6 Easy Ways to Use Onions in Your Meals

Onions complete my kitchen.

For some people, every kitchen must have eggs, milk, and bread. For me, my kitchen isn’t complete unless it has onions, garlic and rice. In my two previous posts, I talked about 4 easy ways to use garlic in your meals and rice and the different ways to use it.

Today, I shall dedicate an entire post to onions, my beloved life-saving ingredient, which has never failed me, and never will. I know so many people who refuse to eat onions, because they don’t want “onion breath”, or because onions make you fart, or other randomly ridiculous reasons. For me, there is such a long list of reasons why I love onions so much.

Onions add texture and flavor to foods, either complementing it as the base of a soup, a rice or noodle dish, or whether they are used as a main ingredient. Onions can have a spicy perk-me-up taste if eaten raw in a salad, or they may be very soft and sweet when caramelized and have turned a beautiful golden brown. Onions are characteristic in Asian kitchens, and Asian food dishes are soulless without onions (in my opinion of course).

Onions in all their splendor & glory

But apart from than the fact that I almost cannot live without onions, here are some health reasons why everyone should incorporate onions in their diet
(Source: The Skinny Mom):

1.    The number one reason to add onions to your diet is that onions are NATURAL FAT BURNERS. Onions contain a blend of minerals and oils that work to breakdown deposits of fat and even speed up metabolism. They’re low in calories too; just 60 calories in a cup of chopped onions.

2.    Onions can actually reduce inflammation in the body. Often times inflammation in the body is caused by a build up of oxidized fatty acids and there are various enzymes in onions that prevent the oxidation from occurring.

3.    Onions can also increase your bone density. Several of the flavanoids found in onions have been proven to help prevent the cells that are known to break down bones and even help stimulate bone building cells, thus increasing bone density.

4.    Onion intake helps reduce the bad cholesterol in your body as well as prevent blood platelets from clogging. Both of these can greatly improve your cardiovascular health.

5.    Lastly, onions have the potential to prevent or reduce risk of certain types of cancer. Medical studies have shown that onions can actually prevent the growth of cancerous tumors, most often those found in the stomach or digestive system.

If the only thing that is hindering you from using onions is because they always make you cry, here are some ways on How to Cut Onions Without Crying.

How do you cut onions without crying?


So… let’s get on with the more exciting part! How do you cook with onions? Read on for juicier onion recipes!

(With tried & tested recipe links included below):

1)    Soups:

Soups make up a large part of our meals in Asian culture as well as in Western culture. There are a gazillion ways to use onions in your soups, whether as part of the base and finally pureed into a cream, or as a whole onion in a clear soup. When used as a base, the taste is less strong, and more people may be inclined to consuming onions. When used as a whole, the onions provide a stronger flavor and take the role of the main character, making your soups distinctly tasty.

Use onions in soups!

Here are some easy recipe to use onions in soups:

•    French Onion Soup
•    Cream of Butternut Squash
•    Cream of Carrot Soup
•    Cream of Mushroom Soup
•    Cream of Asparagus Soup
•    Mushroom & Carrot Soup

2)    Breads/Wraps:

Bread is to Westerners what rice is to Asians, a staple that cannot go missing in a household, and is present during breakfast, lunch and dinner. Try using onions with breads, including in breads when you bake them, or just as garnishing in wraps such as Mexican fajitas or as a topping for bruschetta.

Use onions with bread!

Some foolproof recipes to use onions in breads/wraps are:

•    Garlic Bread Bruschetta
•    Chicken Fajitas
•    Caramelized Onions and Garlic Bread

3)    Salads:

Onions may be used in their raw form in many western salads, but they may also be used cooked and caramelized in less traditional salads and appetizers.

Onions make a lovely ingredient in salads

Try the following exotic salads in which onions are incorporated:

•    Ensalada Belen (Armenian Eggplant Salad)
•    Piperade (Traditional French Appetizer)

4)    Rice:

Ahh… my other favorite ingredient. Rice gives body to my meals, it is the comfort food which reminds me of my home in Asia, and the grain I eat the most. Rice and onions for me almost never go separately, and I have to say that in all my rice dishes (except for arroz con leche), I always add onions, as a side, as a garnish, or simply as a base.

Onions are delicious with all types of rice

Here are a few simple rice recipes with onions:

•    Beef Risotto
•    Spring Vegetable Risotto
•    Tomato & Basil Risotto
•    Mushroom & Onion Risotto
•    Fried Rice
•    Laksa Beef Fried Rice

5)    Pasta

Pasta, another staple in the Western kitchen, the alternative to bread and rice, is also a student food because of its economical pricetag and the variety of different forms it comes in. Pasta is probably one of the easiest type of foods to cook, and combined with the magical problem-solving onion, any pasta dish will turn out delish!

Add onions to your pasta dishes!

Some easy pasta dishes you can try are:

•    Spaghetti in mushroom & white wine sauce
•    Spaghetti Bolognaise

6)    Omelettes

Finally, we arrive at omelettes, which for some maybe just a part of the meal, while for others it could be the entire main dish. A quick fix and ready in just a couple of minutes, here’s the final way to add onions to your diet.

Onions in omelettes make a fantastic combination!

Try this recipe for a quick brunch this weekend!

•     Mushroom Omelette

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felicia | Dish by Dish

Felicia is a Singaporean who's currently located in Buenos Aires, also known as the "Paris of South America". After moving to Argentina because of love, she found herself grappling with the mysterious concept known as cooking. Starting this blog has helped her explore the kitchen, the effect cooking has on our lives, and generally helped her make more friends with people like you! Please stay a while and explore!

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