on hand for scrambles, omelets, and frittatas.
The vinegar in your jar has already been infused with a load of spices, so drop a few peeled hard-boiled eggs into the jar and let it sit in the fridge for a week. There ya go—pickled eggs. Want to impress guests? Soaking eggs in beet brine will dye the outer layer of the egg to a pretty fuchsia. Toss with a bright breakfast salad or just season with a light sprinkle of salt and pepper.
Chill bloody marys
Start your Sunday morning right by swirling a tablespoon of pickle juice into your bloody mary. Even better, mix the rest of the pickle juice in your empty jar with a bit of water, pour it into an ice tray, freeze, and say goodbye to watered down bloody marys on a hot summer day.
Soaking shredded potatoes in a water bath before frying removes excess starch and prevents discoloration. Try giving your potatoes a few thorough rinses until the water runs clear, then soak them in a bowl of pickle juice for 20 minutes. Then use this basic technique for making perfect hash browns.
Swap mayo for a schmear of dill pickle butter in your turkey sandwich and experience a serious flavor uptick. Whip together a stick of unsalted butter with a tablespoon of pickle brine, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and finely chopped dill pickles. Spread on a slice of toasted bread and eat up—that’s toast with the most.
The secret to irresistibly good Chick-fil-A chicken: pickle brine. If the top of your jar is large enough, pop a few chicken tenders in. Or, add the chicken and brine to a large plastic bag along with spices, herbs, and water. Marinate in the fridge for 6 to 8 hours, but no longer or else the chicken will get mealy.
Spice up Hollandaise sauce
Instantly upgrade your homemade eggs Benedict by substituting pickle brine for lemon juice in your favorite Hollandaise recipe. Lazy Sunday brunch will never taste the same.