How to Cut an Onion



Oh, onions. What’s up with all of the slicing, dicing, chopping, mincing, crying? Let’s check out all of the methods for how one can lower an onion!

Cuts of onions that says "how to cut an onion".

The mighty onion! Looks like you’re all the time going to search out one among these little guys on the base of, like, each recipe. A lot taste! However what’s up with all this slicing, dicing, chopping, mincing, crying? Let’s check out all issues onion, lets?

Additionally, scorching tip alert. Please remember the fact that an onion already has some built-in slices for you so we’ll be utilizing that to our benefit! Some strategies might have advised you to slice horizontally, however, slicing horizontally by means of a slippery vegetable with a really sharp knife sneaking underneath your fingers and headed TOWARDS your physique…feels simply kinda downright bananas. Additionally pointless – these cuts exist already!

Let’s dive in, lets?

In This Put up: Every thing You Want For How To Lower An Onion

Strategies for Chopping An Onion

Onion Extras

Strategies For Chopping An Onion

Knife Technique

Half of an onion cut on a cutting board with a knife.

That is most likely the commonest methodology in relation to chopping an onion – whether or not you want a tough chop, a fair cube, or a effective mince. Fortunately, all of them begin just about the identical. Get your tear ducts prepared, right here we go!

  1. Lower in half. Flip the onion upright on one of many flat ends and lower it down the center.
  2. Trim the top. Trim one finish of the onion and preserve the opposite as sort of a bit of deal with. (You would chop each ends however this fashion it helps the onion half keep intact.)
  3. Take away the skins. If the onion pores and skin doesn’t come off simply, take away the outermost layer of the onion too.
  4. Slice the onion. Place one half of the onion massive, flat cut-side down in your chopping board. Make even vertical slices towards the grain, skinny or thick relying on the dimensions chop you need, with out slicing right through your “deal with” finish in order that the slices keep intact.
  5. Flip and chop! Holding the deal with finish, gently squeeze the onion to assist safe your vertical slices and make comparatively evenly spaced slices by means of your authentic cuts. These cubes will begin falling onto your board and also you’ll have a beautiful tough chop! Then repeat with the opposite half.

Mandoline Technique

Rings of onions on a cutting board with a mandoline.

We love our mandoline* for a lot of issues, however to slice an onion? It’s severely clutch. This methodology is often used for rings and half moons (as you’ll be able to see above), however if you wish to pull out your knife and chop them up much more from there, you do you!

  1. Lower off prime of the bulb. You don’t want to chop off a lot – nearly 1/2 of an inch.
  2. Lower in half, root to prime (elective). If you need slices as an alternative of rings, you’ll be able to lower it in half from root to prime. See video under for reference.
  3. Take away the pores and skin. Maintain the basis intact and peel again the outer layer of the onion.
  4. Get your mandoline prepared. There must be 3-4 completely different thickness ranges in your mandoline you can select from primarily based on what you’re searching for. Set your mandoline and also you’re prepared!
  5. Slice your onion. Put the lower facet towards the mandoline and transfer it forwards and backwards to create slices or rings. Use a mandoline protector to maintain your fingers protected or cease earlier than the basis will get too shut!

Meals Processor Technique

Minced onion in a food processor.

This is likely to be our favourite hack to make chopping an onion the simplest factor you’ll do all day (are you able to think about!?). It’s good for getting a tough chop or a effective mince, and is particularly superb for when you’ve gotten quite a lot of issues to cut for soup or need a perfectly-textured meatball.

  1. Lower off each ends of the onion. No want for the basis right here!
  2. Take away the pores and skin. If you should take away the highest layer of the onion too, that’s a-okay.
  3. Lower into sections. Lower the onion in half root to stem, after which a couple of times extra to create even sections of the onion.
  4. Chop within the meals processor or chopper. Place the sections of onion within the meals processor and pulse to your required chop consistency.

Onion Lower Varieties and Their Makes use of

Different types of cuts of onions.


The tiniest of all! Make all of your slices/cuts as small and uniform as attainable utilizing a knife or meals processor (or you’ll be able to simply proceed to run your knife by means of that tough chop pile till the whole lot is actual itty bitty).

That is nice for: Mincing is required whenever you don’t wish to chew into items onion in any respect like for dressings, soups, and marinades, or additionally in meatballs!


Smaller than a chop, so make all of your slices thinner. You can too run your knife again by means of your tough chop pile a couple of instances to get smaller items. They gained’t be completely uniform tiny cubes however it would get you the place you’re going!

That is nice for: Dicing is right in the event you’re going to be consuming the onion extra by itself and don’t wish to chew into too massive of a bit of onion, like as a topping or in a salsa or base of an awesome sauce.


Barely bigger, rougher cubes.

That is is nice for: A bigger fast tough chop is nice for roasting, sauces, or soups that can cook dinner awhile or get pureed later the place you want the flavour of onion however dimension actually doesn’t matter. Additionally nice for pot roast!


These want a barely completely different methodology than the cuts above. You’ll trim the non-root finish, take away skins (chances are you’ll must make a really shallow lower within the facet to assist get them eliminated), rigorously place the total onion your board and begin slicing parallel to the ends forming full rings, or use your mandoline as proven above. If utilizing a knife, you may as well slice a tiny bit off of 1 facet of the onion to offer your self a steadier floor when chopping the entire onion.

That is nice for: Onion rings, YAY! But additionally perhaps you need a full ring in your burger or in your salad for fanciness?

Half-Moon Slices

Sliced with the grain of the onion to your required thickness.

That is nice for: Burger/sandwich toppings or salads, when extra distinguished items of onion are key!


Slim or large strips made by these vertical cuts towards the grain. You would use on skewers or in fajitas.

That is nice for: Kebabs, fajitas, or caramelized onions.

Different onion varieties on a cutting board.

Varieties Of Onions

For essentially the most half, you’ll be able to swap out onions in most recipes relying on what you’ve gotten available. However here’s a common breakdown for the place every one can shine. All the time bear in mind when choosing out onions, no matter kind, to search for ones which are agency with dry skins!

  • White onions: They could be a little extra pungent so they’re extra best in cooked dishes or sauces. 
  • Yellow onions: Tremendous versatile and have some actual star energy for caramelizing.
  • Crimson onions: These are your salad and salsa queens as a result of they’ll have an actual kick!
  • Candy onions: (like a Walla Walla or Vidalia). These are nice in issues that want uncooked onion as a result of they’re delicate and candy.
 Someone dicing an onion on a cutting board.

How To Not Cry Whereas Chopping Onions

Goggles? Simply ask another person to do it and depart the room? Yeah, it appears sort of inevitable to shed a tear or two, however listed below are some suggestions/tips folks say assist ease the burn.

  • Goggles. Like severely, they work. Any barrier in entrance of your eyes will assist a bit of! Here’s our favorite pair*.
  • Chopping with a pointy knife! A boring knife will smash and break down the cells of the onion extra which releases extra of the chemical syn-propanethial-S-oxide which is what’s liable for these teary eyes!
  • Chill them! You must assume forward however some counsel popping peeled onions within the freezer for a bit or within the fridge or in a bowl of ice water for about half-hour to minimize the chemical’s impact.
  • Put a slice of bread in your mouth and let it hang around. In case you wanted a purpose to eat bread (spoiler: you by no means want a purpose). Some say it really works, some say it does nothing. Apparently the bread is meant to soak up the sulphuric compounds earlier than it reaches your eyes. Strive it and report again!

Getting Onion Scent Off Your Arms

Oh! Yay! Now for some enjoyable science! Do you know you’ll be able to eliminate the odor in your fingers by merely rubbing them on any chrome steel object underneath chilly operating water? It’s true! You may seize a spoon or a spatula (perhaps skip a knife), and even use the underside of your chrome steel sink. The sulfuric chemical in onions will bind to the metals in chrome steel and keep on with these as an alternative of your fingers, no cleaning soap required! (However let’s be trustworthy, cleaning soap by no means helped anyway, proper?!)

You would additionally seize your self one among these useful dandy little stainless steel “soap” bars* in the event you actually wish to be fancy.

Four sections of an onion in a food processor.

In case you don’t wish to make use of your knife-work within the kitchen, you do have a pair different choices.

  • Pre-cut onions. We love a very good shortcut generally so thanks, grocery retailer! Or make your individual pre-cut ones by simply doing a ton of onions directly, so long as you’ve bought your tear ducts going, after which retailer them within the freezer!
  • A mandoline. Although it may be intimidating, a mandoline* could make very straightforward work out of getting completely evenly skinny slices.
  • Meals processor. Peel and slice these onions into sections, and buzz these infants up in a food processor* for a chop-cheat!
  • A spiralizer. Onions are tremendous straightforward to spiralize* – who knew?! Simply use a flat blade because the onions are already layered by nature, and two seconds later, you’ll have a pile of thinly sliced rings which are good for a complete number of makes use of. See how one can do it here!
Pickled red onions in a jar.

Storing Lower Onions

So long as you’re already crying, you’ll be able to chop up a bunch of onions after which preserve them available and able to go on your different cooking wants this week. Simply be sure to preserve issues hermetic to keep away from oxidation and moisture absorption (good day Stinksville, USA).

  • To Refrigerate: You may preserve chopped onions in a sealed, hermetic container (ideally a glass one since plastic will soak up odor which…doesn’t assist your trigger) within the fridge for as much as to 10 days. {A partially} used onion may be wrapped in plastic wrap and saved within the fridge as properly.
  • To Freeze: In case you’re going to be cooking the onions the place texture doesn’t matter as a lot because you gained’t be consuming them uncooked, you may as well freeze chopped onions for simple use. Simply toss them in a freezer bag they usually’ll final 3-6 months!
  • BONUS! To Pickle: We looooove pickled onions (see these bowls and these tacos). Simply switch your onion slices to a jar, fill the jar half to three-fourths of the way in which with vinegar and the remainder of the way in which with water. Add 1 tsp. of salt and 1 tbsp. of sugar. Shake a couple of instances and set within the fridge.
Caramelized Onion Dip in a bowl with a spoon.

A Few Of Our Favourite Recipes with Onions


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