Dehydrated caramelised onions (slow cooker recipe)

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This recipe requires preparation in advance!

This recipe will make onions that are very similar to the dried, fried onions you can buy in Indian grocery shops, but without the fat. The quantities given are for a slow cooker with a 5-6 litre capacity - for other sizes, adjust the amounts accordingly. You will need a dehydrator.

This recipe makes about 200g of dried onions.

Dehydrated caramelised onions (slow cooker recipe)
Servings:Serves 2
Calories per serving:801
Ready in:30 minutes
Prep. time:30 minutes
Cook time:None
Recipe author:JuliaBalbilla
First published:26th November 2016

Best recipe review

Looks like chocolate cornflakes?


tastes much nicer than they do!



Printable 🖨 shopping 🛒 list & 👩‍🍳 method for this recipe


  1. Put enough water to cover the bottom of the slow cooker.
  2. Add the balsamic or sherry vinegar.
  3. Pre-heat the slow cooker on high, whilst you are preparing the onions.
  4. Once the water and vinegar are hot, add the onions.
  5. Cover the slow cooker withe foil and replace the lid.
  6. Stir the onions once in a while, but try to do it quickly so that the slow cooker doesn't lose heat and moisture. You can add a little extra water if necessary.
  7. Cook until the onions are starting to brown, about 5 hours.
  8. Remove the foil, and replace the lid at an angle so that there is some space for the moisture to evaporate.
  9. Leave the lid like this, stirring occasionally, until the onions are the colour you want - anything from golden to dark golden brown.
  10. This took me 11 hours.
  11. Once you are happy with colour, drain the onions and keep any liquid for soups or stocks - I found that mine didn't need draining because it had all evaporated in the slow cooker
  12. Pre-heat the dehydrator to 60C.
  13. Because the onions will be wet, I suggest you use dehydrating mats or greaseproof paper in the trays to start with.
  14. Spread out the onions over the trays and dry until crispy, rotating the trays every hour - this can take a further 4-12 hours, depending on the onions, the humidity and how many trays you use.
  15. After rotating the trays a couple of times, I reduced the temperature to 50C as my kitchen was getting too hot!
  16. Once you are sure they are thoroughly dried, store the onions in jars, Lock & Lock boxes or vacuum pack them.

Serving suggestions

Use in soups, stews, crushed over salads or in sandwiches and dips. You can also eat them as a small snack.

Recipe source

  • I started with this recipe from 21st Century Simple Living and worked from there.


You could add some sliced garlic to the onions.

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