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Are pickles paleo?

Commented on March 16, 2015
Created June 27, 2011 at 1:33 AM

Are pickles paleo approved? I am looking for a low calorie natural food to munch on, and I am enjoying chowing down on half a jar at a time. I know they are very high in sodium, but that is the only downside I can see....

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on April 13, 2012
at 03:03 PM

I may be confusing brands, but I think Bubbies "Bread and Butter" pickles (a yummy style known for its sweetness) have sugar added & are pateurized, which would kill off live cultures & cook the pickle. I suspect the purpose of this is to prevent the added sugar from feeding live cultures after packaging, which could possibly result in overly fermented/fizzy pickles, or worse, exploding jars. But the non-sweet kosher dill-type Bubbies are not pasteurized, and contain live cultures. If I'm mistaken, someone please correct me, as I don't want to impugn the excellent Bubbies!

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on April 13, 2012
at 02:52 PM

Salt and vinegar are not forbidden. Ditching processed foods can results in a rather drastic reduction in dietary salt, which is certainly a necessary chemical for practically all bodily processes. Someone on very strict paleo might even need to add some salt, depending on their activity level and perspiration. I got too low on salt early on and started cramping until I added salt to some of my food.

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on April 13, 2012
at 02:40 PM

To be fair, it's more than possible to find commercial, vinegar-preserved pickles that don't contain all those nasty ingredients. But I can't argue with the value of lactofermented pickles. Sauerkraut is essentially a pickle. I imagine the advent of canning (which is where the vinegar is important) allowed people to preserve their in-season vegetables much more quickly and reliably--particulalrly where climate control was iffier (it can be too hot for optimal fermenting during the vegetable harvest season). I love both types of pickles.

Fe535c4994ac6176f76e1ff6d29eb08a

(4286)

on June 27, 2011
at 05:56 PM

Thanks for that link! Now I just need my pickling cukes to grow!

Eb7af4185a5889288234e1e01388cd5f

(-2)

on June 27, 2011
at 04:31 PM

http://altmed.creighton.edu/Paleodiet/Foodlist.html Foods You Should Avoid Salt-Containing Foods Almost all commercial salad dressings and condiments Bacon Cheese Deli meats Frankfurters Ham Hot dogs Ketchup Olives Pickled foods Pork rinds Processed meats Salami Salted nuts Salted spices Sausages Smoked, dried, and salted fish and meat Virtually all canned meats and fish (unless they are unsalted or unless you soak and drain them) For more Paleo hacks: http://paleohacks.com/questions/47723/are-pickles-paleo#ixzz1QUjf3taW

Medium avatar

(3024)

on June 27, 2011
at 12:32 PM

I live in Tel Aviv. Plenty hot. For the most part, I've kept them on the kitchen counter near a window, but now that the hot weather has arrived, I try to keep them away from the window not to overdo it. But I haven't had a problem with heat. I think it just ferments faster.

A31b063c5866c08aa9968a8f2f1e9949

(1721)

on June 27, 2011
at 11:10 AM

Where do you keep them while they are fermenting? I live in Florida and even inside it's often 80+ this time of year... too hot, yes?

4e184df9c1ed38f61febc5d6cf031921

(5001)

on June 27, 2011
at 09:19 AM

This sounds great - preserved via lactofermentation rather than vinegar? Have you a link to a recipe?? Thanks...

559aa134ff5e6c8bcd608ba8dc505628

(3631)

on June 27, 2011
at 03:19 AM

**ONLY** IF they are *real* pickles, *and* contain probiotics. most of the pickles in stores are junk.

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on June 27, 2011
at 02:39 AM

Oh, yum, that looks delicious, and most importantly (for pickle making newbs like me) simple!!

35b6ce9b7f9dda8d40d3e6a1812ab0a9

(439)

on June 27, 2011
at 02:38 AM

Jerkey is preserved, right? Pemmican, preserved?

Aead76beb5fc7b762a6b4ddc234f6051

(15239)

on June 27, 2011
at 02:18 AM

HU?!?! since when is preserved food "not paleo"? this has gone too far.

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14 Answers

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2
9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

on June 27, 2011
at 04:48 PM

There is a big difference between "real" fermented pickles (i.e. vegetables that are made sour and preserved via fermentation) and virtually all store-bought pickles (i.e. Vlasic) which are basically cucumbers plus vinegar, sugar, salt, artificial colors, and preservatives.

Fermented vegetables are very good for you and I think very Paleo, since preserving vegetables in this way is very easy and entirely natural (all you need is salt and a place to keep them). This could arguably have been developed (even by accident) by ancient peoples, and provide a great way to preserve and carry vegetables for later consumption. The microbes that perform the fermentation are very good for gut health and aid in digestion and improving your immune system.

Supermarket pickles on the other hand basically vary from salt water to sour Gatorade, with artificial colorings and preservatives. You may as well drink a glass of green salt water.

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on April 13, 2012
at 02:40 PM

To be fair, it's more than possible to find commercial, vinegar-preserved pickles that don't contain all those nasty ingredients. But I can't argue with the value of lactofermented pickles. Sauerkraut is essentially a pickle. I imagine the advent of canning (which is where the vinegar is important) allowed people to preserve their in-season vegetables much more quickly and reliably--particulalrly where climate control was iffier (it can be too hot for optimal fermenting during the vegetable harvest season). I love both types of pickles.

8
Aead76beb5fc7b762a6b4ddc234f6051

(15239)

on June 27, 2011
at 02:25 AM

try this recipe. pickles are great, but the ones at the grocery are loaded with HFCS, colors and preservatives. lucky for you, they are about the easiest thing to make yourself. forget about the reenactment nonsense. just eat real food.

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on June 27, 2011
at 02:39 AM

Oh, yum, that looks delicious, and most importantly (for pickle making newbs like me) simple!!

Fe535c4994ac6176f76e1ff6d29eb08a

(4286)

on June 27, 2011
at 05:56 PM

Thanks for that link! Now I just need my pickling cukes to grow!

3
79648d1e9f1a8d25d9450a8a1d18fe64

(395)

on June 27, 2011
at 02:24 AM

Naturally fermented pickles would qualify as paleo since fermentation is a natural process. Bubbies is a good brand of naturally fermented pickles with no vinegar or sugar added. Just sea salt and probiotic cultures... You can also make your own fermented foods...Wild Fermentation is an excellent book by Sandor Katz, just skip the recipes for fermented grains (ie sourdough bread).

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on April 13, 2012
at 03:03 PM

I may be confusing brands, but I think Bubbies "Bread and Butter" pickles (a yummy style known for its sweetness) have sugar added & are pateurized, which would kill off live cultures & cook the pickle. I suspect the purpose of this is to prevent the added sugar from feeding live cultures after packaging, which could possibly result in overly fermented/fizzy pickles, or worse, exploding jars. But the non-sweet kosher dill-type Bubbies are not pasteurized, and contain live cultures. If I'm mistaken, someone please correct me, as I don't want to impugn the excellent Bubbies!

2
Medium avatar

(3024)

on June 27, 2011
at 09:16 AM

Fermented dill pickles are brilliant! Once you get used to making them, they take two seconds - cucumbers, garlic, dill, water, and salt - that's it! You can add more seasonings, but you really don't need to.

It's one of my best dietary changes. Everybody loves them and they help your gut. Win win!

Here's my recipe for dill pickles

  1. Wash cucumbers, remove stems and flowery end. I slice the pickles when I make a small amount ??? easier to fit in a small jar (1 quart/1 liter).

  2. Add cucumbers, peeled garlic cloves (about 10 ??? 15) and fresh dill interspersed in the jar.

  3. Dissolve the coarse sea salt in hot water at the ratio of just under 1 tablespoon per cup. Add to almost to the top of the jar. Make sure all the contents are covered. I put dill on top to make sure the cucumbers are submerged.

  4. Ferment till it is ready: 4 ??? 10 days. The timing depends on a bunch of things. Just open it and taste it. When it tastes ready, it???s ready.

Once they???re pickled, keep in the fridge.

C48c24418b3b1493c182286fbf8304bf

on March 16, 2015
at 12:32 AM

Made these once, were great... had to search for this again.  Writing it down this time  :)

A31b063c5866c08aa9968a8f2f1e9949

(1721)

on June 27, 2011
at 11:10 AM

Where do you keep them while they are fermenting? I live in Florida and even inside it's often 80+ this time of year... too hot, yes?

4e184df9c1ed38f61febc5d6cf031921

(5001)

on June 27, 2011
at 09:19 AM

This sounds great - preserved via lactofermentation rather than vinegar? Have you a link to a recipe?? Thanks...

Medium avatar

(3024)

on June 27, 2011
at 12:32 PM

I live in Tel Aviv. Plenty hot. For the most part, I've kept them on the kitchen counter near a window, but now that the hot weather has arrived, I try to keep them away from the window not to overdo it. But I haven't had a problem with heat. I think it just ferments faster.

1
B3c62d89cd47b7d7209b6a99243d0ded

on June 27, 2011
at 09:53 AM

http://www.pickyourown.org/makingpickles.htm is a great pictorial how-to for pickles that are canned.

I also love lactofermented pickles, and think they are even more paleo, but I'm almost always in favor of fermented foods.

http://www.wildfermentation.com/resources.php?page=pickles

1
A31b063c5866c08aa9968a8f2f1e9949

(1721)

on June 27, 2011
at 01:53 AM

http://blog.cgsm.com/2011/04/08/food-coloring-as-marketing-%E2%80%93-would-you-eat-a-gray-pickle/

Not these ones... my problem, and why I've avoided them since going primal, is that I don't know which ones are gray...

0
7cbee1b3d76a6028aef8008a1bbc51dd

on April 13, 2012
at 05:39 AM

I wanted to add...to correct the posted reply at the very top... that a jar of Vlasic pickles (that I'm having a couple from right now) contains no sugar at all, and also definitely has no HFCS. It does have 250mg of salt per, but the "asking person" said they were already aware of this.

I dont see anything wrong with storebought pickles. Just read the label, chart, and ingredients and find out what's in the jar!

0
5113df7e1c5a7e9c7555b6b59144de24

(910)

on June 27, 2011
at 03:21 PM

Bubbies pickles are naturally fermented. No vinegar. The ingredients for the Kosher Dills are: cucumbers, artesian well water, salt, calcium chloride, garlic, dill spices.

0
D533fa6a593a96f04e49fa58364632ad

(0)

on June 27, 2011
at 02:15 AM

i thought vinegar and sodium were both verboten. and since pickle brine is, usually, salt and vinegar based that would make them non-paleo.

then again, as processed/preserved foods go, you could probably do much worse than some garlic dills.

A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on April 13, 2012
at 02:52 PM

Salt and vinegar are not forbidden. Ditching processed foods can results in a rather drastic reduction in dietary salt, which is certainly a necessary chemical for practically all bodily processes. Someone on very strict paleo might even need to add some salt, depending on their activity level and perspiration. I got too low on salt early on and started cramping until I added salt to some of my food.

0
Eb7af4185a5889288234e1e01388cd5f

on June 27, 2011
at 01:57 AM

Aren't they considered preserved and thus not paleo?

35b6ce9b7f9dda8d40d3e6a1812ab0a9

(439)

on June 27, 2011
at 02:38 AM

Jerkey is preserved, right? Pemmican, preserved?

Aead76beb5fc7b762a6b4ddc234f6051

(15239)

on June 27, 2011
at 02:18 AM

HU?!?! since when is preserved food "not paleo"? this has gone too far.

Eb7af4185a5889288234e1e01388cd5f

(-2)

on June 27, 2011
at 04:31 PM

http://altmed.creighton.edu/Paleodiet/Foodlist.html Foods You Should Avoid Salt-Containing Foods Almost all commercial salad dressings and condiments Bacon Cheese Deli meats Frankfurters Ham Hot dogs Ketchup Olives Pickled foods Pork rinds Processed meats Salami Salted nuts Salted spices Sausages Smoked, dried, and salted fish and meat Virtually all canned meats and fish (unless they are unsalted or unless you soak and drain them) For more Paleo hacks: http://paleohacks.com/questions/47723/are-pickles-paleo#ixzz1QUjf3taW

0
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78407)

on June 27, 2011
at 01:51 AM

I would think the paleo human didnt make them but look at the ingredients and make sure the oil isn't a bad one and leave out the sugar. I'd give a vote of confidence but if you're really going full paleo snacking is unnecessary.

0
8b3e94f31ec56a5d9f37272c33874afe

on June 27, 2011
at 01:47 AM

Ever try Seasnax or grass-fed jerky?

0
Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25467)

on June 27, 2011
at 01:47 AM

very little downside and they are a great source to help heal a leaky gut.

559aa134ff5e6c8bcd608ba8dc505628

(3631)

on June 27, 2011
at 03:19 AM

**ONLY** IF they are *real* pickles, *and* contain probiotics. most of the pickles in stores are junk.

-1
Eb7af4185a5889288234e1e01388cd5f

on June 27, 2011
at 04:30 PM

http://altmed.creighton.edu/Paleodiet/Foodlist.html

Foods You Should Avoid

Salt-Containing Foods Almost all commercial salad dressings and condiments Bacon Cheese Deli meats Frankfurters Ham Hot dogs Ketchup Olives Pickled foods Pork rinds Processed meats Salami Salted nuts Salted spices Sausages Smoked, dried, and salted fish and meat Virtually all canned meats and fish (unless they are unsalted or unless you soak and drain them)

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