How to chop an onion

October 17th, 2008 by megan · 3 Comments

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I like this technique because it gives you a lot of flexibility. You can make your onion pieces big or small. And they’ll all be pretty much the same size, which means they’ll cook at an even rate. You can use this technique on shallots, too – I find it’s sometimes easier to use a small pairing knife when chopping shallots.

You’ll need:
An onion (or shallot)
A really sharp knife


1. Slice off the side of the onion opposite the root end.

2. Slice the onion in half through the root, making sure to leave the root intact.

3. Peel each half of the onion.

4. Position your knife horizontally and make a series of horizontal cuts into the onion, one on top of the other, stopping just short of the root end. If you want small onion pieces, keep your cuts close to one another. If you want large onion pieces, you can space your cuts fairly widely.

5. Next make a series of vertical slices, moving from left to right across the onion half. Don’t worry if a couple of slices of onion fall off. Again, if you want small onion pieces, keep your vertical cuts close to one another. If you want larger pieces, space your cuts more widely.

6. Finally, cut vertically through your horizontal and vertical cuts. Your fine-looking onion pieces will come magically tumbling away from your knife.


Katy Tucker Nov 8, 2008 at 6:05 pm

Oh! Thank you, this is great! Didn’t realize you’re supposed to leave the root attached. Would love to see more of “The Basics” they are so helpful! Your site is so amazing. So are you, I think.

Pasta e Fagioli (with Fregola) | Brooklyn Farmhouse Dec 2, 2008 at 9:50 pm

[...] How to chop an onion [...]

Ben Bray Oct 25, 2010 at 1:15 am

I love cooking and I watch on dish network cooking and write recipes down first shows recorded and then I pause em as need too and ten retype em neat plus cook em.Plus love the internet cause all things can do on it.All I did was searched onion costumes and found this website on page 1 bought me to this and I love it.I love taste and smell of onion and garlic too I put garlic and onion in most my foods as tasty as are

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