Hairy Bikers Piccalilli Recipe

Hairy Bikers Piccalilli Recipe
Yields: 1 Serving Difficulty: Easy Prep Time: 24 Hr Cook Time: 30 Mins Total Time: 24 Hr 30 Mins

Piccalilli is a classic British condiment that is made with chopped vegetables, vinegar, sugar, and spices. It is also known as mustard pickle, because it has a tangy and spicy flavour from the mustard powder and turmeric. Piccalilli is a great way to preserve the summer harvest and enjoy it throughout the year. It goes well with cheese, ham, sausages, pies, and sandwiches.

In this blog post, I will show you how to make piccalilli using the Hairy Bikers recipe, which is one of my favourites. The Hairy Bikers are a duo of British chefs and TV presenters who are known for their love of food and travel. They have written several cookbooks and hosted many shows, including The Hairy Bikers’ Best of British, The Hairy Bikers’ Mediterranean Adventure, and The Hairy Bikers’ Food Tour of Britain.

What is Hairy Bikers Piccalilli Recipe

The Hairy Bikers’ piccalilli recipe is easy to follow and produces a delicious and crunchy pickle that is not too sweet or sour. It uses green beans, cauliflower, courgettes, onions, malt vinegar, white wine vinegar, sugar, honey, mustard powder, turmeric, ginger, chilli flakes, cumin, coriander, and cornflour. You will need some sterilised jars and lids to store the piccalilli, as well as a large saucepan, a mixing bowl, a colander, and a measuring jug.

Ingredients Needed to Make Hairy Bikers Piccalilli

You will need the following ingredients to make this recipe

  • 250g green beans
  • 500g small cauliflower florets
  • 250g courgettes (2 medium courgettes)
  • 100g fine sea salt
  • 3 medium onions, chopped
  • 300ml malt vinegar
  • 1 heaped tbsp English mustard powder
  • 1 heaped tbsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp dried chilli flakes
  • 25g cornflour
  • 300ml white wine vinegar
  • 250g granulated sugar

Instructions to Make the Hairy Bikers Piccalilli

Here are the steps to make the Hairy Bikers’ piccalilli:

Step 1: Prepare the vegetables

  • Trim the green beans and cut them into roughly 1.5cm lengths.
  • Cut the cauliflower into small florets and cut the florets into quarters.
  • Trim the courgettes and cut lengthways into four and then into 1cm slices.
  • Put the vegetables in a non-metallic mixing bowl, sprinkling with salt between the layers.
  • Cover with a plate and leave to stand for 24 hours.

Step 2: Cook the onions

  • The next day, tip the vegetables into a colander and rinse off the salt.
  • Put in a large bowl, cover with cold water and swirl around a few times.
  • Tip back into the colander and leave to drain.
  • Put the onions in a large saucepan and stir in the malt vinegar.
  • Bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 15 minutes, stirring every now and then.

Step 3: Make the spice paste

  • Mix 5 tbsp of the white wine vinegar with the mustard powder, turmeric, ginger, chilli flakes, cumin, coriander, and cornflour.
  • Stir well to form a smooth paste.

Step 4: Add the sugar and honey

  • Stir the remaining white wine vinegar and the sugar into the malt vinegar and onions until dissolved.
  • Add the honey and stir well.

Step 5: Add the vegetables and spice paste

  • Tip the drained vegetables into the same pan, return to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Stir the cornflour mixture, pour into the pan with the vegetables and stir briskly.
  • Cook for 8-10 minutes more, stirring regularly until the vegetables are tender but crisp and the piccalilli is thick.

Step 6: Pot and store the piccalilli

  • Pot into warm sterilised jars, trying to ensure that all the vegetables are evenly distributed, and leave to cool.
  • Cover with glass or plastic-coated metal lids and seal.
  • Label and store in a cool, dark place for at least a month before eating.
Hairy Bikers Piccalilli Recipe
Hairy Bikers Piccalilli

Nutrition value per 100g:

  • Calories: 84 kcal
  • Fat: 0.5 g
  • Carbohydrate: 17.6 g
  • Protein: 1 g
  • Fibre: 0.1 g
  • Salt: 1.85 g
  • Vitamin C: Trace
  • Iron: 0.6 mg

Related Recipes to Try


How long does piccalilli last?

Piccalilli can last for up to a year if stored in a cool, dark place and in sterilised jars. Once opened, it should be refrigerated and consumed within a month.

What can I serve with piccalilli?

Piccalilli is a versatile condiment that can go well with many dishes, such as cheese, ham, sausages, pies, sandwiches, salads, and more. You can also use it as a dip, a dressing, or a marinade.

Why is my piccalilli too runny or too thick?

The consistency of your piccalilli depends on the amount of cornflour and vinegar you use, as well as the cooking time. If your piccalilli is too runny, you can add more cornflour dissolved in a little water and cook for a few more minutes until thickened. If your piccalilli is too thick, you can add more vinegar and adjust the seasoning to your taste.

How can I make my piccalilli spicier or less spicy?

The spiciness of your piccalilli depends on the amount and type of chilli you use. You can increase or decrease the spiciness by adding more or less chilli flakes or using fresh or dried chillies instead. You can also add other spices, such as mustard seeds, fenugreek, or curry powder, to enhance the flavour.


I hope you enjoyed this blog post and learned how to make the Hairy Bikers’ piccalilli recipe. This is a delicious and versatile condiment that you can enjoy with many dishes, or give as a gift to your friends and family. It is also a great way to use up any excess vegetables from your garden or market.

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below. I would love to hear from you and see how your piccalilli turned out. You can also share your photos on social media using the hashtag #hairybikerspiccalilli.

Thank you for reading and happy pickling!

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