Caramelized Onions – How to Make Them Like A Pro

caramelized onions

Before you read our post on “How to Make Caramelized Onions” let’s get to what’s important. What will you be sipping on while you wait for your onions to caramelize? An ice cold craft beer or chilled white wine? That’s the good stuff. Now go grab your drink of choice (ours is Chateau Ste Michelle Riesling) and keep reading!

This post will teach you how to Caramelize Onions like a pro. Many of you have enjoyed caramelized onions in our French Onion Dip Stuffed Baguette or on top of a gourmet burger, but how many of you have made caramelized onions at home? Not a huge percentage, based on emails we’ve received from readers.

Follow the “How to Make Caramelized Onions” steps below and these little golden gods will be table side before you know it.

How To Make Caramelized Onions

(PLEASE READ: Don’t skip and be “that” guy):

Onions are filled with natural sugar. This sugar is what “caramelizes” when you cook them over an extended period of time. It’s also why sweet onion varieties work the best. Think Vidalia, Walla Walla, Texas Sweet, Maui, etc.

Onions will shrink to about 50% of their original size once caramelized. Keep that in mind when you’re calculating how many onions you need to use.

Always use a larger skillet than what you think you need. It’s like a “don’t crowd the mushrooms” situation. The onions need to cook as evenly as possible, which means equal heat source for all!

Try and cut the onions as uniform as possible, for even cutting.

Feel free to use only butter or only olive oil vs. half and half. Be a rebel, we dare you.

Don’t take them off the burner to early! If you’ve never caramelized onions before you’ll be tempted to take them off the burner as soon as you see the golden brown color. Show some restraint and keep them cooking! We promise the wait will payoff. Even the pictured caramelized onions could stand another 5 minutes of cook time.

Watch the heat! Feel free to reduce the heat, at any time during baking, if your onions are turning black vs brown.

How to Make Caramelized Onions
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Easy step by step instructions on How to Caramelize Onions.
Recipe type: Condiment
Serves: 1 Cup
  • Sweet Onion(s)
  • 1 Tbsp. of Butter (per onion)
  • 1 Tbsp. Olive Oil (per onion)
  • Salt (to Taste)
  • Pepper (to Taste)
  1. Cut the onions into strips, uniform in size.
  2. Heat a large skillet over medium high heat.
  3. Once the skillet is hot add the butter and olive oil.
  4. Once the butter is sizzling add the onions and stir to combine.
  5. Let the onions sit, uninterrupted, for about 5 minutes.
  6. Turn down the heat to medium and stir to combine.
  7. Repeat for about 20 minutes.
  8. If needed, add an additional tablespoon of butter or olive oil.
  9. If you see the onions are starting to burn, turn down the heat to medium low.
  10. Continue to stir every 5 minutes until you're left with golden caramelized onions.



Learn How To Caramelize Onions like a pro! Easy step-by-step instructions as well as caramelized onions recipes and tips! Click to learn how!

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