The Unexpected Bread Hack For Cutting Onions Without Inducing Tears

Onions make a great addition to countless meals — from burgers to pizzas, or as a side of onion rings — but before you can enjoy their tastiness, you have to get through one annoying step – cutting the onions, which as we all know, is prone to leading to some unwanted tears. For those curious, onions make you cry because they contain sulfoxides that naturally cause eye irritation, thus inducing tears.

Because no one wants to have to take the time to dry their eyes while they're prepping for dinner, people are constantly looking for ways to avoid the cry effect. Lucky for you, we have an unexpected trick that you may not have heard of before: Putting on a piece of bread in your mouth while you cut. By chewing on the bread, you're allowing the chemical to enter through your mouth, rather than your eyes or even your nose. This method may cause your mouth to water, which could be uncomfortable, but it does achieve the very thing we're after: No tears.

Other ways to avoid onion-induced tears

If you're worried the bread method won't work, there are a few other tips you can keep in mind. First and foremost, a practical tip: Use a sharp knife. This is something that you should be doing anyway, as dull knives can be dangerous, but a sharp knife can also help with the onion crying problem. This is because a sharp knife will damage the onion flesh less than a dull knife, which releases less of the gas that makes you cry.

Next, put your onion in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before you need to start cutting it — cold temperatures slow down chemical reactions, which will delay the onion's release of gas. Another method is to cut the onion underneath the kitchen vent or near a fan, which will sweep the tear-inducing sulfoxides away from your eyes.