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    Homemade Giardiniera Recipe

    Published April 1, 2024. This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.

    This tasty Homemade Giardiniera Recipe uses fresh vegetables that are salt-brined and mixed with seasonings, herbs, vinegar, and oil for an extremely flavorful accompaniment to any meal. If you’ve never made or tried this, you are in for a treat.

    I’m a huge fan of having an assortment of toppings for my sandwiches, salads, and wraps. If you’re the same way, then you must try my Pickled Jalapeños or Sumac Onions.

    giardiniera in a jar


     

    Giardiniera

    Giardiniera is a mixture of cut vegetables brined and covered in vinegar, oil, and spices. The word itself is Italian and means gardener. When it’s used, it refers to dishes served with vegetable mixture or alla giardiniera. There is usually a punch of heat from spicy peppers or red pepper flakes. It can be mild in flavor or extremely spicy, depending on what is added to it.

    This vegetable topping became popular in Chicago in the mid-1800s due to the wave of Italian and Sicilian immigrants. While it can be served in antipasto or cheese boards, it’s commonly served as an accompaniment to many dishes, such as a Polish dog or Italian beef. This crunchy combination of pickled vegetables is an amazing topping on sandwiches, which is mostly how I use it nowadays.

    Ingredients and Substitutions

    giardiniera ingredients
    • Vegetables – The classic combination is carrots, celery, carrots, and cauliflower.
    • Peppers — I used a serrano and jalapeño pepper, but any spicy pepper can be used in this recipe. You can also add some sports peppers.
    • Garlic – A few minced whole garlic cloves are used in the giardiniera.
    • Spices – I used oregano and celery seed. Other popular spice additions are coriander, fennel seeds, and mustard seeds.
    • Oil – I used a combination of olive and avocado oil. However, you can substitute the avocado for any neutral-flavored oil.
    • Vinegar – White distilled vinegar is used in this dish. Substitute with red wine or white wine vinegar.
    • Olives – You can use pimento stuffed or regular pitted green olives of any variety.
    • Salt – I always use coarse salt in my cooking and baking.

    How to Make Giardiniera from Scratch

    Prepare all the vegetables into small to medium diced size pieces.

    dicing fresh vegetables

    Add them to a large bowl with the salt and mix thoroughly until combined.

    mixing vegetables with salt

    Cover it with plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator overnight or for at least 6 hours. This process will season as well as brine the vegetables.

    brining vegetables in salt

    The next day, drain the vegetables and give them a quick rinse under cold water.

    rinsing vegetables

    Slice or dice the olives small to medium in size.

    sliced olives

    Place the rinsed vegetables in a large bowl with the olives, garlic, oregano, and celery seed.

    adding spices to a bowl of vegetables

    Next, add in the olive brine, vinegar, and oil.

    adding oil to a bowl of vegetables

    Mix the ingredients.

    mixing together. veggies

    Place them in jars and store them in the refrigerator for 24 hours before consuming them to allow the flavors to develop.

    giardiniera in oil

    Make-Ahead and Storage

    Make-Ahead: Whether storing in the refrigerator or canning, you can make this up to several days ahead.

    How to Store: If making refrigerator giardiniera, it can last up to 3 weeks covered in the refrigerator. When canning, it can last sealed and stored in a cool, dark place for up to 6 months.

    Chef Billy Parisi

    Chef Notes + Tips

    • This will get more intense in flavor with time as the flavors will begin to come out and marry.
    • You can also make this recipe by processing them in sterilized jars and submerging them in water for 20 minutes.
    • There does not need to be an exact measurement of the vegetables, so their size does not matter and will not alter the flavor. In addition, if you happen to like a certain ingredient that’s used, then I encourage you to use more of it.

    More Vegetable Recipes

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    Let's Cook - Chef Billy Parisi

    Homemade Giardiniera Recipe

    This Giardiniera Recipe uses fresh vegetables that are brined and mixed with seasonings, vinegar, and oil for the perfect accompaniment.
    Servings: 32
    Prep Time: 40 minutes
    Cook Time: 0 minutes
    Resting TIme: 6 hours

    Ingredients 

    • 1 small head of cauliflower, trimmed into small florets
    • 3 small-diced ribs of celery
    • 4 peeled and small diced carrots
    • 1 seeded and small diced red bell pepper
    • 1 seeded and small diced green bell pepper
    • 1 seeded and small diced jalapeño
    • 1 seeded and small diced serrano pepper
    • 4 finely minced garlic cloves
    • 15 ounce can green olives, reserve the olive juice brine which should be 1 cup
    • 1 cup white vinegar
    • 1 cup olive oil
    • 1 cup avocado or neutral-flavored oil
    • 1 tablespoon dry oregano
    • 2 teaspoons celery seed
    • 1/3 cup coarse salt

    Instructions

    • Prepare all the vegetables into small to medium diced size pieces.
    • Add them to a large bowl along with the salt and mix thoroughly until combined.
    • Cover it with plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator overnight or for at least 6 hours. This process will season as well as brine the vegetables.
    • The next day, drain the vegetables and give them a quick rinse under cold water.
    • Slice or small to medium size dice the olives.
    • Place the rinsed vegetables in a large bowl with the olives, garlic, oregano, and celery seed.
    • Next, add in the olive brine, vinegar, and oil.
    • Mix the ingredients together.
    • Place them in jars and store them in the refrigerator for 24 hours before consuming to allow the flavors to develop.

    Notes

    Make-Ahead: Whether storing in the refrigerator or canning, you can make this up to several days ahead.
    How to Store: If making refrigerator giardiniera, it can last up to 3 weeks covered in the refrigerator. When canning, it can last sealed and stored in a cool, dark place for up to 6 months.
    This will get more intense in flavor with time as the flavors will begin to come out and marry.
    You can also make this recipe by processing them in sterilized jars and submerging them in water for 20 minutes.
    There does not need to be an exact measurement of the vegetables, so their size does not matter and will not alter the flavor. In addition, if you happen to like a certain ingredient that’s used, then I encourage you to use more of it.

    Nutrition

    Calories: 152kcalCarbohydrates: 3gProtein: 1gFat: 16gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 11gSodium: 1398mgPotassium: 106mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 1467IUVitamin C: 18mgCalcium: 21mgIron: 0.4mg
    Course: accompaniment
    Cuisine: American, American Italian