Super simple superfood pickled radishes

By Sari Huhtala

After researching the mountains of health benefits of radish this winter, I decided radish was going to be a plant companion for nearly everything in my garden. The result has been a ridiculous quantity of radish, which is why I started making these simple pickled radishes. So far, even those whose tastebuds run the other direction at the thought of crunching into this bitter-tasting, pungent crucifer, are digging in for more.

That bitterness is a sign of major health benefits, and a cancer-fighting superfood. Researchers have delved deep into the medicine of radish, which has been used in folk medicine since ancient times for liver inflammation, stomach issues, urinary infections, ulcers and heart issues, according to a 2019 review, Deciphering the Nutraceutical Potential of Raphanus sativus—A Comprehensive Overview, in the journal Nutrients.

As a functional food, radish has a plethora of vitamins and minerals, including B vitamins and vitamin C, and calcium, magnesium, iron, zinc, potassium, phosphorus and manganese. Both the roots and leaves have super antioxidant power. Leaves have double the amounts of proteins and vitamin C. The red radish outer layer is your sign this veggie is packed with anthocyanin, antioxidants which help to prevent cancer, heart disease and diabetes, among other chronic conditions.

Looking for a liver detox? Try fresh radish juice, which researchers discovered enhances the detoxification of the liver.

Don’t toss those leaves out. They are superfoods in and of themselves. Try them fresh in a salad, or add to soups, pesto or a stir-fry for an added nutrient boost. Stay tuned next month for my radish leaf superfood health hack.

Super simple pickled radishes

  • About 8-10 radishes, washed and sliced thin
  • 2 tbsp coconut sugar
  • ¼ cup boiling water
  • ¾ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 10-12 whole black peppercorns
  • 10-12 whole allspice
  • 1 tsp Himalayan or Celtic salt

Fill a clean 2-cup mason jar with sliced radishes, allspice, peppercorns and salt. In a measuring cup, dissolve sugar with boiling water and apple cider vinegar. Pour into the mason jar to cover the radishes. Let cool to room temperature, then add a lid and place in refrigerator. They’ll be ready to eat within 12 hours (even less if you just can’t wait to munch on them).

Store in refrigerator for up to three to four weeks.

PS. Don’t just toss the leftover juice down the drain once the pickled radishes are eaten. You can toss fresh radishes in there again for another round of pickling, or, even better, drink the juice for an amazing health kick.

(This information is not intended to replace medical advice and treatment from a health care practitioner).

Sari Huhtala is the creator, publisher and editor of Alive and Fit Magazine, which was created in 2007.  She has over 25 years of experience in journalism and over 15 years of experience as a certified personal trainer and fitness instructor, and is a holistic chef, offering holistic cooking and edible wilds workshops. She is an organic farmer, wild-crafter and grandmother, who has spent over 20 years navigating a holistic, healthy path for her family. Reach her at friends@thelaughingforest.ca 

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