The Single Spice That'll Kick Your Homemade Onion Rings Up A Notch

Crispy, golden, and moreish, homemade onion rings are simply irresistible. Make them right and these heavenly halos have a crunchy, flavor-packed exterior and a tender middle. But if you want to kick your classic recipe up a notch, try intensifying that onion-y taste by incorporating a single spice into your batter: onion powder.

This pale yellow seasoning is made by dehydrating washed and trimmed fresh onions until over 95% of their moisture is removed. These parched bulbs are then ground into a fine powder, ready to be used in countless recipes, rubs, and marinades. Imbued with a deep, allium flavor, onion powder can be used as a substitute for any dish where fresh onions are featured. Simply use a tablespoon of onion powder for every medium onion that your recipe calls for. 

Adding onion powder to the wet batter for onion rings lends the dish a deep, onion-y flavor that's both sweet and savory without doubling up on the existing harshness that's already present in the body of the fresh onions; it has a mellower aroma that's stripped of that pungent bite. Further, the dry, concentrated powder (which has a long shelf life of around two years) won't dilute the consistency of your batter in the same way a liquid condiment like soy or hot sauce would.

Add onion powder to beer batter for a bubbly burst of flavor

The best way to use onion powder in your onion ring recipe is to sprinkle it directly into the batter and give it a good mix. Moreover, you won't need to adapt the ratio of dry ingredients, such as flour, salt, and cornstarch. This beer-battered onion rings recipe is a great place to start because it already features a dry seasoning (you can easily swap the garlic powder for onion powder — or add both!). The bubbles in the beer also make the coating extra crispy and give it a delicious malty flavor. Another useful trick is to soak your onions in water first to dampen their pungency

There are many brands of onion powder that don't contain extra sodium or preservatives, which means you won't need to adjust the quantity of salt in your recipe. Just bear in mind that the powder can clump up and become hard if not stored properly, but you can agitate it with a utensil to loosen it up again. 

As always, fry your onion rings in small batches to maintain the temperature of the oil and create that crispy coating on the exterior of each golden hoop. If you add too many to the pan at once, the oil will cool too quickly and the rings will likely clump together due to lack of space.