Onions are one of my prized crops each year because I think they really do taste so much better than what you can get in the store. They last longer and its always fun to just go out to the garden and pull up an onion. Even if its small its going to taste great.
But you can also use onions from the store for making your own onion powder, salts, and flakes. When you do it yourself you know there aren’t preservatives or other things in the bottle. I would suggest using organic onions, although onions aren’t on the top 20 list for high pesticide residue produce.
Making onion powder or flakes is basically the same as making the garlic powder and you can do both at the same time. Of course, the kitchen is going to smell pretty potent!
2 tsp of onion salt or 1 tsp of onion powder is the equivalent in cooling to one medium onion.
5 steps to making onion powder, salt and flakes
- Peel the outside off the onion as well as any green layers. For powder and salt its best to slice the onions thin and then cut into about 1 inch portions. For flakes you can grate the onion on a box grater on the large side or use food processors grating blade. Place on parchment paper on a cookie sheet. If you are making the flakes put the grated onions in a paper towel and let any liquid absorb into the paper towel for a few minutes before spreading out onto the parchment sheet.
- Heat an oven to 150 degrees (or the lowest setting over 150, mine is 180) and place cookie trays in to dry the garlic. Using a spatula move the slices around as often as you can remember. When dry (about 2 hours), take out and cool them down. You could store your onion bits/straws like this and process them later if you’d prefer.
- If you are making the flakes you are done so skip to #5. For the powder and salt you will next need to grind the mixture. Using a clean coffee grinder (you should have one just for herbs and spices) grind using the pulse a few times. Sift the pieces through a fine strainer and take the larger chunks and either re-grind them or if they aren’t too large keep them separate from the powder and use as onion flakes.
- To make salt mix your onion powder with salt. Recipes are all over the board here in terms of how much salt to use. I would recommend using a good quality salt like a Himalayan or french sea salt. And I would only use 2 teaspoons per tablespoon of powder. You could easily go higher and many recipes do, but my family is trying to watch our sodium.
- Once dried and cooled put your mixture in a glass container or whatever you feel comfortable using (plastic bags etc). Always keep your spices out of sunlight, in a cool dark place.
Note: I have also seen people suggest slicing and then quickly boiling onion slices for about 2-3 minutes, then drying and placing in an oven on low until dried. The storing the onions like that or making them into powder, salts, or flakes.