Chamoy pickles: The surprisingly spicy snack

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Chamoy pickles are a tasty fusion of contrasting flavors that have overtaken the culinary world. This unique snack combines the tangy and spicy chamoy sauce notes with the pickles’ crispness to create an irresistible taste sensation. Explore chamoy pickles history, ingredients, preparation, variations and cultural significance.

A bottle of ketchup and chamoy on a white background.
Chamoy Sauce. Photo Credit: Yayimages.

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People have diverse tastes in spicy condiments, embracing various flavors and heat levels. Many like hot sauces that leave a tingle on the tongue. At the same time, others need a condiment that packs a wallop. 

And there are many kinds of hot sauces out there, from the fiery sting of hot pepper sauces, or milder versions like sriracha to spicy salsa and other tomato-based sauces. Additionally, regional hot sauces from places like Thailand, the Middle East, and various African countries introduce unique spice profiles and regional ingredients, adding even more variety to the world of hot sauces.

Chamoy

Before jumping into the realm of chamoy pickles, let’s take a brief look at chamoy itself. Chamoy is a Mexican condiment that has a long and rich history. It serves as the foundation for the delightful world of chamoy pickles.

Amor Chamoy Sauce
$24.00 ($4.00 / Count)
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Chamoy Pickle Kit
$19.96 ($1.25 / Ounce)
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Amor Chamoy Sauce
$24.00 ($4.00 / Count)
Buy Now
02/23/2024 01:41 am GMT

Chamoy is typically made from fruits like apricots, plums or mangoes, which are pickled, mashed and blended with sugar, vinegar and chili peppers. The result is a sauce that boasts a harmonious blend of sweet, sour and spicy flavors.

Chamoy is a versatile condiment, often used as a dipping sauce for fruits, snacks or drizzled over various dishes to add a burst of flavor. It’s been trending on social media with the advent of chamoy pickles. I first tasted chamoy on a trip to Cabo, where we purchased cups of fresh fruit drizzled a fiery citrusy sauce that I later learned was chamoy.

Pickles in a black pot on a wooden table, with chamoy pickle.
Photo Credit: Yayimages.

Pickle it

Chamoy pickles combine the best of two worlds — the briny, crunchy goodness of pickles and the bold, complex flavors of chamoy. To create these tantalizing treats, pickles, either whole or sliced, serve as the canvas for the chamoy sauce. The pickles are coated generously with the sauce, allowing the sweet and tangy essence of chamoy to permeate every bite. The result is a delightful combination of flavors and textures that dances on the taste buds.

There are 3 easy steps to creating Chamoy Pickles

You can easily join in the fun of trying a pickle yourself. I purchased premade pickle kits for my kids’ Christmas stockings. I wanted them to have the convenience of a premade kit but you can also easily make your own. 

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  • Drain the pickles: If you’re using whole pickles, make sure to drain them to remove excess brine, which can dilute the chamoy flavor. Pat them dry.
  • Coating the pickles: Place them in a bowl and pour the chamoy sauce over them. Toss or gently stir the pickles to ensure they are evenly coated with the sauce. You can adjust the amount of chamoy according to your preferred level of sweetness and spiciness.
  • Chill and marinate: Allow the chamoy-coated pickles to chill in the refrigerator for at least a few hours or overnight. This marinating step allows the flavors to meld together, creating a more harmonious taste.
A plate with a piece of fruit drizzled in sauce.
Mango with Chamoy Sauce. Photo Credit: Yayimages.

Now get wild with it

Chamoy pickles are incredibly versatile, and you can customize them to suit your taste preferences. If you want to buy a wild chamoy pickle kit, you can find them with all kinds of additions to level up the spice and flavor. 

Chamoy Pickle Kit
$19.96 ($1.25 / Ounce)
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If you’re making your own at home, you can add more flavor with fun additions too. Here are some popular variations and personalization options I’ve collected for you to choose from.

  • Spice level: Adjust the spiciness by adding more or fewer chili peppers to your homemade chamoy sauce. Add more heat and flavor by using a citrus and chili powder combination.
  • Add fruity flavor: Popular pickle kits can come with chewy fruit candy. You can add leather roll-ups to add more fruity notes to your pickle experience.
  • Types of Pickles: While dill or sour pickles are commonly used, you can explore other types of pickles like home-canned pickles, bread-and-butter pickles or spicy pickles for unique flavor combinations.
  • Toppings to add: Some enthusiasts take their chamoy pickles to the next level by adding toppings like chile pepper dried mango, chopped fresh fruit or even crushed candy for an extra burst of flavor and texture. We like the tangy flavor of dried mango best.

When to give a pickle kit

Pickle kits make a perfect gift for almost anyone who loves spice and flavor. Kids love them for the same reason they love flaming hot chips, wild-colored chips or wasabi peas, the extreme attraction to foods they can barely tolerate. 

They make the perfect stocking stuffers. They can fit right into a stocking, and kids will enjoy experimenting with them. Or sharing the experience with their friends.

And they also make a great gift for anyone who loves food and food gifts. Food gifts are some of my favorite gifts to give because once they’ve been enjoyed, there’s nothing to store, dust or keep forever. 

Chamoy pickles have found their place in the hearts and palates of many. These tasty treats are often enjoyed as street food snacks. Still, they have entered the culinary world, inspiring chefs and home cooks to experiment with the intriguing combination of flavors.

Chamoy pickles demonstrate the flexibility of culinary traditions, allowing for the exploration of new flavor combinations. These pickles offer a unique mix of sweet and tangy flavors that appeal to various taste preferences, making them a must-try snack. Whether you enjoy sweet, sour or spicy flavors, chamoy pickles showcase the art of culinary fusion, making them a delightful choice for flavor enthusiasts.

Laura Sampson of Little House Big Alaska is on a mission to teach modern family-oriented home cooks how to make old-fashioned foods new again. She shares her passion for home cooking, backyard gardening and homesteading on her website and blog.

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