If I can't find anything named "scallions" at the store, what else can I look for?

1 Answer 1


According to Wikipedia:

Scallions (also known as green onions, spring onions, salad onions, green shallots, onion sticks, or syboes), are the edible plants of various Allium species, all of which are "onion-like", having hollow green leaves and lacking a fully developed root bulb.

In the grocery stores I've been to most (east cost of US), if they aren't called scallions, they're called green onions. I've never seen grocery stores label them with any of those other names from Wikipedia (though I've seen recipes calling for syboes).

Then of course there are stores / vegetable stands where nothing is labelled, in which case knowing what they look like is the most helpful ;) (Google image search yields plenty of decent results.)

  • In English cultures these are usually referred to as "Spring Onions". But as is the case with most of these things the variety commonly grown in each country is significantly different. I suspect even a different species in some cases. It is usually used as a mildly acidic, but tangy tasting and colourful "onion" addition. The English variety is very similar to the common Chinese variety, the US variety seems more similar to what is used in France and surrounds
    – TFD
    Commented Aug 10, 2011 at 1:18
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    IN my experience, spring onions aren't quite the same thing as green onions / scallions. FYI, the Cook's Thesaurus is a great resource for this type of question--I'm there all the time: foodsubs.com/Onionsgreen.html
    – Ray
    Commented Aug 10, 2011 at 1:40
  • According to archives.record-eagle.com/2007/may/21onions.htm spring onions have a rounded bulb while scallions do not. If you are using this definition, Egyptian onions can probably be used as a substitute. Commented Aug 10, 2011 at 1:59
  • Yeah, there seem to be different schools of thought regarding the subtleties of green onions v. scallions v. spring onions. Some people (/sellers) use the names interchangeably, while other argue that they are actually different things. I've never really noticed any difference, but like I said, most of my produce shopping has been on the US east coast - geographically limited.
    – Laura
    Commented Aug 10, 2011 at 21:30

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