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I opened my onion rack lately to find onions that had sprouted several-inch-long green roots... It made me extremely queasy and I threw them out. But I was wondering - would it be safe to eat them / cook with them?

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They are definitely safe but the flavour and consistency might be a little off. The onion spends its energy on the sprouts which will dry it out and make it less sweet. What you can do is chop the sprouts and use them like spring onions (scallions if you are American). – Henrik Söderlund Feb 15 '11 at 16:11
Similar question: – Sobachatina Feb 15 '11 at 17:08
up vote 16 down vote accepted

Sure, but the rest of the onion gets mushy and unpalatable after they've grown for a bit. Some people eat the sprouts; they have a lot of protein, so they're popular with vegans and other protein challenged groups.

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The roots aren't usually very green- they're white.

The part of the sprouts that is green is call... wait for it... Green onions.

You can just eat the sprouts and don't bother with the spent bulb.

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Absolutely! They can be quite strong though. I would recommend cutting them thinly. I just used some as a garnish on my miso soup. They add just enough onion flavor and it looks nice.

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