Quick pickled red onions can be effortlessly prepared with only a few simple ingredients.
Quick pickled red onions are easy to prepare since they quickly absorb their flavor soaking in a sweet and tangy vinegar solution. The pungent heat from the sliced red onion dissipates overnight into a sweet crunch and a vibrant pink color. Its flavor is as bright as its appearance.
Quick Pickled Red Onion Ingredients
- Red onions - You can also make refrigerator pickled onions with any other raw onions, like yellow onion or sweet onions.
- Apple cider vinegar - Red wine vinegar, rice vinegar, or white vinegar can also be used.
- Granulated sugar - Sugar takes the bite off the vinegar, but it can be left out if you want a more astringent flavor. You can even substitute a different sweetener such as brown sugar, honey, or maple syrup.
- Kosher salt - You can substitute pickling salt or table salt too, but cut the amount back to 2 teaspoons.
- Customize this recipe - You can add different flavors with seasonings and fresh herbs. Suggestions include black peppercorns, crushed red pepper flakes, and garlic cloves.
How to make it
To cut an onion for this quick pickled red onion recipe, you want thin slices. Begin by slicing the onion in half through the stem with a sharp knife. Remove the dry outer leaves and then lay them cut side down on a cutting board. The onion can now be thinly sliced.
The vinegar, water, sugar, and salt are briefly boiled on the stovetop in a small saucepan to combine the sugar and salt. Once the sugar and salt have dissolved let the pickling solution cool. Then add your sliced onions to a quart jar (or similar glass jar) and fully submerge the slices with the brine. Place the onions in the refrigerator for at least one hour to pickle, but for the best flavor overnight is better.
How Long do Pickled Red Onions Last?
When stored properly in the refrigerator in an airtight container your pickled red onions will last about 2 weeks. I find the flavor and texture to be best the second day, as the color will slowly bleed out and the red onion slices will begin to soften over time.
Uses for Quick Pickled Red Onions
Use these refrigerator-pickled onions to brighten the flavor of your favorite dishes. Here are some of my favorite recipes to add these to:
- Truffle Burgers - These pickled onions really cut through the richness of the truffle oil.
- Salmon Salad Sandwich - The bright flavor is perfect for pairing with smoked salmon.
- Brat burgers - You will never want to want to enjoy bratwurst with any other onions again.
- Jamaican Jerk Pork Burger - These sweet onions are my favorite way to add a nice contrast to the spicy ground pork patties.
- Grilled Corn Salad - The bright flavor really makes this vibrant salad pop!
- Red potato salad - These tangy onions are the perfect addition to jazz up any potato salad.
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Quick Pickled Red Onions
- 1 large red onion thinly sliced
- 2 cups apple cider vinegar
- 1 cup water
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- Whisk vinegar, water, sugar, and salt together in a saucepan and bring the pickling liquid to a boil. Cook until the sugar and salt are fully dissolved then remove from heat and let the brine cool to room temperature.
- Place onion slices in a sealed container and add the vinegar mixture until covered. A 1 quart mason jar works perfectly for this.
- Let sit for at least 1 hour, but it is best if left in the fridge overnight.
This recipe was originally published on April 15, 2015 here on FoxValleyFoodie.com.