Easy Quick Pickled Onions
An easy way to elevate almost any dish. Use these flavorful quick pickled onions on tacos, pizza, sandwiches, burgers, salads, bowls...the options are endless! Vegan & Gluten Free. <jump to recipe>
Quick pickled onions are one of the best make-ahead items to keep in your fridge. Not only are they a cinch to make, but once you have a jar on hand, you’ll find you use them on almost everything. They’re naturally a great topping for tacos, but you can use them for so much more than that: pizza, sandwiches, burgers, salads, bowls, you name it.
Quick pickled onions can be used liberally, because the pickling brine takes out the harsh bite that a raw onion has. So, don’t be shy about piling them on! The hit of acid is one of the most surefire ways to liven up a dish - much like fresh lemon juice, capers or vinegar would do. And trust us: when you have pretty pink onions on hand, that’s going to seem like the best route of them all.
You can enjoy your quick pickled onions almost immediately after making them. Just be sure to let them sit in the brine for 30-45 minutes first, to soften. If you’re cooking up a dish that’ll use them, just make the pickled onions first, and let them sit out on the counter as you cook. By the time your meal is ready, so will the quick pickled onions. Otherwise, if you don’t need them right away, pop the jar in the fridge and let them sit for longer. They’ll be even better the next day!
At home, we love spice, so we usually add a couple sliced jalapeno peppers to the brine as well. It gives you a bit more bang for your buck, since you can squeeze it all into the same batch of brining liquid. The brine also works with other veggies as well, so feel free to use what you have on hand. Red onions will dye the brine pink, so if you don’t want any color transfer, double the brine and store other veggies in a separate jar.
EASY QUICK PICKLED ONIONS
MAKES 1 CUP (VEGAN, GLUTEN FREE)
- 1 red onion
- 1-2 jalapeno peppers (optional)
- 1/3 cup water
- 2 tablespoons cane sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt (kosher salt recommended, otherwise sea salt)
- 3/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- Thinly slice red onion and jalapeno peppers (if using). Place them in a large glass jar.
- In a small pot, bring water to a simmer. Add cane sugar and salt, then stir until dissolved. Remove from heat. Add apple cider vinegar. Stir to mix.
- Transfer liquids into glass jar, pouring enough pickling liquid to full cover the tops of the onions/jalapenos. Seal with a lid, let stand on the counter 30-45 minutes, before transferring to the fridge. Pickled onions can be used as quickly as in 30-45 minutes from making, but are best after at least a couple hours (and better overnight). Keeps for 2-3 weeks in the fridge.