I love a good pickled onion, and I always thought they were so difficult to make. It turns out, they are super easy, and so much better homemade than store-bought. Once you get the base of pickling down — the pickling liquid — you can flavor the pickle with whatever flavors you want. Mustard seed, fresh dill, fennel, rosemary, red pepper flakes — you name it. 

Lately I’ve been putting pickled onions onto breakfast tacos. They are the perfect burst of bright flavor and a little crunchy to add texture. These pickled onions come together in about 10 minutes, and then just need to come to room temperature before you serve them. However, they can last in your refrigerator for up to two weeks. I suggest making a batch of pickled onions to have around whenever a craving strikes. 

I’ve also used this recipe to pickle things like jalapeños, carrots, radishes and cucumbers. If you are pickling something like carrots or radishes, which are a little bit tougher than onions, I would suggest letting them sit in the hot pickling liquid a bit longer before serving — about two hours instead of just one, as indicated below.


Quick Pickled Onions

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Servings: 8

  • 1 large red onion, sliced thin
  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
  • ½ teaspoon whole mustard seed
  • ¼ teaspoon whole fennel seed
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup white wine vinegar
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • Thinly slice onions; I like to use a mandoline. Place onions in one large Mason jar, or two smaller ones.
  • In a medium saucepan, heat the vinegar, water, sugar, salt and honey over medium heat. Stir for 2 to 3 minutes until everything is completely dissolved.
  • Add peppercorns, mustard seeds, fennel seeds and rosemary to the onions in the Mason jar.
  • Pour the pickling liquid over the onions.
  • Cover with the lid, and let it cool to room temperature — about an hour.
  • Either serve warm as a side dish, or put in refrigerator for up to two weeks.
  • Enjoy!