Types of Onions – Different Kinds of Onions and Uses

types of onions

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The humble onion is the spine of so a lot of dishes—and it can get on numerous forms, shape-shifting from sharp and crunchy to sweet and silky. When cooked lower and slow, yellow onions will virtually “melt” (Ree Drummond’s French Onion Soup­ is an exceptional instance of just that). Fried onions, in the meantime, have a sweet crunch. No question Ree thinks these should to be placed on a record of “Culinary Triumphs of All Time”! Then there are sautéed onions: the driving-the-scenes foundation of savory dishes all about the globe. (By the way, we have got a great recipe for making sluggish-cooker caramelized onions—don’t overlook it.)

But the difference in flavor and texture doesn’t just depend on how you cook your onions—it also relies upon on what forms of onions you use. Whilst quite a few kinds of onions are interchangeable, some are improved than other people raw, fried, braised, roasted, grilled, sautéed, caramelized, or pickled. Every onion has a a little various taste, too: Some are additional sharp, some are a bit sweeter, and some others are pretty much peppery. Study on to master about nine of the most common kinds of onions, then verify out our guides on how to shop onions and how to chop an onion.

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Yellow Onions

No question about it: This is the MVP of the onion spouse and children! Yellow onions are the type you may want to preserve stocked in your pantry at all situations. If a recipe just calls for “onions,” this is a superior default solution. Yellow onions are ideal for cooking (the for a longer time they prepare dinner, the sweeter they become). They are not fantastic, even so, for taking in uncooked, since they are rigorous in both of those scent and flavor with that unmistakable eye-watering onion punch.


Red Onions

The most vivid of the bunch, red onions are a beloved for eating uncooked in salads and on sandwiches. They are delicate and sweet with a sharp, crunchy chunk, and their vibrant hue tends to mellow the moment cooked. When steeped in an acid like lemon juice or vinegar for a rapid pickle, having said that, they bloom into a magnificent magenta shade. They’re also superb for grilling. Professional tip: Allow pink onions sit in ice water for a several minutes right after slicing in buy to soften their chunk!


Sweet Onions

The title gives it absent: These further-substantial onions are the sweetest in the household! They’re absolutely a lot less pungent and considerably less sulfuric than other onions. Some of the a lot more well-known versions involve Bermuda, Maui, Vidalia, and Walla Walla. Sweet onions are also juicier than other onions, which implies they aren’t suitable for prolonged-phrase storage and want to be refrigerated. Toss them in salads or use as a topping for burgers, pizzas, and sandwiches—and note that they’re also ideal for generating onion rings!


White Onions

These pristine onions can be liked uncooked, and they provide big, tangy onion flavor with less of a chunk than yellow onions. They are usually employed to make salsa and guacamole, and they are well-liked as a topping for incredibly hot canines (in actuality, Ladd’s favorite very hot pet isn’t comprehensive without having them).

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Pearl Onions

A staple on the holiday desk, these small, inch-extended onions are mild in taste, which will make them great for braising and roasting. However white pearl onions are the most commonly offered, they can also be discovered in red and yellow. What ever shade you pick, although, you may need to peel them right before cooking: Blanch them in boiling h2o for about 2 minutes, then drain and plunge them into an ice bathtub. The skins will slip proper off! You can also purchase frozen pearl onions, which come pre-peeled.


Cipollini Onions

Primarily the “pearl onions of Italy,” cipollinis are common in the United States, also, many thanks to their sweet, gentle flavor. Tiny in stature and considerably far more squat than pearl onions, cipollinis turn into a little bit creamy when cooked. They are simple to braise, grill, and pickle, and they’re are also an best substitute for shallots and pearl onions.


Scallions (aka Environmentally friendly Onions)

These long shoots pack a peppery punch! The slender white bulbs at the finishes are typically sliced and cooked, although the top rated green areas are terrific for garnish (but thoughts you, any section of the scallion can be eaten uncooked as a garnish). Scallions are also scrumptious when grilled or roasted total.




Shallots are onion-like in physical appearance and flavor, but they expand in clusters like garlic. While pungent in flavor, they are phenomenal finely diced and additional to vinaigrettes, and they are a stalwart in French cuisine, exactly where they are employed in vintage sauces. Their little measurement also will make them excellent for braising and roasting, which concentrates and highlights their organic sweetness.


Spring Onions

Not to be perplexed with scallions or inexperienced onions, spring onions are essentially youthful veggies with round bulbs positioned at the end of their inexperienced shoots. These seasonal onions are regarded for their moderate flavor and can be roasted, braised, or grilled full. They are also mouth watering raw—try them in your subsequent salad, or incorporate some to your favored salsa!

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