Sweet, spicy and tangy- these Mexican pickled vegetables (aka Escabeche) are an absolute riot of flavors.
Just a couple of spoonfuls of this condiment can elevate your favorite tacos and other Mexican dishes and take them to the next level.
Best of all, this quick and easy recipe comes together in under 20 minutes!
Quite recently, I’ve developed an inclination towards pickles and condiments.
They’re packed with flavor, and can be a super side dish to put together with any of your simple mains.
- What's So Great About the Recipe?
- Ingredients For the Mexican Pickled Vegetables Recipe
- How to Make Mexican Pickled Vegetables
- Variations For the Escabeche Recipe
- 💭Top Tip
- How to Store the Pickled Mexican Vegetables
- Tips & Tricks to Nail the Recipe
- How to Serve the Pickled Vegetables
- Related Recipes
- Mexican Pickled Vegetables
- Food Safety
What's So Great About the Recipe?
My favorite part about Escabeche is its sweet and spicy flavor. The texture from the slightly crunchy veggies is another big plus.
And of course, the fact that I can batch make these and store them for weeks is a big win in my books.
Plus, since this one’s a quick pickle, you don’t need to go through any of that water bath canning process too!
Ingredients For the Mexican Pickled Vegetables Recipe
To make these spicy pickled veggies, you’ll need just a few simple ingredients.
Veggies: You’ll need to start with some fresh veggies including carrots, red onions, radishes, jalapenos and garlic to make the vegetable escabeche.
Apple cider vinegar: Apple cider vinegar, with its fruity flavor, is the perfect choice to make the pickling liquid base.
Lime: A dash of lime juice also helps bring some citrusy flavor to the spicy pickled vegetables.
Spices: To add some earthy undertones, I added about 8-12 whole black peppercorns and a single bay leaf.
Sugar: You’ll also need a bit of sugar to balance out the tanginess from the brine and the heat from the jalapeños.
Oregano: I also added a pinch of Mexican oregano because I had it at hand. You can skip adding it if you don’t have it.
See recipe card for quantities.
Also Try: Tajin Nuts
How to Make Mexican Pickled Vegetables
Ready to make these crunchy pickled vegetables? Here’s what you’ll need to do.
Start by slicing all your veggies.
In a pot, combine the vinegar, sugar, garlic, whole spices, oregano, lime juice and some water and bring to a boil.
Add carrots to the slightly hot mixture and let cool.
Pack all the veggies in a mason jar or a glass jar.
Pour the pickling mixture over the vegetables and refrigerate for 24 hours or more before serving.
Variations For the Escabeche Recipe
- If you don’t have apple cider vinegar, you could stick to using your regular white vinegar instead.
- Experiment with other veggies like cauliflower, jicama and other peppers like serrano peppers if you want to make the Escabeche super spicy.
- If you don’t have a lot of veggies and want to keep it simple, just stick to using pickled carrots and jalapenos to make the quick and easy Escabeche.
- I used red onions for this recipe, but you could also try using other varieties of onions if you want to.
To add a nice pop of color to the Mexican pickled veggies, you can also add some chopped cilantro into the mix.
How to Store the Pickled Mexican Vegetables
Storing the Escabeche is super easy. All you need to do is make sure you use clean glass jars and containers, preferably ones with an airtight lid, and then keep it refrigerated at all times.
Another important tip to take note of is to always have the veggies submerged in the brine.
These Mexican pickled vegetables can stay fresh there for up to 2 months. You can also choose to use both sugar and salt in the pickling liquid if you want to preserve the veggies for longer.
Also Try: Mexican Roasted Potatoes
Tips & Tricks to Nail the Recipe
- I used whole garlic cloves for the recipe, but you can also choose to slice them up if you want to.
- Depending on your personal taste preference, you can also increase or reduce the amount of jalapenos you’re adding to make the brine a little less spicy.
- Regardless of how many vegetables you’re using, make sure you cut the vegetables such that they’re roughly the same size.
- Remember to use enough of the pickling liquid to cover all the veggies.
- If you suspect you don’t have enough liquid, use a mix of vinegar and water to make the brine.
- You can also experiment with the way you cut these veggies. I love cutting them into rounds like these, but you could also try chopping them into sticks.
- To make slicing the veggies easier, you can use a mandolin slicer.
How to Serve the Pickled Vegetables
Traditional Escabeche is served as a side with almost any and all Mexican recipes.
In my opinion, the spicy pickled carrots and other veggies taste great on tacos and in burritos and enchiladas. I love using them as a topping over my Air Fryer walking tacos.
These tangy and spicy veggies can also be a great topping on your breakfast toast or when teamed up with some scrambled eggs.
I also love serving these with the classic Mexican Migas and with my tostadas, and sometimes even on my burrito bowls.
Also Try: Mexican Grilled Onions
You don’t necessarily need to, but it is recommended for slightly harder veggies like cauliflower florets, carrots and radishes. If you prefer a bit of a crunch factor, you could totally skip that step.
If you’re running short of just a teeny bit of the liquid, just wait for an hour to let the veggies become tender, and then using a spoon, push them inside to make sure the brine covers them nicely.
Looking for other recipes like this? Try these:
Mexican Pickled Vegetables
- 1 carrot
- 2 jalapenos
- 1 red onion
- 1 radish
- 2-3 garlic
- 8-12 black peppercorns
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 lime juiced
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- Start by slicing all your veggies.
- In a pot, combine the vinegar, sugar, garlic, whole spices, oregano, lime juice and some water and bring to a boil.
- Add carrots to the slightly hot mixture and let cool.
- Pack all the veggies in a mason jar or a glass jar.
- Pour the pickling mixture over the vegetables and refrigerate for 24 hours or more before serving.
- Cook to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking point to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove