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Cowboy Candy (Candied Jalapenos)

cruiser rod

Smoke Blower
Joined Jul 18, 2013
For everybody that likes a spicy treat you have to try Cowboy Candy. My suggestion is to have them on a Ritz cracker with Cream Cheese.


3 1/2 pounds fresh jalapeños, washed

2 cups apple cider vinegar

6 cups granulated sugar

! teaspoon turmeric

! teaspoon celery seed

3 garlic cloves, chopped

1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper


Remove stems from all of the jalapeños and slice into 1/8 to 1/4 inch rounds. Set aside.

In a large pot, bring the cider vinegar, sugar, turmeric, celery seed, garlic and cayenne pepper to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.

Add the pepper slices and simmer for 5 minutes.

Use a slotted spoon, transfer the peppers into clean sterile canning jars leaving 1/4 inch at the top of the jar.

Turn the heat and bring the syrup to a full rolling boil. Boil for 6 minutes. Pour the syrup over the jalapeño peppers in the jars but still leaving 1/4 inch from the top. Make sure there are no air pockets. Wipe the rims of the jars with a clean, damp cloth and place lids on the jars.

You can store these in the refrigerator or complete the canning process so that they are shelf stable. Either way they need to mellow for at least two weeks before eating.

To complete the canning process place the jars in a large pot of hot water, covered by 2 inches. Bring the water to a full boil and boil for 10 minutes for half pints and 15 minutes for pints. When the time is up transfer jars to a cooling rack. Leave them to cool, undisturbed for 24 hours.

Yields 5 pints

chef willie

Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
Joined Dec 31, 2010
Hmm, now those look outstanding. Question for you as to your preference? I've done many water bath concoctions and find the finished product can be a bit, well, soft as opposed to the snap of a crispy pickle that's just allowed to brine itself. Again, great looking product.....Willie

cruiser rod

Smoke Blower
Joined Jul 18, 2013
My feeling is that doing them this way may reduce the heat in the peppers a little. IMHO they still have plenty of heat. I also recommend not over eating because the next morning you will have a reminder. Just sayin'! I do think with the processing time that you still are cooking them and the 5 minutes prior to canning won't accomplish much in the case in keeping them crispy. 

cruiser rod

Smoke Blower
Joined Jul 18, 2013
Leave the seeds and the membrane in and you'll retain the heat. BTW, how do you use the relish?


Legendary Pitmaster
Joined Oct 20, 2010
Leave the seeds and the membrane in and you'll retain the heat. BTW, how do you use the relish?
I now leave half of the jalapenos with the seeds and membrane and it's got great heat! 

I mix it 50/50 with soft cream cheese and we use it on crackers, breakfast burritos, burgers, breakfast sandwiches etc. By filling the jars with the drained chopped mixture, then poking holes into the jars and adding a little of the syrup, we get a more even distribution of the peppers throughout the cream cheese and doesn't get as thinned out from the syrup.

I've made this 5 times since I posted the recipe here and as soon as elk hunting is done, I have to make it again. It just doesn't last!

dj mishima

Smoking Fanatic
Joined Jun 8, 2011
This stuff is the truth!

I have never tried them without cold smoking the jalapenos first, but man oh man, that is a tasty treat.  I gotta make a batch soon.

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