Find answers to common questions about our fermented products below. If you have other questions, please email us or give us a call!
When I opened my jar it was fizzy! Is it ok to eat?
Yes. Refrigeration slows the fermentation of our products, but does not stop it – and some of our batches are especially active! If you experience a fizzy sensation on your tongue or open a jar to find downright bubbly kraut, rest assured that you are eating a living food. It is not only safe to eat, but proof that the live cultures and enzymes are hard at work!
When I opened my jar it didn't *pop* like other canned pickles do. Is it ok to eat?
Yes. Our products are cold-packed, which means that they are not cooked or vacuum sealed. Most pickles and sauerkraut you’ll find on the grocery shelf are cooked to create a vacuum seal that makes them shelf stable (and which, when broken, makes the *pop* sound when you first open the jar). In order to preserve the healthful probiotic qualities of our products, we pack them raw and then refrigerate to slow the fermentation at the height of tastiness!
Can I eat Real Pickles products if I don't eat dairy or lactose?
Yes. Lactic acid fermentation, despite its misleading name, actually bears no relation to dairy products. Our products are lactose-free.
What happens if a jar of Real Pickles is left out of refrigeration?
The fermentation process will resume. After a few hours at warm temperatures, some carbonation may develop in the jar, leading to a fizzy or tingling sensation on the tongue. If you find the carbonation undesirable, you can eliminate it by leaving the jar in the refrigerator for several days with the lid on loosely (giving the carbon dioxide a chance to escape). Left out of refrigeration for a few days, the product may become softer and more sour, but it will not spoil.
Once I open a jar of Real Pickles product, how long will it last?
Once opened, the jar should last at least 1 to 2 months under refrigeration. After this time, the top portion (exposed to air) may begin to darken in color and change in flavor, while the product below will remain unaffected for a longer period of time. At this stage, the discolored portion may be discarded and you can continue to enjoy the remainder of the jar.
Why have I noticed differences in the taste or texture between two jars of the same product?
The fermentation process can be affected by subtle factors such as the moisture content of a particular batch of cabbage or the soil type in a cucumber field. As a result, batches frequently vary in taste, texture, and color. Also, as raw products, they will continue to ferment at a very slow rate under refrigeration, leading to continued changes over time.
Why do the Organic Dill Pickles have a cloudy brine and a white sediment at the bottom of the jar?
The white sediment is a natural and healthy by-product of the lactic acid fermentation. When disturbed, the sediment becomes distributed throughout the jar and gives a cloudy appearance to the brine.
Are Real Pickles products gluten-free? Nut-free?
Our products are not currently certified gluten-free and we have not had them tested for gluten. However, our facility is dedicated to the production of Real Pickles products and none of the ingredients in any of our products contain gluten or nuts.
Are there microplastics in the sea salt Real Pickles uses?
A 2018 study (Kim et al.) examined microplastic content in sea salts, rock salts and lake salts across the world. The highest microplastic content was in Asian sea salts, as a result of increased plastic pollution in regional ocean waters. Microplastics in European sea salts were found at much lower levels – similar to rock salts, and in many cases below concentrations found in rock salts. In many cases, refined salts had higher concentrations of microplastics than unrefined salts. While we have not had our salt brand tested for microplastics, based on results in this paper, we feel confident that our choice to use a high quality unrefined European sea salt minimizes microplastic content in our products.