Balsamic Onion Flowers Recipe- Easy, Frugal, and Fancy- Healthy, Paleo, and Vegan too!

My absolute favorite types of recipes to make are those that look all fancy and taste great, but are actually very easy to make and quite frugal to boot.
This recipe is exactly that. Made out of whole onions, they look like lotus flowers and are a beautiful appetizer to serve at a fancy dinner. When I served these at a family get together, everyone oohed and ahhed over it and really enjoyed it, but it was the easiest thing I served at that meal.
I didn't make up this recipe myself- I saw it in a video a bit back on facebook, only made with a purple onion. If you make it with purple onions, it'll be prettier, but also pricier- they work just fine with the white onions but feel free to use purple if it floats your boat.
And of course, these are very versatile and good for most diets- they're Paleo, vegan, allergy friendly, GAPS legal, etc...

Balsamic Onion Flowers Recipe- Easy, Frugal, and Fancy- Healthy, Paleo, and Vegan too!

Onions- one per person. Use larger or smaller depending on how big you want them to be. I prefer to use medium onions.
Olive oil
Balsamic vinegar (if you don't have, just mix wine vinegar with a bit of sweetener of your choice)
Black pepper

1. Cut off both ends of your onions, and peel them carefully, being careful not to nick the layers under the peel with the knife.

2. Make cuts in the onion, cutting it first into quarters, and then into eighths, being careful not to cut all the way down to the bottom. The distance I cut this onion is about the max you want to cut each cut- cutting them a smidgen less is even better.

3. This is what your onions should look like when you finish cutting them.

4. Mix balsamic vinegar, olive oil, salt, and pepper in a bag- I didn't measure how much I did. I just did approximately equal amounts of vinegar and oil, then added salt and pepper that seemed "right".
Add the onions and let them marinate for 20-30 minutes or so.

5. Put the onions, cut side up, on a lined baking tray. Leave enough room between them so they have room to "open their petals". You don't need to pour the extra sauce on the tray- it just burns. Whatever the onion absorbed in the marinating is what flavor it'll have.

6. Bake the onions at 350 until they start opening up like flower petals and the sides lay flat down and the middle stands up like a lotus flower. If you don't cook it enough the onion will be partially raw- in my opinion it's better to err on the side of caution and cook these longer.

7. Enjoy! Serve cold or hot.

Ever seen the video for onion flowers like this with purple onions? Have you tried it? Thoughts?
Does this look like a recipe you'd try?

Penniless Parenting

Mommy, wife, writer, baker, chef, crafter, sewer, teacher, babysitter, cleaning lady, penny pincher, frugal gal


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  1. This looks so pretty, and the flavors sound perfect for each other!

  2. I like to make a couple of these to serve alongside a platter of other roasted vegetables. Never served them individually plated, but sure looks pretty!

  3. I've not seen this before. It seems like a great thing to put in the oven after a roast meat or casserole (or near the end of roasting time) for an easy go along. The sweet tang of balsamic vinegar sounds wonderful with roast onion. Various onion varieties tried with different herbal vinegars sounds fun to try too. For instance where I live sweet onions can be got pretty cheaply in season to make a large lotus to share.

  4. I love blooming onions. These seem like a healthier alternative!

  5. I make these with red onions and serve alongside of sesame seed stir fried broccoli. I use about a tablespoon of sesame oil to a very large bunch of broccoli.

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