Zucchini Relish Recipe for Topping Burgers and More 10

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Remember Del Monte hamburger relish? Talk about a blast from the past. A couple of years ago I discovered a fabulous relish recipe, made from zucchini, that tastes just like the Del Monte version. Now mind you, I can’t grow zucchini here. No, really. But I wanted to share the recipe anyway.

You might have already seen my alternative version of this recipe, made with watermelon rind. (You do what you’ve gotta do!) But in light of the fact that lots of people are still harvesting zucchini, I thought I’d share the original version.

Important: This is not scary. It takes about an hour to make 3 pints of relish. If you know how to operate a stove and chop veggies, you’re good to go.

Zucchini Relish Recipe


  • 4 cups chopped zucchini
  • 2 cups chopped onion
  • 1 large red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground turmeric
  • 2 teaspoons mustard seed
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • pinch ground nutmeg

A shortcut to start you off: If you have a food processor you can just toss roughly chopped zucchini, onions, and peppers into the bowl of the processor and pulse until they’re a good size. I like mine in about 1/8 – 1/4″ pieces. If you don’t have a food processor, just chop them finely by hand.

Combine zucchini, onion, peppers, and salt in a large bowl, stirring well. Chill overnight. Place in a colander to drain; rinse thoroughly and drain again. Transfer to a large stock pot and add remaining ingredients; bring just to a boil, then simmer for 10 minutes. At this point, the relish is done. You can just put it in jars and then in the refrigerator to use right away or give as gifts.

If you’d like your relish to be shelf stable, you’ll need to process it. Ladle hot relish into sterilized jars, leaving 1/4-in. head space. Wipe rims with a damp cloth (to assure a good seal), screw sterilized lids on, and process for 10 minutes in a boiling water bath. (Click through for a complete tutorial on water bath canning if you’ve never done it before.) 

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10 thoughts on “Zucchini Relish Recipe for Topping Burgers and More

    • Kris Bordessa Post author

      Maybe I should say: I haven’t yet figured out how to successfully grow zucchini! Cucurbits have so far eluded me, due to something called a pickleworm. Photographic evidence: http://on.fb.me/1eiqINU.

  • Vera MarieBadertscher

    This does sound good, but I wouldn’t dare tell my family what is in it.. When I had a garden the zucchini was so prolific that my sons won’t even look at the stuff any more.

  • Jane Boursaw

    Thank you for the “this is not scary” line. I often look at recipes and photos and my eyes sort of glaze over. But this one does indeed look easy and delicious. If I could send you some of our zucchini, I would totally do it.

  • Donna Hull

    I don’t remember Del Monte hamburger relish but this is a great use for zucchini. They are usually so prolific.

  • Jeanine Barone

    Both the zucchini and watermelon rind relishes sound great. I never would have thought of using either in a relish. I don’t eat hamburgers but I’d like to try ’em on a turkey or veggie burger.

  • Carol

    OK< am I that old? I DO remember Del Monte relish!!!
    I thought it was still around, but then, I don’t shop the regular isles, and I don’t buy commercial stuff anymore.
    Thanks for the recipe!

  • Gale

    Thanks for the recipe. I’m going to have to try it out it looks great.