Pickles are a versatile and tasty snack, but when you’re finished with a jar of pickles you’re usually left with the brine – a salty, vinegary liquid used to preserve the pickles.
Most people just pour this mixture into the sink without a second thought, but some pioneering individuals have figured out that pickle juice has a number of other uses, from preventing muscle cramps and improving athletic performance to various uses in the kitchen.
Here are some common practical uses for leftover pickle brine:
1. A Post-Workout Drink
Many sports medicine professionals swear by pickle juice as a method for staving off muscle cramps and replenishing lost electrolytes after intense workouts, according to NBC News.
Indeed, studies have confirmed that in large enough amounts pickle juice can be an effective treatment for workout-induced muscle cramps(1).
2. A Vinegar Substitute
One of the primary ingredients in pickle juice is vinegar, which makes it a good emergency substitute for vinegar in many recipes. Some individuals even use it for cleaning purposes – after filtering it, of course.
Pickle juice is great in marinades, salad dressings, and even bread dough! For recipes that include pickle juice, check out The Kitchn’s guide to culinary uses for pickle juice.