If you are looking for a step-by-step process on how to ferment vegetables then you have found the right place! After reading this post you will be ready to take on fermenting your veggies!
Fermenting vegetables can seem a bit weird or confusing, but it really is super simple. It just takes time as you wait for the beneficial bacteria to grow. Eating something fermented every day will give you the probiotic nutrients needed to improve gut health.
If you are on a gut health journey be sure to ask your doctor if fermented vegetables are something that will help you. For most people they are a wonderful addition to your daily diet. There are some who can’t handle fermented veggies and may have digestive issues from it.
Can I ferment my garden harvest to preserve it?
Yes! I love using fermentation as a way to preserve my garden harvest for longer. Fermented foods can last in a cool place like a fridge for 4-6 months! So by fermenting your harvest, you can be eating it well into the winter and it is a much easier process than canning.
What are the easiest vegetables to ferment?
Easy veggies to ferment are carrots, radishes, cucumbers, cabbage, garlic, onions, cauliflower and so much more. The process is really the same with all of these. You just have to experiment with what taste you like best.
What can I ferment at home?
You can ferment whatever vegetable you have on hand. Some do better than others but that is all up to preference, trial and error. I think I would probably avoid any type of squash, not sure if that would turn out.
What supplies do I need to ferment vegetables?
- kitchen scale
- 2 mason jars and lids. 16 or 32oz will work. just depends on how much you want to ferment
- fermentation weights. Make sure your weights are the same size of mouth of jar that you have. (wide mouth versus regular mouth jars).
- kosher salt
- filtered water
How do you ferment vegetables? Step-by-step
- Wash your vegetables with water.
- Prepare your veggies by slicing them to your desired size. Some may be left whole (e.g., beans)
- Shove your veggies in the jar and add water till you get to the lower ridge of the jar.
- Place the empty jar on your kitchen scale and zero it out. Then put your jar with veggies and water on the scale to get the weight of the water and veggies.
- Here is the equation I use for how much salt to use for anything I ferment. Weight of the water and veggies (g) X .025 = how much salt (g).
- Measure the needed amount of salt in grams and pour into the empty mason jar.
- Pour the water from the water and veggie jar into the jar with salt inside
- Put the lid on the water and salt jar and shake it vigorously until the salt is dissolved.
- Then add the salt water back into the jar with the veggies. You may not need all the water. Do not over fill. Don’t go past the bottom ridge.
- Make sure all the veggies are packed in and don’t float to the top. Add your fermentation weight on top of the veggies. This keeps them from floating up out of the water. You don’t want your veggies to be exposed to air or mold will form.
- Set the lid on the jar making sure it is very loose.
- Place the jar in a bowl or container as sometimes liquid will spill out during the fermenting process.
How long should my veggies be fermented?
Your veggies can be fermented from anywhere between 1-4 weeks. This largely depends on how you want your vegetables to taste. The longer you ferment the more sour or tangy they will taste. For some things I like a longer ferment and others I don’t let go past a week. You will figure out what your taste preference is over time.
Make sure to check on your ferments every other day or so to make sure all the veggies are under water. Occasionally some pieces will float up and if allowed to stay there will become moldy. When the fermentation is done take out the weight and tighten the lid, and put in fridge to store. Take out and enjoy as a side dish, salad topping or snack!
Tasty fermentation combinations
Cucumbers and dill (tastes like pickles)
garlic and radishes
chopped peppers, coriander seeds, dry chili, garlic
carrots, thyme, mustard seeds, garlic, onions.
red onions and garlic
onions, corn, jalepenos, thyme
jalapenos, onions, garlic
The options are endless! Now you’re ready to get fermenting! What are your favorite things to ferment? Comment below on your fermenting journey!
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