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6 Quick Red Onion Substitutes: Revamp the Recipes

Let’s talk about those moments when we’re halfway through a recipe and realize we’re out of red onions. It’s happened to us all, and it can throw a wrench into cooking plans.

Relax, we have you covered. Substituting red onions is easier than it sounds, and you might already have some great alternatives at home.

Ever tried using shallots instead? They bring a subtle sweetness. Or maybe green onions? They offer a fresh kick.

Different substitutes can really change up the flavor of your dish. Stick with us, and we’ll show you exactly what to use.

6 Easy Substitutes for Red Onions

While red onions are a staple in many recipes, you don’t have to let their absence hold you back. Here are six easy substitutes for those moments when you find yourself without red onions:

SubstituteTasteTextureRatioSuitable Dishes
ShallotsMild, SweetSoft1:1Salads, Dressings, Sauces
Yellow OnionsPungentCrisp1:1Soups, Stews, Stir-fries
White OnionsMildCrisp1:1Salsas, Pickles, Grilled Dishes
ScallionsMild, OnionyCrisp1:1Asian Dishes, Garnishes
LeeksMild, SweetSoft1:1Soups, Casseroles, Quiches
ChivesMild, OnionyCrispGarnishSalads, Baked Potatoes, Omelettes

1 – Shallots

First off, shallots might be our best bet. They’re small, kind of like red onions’ charming cousins. They’ve got a mild, sweet flavor that’s perfect for almost anything.

Use them at a 1:1 ratio, so it’s super easy.You’ll find shallots are less pungent. They won’t make you cry as much, which is a huge bonus.

We often throw shallots into salads. They add a nice crunch.

Feeling adventurous? Try them in your next stir-fry. Want more substitutes? Check out this detailed comparison of shallot substitutes.

2 – Yellow Onions

Yellow onions are our next go-to. These guys are super versatile and likely already in your pantry.

They provide a balanced flavor that’s not too sweet or too strong. Use yellow onions at a 1:1 ratio for red onions.

They’re great for sautéing. We love them in soups and stews. Yellow onions caramelize beautifully, adding rich flavor to any dish.

Need more options? Check out this yellow onion substitutes guide.

3 – White Onions

For a milder flavor, white onions might be the answer. These are also pretty common in most kitchens.

White onions have a crisp texture and mild taste that won’t overpower your dish. Use them at a 1:1 ratio for red onions.

We like to grill white onions for burgers and sandwiches. They bring out great flavors without being too strong.

4 – Scallions

Next up, scallions! These guys are a fantastic option if you’re in a pinch. Scallions, or green onions, offer a fresh, bright flavor. Use them in a 1:1 ratio for red onions.

They’re super quick to prep. Just chop and toss them in. We love scallions in salads and as a garnish. They add a nice crunch and a pop of color.

For those interested, here’s more on scallion substitutes from our detailed guide. Scallions work best in raw dishes or lightly cooked meals.

5 – Leeks

While leeks might not be an everyday staple, they’re worthy of attention. Leeks have a mild, sweet flavor that’s perfect for subtle dishes. Use them at a 1:1 ratio for red onions.

Chop them fine, and they blend seamlessly into soups and risottos. We love using leeks in potato and leek soup. They add a delicate sweetness without overpowering other ingredients.

Need more leek substitutes? Check the leek substitutes guide. It’s full of helpful info.

6 – Chives

Last but not least, chives. Chives offer a milder flavor than red onions, but they’re still packed with taste. Use them at a 1:1 ratio for red onions.

They add an elegant touch as a garnish to almost any dish. And when chopped up, they make a great addition to salads and dips.

For more info on chive substitutes, check out our guide.