Easy Sautéed Onion Recipe (15 Mins)

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Heavenly caramelized onions can be achieved in 15 minutes flat. This easy sautéed onion recipe transforms your onions from meh to amazing.

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It’s time your onions got their moment in the spotlight. These humble veggies can go from mediocre to delicious if you cook them just right, and when I prepare caramelized onions, they end up going on everything I cook for days. And, the best part is that this sautéed onion recipe takes only 15 minutes!

Your main asset in this recipe is the sweet onion, which looses its teary-eyed exterior once cooked, turning into a soft, sweet ingredient. To jazz it up a little, I’ve added a hint of balsamic vinegar for an extra oomph that’ll make your onions taste like they came straight out of a gourmet kitchen. These babies go on everything, so you’ll want to make a big batch to top many meals to come.

Why You Will Love This Recipe

  • Balsamic vinegar adds a sweet and thick component that caramelizes your onions beautifully. If you love onions, you may want to try making caramelized onion garlic jam as well.
  • These sautéed onions are the best addition to your sandwiches, wraps, burgers, pizzas, eggs, or anything you’ve got cooking up. For a twist on a classic side dish, consider serving them with sauteed broccoli.
  • Mastering sautéed onions is a basic cooking trick that’ll come to your rescue in tons of ways. For more fundamental kitchen techniques, learn how to make oven roasted garlic.

Difference Between Sauteed and Caramelized Onions

Sautéed onions are made by turning the heat up to medium-high and cooking them until they are tender and translucent. But when it comes to caramelized onions, we’re playing the slow game here, cooking them on the down-low until they transform into a rich, brown little packet of sweetness. In my sauteed onions recipe, the balsamic vinegar helps achieve a similar caramelized taste in a much quicker fashion.

Ingredients

  • 2 large sweet onions
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • salt and pepper
Easy Sauteed Onion recipe (15 Mins) ingredients

How to Make Easy Sautéed Onions – The Steps

Step 1: Peel and slice your onions

Easy Sauteed Onion recipe (15 Mins) step

Step 2: Heat a pan over medium to high heat and add in the olive oil. Then pour in the sliced onions and sauté for 2 -3 minutes, stirring until they start to become translucent. 

Easy Sauteed Onion recipe (15 Mins) step

Step 3: Add in the balsamic vinegar and turn the heat down to medium low. Continue stirring occasionally for another 5 minutes or until the onions are transparent and a little browned on the edges.

Easy Sauteed Onion recipe (15 Mins) step

Variations

There are a lot of ways you can make this easy sautéed onion recipe your own. I’ve included some of my favorite variations below:

  • Slower Method: When you sauté your onions over a lower heat and take your time with it (somewhere around 30-40 minutes), you’re left with a more tender and thick onion mixture. This is definitely my preferred way of sautéing onions when I have the time.
  • Maple Syrup Onions: Instead of balsamic vinegar, add a splash of maple syrup to the pan and make sure your onions are evenly coated as they cook. Your onions will become deliciously sweet.
  • Smoky Onions: Add some extra seasoning into the pan, like smoked paprika or chipotle powder. You could also introduce a touch of liquid smoke for some smoky sautéed onions.

Serving Suggestions

I get so excited about the realm of possibilities I can put these on whenever I make them. They’re so versatile you can add them to almost anything:

  • The Best Hamburger Ever: My version of the best hamburger – high-quality beef, thick-cut bacon cooked crisp, aged cheddar, and a brioche bun. All topped with these delicious sautéed onions.
  • Flatbread White Broccoli Pizza: A quick lunch or dinner pizza that reminds me of home. White broccoli pizza with ricotta cheese and broccoli pair perfectly with these onions.
  • Delicious Over-Hard Eggs: Delicious, nutritious, and no mess. These delicious over-hard eggs are an easy addition to any breakfast and the sweetness of these onions go great over the top.
  • Roast Pork Sandwiches: These onions go great on any sandwich, but roast pork might take the cake with complementary fillings, especially if you include a spread of caramelized onion garlic jam.
Easy Sauteed Onion recipe (15 Mins) featured

FAQs

Which type of onions should I use for this recipe?

You can sauté pretty much any onion, but for this recipe I go with the big sweet ones, like Vidalia, Walla Wall, or Maui.

Can I use a different kind of vinegar?

Go for it! I personally love balsamic as I think it complements the onions the best but red or cherry vinegar work too.

What other seasonings can I add to enhance the flavor?

Don’t hold back when it comes to adding extra spice. I like to include fresh or dried herbs like thyme, rosemary, or oregano. You can also sprinkle in some red pepper flakes for a little heat.

Easy Sauteed Onion recipe (15 Mins) featured

How to Store Easy Sautéed Onions

Once cooled, refrigerate your onions. They’ll remain fresh for up to 3-5 days. You can also freeze the onions in bite-sized portions. Once they’re frozen, pour them into a resealable plastic bag and stash in the freezer for up to 3 months.

When you’re ready to reheat them, just cook them gently over low heat in a skillet. You might need to add a drop of water, veggie broth, or a dash of olive oil.

Easy Sauteed Onion recipe (15 Mins) featured

Easy Sauteed Onion recipe (15 Mins)

Baked Bree
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Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course condiment
Cuisine American
Servings 4
Calories 90 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 2 large sweet onions
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • salt and pepper

Instructions
 

  • Peel and slice your onions
  • Heat a pan over medium to high heat and add in the olive oil. Then pour in the sliced onions and sauté for 2 -3 minutes stirring until they start to turn translucent. 
  • Add in the balsamic vinegar, turn the heat down to medium to low, and sauté, stirring occasionally for another 5 minutes or until the onions are transparent and a little browned on the edges.

Nutrition

Serving: 1gCalories: 90kcalCarbohydrates: 14gProtein: 1gFat: 4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gSodium: 89mgFiber: 2gSugar: 10g
Keyword How to saute onions, saute onions, Sauteed onions
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