If you’ve ever wondered how to make those addictive crispy fried onions you can buy in stores, look no further than this French fried onions recipe. They’re hot, fresh, and crispy and oh so satisfying to eat on their own or to sprinkle on a burger, steak, soup – you name it! Next time you’re feeling like kicking your everyday meals up a notch, try making these Fried Onions.
The type of onion doesn’t matter too much. Vidalia onions are delicious, a little sweet, and less pungent. The milk, however, cuts the sharpness of any onion you use for these. As for seasonings, I used salt and pepper but I think these would be delicious with a little dried dill or maybe dusted with Cajun seasoning after they’ve been fried.
- all-purpose flour (I used gluten-free)
- frying oil such as canola, avocado, or vegetable
Soak the Onions in Milk
I think the trick for great fried onions too is to make sure the onions are sliced thin. This way you get ultra-crispy fried onions. As mentioned briefly above, these crispy fried onions use a traditional technique of soaking in milk. Buttermilk gives them a little extra something something if you have it handy but otherwise, regular milk was fine for mine. Soak them for a few minutes.
Coating and Frying Them
In a large ziplock bag combine flour, salt, and pepper. In the meantime, get a good skillet or wide shallow pot you use for frying and fill it about 1 1/2 – 2″ up the sides with frying oil. Bring it up to 350F over medium-low heat. Keep an eye on it, you don’t want it to smoke! Drain the onions well from the milk and toss about half into the bag with flour. Seal it up and shake it, baby! Shake off any excess flour and scatter them in the hot and ready oil. Make sure you have a tray covered with a paper towel ready to catch the golden brown freshly fried onions. Repeat dredging the drained soaked onion slices in the ziplock bag with flour, adding more flour, salt, and pepper if needed.
Crispy Homemade French Fried Onions Recipe
- Deep Fry Thermometer (optional)
- 12" high sided skillet (optional)
- Heat Safe Slotted Spoon
- Heat Safe Tray
- Paper Towel
- Large Ziplock Bag
- 1 medium yellow onion or Vidalia onion, sliced thin into rings or strips
- 1 cup milk or buttermilk for extra tang
- ⅓ cup all-purpose flour plus more if needed
- ½ tsp fine salt plus more if needed
- ¼ tsp fresh ground pepper plus more if needed
- 2 cup frying oil such as vegetable, canola, or avocado oil
- Place cooking oil in a large skillet with high sides. Oil should reach about 1" high up the sides of the skillet or pot. Set aside.
- Place the thinly sliced onions into the milk. Set aside for 15-20 minutes.
- Slowly heat up the oil on the stove over medium-low heat after the onions have been marinated.
- Add flour, salt, and pepper into a ziplock bag.
- Carefully remove the onions from the milk by draining it through a fine-mesh sieve or using a slotted spoon. Allow to drip dry for about minutes.
- Pace paper towel onto a tray. Set aside. This will be where you put the fried onions.
- Add 1/2 of the onions to the ziplock bag and shake to coat with flour.
- When the oil reaches 350F, it is ready to fry. Alternatively, carefully drop one coated onion in the pan. If bubbles form around it immediately, it is ready to fry.
- Carefully scatter coated onions into the oil. Try to not overcrowd the pan. Fry the onions in one layer. Fry until golden brown using an oil-safe slotted spoon to move them around. This should take about 2-5 minutes. Carefully remove leaving oil in the pan and transfer the fried onions to the tray with a paper towel.
- Repeat coating the remaining milk-soaked onions and fry them in the same manner as above. If needed, make additional flour dredge, and add more flour, salt, and pepper to the same ziplock bag.
- These are best served day of and fresh within 1 hour of making. Keep at room temperature on top of a fresh paper towel sealed overnight once cooled. They remain crisp for about 1 day but do not taste as fresh.
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More Veggie Ideas
Check out our Instant Pot Minestrone Soup or our Air Fryer Vegetable Fritters (Pakoras).
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