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Questions tagged [onions]

Use this tag for questions about selecting, identifying, storing, preparing, replacing or cooking with onion as a star ingredient.

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265 votes
21 answers
47k views

How can I chop onions without crying?

Onions are an excellent addition to many dishes, but cutting them can be frustrating when they make you "cry" all the time. Does anyone know any tips or tricks to help minimise the tears when ...
44 votes
4 answers
50k views

Where does the green part of the scallion start and the white part end?

I've been using Hello Fresh for a while now and many of their recipes include the step: "Trim and thinly slice scallions, separating whites from greens." Looking at a typical scallion, I ...
Brian Nickel's user avatar
42 votes
5 answers
17k views

How to know when a recipe shouldn't contain onion/garlic?

When travelling at a campsite, our resident cook made a Bolognese, and for fun I asked the Italian campers what they thought about it (playing on the stereotype that they are serious about their food) ...
aName's user avatar
  • 621
40 votes
12 answers
36k views

Why use onions in cooking?

Onions are an ingredient in almost every recipe. I hate the taste(flavour) of them (I know I might be the only one). I always try to avoid eating them and try to pick them out of the food. Seeing that ...
user avatar
36 votes
7 answers
39k views

Fry onions and garlic before adding to the sauce?

I am making a tomato sauce for pasta but I am not sure whether to put the garlic and onions into the sauce raw or to sauté them first? What would be the difference in the taste, does one have more ...
Definity's user avatar
  • 471
27 votes
7 answers
7k views

How to keep onions from sinking in a salad

How to keep onions from sinking in a salad? I like raw and cooked onions. I like raw onions in a lot of salads but the problem is diced onions end up in the bottom of the bowl.
paparazzo's user avatar
  • 6,308
27 votes
6 answers
5k views

How to caramelise onions?

Often recipes ask for caramelised onions. What are some good techniques for cooking them this way, as it seems to take a while, and often even if they are on a low heat they can brown a bit too much ...
Sam Holder's user avatar
  • 11.3k
26 votes
5 answers
8k views

Is there a word for the flavour shared by onion, spring onion, shallot, leek, and chive?

Among the flavours of onions, spring onions, shallots, leeks, and chives there is one that they share. Is there a name for it?
user avatar
25 votes
11 answers
207k views

Is it safe to eat green onion slime?

I just harvested some scallions from the garden, where it's getting bit chilly (late November in Seattle). After chopping them, I realized that their insides were covered in a gelatinous, slippery, ...
Emmett's user avatar
  • 431
24 votes
6 answers
25k views

Onion and Garlic, a no-no?

I had an Italian flatmate once who was on the brink of lynching me when he saw I used garlic and onion in one dish. He said that - at least in Italian cuisine - thats an absolute no-no. You can use ...
Hans Meiser's user avatar
23 votes
7 answers
264k views

Are Chives and Green Onions the same thing?

Is it OK to substitute one for the other?
AttilaNYC's user avatar
  • 7,576
23 votes
5 answers
258k views

Is it safe to eat sprouted onions? [duplicate]

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 / ...
clueless's user avatar
  • 3,030
23 votes
11 answers
305k views

How long should I keep a cut onion?

Since I only cook for one or two, I will tend to buy an onion and only use part of it, and then keep the rest in the fridge. Sometimes it will be a while before I use the rest. Is there any guidance ...
mbyrne215's user avatar
  • 473
22 votes
1 answer
8k views

Why stud an onion?

Why do some recipes call for studding onions, i.e., cutting little slits in the onion and putting cloves in? For example, when I cook a big piece of meat like cow's tongue, what difference would it ...
Robert's user avatar
  • 1,323
22 votes
4 answers
11k views

What are the differences between different types of onions, and when do you use them?

I used a recipe for a mean black-eyed-pea salad this past weekend which called for a red onion. Since I wanted extra onion flavor in the salad anyway, I decided to pick up a Vidalia onion to throw in ...
Ben McCormack's user avatar
22 votes
2 answers
124k views

Why do red onions turn blue or green when cooking sometimes?

I cooked a pot of beans with some red onions last night. Today for lunch when I got them out of the fridge, all of the onions had turned a blue/green colour! They still taste ok, but sure looks ...
Chris AtLee's user avatar
21 votes
7 answers
186k views

First onion or first minced meat?

When making e.g. spaghetti sauce, do I: first sweat the onions and then add the minced meat? first brown the minced meat and then add the onions? do both at the same time but in different pans and ...
BioGeek's user avatar
  • 313
21 votes
7 answers
49k views

What can I substitute for onions?

I love onions; however, someone that I cook for does not. Absolutely hates them and can tell whenever they are in the dish. That said, so many recipes call for onion to be added. What can I use ...
ist_lion's user avatar
  • 883
21 votes
12 answers
160k views

How can I store chopped onions in the fridge without the smell?

I am cooking for a large group and am trying to do as much as I can in advance. One thing I would love to do in advance is chop several onions. I have done this before with a single onion; I stored ...
Rebecca Chernoff's user avatar
21 votes
1 answer
13k views

(Why) do onions taste sweeter when cooked at lower temperature?

I use onions to add a sweeter taste to some dishes, for example in tomato sauce for pasta. I cook them in oil, with some salt, before adding the other ingredients. It seems to me that when I turn the ...
Hanno Fietz's user avatar
  • 1,007
20 votes
8 answers
92k views

How do I tone down the intensity of raw onion?

How can I tone down the intensity of raw onion? Some onions have a more acute taste and smell than others of the same type, and I would like to avoid them in salad dish, or making dips with raw onion. ...
KMC's user avatar
  • 1,984
20 votes
4 answers
353k views

How much is a small/medium/large onion?

By size or weight - I never seem to know ...
ScottR's user avatar
  • 303
18 votes
4 answers
15k views

What is the Purpose of Using Onions in (Almost) Every Soup Recipe?

Almost every soup recipe seems to call for sauteed onions. For instance, I'm looking up recipes for squash soup, and every single one calls for onions -- but every soup recipe I can think of uses ...
The How-To Geek's user avatar
18 votes
4 answers
16k views

What's the best way to peel an onion?

I'm a pro at dicing an onion. My issue is always peeling it. The papery skin is so tough to get off, and I'm never sure just how many layers to peel off. Does anyone have any sure-fire tips on how to ...
Pirripli's user avatar
  • 283
17 votes
5 answers
35k views

Which onions to use and how to cook them for an Indian curry recipe that specifies "fry until deep pink"?

One of the curry recipes in the book "50 great curries of India" says "Heat the oil in a cooking pot and fry the onions until deep pink." I think I know what it means when a recipe says "until deep ...
Rinzwind's user avatar
  • 2,670
16 votes
4 answers
28k views

If you 'caramelize' an onion, does an onion contain sugar?

I love the taste of lightly fried sliced onion. I've heard this referred to as 'caramelizing' the onion. Is there sugar in the layers of an onion that is changed to caramel, or is this just a phrase?...
hawkeye's user avatar
  • 1,429
16 votes
2 answers
27k views

How can I peel pearl onions quickly?

I love pearl onions, but I'm always put off by the idea of peeling every single one. Are there any shortcuts to peeling pearl onions?
Goodbye Stack Exchange's user avatar
16 votes
1 answer
1k views

A definitive method of dicing an onion

It bugs me that I've just sort of self-taught a method of turning a whole onion into a nicely diced pile. I'm going to assume my method is inefficient and wasteful. Could someone explain how I should ...
Codebeef's user avatar
  • 263
16 votes
1 answer
3k views

How do I cut a blooming onion?

A blooming onion is a deep fried onion which opens up during frying to resemble a flower. Obviously, I start with a giant onion. How do I cut it?
txwikinger's user avatar
15 votes
6 answers
12k views

Is it ok to skip onions in a recipe?

so this yet another attempt of mine to start cooking and yet again I'm frustrated by the perverse need of every single recipe to include onions. I hate onions, their flavour, their texture etc. and I ...
onionhater's user avatar
15 votes
5 answers
36k views

Why do you need to fry onions and garlic before adding other ingredients to a dish?

I've been using an online Paella recipe that instructs you to sweat some onions for 5 minutes, then add garlic for a few minutes, followed by the vegetables, tomatoes, rice and stock. Is there a ...
Chris S's user avatar
  • 437
15 votes
3 answers
71k views

How do I sweat onions?

A recipe calls for me to sweat finely chopped onions. What do I do, and why?
paprika's user avatar
  • 530
14 votes
8 answers
4k views

Substitute for onion sweetness?

I have a lamb stew recipe which I'm trying to adapt for my sister, who can't eat onions, garlic, or other alliums. Usually when I need to substitute for garlic or onion, I use a tiny amount of ...
Roddy of the Frozen Peas's user avatar
14 votes
2 answers
7k views

Why sweat but not brown?

Many recipes require that you sweat vegetables (celery, onions, etc). Why not saute them and brown them a little instead? Would not that develop the flavors even more? Why would you not want that?
Sly's user avatar
  • 917
14 votes
7 answers
23k views

Can you develop an immunity to chopping onions causing tears?

I just chopped a particularly strong onion, I noticed some slight irritation but no tears. I realized then that onions haven't made me cry for years, decades even. I use all kinds of onions and take ...
Jolenealaska's user avatar
  • 58.6k
13 votes
11 answers
16k views

How should I fry onions without burning them?

Lots of recipes begin with something along the lines of "fry onions in oil until tender/soft/translucent". When I do this I often find that the onions end up burning before they have softened. What ...
Rob Gilton's user avatar
13 votes
4 answers
5k views

Does it matter if I sauté onions for high liquid foods?

Many (most?) recipes ask that you sauté onions before adding other ingredients when making soups, stews, or other dishes that contain lots of liquid (as opposed to something like a stir fry). I'm not ...
Ron Trunk's user avatar
  • 276
13 votes
1 answer
5k views

How well does it work to just throw in all the ingredients and boil?

I'm wondering about this recipe. It tempts me because I'm really lazy. But I'm skeptical because I've always been taught to sauté onions first, then progressively add other ingredients, starting with ...
Alex Hall's user avatar
  • 437
13 votes
4 answers
61k views

What's the difference between green, white, and red onions?

Being a north Indian, the only onions that I have used and seen others using are red onions. These are used in all Indian traditional dishes. I have seen green onions and white onions in the market ...
Aquarius_Girl's user avatar
12 votes
2 answers
2k views

How to store Onion

I've just harvested onions from my garden. I have quite a few and should last me about 3+ months. What is the best way to prepare the onions for storage and how should I store them so they last as ...
B Z's user avatar
  • 223
12 votes
1 answer
8k views

What happens to the flavour of meat when you cook it Star Anise with Onions?

What exactly is the chemical reaction that occurs when you cook Star Anise with Onions? According to Heston Blumenthal doing this intensifies the flavour of meat. Ultimately what I want to know is ...
Pram's user avatar
  • 355
12 votes
3 answers
24k views

Is there a difference between green and spring onions?

I've seen some recipes call for green onions but always use spring onions? Is there a difference between them? Is there a better substitute?
rose's user avatar
  • 867
12 votes
1 answer
2k views

Why fry onions without oil and then add oil?

In several recipes I have seen lately, the instructions are to sautee onions and garlic without oil for a few minutes, and then add oil and continue until golden. If it's of any help, these are ...
Carmi's user avatar
  • 11k
11 votes
7 answers
46k views

Why do you marinade steak with onions?

Most recipes call for onions when marinading steak, but...why?
Pyrolistical's user avatar
11 votes
1 answer
5k views

When is burning onions a good idea for cooking?

I saw this technique mentioned in this Youtube short where the chef makes a burnt onion shrimp curry. In my experience burning stuff is not a good move for making it taste good. Why did it apparently ...
Babu's user avatar
  • 1,137
11 votes
2 answers
6k views

Why does my onion have very few, very thick layers, and a hollow center?

My girlfriend sliced into an onion this evening to find this, …this is weird to me. There are very few layers, the innermost layer was exceedingly thick, and it's hollow. For reference, I'm used to ...
Thanatos's user avatar
  • 213
11 votes
2 answers
3k views

Need to remove germ from garlic or onion?

My mate always tells me to remove the germ (the center) from garlic and onions, especially if it's turning green. What are the pros and cons of the germs of these plants?
Kricket's user avatar
  • 853
10 votes
2 answers
6k views

How to use dried onion flakes as a substitute for fresh onion?

In Poland, onions are very juicy. In addition to that, gas has low intensity. As a result, it takes a lot of time to sauté onions, and onions are almost impossible to deep fry on the pan. To fight the ...
user366312's user avatar
10 votes
7 answers
26k views

Cooking up onions, without oil

For a while now I have been trying to reduce my intake of fried food, or food otherwise cooked with oil. However I still make a lot of things with onions, and I end up sautéeing them with vegetable ...
Jason's user avatar
  • 1,283
10 votes
4 answers
39k views

Black layer in an onion

I just sliced an onion and found that there is a large section of one of the layers that's black. What is the black substance? Is it safe to eat? If not, is the rest of the onion safe to eat? The ...
Eric Finn's user avatar
  • 217

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