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Candied Jalapeños

Candied Jalapeños are sweet and spicy! Add to sandwiches, burgers, salads, tacos and more! A small batch refrigerator recipe that requires no canning.

This recipe makes ‘Refrigerator’ Candied Jalapeños which means there is no need for sealing the jars, just keep them in the fridge for months to enjoy! Makes a small batch but you can easily double the recipe.

a top down view of red and green jalapeno peppers laying on a wooden table

Candied Jalapeños aka Cowboy Candy

If you’re looking for a sweet and spicy homemade pickle recipe, these Candied Jalapeños are it! This recipe is a great way to use up your bounty of fresh jalapeño peppers. Easy to make and SO delicious.

a jar of candied jalapenos

No Canning Method: Refrigerator Candied Jalapeños

You don’t need to know how to can or use water baths to make these Candied Jalapeños, so don’t be afraid to make them! This recipe makes a small batch so you can keep the sealed jars in your fridge for up to 3 months.

a jar of candied jalapenos and a close up of a forkful of some of the pickled peppers

How to enjoy Candied Jalapeños

  • Add to sandwiches. They are absolutely delicious on this Italian Sandwich, and these pulled pork sandwiches, but they’re also great on any sandwich.
  • Toss them on hot dogs and hamburgers.
  • Eat with crackers and cream cheese. In fact, they’re delicious with all kinds of cheeses and are a perfect addition to charcuterie boards.
  • Add them to dips.
  • Stuff them into tacos.
  • Add them to nachos.
  • Enjoy them with any barbecued meat.
  • Add to salads.
  • Add them as a topping to pizza.  So good.
  • Eat them as is like pickles…they’re wonderful for snacking!
a jar of candied jalapenos

Candied Jalapeños Recipe Tips & Tricks

  • Jalapeños: Use fresh peppers.
  • Red vs. Green Jalapeños: The difference between red and green jalapeños is the age. Green jalapeños are picked earlier, red are more ripe. Red can be hotter and a little more sweet than green jalapeños. You can use either or both!
  • To remove the seeds or not? Leaving the seeds in will make these candied jalapeños even more spicy. If you don’t want as much spice, remove the seeds and ribs from the peppers. As you can see we like the heat so we leave most of the seeds in.
  • No Canning Method: This recipe is for ‘refrigerator’ pickled peppers. What this means is that you don’t need to seal the jars. Just keep the jars of candied jalapenos in your fridge and enjoy!
  • LET THEM REST! I know it’s tempting to dig right in and eat these peppers, but let them rest for at least 2 weeks. This time allows the flavours to come together, and gives the peppers time to plump up again after cooking.
  • How long do these pickles last? They keep well in the fridge for up to 3 months.
  • Wear gloves! When slicing the jalapeños, make sure to wear gloves, or your hands will burn for hours! Ask me how I know. 😉
  • Leftover Syrup Tip! If you have leftover syrup, save it and add it to drinks for a little spice! It’s particularly delicious in Caesars! The syrup is also really tasty drizzled or basted onto barbecued meats.



Candied Jalapeños

Candied Jalapeños are sweet and spicy! Add to sandwiches, burgers, salads, tacos and more! A small batch recipe that requires no canning.

  • Author: Jo-Anna Rooney
  • Yield: 3 jars 1x
  • Category: Pickle
  • Method: Canning


Units Scale
  • 1.5 lbs fresh jalapeños peppers
  • 1 cup cider vinegar
  • 3 cups white sugar
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric (great for colour)
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • jars: I used 3, 500 mL jars.


  1. Prepare the jars. Make sure to sterilize the jars, lids and seals before adding the jalapeños and syrup.
  2. Prepare the jalapeños: remove the stems and cut into 1/4 inch round slices (to minimize heat you can remove the seeds and ribs, see tips above).
  3. In a large pot bring the vinegar, sugar, and garlic powder to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer till the sugar dissolves into a syrup, around 5 minutes.
  4. Add the sliced jalapeños and and mix thoroughly.
  5. Then increase the temperature to medium, bring to a light boil, then immediately reduce heat again. Simmer for 4 minutes.
  6. Use a slotted spoon to scoop the jalapeño peppers into the sterile canning jars, fill to within 1/2 inch from the upper rim of the jar.
  7. Pour or ladle the syrup into the jars, covering the jalapeño peppers.
  8. Use a clean fork to ensure jars are packed well (push the jalapeño peppers to the bottom of the jar) and there are no air pockets.
  9. Wipe the rims of the jars, then apply the clean lids and rings.
  10. Let the jars cool down slightly on a wire cooling rack before putting them in the fridge.
  11. LET THEM REST. These peppers need to sit in the fridge for at least 2 weeks before you eat them, to allow the flavours to come together and for the peppers to plump up again after cooking.
  12. Store in the fridge for up to 3 months.

Keywords: candied jalapeños, cowboy candy

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