Pickled Onions
Canning and Preserving,  Recipes

Pickled Onions

Pickled OnionsLast Summer I had tacos that came with pickled onions as a topping, and something about the flavours made me slightly obsessed.  I thought about making pickled onions on and off for ages, but couldn’t find a recipe I really liked the look of, so I sort-of forgot about it.  Then a few weeks ago I was in Montreal for the Folk Alliance International conference, and I was served a dish with the most delicious pickled onions ever, and it reminded me that they are easy to make and that I ought to just give them a shot and see if I could come up with something I liked.

I read a lot of recipes, and this was what I thought would come closest to the delicious flavours I’m trying to approximate – not too much sugar or salt, a bit of fresh oregano, and cider vinegar for depth of flavour.  

The colour is completely natural – they just turn that beautiful magenta-y red overnight – which is one of the fun things about them.

Pickled OnionsI’m still fiddling with this recipe – I made these with garlic, which on day 2 I thought wasn’t great, but on day 10 I thought was perfect – and I’m still deciding if the sugar-salt-vinegar ratio is how i want it. You can also fiddle with the spices – peppercorns or red pepper flakes for some spice, or allspice berries or other fresh herbs. It’s a nice small batch, and onions are inexpensive, so you can experiment without much fear.  I’ll update as I go, but for now, here’s my basic recipe!

Pickled Onions


  • 1 large red onion, cut into rounds and separated into rings
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 clove of garlic, peeled and cut in half
  • 2 sprigs of fresh oregano (or other seasonings to taste)

Pickled Onions


  • A 500 mL mason jar or similar
  • Knife
  • Chopping board


  1. Slice onion into rings and place in mason jar
  2. Place onions, garlic, vinegars,  sugar, and salt, in a medium saucepan and heat until boiling.  Allow to simmer for 5-10 minutes.
  3. Add oregano to mason jar
  4. Pour vinegar and onion mixture into mason jar.
  5. Allow to pickle at least one day for flavours to develop.
  6. Eat and enjoy!

Pickled onions are particularly good as a topping for tacos or meats like pulled pork, and add a nice tangy kick.

Pickled Onions


For more delicious recipes, visit my Family Recipes page!







Pickled Onions