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IPA Pickled Jalapeños

IPA Pickled Jalapeños, quick and easy pickled jalapeños made with beer

I’m in a shitty dive bar in what can nicely be referred to as an “up and coming” area of town, and the guy I’ve just met asks me the question I’m asked far too often. Maybe for lack of a better conversation starter or maybe there’s supposed to be a right answer, either way, I don’t have one.

“What’s your favorite beer?” We all get asked this, everyone who’s decided that the life for them is fighting to be a part of the craft beer world.

The question is much bigger than it seems. Because we have a favorite “I only like it for nostalgic reasons beer,” or a “favorite because it’s the one that got me into craft beer,” or the, “my most recent discovery beer,” or the, “my go-to beer when I’m throwing a party and need to fill the beer tub beer,” but as for a hands-down favorite we really can’t pinpoint one. So I steer the conversation to distribution laws.

Of course, this sounds ridiculous. It sounds like a colossal leap, but it isn’t. Wherever I go, I want to drink the beer I can’t get at home.


I want the beer that doesn’t travel into my distribution zone, the beer that I’ve been hoping to cross paths with. I’ll spare you the gory nerdiness of the details but the quick-and-dirty version is that often even really popular beer is only distributed in a few states, and only a small percentage of craft beers in the US get to more than half the states.


This means when you travel you have access to beer that you can’t get where you live. In a world where almost everything can be obtained with one-click ordering and prime shipping, it’s pretty great to actually have to get on a plane to have a specific pint. That’s my favorite beer, the one I can’t get at home.

Until very, very recently Founders Brewing was on that plane-trip-needed-for-a-pint list. And luckily for those of us in the Pacific Northwest, I can now find it at the local markets. I still get a small thrill seeing it there, as if it must be some sort of magic accident. There is a good chance that this summer will be henceforth known as my “All-Day IPA Summer,” now that one of my favorite session ales is so accessible.


Oh, and I’m going to be pickleing quite a few things with it. So settle in.

Come back tomorrow and I’ll show you what I did with these. You’re gonna want to see it. (it’s this, check it out)

IPA Pickled Jalapeños


  • 5-6 large jalapeno peppers
  • 1 cup IPA beer
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 1 tablespoons black peppercorns


  • Slice the jalapenos to desired width (some people prefer super thin slices, others prefer thick slices), add to a storage jar.
  • In a saucepan over medium heat add the beer, vinegar, sugar, salt and peppercorns, stir until sugar and salt have dissolved, remove from heat.
  • Pour the pickling liquid over the jalapenos. Cover tightly and refrigerate for 24 hours. Jalapenos will last for several weeks if stored correctly.


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Penny April 20, 2017 um 12:56 pm

Have you/would you try these as refrigerator pickles where it’s all kept away from heat?


Jackie April 20, 2017 um 2:21 pm

I think that will work great!


Lisa Lowe April 20, 2017 um 1:15 pm

Have you tried it with cucumbers?? Tried any other styles of beer??


Jackie April 20, 2017 um 2:22 pm

Yes, I really like it with cucumbers. I use Kirby or Persian. I like the hoppiness of an IPA but almost any beer will work. I’d stay away from anything too malty.


Heather Spencer April 22, 2017 um 4:34 am

I am definitely trying these! They look great. I live in Michigan and am very lucky to be able to go to my four favorite breweries within easy driving distance. Bell’s, Founders, Shorts and Dark Horse. All Day IPA is my go to for a "Light" beer and Two Hearted and Crooked Tree from Dark Horse are always in close contention! If you have never heard of Dark Horse, you should definitely look it up!


ROBERT CORFIELD April 22, 2017 um 7:30 am

I don’t really care for IPA’s, which Ales would you recommend to use instead?


ROBERT CORFIELD April 22, 2017 um 7:31 am

Sorry, meant brown, English ales, etc.


Marcelo Braganceiro September 12, 2019 um 9:17 pm

I loved this! I’ll take some Founders All Day IPA here (Los Angeles) to my country (Brazil) and wanna Make this recipe. :))


Jackie April 23, 2017 um 8:46 am

You can use almost anything. If you don’t like an IPA, maybe a pilsner, or a pale ale? An ESB would work as well.


David June 5, 2017 um 8:58 am

I’m also from Michigan and found Arcadia Mango Surprise IPA that I used for this recipe. I subbed coriander seed for half the peppercorns (1/2 Tbsp. of each) which gave the jalapenos a slight tropical note that was very nice. To answer another of the questions, I chilled the brine before pouring it over the peppers so they wouldn’t cook at all. They were crispy and delicious. We ate them in no time and I didn’t want to throw away the leftover brine so added some sliced baby cucumbers, sliced serrano pepper and some fresh dill to what was left of the brine. The resulting pickles may be the best we’ve ever had. This is a great and versatile recipe!


J Kneier June 12, 2017 um 4:25 pm

These are awesome! Just tried the recipe for the first time and they taste delicious! I can use them on any sandwich for sure. I plan on some variations such as pink peppercorns and possibly some garlic chunks as well. I used the All Day IPA which I think is now my go-to daily beer. It really is incredible.


Robin June 13, 2017 um 1:26 pm

Do you place this warm in de refridgerator?


Jackie June 13, 2017 um 5:33 pm

I wait for it to cool to room temp, but warm (not hot) is fine.


Mike June 14, 2017 um 6:16 pm

I’m from the midwest so founders is a go to staple of mine. I worked in the PNW last summer and I got a lot of those "plane trip" beers you’re talking about. Just recently Elysian started shipping here to the midwest and I have that same giddy feeling seeing Space Dust on the shelf here.


Helge Anderson August 28, 2017 um 2:36 pm

Can this do a hot water bath with this recipe to extend the shelf life?




Jackie August 28, 2017 um 3:24 pm

Feel free to can this using standard canning methods, should last years if done properly. Thanks!


Erik December 19, 2017 um 8:53 pm

Does this process cook all the alcohol out?


Jackie December 20, 2017 um 9:34 am

Not entirely but what is left behind is really minimal


Joe January 17, 2018 um 2:34 pm

have you tryied with brown sugar instead of regular?


Jackie January 17, 2018 um 3:12 pm

I haven’t. I’m not sure how the molasses flavor in Brown sugar would play with the beer and jalapenos. If you try it, let me know how it goes!


Ron August 1, 2018 um 4:01 am

Can you use Banana Peppers in place of the jalapeños?


Jackie August 1, 2018 um 9:19 am

Absolutely! You can pretty much use any pepper you want.


Ron August 1, 2018 um 8:09 pm

Thanks, will be making a batch very soon!


Josh August 19, 2019 um 7:55 am

I am way late to the party here…but i made these this morning with cucumber chunks and used a peanut butter porter….i love me a peanut butter and pickle sammich…so i thought i would give this a try. I am canning them so i will wait at least a ciuple weeks before i try them…


natalie April 27, 2020 um 1:38 pm

very late to the party….but just made a very pretty jar of this. Cannot wait to use them to garnish the odd cocktail used a hazy ipa from Sawdust City (Canada) called Everyday Magic and a peppercorn mix. Cannot wait to add mini cukes into it.


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