Many will ask what is Piccalilli (Pick-a-Lilly)! The answer depends on where you live in the world. Even here in the United States there are different versions of this relish of chopped veggies and spices. My research: In the Northeast, many store bought piccalillis are filled with diced sweet peppers, either red or green. This style is very similar to sweet pepper relish but you can tell visually by having a darker red or green color, the chunks are larger,  and it is tangier and less sweet. It is a popular topping on such foods as hamburgers and hot dogs. In the Midwest piccalillis are based on finely chopped gherkins (pickles); bright green and on the sweet side, they are often used as a condiment for Chicago-style hot dogs. This style is sometimes called “neon relish”. In the South, piccalilli isn’t common but chow-chow, a relish with a base of chopped green (unripe) tomatoes is available. This relish may also include onions, bell peppers, cabbage, green beans and other vegetables. Even though there are not completely similar piccalillis and chow-chow may be used interchangeably.

Sharon used her green romas making this version of this varied relish. I love her labels! Enjoy!



4 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 2 hrs
Total Time 2 hrs 10 mins
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Italian
Servings 30


  • 6 cups finely cored green tomatoes(unpeeled)
  • 2 PC. onions finely chopped
  • 2 PC. green peppers finley chopped
  • 1 PC. red pepper finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup canning salt
  • 1 t. whole cloves
  • 1 t. celery seed
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • 2 cups white vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 pc. clove of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 t. dry mustard
  • 1/2 t. salt
  • 1/2 t. ground ginger


  • Combine green tomato, onion, green and red peppers and 1/4 cup salt, mix well, cover with a dish towel and let stand overnight(70-75 degrees).
  • Transfer to a colander to drain. Rinse w/cold water and drain thoroughly. Using hands squeese out liquid. Set aside.
  • Tie cloves, celery seed and cinn. stick in a cheese cloth bag.
  • In a pan combine vinegar, brown sugar, garlic, mustard, salt, ginger and spice bag.
  • Bring to a boil stirring to dissolve sugar.
  • Add drained tomato mix stir well and return to a boil, turn down to a gentle boil, stirring freq. until tomatoes are transparent, about 1 hour.
  • Ladle hot relish into hot jars leaving 1/2" headspace. Remove bubbles, wipe rim cap and water bath for 10 min. at a full rolling boil.


Makes 6 - 8oz. jars
Keyword Piccalilli