Jamaican Escovitch Spicy Pickled Vegetables.

Pickled vegetables

Do you say escovitch sauce or escovitch dressing? Whichever lingo you use, most will not deny that pickled vegetables are a great addition to many dishes.

My blog posts: Jamaican Escovitch Dressing, showcases a more detailed description of the traditional version of the Jamaican style pickled vegetables.

Pickling is just a simple way to preserve vegetables or other foods in an acidic medium. What makes pickling so great, is the complex flavor it adds to vegetables. 

I have had several different kinds of pickled vegetables. But, escovitch dressing by far has the best flavor profile. The very distinct flavor and aroma come from the perfect marriage between the ingredients that are used.

If you dislike spicy or hot foods, then you may want to adjust the number of habanero peppers in this recipe. 

The battle of the Heat: Habanero vs Scotch Bonnet Pepper.

Traditionally, escovitch sauce recipe calls for scotch bonnet peppers, which are a native pepper in Jamaica. Habanero peppers in comparison, are 1st cousins to scotch bonnet peppers. However, there is a huge difference in their heat profile.

Capsaicin, the chemical compound responsible for the heat in both peppers is measured in Scoville Heat Units (SHU). The habanero pepper is approximately 260,000 SHU, while scotch bonnet peppers are twice the heat, with 450,000 SHU.

Jamaican Escovitch dressing is traditional very hot. But, the degree of heat can be adjusted to your tolerance level by scaling back on the number of peppers or removing some of the seeds.

These delicious pickled vegetables are traditionally served on fried fish. But I have added them to fried chicken, salads, eggs, stews, and sauces.

If you love spice and heat, then you will love this recipe.

Spicy Jamaican Escovitch Pickled Vegetables

Here are all the ingredients You Will Need.

Click on each ingredient for shopping locations.

escovitch sauce

Spicy Jamaican Escovitch Pickled Vegetables

Kevin Foodie
This pickled vegetables recipe is a very easy . It requires very little preparation and cooking cooking time.
5 from 14 votes
Prep Time 35 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Course Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine Mediterranean


  • Medium Pot
  • Knife
  • Cutting Board
  • Spoon
  • 32 oz. Glass Jars with lids.


  • 4 medium Carrots
  • 1/2 large Sweet Red Pepper
  • 3 medium Onions
  • 1/2 large Sweet Yellow Peppers
  • 2 tbsp Pimento Seeds
  • 6 medium Habanero Peppers (red, green, yellow and orange)
  • 3 tbsp Iodized Salt
  • 1/2 cup Light Brown Sugar
  • 3 cups White Cane Vinegar
  • 2 cups Water


  • After you wash your vegetables, julienne the carrots, and sweet peppers into about 1/4 inch sizes. Cut the onions into rings about 1/4 inch thickness. Slice the habanero peppers as thinly as you can.
    vegetables for pickling
  • In a deep pot, add vinegar, water, sugar, salt, pimento and bring to bol over medium heat. Stir until the sugar and salt dissolves.
    vinegar and pimento
  • As liquid begins to boil, add the carrots and some of the other vegetales to the vinegar mixture; allow to cook for 1-2 minutes.
  • In clean sterile jars, layer the cooked vegetables and the remaining uncooked onions, sweet peppers, and habanero peppers into jars.
    pickling jars
  • As you layer the vegetables, carefully pour the pickling liquid onto each layer. Make sure vegetables are fully covered with vinegar mixture.
    pickled vegetables
  • Cover Jars and leave at room temperature to cool.
    escovitch sauce


Please wash your hands after cutting the habanero peppers to avoid you accidentally touching parts of your body and cause harm. If you can wear a glove that would be ideal. 
Sterilize jars by boiling them in water for 1o minutes and allow to air dry.
You can adjust the number of habanero peppers to your desired tolerance of heat.
Habanero peppers are more readily available in most grocery stores. However, if you can find Scotch bonnet peppers in your local grocery store, then you can replace them with the habanero peppers.
Keyword Escovitch, Escovitch Dressing, Jamaican, Pickled Vegetables, Pickling, Sauce

Jamaican Escovitch Dressing

Pairs very well with fried fish but is a great flavor enhancer to many meals.

Pickled vegetables
escovitch sauce

The Perfect Pickled Marriage

The ingredients complements each other and form the perfect marriage of flavor, colors and very distinct aroma.

vegetables for pickling

16 thoughts on “Jamaican Escovitch Spicy Pickled Vegetables.”

  1. 5 stars
    I made this last night and can’t wait to use it in a few of my salads. Thanks for the great recipe and great step-by-step instructions.

  2. 5 stars
    Before I became a complete vegan, I was a pescatarian Rasta. Escovitch was my go-to dish. I haven’t had it in so long and this brought back great memories.

  3. 5 stars
    So excited to try this!! It’ll be my first time making it – I’ve had it a friend’s house years ago and just came across your recipe today and got so excited!!! Thanks for sharing!!

  4. 5 stars
    This recipe was beyond delicious. I love how so many flavors come together and form this beautiful taste! I made this for dinner and was so happy that I made it again for lunch the next day.

  5. 5 stars
    I’ve never heard of this dish before, I really don’t know much about my culture on my dad’s side. However, due to it’s spicy nature and my IBS, this won’t be one I’ll be able to try

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