Caramelized onions

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Soft, sweet and full of umami, slowly caramelized onions make everything better. Here is what you need to know to make beautiful caramelized onions every time.


  • 3 Spanish, yellow or brown onions, peeled and sliced into 1/81/4” slices
  • 23 T olive oil, butter, or a mixture of olive oil and butter
  • A pinch salt
  • Pepper
  • A pinch sugar (optional)
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup deglazing liquid (water, wine, stock, beer or vinegar)
  • 12 T balsamic vinegar to finish (optional).


  1. Heat your pan over a medium flame. Add the olive oil and or butter and heat until it shimmers. If you are using butter you will have to take care not to let it burn.
  2. Add onions to the oil and stir to coat. Add a big pinch of salt and some pepper and stir again. Reduce your heat to medium-low and keep a close eye on the onions stirring every 5 minutes or so. If you want to add a pinch of sugar do so when the onions are just starting to color. If the onions start to stick to the pan add a splash of the deglazing liquid and stir, scraping up any bits that are stuck to the pan. Continue cooking the onions for about 40 minutes to an hour. They will continue to darken going from gold to deep brown as you cook them. Taste along the way.
  3. When your onions have achieved your desired color and flavor you can splash in a little balsamic vinegar if you wish for a final deglaze.
  4. Serve immediately or store in the fridge for 1 – 2 weeks or longer in the freezer.

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