Is there anything better than a crispy onion? Nice, crispy onions taste wonderful on sandwiches, tucked into salads, served with juicy steaks, or even by themselves if you’re a true onion lover.
And, while it is easy enough to pick up pre-made crispy onions from the store or to enjoy them at a restaurant, you may be wondering whether or not it is possible to make crispy onions at home.
Fortunately, the answer is a big “yes.” With a little know-how and a willingness to follow some solid advice, we can help you to make perfectly crispy onions every time.
What You Will Need
To make truly delicious crispy onions, you will need more than just onions. They are the most important ingredient, of course, but they certainly are not the only one.
Here is what you should gather to begin your onion making quest:
Once you have all of your ingredients set out, you are ready to start preparing this delicious treat.
Making Your Onions
The first thing you will want to do is heat a pan full of vegetable oil or a deep fryer to 350 degrees.
While the oil is heating up, mix your seasonings and your eggs together. From there, grab a few onions at a time. Dip them in your egg and seasoning mix and then in the flour, being sure to fully coat each onion.
Once all onions are covered in the crispy batter, place them, a few at a time, into the oil. Be careful as the oil is hot and may splatter. You should cook your onions for around five minutes or until browned and golden in color.
As you remove the onions, blot them with a paper towel to keep them from getting too greasy and growing soggy. Salt the onions to taste and then enjoy.
If You Want Something with a Little More Kick
We think the above recipe for crispy onions is pretty darn delicious. Unfortunately, though, some people find it to be a little bit bland. If you are the kind of person who likes a little more zest and kick in your food or if you did find the above recipe bland, don’t worry. We have another one that you can try.
For this “zesty” version of the recipe, you will need:
Once you have your ingredients together, place your onions in a bowl and cover them with water. Allow them to soak for around ten minutes to soften.
While they are soaking, go ahead and fill a large pot or a deep fryer with sufficient oil. Heat the oil to about 365 degrees.
While the oil is heating, remove your onions, dry them gently, and then dip them in the cornstarch before adding them to the oil. Fry your onions for about five minutes or until golden brown.
Remove from the heat when ready, and sprinkle with five spice powder and salt as desired. You can blot off excess grease if you’d like, but be careful not to get rid of all of it. The oil is what helps the seasoning to stick and gives these onions their distinctive zesty flavor.
Don’t be Afraid to Experiment with Seasonings
Whether you use our basic recipe for crispy onions or you go with the zesty version, don’t be afraid to change things up a bit and make it your own.
You can actually add all kinds of seasonings into the batter for different tastes and flavor combinations. Some of our favorites include celery salt, seasoned salt, steak seasoning, ginger, wasabi, lemon pepper, and chili pepper.
However, you will never know what you like until you try different things, so have some fun with these recipes and experiment until you find your perfect combination.
If You Want to Be a Little Healthier
These crispy onion recipes are definitely delicious, but they are probably not the best thing in the world if you are trying to eat healthy. All that breading plus the oil equal a lot of calories, even though the onions themselves are not bad.
If you want to get rid of the calories from the oil, eliminate it. It is actually quite easy to do, and your onions should still turn out crispy and delicious.
To make the lighter version, follow either of the above recipes. However, instead of frying your battered onions in oil, bake them in the oven on a lightly greased pan. Usually, around 30 minutes at 350 will do the trick.
Your onions will still get nice and crisp, and you won’t even notice that they aren’t fried.
If You are Feeling Brave
We knot not everyone is a “spice fiend,” but, if you do happen to fall into that category, know that there are plenty of ways to turn these simple crispy onions into some fiery little devils.
If you want your onions to be over the top spicy, try adding some finely minced Carolina reaper peppers or ghost peppers or even both into the frying batter. You can add as little or as much as you dare. Just be prepared for the fire that will invade your mouth.
And, if you want some spice but not quite that much, skip these two really hot peppers. Instead, opt for a tablespoon of sriracha sauce added into your batter. You can do hot sauce instead if you aren’t a sriracha fan. Either way, this will add a small amount of heat to your onions without making them unbearably hot.
Some people do one of these “hot additions” but also add a pinch or two of sugar to the batter. It might sound crazy, but it’s a good way to cut the heat with a little bit of sweet. Whether you want to brave that one is on you though.
What to Do with Your Crispy Onions
Once you have your crispy onions all made to your liking, all that is left is to figure out how you want to enjoy them. Honestly, there are so many ways, but we will highlight some of the very best ones in our opinion.
One of our favorite things, to start with, is to fry these onions up using the “zesty” recipe. Only, to make it even zestier, we also bread and fry jalapenos. Once done, you will have a big batch of fried goodness. Dip in ranch and enjoy as a delicious appetizer.
If you are not the type to eat your crispy onions just plain and dipped in dressing, you can try them as a topping for burgers. Place a heaping handful on top of any burger to make it better. In fact, just about any sandwich can benefit from the addition of crispy onions. They taste great on chicken sandwiches and fish sandwiches too, so try them out to see what you like.
Crispy onions can also be used in place of croutons on a salad. And, while fried onions might not be the healthiest thing in the world, they are certainly better for you and less caloric than croutons, which are really just fried bread. They add crunch to any salad and can make it feel more filling and decadent, helping you not to “cheat” later on in the day.
Perhaps one of the most famous uses for crispy onions is to put them on top of a green bean casserole. And, you can certainly do that. However, these onions work great on top of any casserole. Every casserole can benefit from a little crunch up top, and onion goes with everything. So, the next time you make a casserole, try sprinkling some onions on top about five minutes before it’s done. It will add a whole new level of deliciousness for sure.
Crispy onions also make a wonderful garnish for just about anything. If you need to make a dish look a little more “elegant,” put it atop a bed of crispy fried onions. Or, add a small, artful pile to the side of a plate. If you want your food to look like it came from a restaurant, crispy onions are the perfect garnish.
As you can see, there are all kinds of things you can do with crispy onions. And, no matter what you do, even if you just eat them straight out of the pain, you are sure to love them. We have that much faith in our decadent recipes. So, what are you waiting for? Grab some onions and get chopping. You’ve got something delicious to make.