What a Pickle!

Not every pickled cucumber is prepared the same way. Here’s a quick and easy way to decode the descriptions you see on the labels:

  • Dill Pickles. The most popular type of pickle, these are flavored heavily with—you guessed it—dill. The dill used to make the brine can be fresh, dried or even in seed form.

  • Sweet Pickles. As the name suggests, these pickles are sweet—but not too sweet (depending on your palate). The brine has a little bit of sugar to give them just a hint of sweetness. The more extreme version of sweet pickles would be candied pickles, which are packed in brine so heavily sweetened that it’s almost syrupy.

  • Bread and Butter Pickles. This variation on sweet pickles uses slightly less sugar for a better balance of sweet and sour. Originally a trademarked name (the trademarked has since expired), bread-and-butter pickles were first made in the 1920s by husband-and-wife duo Omar and Cora Fanning, who likely traded jars of their pickles for grocery staples like bread and butter.

  • Sour Pickles. Made in a brine of water, salt, and spices, sans vinegar, sour pickles don’t have the traditional acidic edge to their flavor profile. Instead, they’re just plain sour.

  • Kosher Pickles. Kosher pickles aren’t necessarily kosher (though many of them are). They are so-called because their brine is made with coarse-grain kosher salt, in the style of pickles made by New York Jewish delis.

  • Gherkin Pickles. Gherkin pickles are made with a smaller variety of cucumber that measures about 1.5 to 2 inches long and typically pickled whole.

Contact Us

2900 S. Quincy Street, Suite 700
Arlington, VA 22206

Tel (703) 824-3000
Fax (703) 824-3015

> For The Media
> Work With US

Sign Up for Our Newsletters

Read the latest news and developments facing the school nutrition industry, as well as stay on top of important trends and resources.


> Read the Latest Newsletters

SNA State Associations

The School Nutrition Association has a presence in every state across the country. View links to many of the state associations to find out more about what SNA is doing nationwide. 

> Learn More