Quick Pickled Onions

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When I was little, my parents’ favorite restaurant was a family owned Italian restaurant in Mt. Carmel, Pennsylvania called Mattucci’s. Even as young as 10 or 12, my favorite thing on the menu was their antipasto, and my favorite thing on the antipasto was the pickled onions! Four plus decades later, I have yet to find a better antipasto (although I haven’t been to Italy YET!)

I still love pickled onions… quick pickling onions mellows the sulfur compounds that make an onion “strong” and adds the tang of vinegar and salt. Plus, by thinly slicing the onion all at once and pickling them, they are ready to add to your next salad, wrap or sandwich without breaking out the mandolin or dirtying a knife. Since they will last in the refrigerator for about a month, I try to keep a jar on hand most of the time.

Quick pickled red onions with thyme in a glass jar on a rustic wooden table.

For these, I use at least 1 part vinegar to 1 part water. If you like things really tangy, you could use more vinegar but since I am trying to cut added sugar out of my diet, I go with 1:1 but don’t add any sugar like some do.

Quick Pickled Onions

1 onion sliced thinly
1/2 cup white vinegar
1/2 cup water
1/2 teaspoon salt
Herbs or peppercorn add-ins as desired


Place thinly sliced onions in a clear jar with any add-ins. 
Heat water and salt in a measuring cup in the microwave until hot.
Stir until salt dissolves and then add vinegar. 
Pour hot mixture over onions. 
Allow to cool a bit and then place the lid on the jar 
and refrigerate.

I like to use red onions because they turn a beautiful magenta color as they pickle, but white onions work fine too.

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