Garden to Table: Cucumbers {Recipes + Tips)

Do you have tons of cucumbers piling up from your garden and are not sure what to do with them? I’m here to help! I’ve put together some of my favorite recipes, from cool salads to tangy pickles.

And if you want to grow your own, I can help with that too. From choosing varieties to making pickles, there’s a lot to learn about this crunchy green veggie.

A warm, watercolored still life showcasing a basket brimming with freshly harvested cucumbers on an old wooden kitchen table,

Cucumbers are easy to grow, and if you don’t have your own garden, they can be purchased in season at farmers’ markets for a great price. They’re versatile, and most people (even non-vegetable people!) will eat them.

What You’ll Find

  • Cucumber Salads. Make ahead classics for hot days.
  • Garden Tips: How to choose and grow your own cukes.
  • How to Preserve: Pickles, relishes, and more
  • More Ideas: Sandwiches and more.

Cucumber Salad Recipes

Cucumbers are almost always eaten fresh, so most of the ways to use them up involve some type of salad. You’ll want to find a few favorites that you rotate through all summer… if you make the same one over and over, you’ll be sick of it by fall!

An inviting watercolor scene set in a sunlit kitchen, where freshly sliced cucumbers rest on a plate

On a hot day, you can mix these up in the morning and serve with dinner. Nice and easy!

Preserving Cucumbers

Don’t let your cucumber bounty go to waste. This section will guide you through various methods of preserving cucumbers, from pickling to fermenting, ensuring you can enjoy your harvest all year round.

A watercolor depiction of a kitchen window sill bathed in sunlight, adorned with jars of homemade pickles and a bowl of ripe tomatoes,

When it’s cucumber time, they tend to be ready to harvest at an overwhelming rate. So pick a few favorite preservation methods now, and you’ll be ready when the cukes are.

Other Cucumber Recipes

Cucumbers aren’t just for salads and pickles. They can be a crisp, hydrating addition to main dishes. To be fair… most of these are still salads and pickles.

fried pickles on dining  table
  • If you’re in the mood for something crispy and indulgent, deep-fried pickles will hit the spot with their irresistible crunch.
  • Maryland Shrimp Salad combines the freshness of cucumbers with shrimp for an elegant lunchtime dish.
  • Pickle Juice Marinated Chicken is a creative way to use leftover pickle juice while infusing your chicken with plenty of flavor.

Since they’re so light and don’t cook well, cucumbers will never really be the star of the show. But they’re still a great addition to so many things, adding that irresistible summery crunch.

Growing Cucumbers

Inspired by all these recipes and want to grow your own? It’s so easy if you have sunshine, space, and something for them to climb.

A serene watercolor painting of a farm at sunrise, featuring a classic red barn amidst rows of lush green crops, with a soft morning haze in the background and a rustic fence leading towards the horizon.

They are truly one of the most productive and beginner friendly choices for your garden. But if you don’t have the space, just swing by a local farmer’s market. Because they’re so abundant, they’re very cheap in-season.

What’s the best way to store cucumbers to keep them fresh?

To keep cucumbers fresh longer, wrap them tightly in plastic wrap and store them in the crisper drawer of your refrigerator.

Heat is a cucumber’s enemy. They should go straight to the fridge after harvest.

Can cucumbers be used in cooked dishes, or are they just for salads?

The only time I can think of that you would heat up a cucumber is for pickling.

Can I preserve cucumbers without canning equipment?

Yes, you can make pickles without any special canning equipment by using the refrigerator pickling method. The refrigerator pickle recipes above are great examples of how you can create delicious pickles with just a few simple ingredients and a fridge.

More resources

Of course, this is just one small part of farm-to-table living. Here’s more to learn on your journey.

Stainless Steel Kitchen Colander - A Pasta Strainer, Fruit & Vegetable Rinse Bowl, and Multipurpose Kitchen Essential in 3 Quart Size - Ideal for Everyday Cooking and Food Preparation Needs (Red)Stainless Steel Kitchen Colander – A Pasta Strainer, Fruit & Vegetable Rinse Bowl, and Multipurpose Kitchen Essential in 3 Quart Size – Ideal for Everyday Cooking and Food Preparation Needs (Red)The Berkshires Farm Table Cookbook: 125 Homegrown Recipes from the Hills of New EnglandThe Berkshires Farm Table Cookbook: 125 Homegrown Recipes from the Hills of New EnglandBlue and White Kitchen Towels Cotton, Blue Cotton Dish Towels Set of 6, Blue Striped Kitchen Towels, Flour Sack Tea Towels, Blue Stripe Dish Towels, Farmhouse Towel 18X28 Navy BlueBlue and White Kitchen Towels Cotton, Blue Cotton Dish Towels Set of 6, Blue Striped Kitchen Towels, Flour Sack Tea Towels, Blue Stripe Dish Towels, Farmhouse Towel 18X28 Navy Blue

 

Container Gardening with Cucumbers: Savvy Gardening discusses how to grow cucumbers in containers, making it an excellent resource for readers with limited garden space.

My Canning and Preserving Hub shares everything you need to know about home food preservation.

You’ll love this collection of Homesteading Books that goes beyond the titles you’ve heard over and over.

Growing, cooking, preserving – it’s not just about the cucumbers. It’s also about creating something out of nothing… whether it’s hundreds of pounds of veggies from a seed packet, or a yummy side dish out of groceries. I hope you found something you liked.

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