Onions on the Go! How to Freeze Onions

Fresh onions make a great addition to many foods, but they can be a pain to cut up, and there are often leftovers. Freezing them is an excellent solution for when you need fresh onions on the go, or you have left-over onions when preparing a meal. Frozen onions are excellent in cooked meals such as meatloaf, stews, soups, ground-meat mixtures, casseroles, and crock-pot meals. Here’s how to do it:

(Note that freezing onions works best when they’re fully mature. This works for most types of onions.)

  • Step 1
    Wash, peel, and chop the raw onion into whatever size you need. Typically, you don’t want to chop them any smaller than 1/2” or they turn into an ice chunk in the freezer. Blanching them is not necessary.
  • Step 2
    Place the onions in a freezer bag. (Freezer bags provide the best results. They’re thicker and help prevent freezer burn and odor leakage.)  If you’re using a thinner bag, be sure to double-bag the onions or you’ll find your other freezer food tasting and smelling like onions.
  • Step 3
    If you’re brave, suck the air out of the bag and quickly zip it closed. Otherwise, just do the best you can to expel the air. Spread the onions flat in the bag, layering them no higher than 1/2″. This makes it easier to break off frozen sections as needed.
  • Step 4
    Place the bag of cut-up onions flat in the freezer, so that when they’re frozen, you can easily stack them. When it’s time to use the onions, simply break a portion off and thaw it out. Frozen onions thaw easily with or without a microwave. When cooking soups and stews, you can add the onion still frozen.

Frozen stored onions last up to 6 months.

Comments, Kudos, and Thoughts

  1. Tedi Jeen Mower luckily comments...

    Because I grow a lot of onions in my garden for storage, and they don’t all mature enough to store, I chop a lot of onions and freeze them in the fall to use all winter. I use chopped frozen onions in just about everything cooked, including things like scrambled eggs and hashbrowns. I never thaw them first. They are fast and easy to use. I always triple bag when freezing onions. That odor seems to escape even through the plastic. I don’t use frozen onions in salads, or when I fry up my favorite treat–liver and onions! Drying the onions also works well for soups, stews, and potato salad.

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