Tuesday, March 22, 2011

An Onion Shortcut

I love the flavor of onions but dread the chopping, tears, and mess that always comes with them.  When I buy them they usually sit there because I put off using them for the previously stated reasons.  Then they rot as I look at them day after day mocking me with their savory hard to get at flavor.

Being the lazy cheap resourceful person that I am I figured out a way to get around the chopping, at least for awhile.  It also lets you use up those onions you bought on sale before they go bad.

I buy a bag full of onions or 3 to 4 very large Vidalia onions at a time.  Then I peel (quickly)DSC01172 the outer skin, cut into 1/4th or 1/8ths, just until the easily fit into your food processor.  If they are too large they will not fall to the bottom and what is nearest the blade will turn to onion mushiness.  This is a picture of onions that have NOT been cut small enough.  The mushy result will be used in soup.

If you don’t have a food processor then I would recommend chopping all at one time.  If you are going to tear up then I suggest putting on some sad music and make a moment out of it.  Then you will be done for a few months.

DSC01177I use a chopping blade in the food processor and pulse until chopped.  Turning it on and leaving it will turn your onions to mush.  The pulsing chops and knocks the larger chunks down toward the blade while keeping the mush at bay.  This takes around 2 minutes or longer if you let the 5 year old do it.

Then I fill gallon plastic bags with one to two large onions or 4 to 5 smaller onions.  Lay flat on a cookie sheet and label if you want.  I like to score DSC01179mine with my hand so they are in easy to break off sections.  Also, laying flat on the cookie sheet makes them easy to stack in the freezer and keeps them from conforming to whatever object is underneath.  Because if they are in the metal grate then they will freeze in that shape, squish between the metal bars, and be impossible to get off without tearing the bag.  Not fun.

DSC01181Once they are frozen you can easily, really easily, break off as much as you need for what every recipe you are doing.  They defrost in about 2 minutes or 30 seconds in a hot pan.  The bonus, no tears or running to the store for onions.

Because we are a cooked onion lovin’ family this is really the only way I use them.  If you are a raw onion lover I don’t see why this would not work for you too.  Someone give it a shot and let me know.  But if they will be cooked in anyway then this definitely will work with any onion.

FYI….if you stop to take pictures of the onions you don’t avoid the crying part.

A quick public service announcement:  Onions, even in small quantities cooked or raw, are life threatening to dogs and cats.  They can cause a deadly reaction called Heinz Body Anemia where the red blood cells will burst.  Treatment is available at your vets office but please be aware what your pet is into.

Linked up to Works For Me Wednesday over at We Are That Family

works for me wednesday at we are that family
Also, linked up at Women Living Well


  1. Great idea! Sure wish we had an extra freezer space for things like this!

  2. I like this idea as I use chopped onions a lot in my cooking. Thanks for sharing!


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