This step-by-step recipe post shows you how to make caramelized onions. These onions are cooked low and slow creating deliciously sweet and golden onions that you will adore! Perfect for burgers, scrambles, steak, soups, the options are endless!
Here we are with another staple recipe in my retpotorire. I love to make a large batch of caramelized onions and keep them in the fridge to throw into whatever meals I want that week. They are so easy to make, full of flavor, and so versatile!
You can make your caramelized onions as dark or as light as you want, I generally prefer extra dark onions. They have caramelized for so long I find the flavor is much deeper, I even like the onions to go a little black around the edges. If you don't like your onions that dark you can just cook for less time. Caramelized onions are delicious and super easy but definitely not quick.
You'll only need pantry ingredients
- Olive Oil. Olive oil keeps the onions from sticking and keeps them liquid to help them caramelize during the cooking process.
- Butter. I like to use a combination of both butter and oil for the best flavor. I do this with a lot of food- steak and cake too.
- Onions. The star of the show. I like to use yellow or white onions but red onions would work too!
- Salt. Just a smidge.
- Sugar. Just another smidge!
Peel the onions, cutting the top and bottom off, then slice in half and remove the center/core stem of the onion. Then slice into strips lengthwise. You can slice thicker or thinner strips depending on your preference.
In a large skillet over low medium heat add the olive oil and butter and let warm. You want to use a wide pan to help ensure the water has room to evaporate so that the onions do not steam but caramelize.
Add the onions and move around to evenly coat the onions in the liquid fat. Also, break the layers of onion apart, if necessary.
Let the onions cook for 5 minutes then stir in the salt and sugar.
As we all have different stoves your stovetop burners may be stronger/weaker so make sure to watch closely and adjust the heat as necessary to prevent the onions from drying out and burning.
For the next 30-45 minutes keep the onions on low-medium heat, depending on the strength of your burner, you'll want to stir the onions every 5 minutes or so. Stirring helps prevent the onions from sticking in one place for too long and potentially burning.
Letting the onions sit will help them carmelize and brown, if the heat is too high the onions will burn, so when in doubt go lower and take your time.
If the pan looks dry, which it might because the liquid may have evaporated, I like to add another splash of olive oil or even just a bit of water or broth.
Once the onions are caramelized let cool and store in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to a week or so.
How to freeze
Caramelized onions freeze beautifully. You can freeze them in an ice cube tray, I do this with fresh herbs and a bit of oil, but for the onions, you don't need the oil. Once frozen pop the onion cubes into a freezer-safe bag. Then when you want to cook with them just use a cube at a time.
Another way to freeze the onions is to place them in a freezer safe bag in a thin layer and then break off a chunk when you want to use them.
Caramelized onions will keep for around 3 months frozen.
Can you double
I wouldn't recommend using more than 3 onions in a large skillet. You don't want to overcrowd the pan, which will prevent the onions from caramelizing.
Recipes to use caramelized onions
These black bean burgers look fantastic, but would be even better with caramelized onions on top!!
If I have lots of leftover caramelized onions I use them in my French Onion Dip Recipe.
★★★★★ Please let me know if you make this recipe by leaving a star rating and comment below!Print
- 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- 1 Tablespoon Butter
- 3 Medium Onions
- ¼ Teaspoon Salt
- ¼ Teaspoon Sugar
- Peel the onions, cutting the top and bottom off, then slice in half and remove the center/core stem of the onion. Then slice into strips lengthwise.
- In a large skillet over low medium heat add the olive oil and butter and let warm. Add the onions and move around to coat the onions in the liquid fat and also break the layers of onion apart. Let the onions cook for 5 minutes then stir in the salt and sugar.
- For the next 30-45 minutes keep the onions on low-medium heat, depending on the strength of your burner, you'll want to stir the onions every 5 minutes or so. Letting the onions sit will help them carmelize and brown, if the heat is too high the onions will burn, so when in doubt go lower and take your time.
- Once the onions are caramelized let cool and store in an air-tight container in the fridge.
You can double the recipe just be sure to use a large pan for all of the onion.
- Prep Time: 5
- Cook Time: 45
- Category: Side
- Method: Saute
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: how to caramelize onions, easy caramelized onion recipe,