Sweet, savory caramelized onions make everything better: sandwiches, scrambled eggs, even soup from a can. This easy trick makes the usual method of stirring the onions for 20+ minutes a thing of the past.
It’s Healthy Kitchen Hacks Wednesday – the day we share our favorite time-saving kitchen tricks and cooking shortcuts to help you make healthy and delicious meals.
UPDATE: Deanna now loves to make a big batch of these and mix them into her Vegetarian French Onion Barley Soup. We also have a Mushroom Barley Soup in our 30-Minute Mediterranean Diet Cookbook that these onions are delish in!
How to Make Caramelized Onions the Easy Way
(originally inspired by Robin @RobinsBite.)
Caramelize onions make everything better: Simple sandwiches, scrambled eggs, even soup from a can or buttered toast. But, most recipes for caramelized onions suggest near-constant stirring for over 45 minutes. This caramelized onion trick is totally hands-off. Just set ’em and forget ’em in the slow cooker.Set them and forget them! Easiest way to make caramelized onions! #healthykitchenhacks @tspcurry Click To Tweet
Here’s the easy way for how to make caramelized onions in the Crock Pot:
1) Start with about 1.5 pounds of onions – about 5 medium onions. This will make about 4 cups of caramelized onions.
2) Chop onions in half from ‘stem to root’, then in thin half moon slices. You could use the food processor, but it only took 11 minutes for me to peel and slice my way through 5 onions.
3) Add onions into a 4- or 6-quart slow cooker that’s been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt, 2 tablespoons of melted butter, and an optional ingredient is 1 1/2 teaspoons of balsamic vinegar.
4) Cook on HIGH setting for 4 hours or on LOW setting for 6-8 hours. No stirring required. How easy was that?
One note: I add the optional balsamic vinegar to give deep golden color to the final caramelized onions, which otherwise, don’t turn out quite as golden-brown as those sauteed for 45 minutes. The vinegar also gives a taste of acidic sparkle to offset the sweet onions. AND it makes a few of the onions around the edges of the slow cooker get dark brown – which lends deep flavor to the whole pot. The easy trick that makes Caramelized Onions totally hands-free. No stirring! #HealthyKitchenHacks via @TspCurry Click To Tweet
Now comes the fun part. What will you add these sweet, boldly savory, heavenly-scented onions to?
Here’s a few ideas:
Bacon Onion Tart – Smokey bacon + sweet caramelized onions. Oh my!
Caramelized Onion and Broccoli Pull-Apart Bread – A savory version of monkey bread with sweet onions, broccoli, and melted cheese
Caramelized Onion, Pepper and Cheddar Pie – A simple entree or cut it up into bite sizes to serve as an appetizer.
And here’s one more bonus Healthy Kitchen Hack that I use almost every day: The Easy Way to Chop Onions (after 6 months of testing!)
Do you ever caramelize onions? If so, how do you use them?