Monday, May 10, 2010

Can I Get the Onion Rings, Instead of the Fries?

Onion rings have an odd place in American cuisine. Everyone seems to love them, and they're on the menu at just about every burger joint in the country, yet their popularity as a side dish to meat on buns doesn't even come close to the venerable French fry.

The reason is as obvious as it is annoying – they cost extra. Fries always come with the burger, but if you want those crispy, golden brown rings of pleasure, it's going to be $2.00 more.

Sure you crave the crunchy goodness, but the thought of paying extra to upgrade a side dish at Big Bad Billy's Burgers and Beers seems downright un-American.


So, as much as you may want them, and as much as you may fantasize about what a nice treat they'd be while standing in line, when you come belly to cash register, you just can't pull the trigger.

Well, I have good news – this onion rings recipe is so easy, and so amazingly crispy, you can now make up for all those years of deep-fried denial by making these at home.

If fact, these are so good, you may want to consider charging your friends and family a little bit extra for the upgrade. Enjoy!




Ingredients:
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup cornstarch
2 tablespoons instant mashed potatoes
big pinch of cayenne
1 cup cold club soda
2-3 cups Panko (Japanese-style breadcrumbs), or as needed
fine salt to taste
vegetable oil for frying
2-3 yellow onions, cut into 1/4-inch rings
*Note: the amounts in the video were for a smaller batch. The amounts above will make a nice large batch, enough for about 8 servings.

315 comments:

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Chef John said...

Yes!

Monique Charles said...

I cannot WAIT to try this!

Some people have complained about where to find plain Panko. They really can be found at most major grocery stores. Often times in the "Asian" or "International Food" aisle. ...I buy a lot of Panko.

I love onion rings, but have never tried to make any (due to a corn dog recipe fail).

Screwed Up Texan said...

Chef John, if people want an alternative to the instant potatoes, they should try rice cereal...like the kind you give babies. I have a ton of it (from 3 kids who never ate it) and I use it all the time to thicken soups. It's basically like instant potatoes, but made with rice instead. Look in the baby food aisle for it. Thanks for helping me find another use for it!

Wahinetoa said...

Hi. Just wanted to say WOW, beautiful recipe. Got me hooked on the crunch. Thank you kindly!

Someone asked about Cornstarch - I thought it could be known as Cornflour too. Mostly used for thickening sauces etc.

Anonymous said...

Greetings from the Netherlands! We just made these and think your recipe is fantastic! Thank you!

Angelina P. said...

Hi Chef John,

Greetings from the Netherlands! just wanted to thank you for this fantastic recipe!! thanks!!

Anonymous said...

Chef John, I must admit these were the best onion rings I've ever eaten. And my family agrees. We will be making these again. Thanks

Rose et ses petits plats said...

I tried your recipe, so good!

Here is the link if you want to see the result :)

http://lespetitsplatsderoseinenglish.blogspot.com/2012/01/onion-rings.html

Anonymous said...

This recipe is AMAZING! I added a lot of cayenne pepper and some garlic powder cause I'm a garlic fiend and it was delicious! My whole family loved it!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Chef John: Just came across your recipe which I would just love to try this week-end. However, since it's only my daughter and me, an 8-serving is way too much for us. A 4-serving would be perfect. Can I cut in 2 all the ingedients required for the recipe? Would love your thoughts on this. Merci beaucoup.

Anonymous said...

Chef John.... I really shouldn't be watching your videos at 9:45 at night. They say midnight snacking is a bad habit.

Anonymous said...

Aloha Chef John, I stumbled on this blog clicking on the video on your onion rings and loved it. Checked out the exact ingredients and measurements, then read most of the comments. Thanks so much. I'm going to try this out tomorrow. We love onions, and Ihave all the ingredients, so why not.
Mahalo from Hawaii, V.Naehu

Anonymous said...

can i use this batter for making deep fried oreos or mars bars?

skymile said...

Hey Chef, You have the "BEST", Recipes on the Net.
To all the Folks asking about weight conversions I use this as a rule of thumb, It always works,
Liquid weight, 1 Cup = 8oz
Dry weight, 1 Cup = 4oz
For Metric Conversions 25 Grams = About 1 oz - for wet or dry measurements. Hope it helps.

Chef John said...

I appreciate you wanting to help, but some of your info is off!

dry cups aren't 4-oz. Flour would be close, but for thing like salt or sugar this would be way off.

Also there are 28.35 grams in an ounce, not 25, but only for weight, not volume.

Anonymous said...

can i make french fries with this recipe or can you suggest me any other good recipe for crispy fries?

Anonymous said...

Hey!!!!

Chef john, do u remember ur valentines chocolate stone's ... I tried making them the other day and well ........ They turned in to balls :( I hope this one will do better !!!


Fanks

A random 12 year old

Bradly said...

Hey Chef John! This is the first recipe that got me following some of your stuff. Tried it out today. After realizing I was frying the things for too long (never fried anything before) they turned out the correct color, but I was wondering: Is it normal for the Panko bread crumbs to clump together extremely fast? I noticed that my best onion rings were coming out the first two or three that I did in the panko pan. It seemed that the consistency of my mixture for coating the onion rings was allowing it to just slip off the onion ring a bit too much. That resulted in me using A LOT more panko than I wanted to if I wanted that stuff to coat my onion rings nicely. Just wondering if that is normal at all. Maybe some advice as to what I could to do thicken the mixture a bit more so that it won't drip off as easily?

Thanks again!

Chef John said...

You can just add a little less water if it's too thin.

Anonymous said...

I had followed the reciepe to the tee, my only question is,How do i keep the batter from coming off when i begin to fry them?

Anonymous said...

hello chef john,

i followed the reciepe to the tee, the only thing that went wron with it, it that the batter came off the onion rings, what can i do to keep the batter from coming off??

joyfulparadise said...

Chef John I'm new to your cooking videos and have been DYING to make these onion rings. I made it for a gathering and OMG!!!! It was a smash! The host (my gf who is an onion ring fanatic) said they were better than any restaurant's version!! Thank you so much! And btw, you are so stinkin hilarious. I love the humor in your videos. =)

Brent said...

I must say, I am addicted to this blog and the videos. I just love it how easy a lot of this food is to make. Time to go restock my shelves.

budataymom said...

Yumm!!! This is amazing! Thank you Chef John!
After making onion rings we decided to branch out. Glad we did! Also made cheese chunks and fish pieces.

mitch said...

chef john,

would adding salt to the batter work?

Chef John said...

you could, but not sure if that will effect crispiness

oxyclean said...

Hi I made these they turned out awesome thank you so much for the recipe.
But I do have a question. Can I add salt before frying them? Because I had a hard time salting them evenly.

Anonymous said...

can you bake them?

Goddess said...

Hi Chef,
I tried this recipe today and they came out the exact way how it is put in your video. I got thrilled :D
My rings were actually in the size of large bangles. So they looked like gold bangles. We enjoyed it as our evening snack today :). Thanks so much!

Donna said...

Hi Chef John
Just so you know, I am addicted to your website/videos......
I have tried many of your recipes and they have all turned out wonderful.
For this recipe I used Betty Crocker potato flakes (about 79 cents) and used egg plant and onions. I tested a couple of them to see if they were crunchy after about 15 minutes and they were !!! Eggplant is usually pretty soggy but it was crunchy too !! Thank you so much for sharing this unique idea for batter !

hawkturkey said...

It worked great using carbonated beer (I used Miller High Life) instead of club soda, and normal dry bread crumbs (though I'm sure panko would have made it even better). It took about 3-1/2 minutes in 350F oil, and timing didn't seem super critical. As for some cooking directions that say "fry in a single layer on the bottom of the pan" -- don't worry if using deep fat. Just fry in reasonable sized batches; they will remain separate and float to the top of the oil.

People who make these should know it creates a lot of waste onion pieces and nubs, even without the misfortune of breaking rings. (Though there is nothing wrong with battering, crumbing and frying a broken ring, it just isn't as pretty.) With gnarly onions that have several whorls inside (which can't be told by looking) there is even more waste. One thing that can be done with these pieces is to fry them directly in the oil at the end till they brown, then drain and save them refrigerated for other savory dishes.

hawkturkey said...

One person recently asked about salting the batter. I did this and still experienced no problem getting the bread crumbs to stick -- the cornstarch and potato flakes still held the crumbs like a champ and the final product had an almost breadstick like crunch. Something from half a teaspoon to a teaspoon of salt in the recipe proportions listed would be enough. Most of the coating isn't the batter, but the crumbs. I suppose one could also try salting the crumbs -- I didn't.

Anonymous said...

I read this recipe yesterday and went out this morning and bought the ingredients and whipped up a batch. I did add another tbs of potato flakes to be sure the batter would thicken and it did. I used vidalia onions. Everything said positively about the recipe is true. They are fantastic. I intend to try other vege's and will let you know how they do.
Thanks chef John, I really like all you r videos and will be trying more.

Mangala said...

Chef John,

I've tried the onion rings from your site many times and all my guests praised me. I gave them your link. I also tried the french fries last week and it came out so so so so nice. Can I post these two recipes with my own pictures in my blog leaving a link to your post?

Chef John said...

Sure! Thanks!

Luz From Argentina said...

Hi Chef John I tried your onion rings but someone told me to let the raw onions in milk for one night to extract the acidic taste. Is this true? let me knoe please!!

Chef John said...

no need!

Maia said...

Hello chef john at what temperature may I fry the Onions? Thanks!

Chef John said...

350

Grandma Brenda said...

OMM (Oh my Merlin)!!!
Why Merlin? It is because these onion rings were magical!
This was my first time ever deep frying and it turned out great.
My son and his family were amazed at how good they were.
My daughter-in-law even took pictures of the food. She said, "I bet it was a Chef John recipie."
Because everytime I cook something everyone loves, I tell them I got it from Chef John.
Love you Chef John!

Anonymous said...

In your video Chef John, do you put one onion ring at a time? Or do you just put the whole batch of onion rings into the pot?

Chef John said...

You can do more than 1. Depends on size of pot. I did a few at a time.

Renee said...

I´m from Brazil and would
like to thank you for the onion rings video.
Easy and wonderful recipe.
Now I don´t have to dream about Burger King all the time,
anymore.
The recipe worked fine.And it´s a good recipe to fry chicken too.

nick012000 said...

Out of curiosity, if you use this recipe to make fried chicken, do you need to use a seperate batch of batter and breadcrumbs as the onion rings to avoid potential salmonella poisoning?

Anonymous said...

Hello there! Thank you for the wonderful recipe! However, I have a question that I'd like to ask.
Is it possible to make cornstarch using cornflour and water? If so, what are the quantities for each to make 1/4 cup? :)
Thank you!

Chef John said...

No you can't!, sorry!

aisyah Chronicles said...

tried today :) But instead of using instant mashed potatoes, I used potatoes crisp (something like pringles) in Original flavour and mashed it into powder. Then I added it into the batter. Not sure how this is supposed to taste like (since we don't have it here) but not bad XD

Laura Marafioti said...

Hi,

am i able to make them and leave them overnight? or is it better to cook them as soon as they are made?

Chef John said...

Cook fresh!

jen valdez said...

ok. im gonna try this for the first time ever. as a treat to myself on my bday tomorrow. but i dont have any club soda (we dont have that here boo hoo). so is it ok to use vodka instead? or cold water like in tempura?

jen valdez said...

hi chef john. awesome recipe here. ill be trying this tomorrow for my bday. however, we dont have club soda in this country boo hoo. so is it ok to use vodka instead? or cold water like in tempura?

Chef John said...

Yes, ice water! Enjoy!

Chef John said...

And happy birthday!!

Anonymous said...

can i use potato starch instead of instant mashed potatoes

Chef John said...

Yes!

Cookilicious said...

Hello Chef John,
thanks to your videos on youtube, I found out that cooking can be fun. Thank you so much. Today, I tried to do onion rings, I followed your recipe and they were FANTASTIC, crunchy and yummy. The only thing is that,after dropping them in the frying pan, they were ready in less than a minute. But, somehow they looked very brown, like BURNT. Although they tasted fine. Did I mess something up? What do you think? thank you

Chef John said...

Maybe oil was a little hot?

Sam P. said...

Hello. I just came by to tell you that I saw these about a week ago over at Pinterest. We bought the panko yesterday and had them for supper. They turned out GREAT. They were SUPER crunchy. I did not have cayenne pepper, so I substituted that for hot paprika. The dough/dip/coat/whatever was too thin, so I added some more flour to it and it turned out great. The thing is, I live in Mexico, and flour in different parts of the world absorbs different amounts of water, or something like that. ANYWAY... thanks for the recipe!
Sam

Jen said...

Finally got to try this today! They're crispy over an hour later. Yum!

Cookilicious said...

You're right, I preheated the oil, and it was really hot. My bad :) Chef john, would you please teach us how to cook Chicken Caesar Salad? Thank you.

Rathai said...

Hi there Chef John,

I really want to include the instant mashed potato but I have never seen that product here (in Europe). Is that something you can make at home? As I read, it's cooked and mashed potatoes, that has been dried?

Chef John said...

Sorry, but doesn't work with fresh potato. You can just leave out.

Anonymous said...

can purple onion be used??????

Anonymous said...

Hello chef John,
Can i substitute club soda with sprite??
And you said on one of the comments that instant mashed potatoes can be left out, if i leave it out, does it effect the taste or the crunchiness?? :(
(we don't have instant mashed potatoes powder in stores here. :// )

Unknown said...

Hi,I'm from Brazil I loved the crunch of these onion Rings!!! They are absolutely delicious.Unsted the Panko I used Bread crumbs and add some parmesan cheese and time to it.
Tks for sharing!!!

zeldapikmin4 said...

K i have to tell ya, this is by far the best onion ring recipe EVER! I just made them and they are absolutely delicious , and very crispy!!!! Thanks Chef John for sharing!!!!

Zerene said...

Hello Chef,

Is the club soda/light beer a must? Don't have it in hand. Can I use regular water instead?

Chef John said...

Bubbles are better. Can't say must or not, but better.

Anonymous said...

Chef John,
Can I blanch these for restaurant use? And then finish them to order?

Chef John said...

Never tried, but I don't think so.

Anonymous said...

Should i salt this rings like fries right after i drain the excess oil or in the mixture of the batter? thnx

Chef John said...

i've been doing both lately. ;) Add 1/2 tsp to batter, and then season when hot.

Anonymous said...

When you mention to have the oil at 350 degrees, what setting on the stove would the equivalent be to reach that level, medium, medium high, high? Thank you.

Chef John said...

Use high until the temp gets to 350, then adjust to maintain.

Wendy Z. said...

I don't have club soda or beer, the only options are San pelegrini ( lemon) or coke? would it work?

Chef John said...

sorry, not sure.

Anonymous said...

If you're in Mexico, "cornstarch" is "Maizena." And club soda is Topo Chico.

Que se estas en mexico, "Maizena" es "cornstarch." Y "club soda" es Topo Chico.

I'm always amazed at some of the comments. "I didn't have this, so I used that, and I did this this way instead of that way. And this is a TERRIBLE recipe--it didn't work!"

Just don't blame the messenger if you eat the secret message BEFORE you read it!

But on the other hand, reasonable substitutions/additions are the essence of experimentation. For example, my first thought as I watched this was, "Hmmm, wouldn't beer make a tasty o-ring? Or maybe add a little tequila?"

Thanks, Chef John!

ayuz said...

hello. can I use normal plain water instead of club soda? thanks.

BULWARK said...

Hello Chef,

Can we keep them in a deep-freezer after battered and cooked later on when they are still frozen? If so, do you think that we would get the same taste as the fresh ones?

Thanks in advance for your comment.

Serif from Istanbul

Chef John said...

Sorry, never tried to freeze!

Abril Gonzalez said...

Hi Chef!
I am a recent subscriber and I wood like to say that you are awesome!
I was also wondering if you have any sauce for the onion rings?
fries have ketchup onion rings have...?
Thanks!

Abril Gonzalez said...

Hi chef!
I was waiting if theres any special sauce that you made? We usually easy our rings with buffalo sauce or ranch but we want something different.

the fleeting life said...

Club soda seems expensive, is there a replacement I can use instead of it? What's the purpose of club soda anyway? Is there any brand that comes to mind when you use the ingredient?

Sr. Calígula Varney said...

Chef, in Brazil do not have instant mashed potatoes... What can I use?

Chef John said...

Sorry, but no sub that I know of.

Jonathan Baugh said...

Why club soda? Why not beer?

jaq1993 said...

hi i live in holland what is cold club soda. is that water or something
greet

Uğur Akgöz said...

amazing, my wife run to the kitchen!

Uğur Akgöz said...

They look and sound amazing, my wife run into the kitchen immediatly. :P

Tayyub Khakan said...

Hi Chef John! I made these onion rings for dinner, and thought I'd try it with zucchini...and according to my family, they were delicious! The onion rings were perfect, thanks for the recipe!

http://stylopoint.com/

Darian Ravenwolf said...

Hello Chef John, I am wandering if you wouldn't by chance happen to have a good beer batter that would work on union rings as well as for like chicken or fish? Or would beer in the place of the club soda work in your union ring recipe?

Chef John said...

Yes, beer will work here!

Salmon Sushi said...

Hi Chef John,

I'm a huge fan of your recipes.
By any chance, can you use milk or water instead of the soda or sparkling water?
I don't seem to have soda or any sparkling water.

Thanks!

Chef John said...

you can, but the bubbles make it work better!

Unknown said...

Dear Chef John,
In your video your onion rings took like 2-3 minutes to cook. When I put my onion rings in the oil they turned black instantly. Also my batter stayed watery after ten minutes. I'm so confused -.-

Anna Berman said...

Hello. Chef John is on vacation and I will be answering question while he is taking a well deserved break. Did you check the oil temperature with a thermometer? It sounds that perhaps the oil was too hot. The temperature should be 350 degrees F to properly fry these onion rings. With the batter, it should have thickened just enough to adhere to the onion rings. If it wasn't thick enough, you could add a little bit more of instant mashed potatoes or flour. Hope you give this one another try.

Adam J said...

Incredible videos chef. Random question, did you use a regular digital camera with the video function to record these? If so, what kind of camera did you use? Or did you use a regular video camera? Thanks so much.

Chef John said...

I use a canon t3i on video setting now, but don't remember what i used for this one! Maybe the camcorder.

mikaachuuu said...

Hi Chef John, looks so good! I wanna try it soon but can I use 7-up instead of club soda?

miss iera said...

what can i use to substitute club soda? i dun think i can find that here around my place

Patrícia Silveira said...

What is ''club soda''? It is like sparkling water?

*I'm from Portugal...

Chef John said...

Yes!

Valerie said...

hello from Brazil, chef John
I want to thank you, for this amazing recipe,
as I didnt have all the ingredients at hand at the time I wanted to try it I made the recipe with a few changes and it still works perfectly,
I actually used a regular soda I had and put the salt on the breadcrumbs (regular) we dont have the panko.
and even making this changes it was amazing!!! thank u so much

Johnjo R said...

Can I let this sit on the fridge? if a have some leftover batter

Jia Ling Chan said...

can i substitute club soda with water?

themasterofcook said...

Hello chef John

i found this video in Youtube:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KQpPOVDBN9M

I'm sure that is a steal from your beautiful channel.
Very sad thing.

Bye. :-)

halpwr said...

Hi Chef John, I am a HUGE fan and pretty much learned how to cook the last 6 months, just from YOU.

These onion rings are simply perfect.

I was wondering if I could use this recipe and cook some fried chicken?

Chef John said...

Not sure, because the chicken would have to cook a lot longer than the onion ring. Sorry!

Lu Jr said...

Chef John.. you, sir.. are my hero! I absolutely love all your recipes and look forward to what exciting recipe you'll come up with next! Continue success!

Josh Suarez said...

To everyone asking about using sparkling water / bubble water / carbonated water... It is the same as club soda. Club soda just has a tiny bit of salt in it. :)

Glen Kunter said...

Chef John these are fantastic! I tried them over the holiday break for the kids and their friends. They all eat out a lot because they are either in High School or College and they loved them. Half way through my Panko crumbs got too soggy so I added Italian flavored Panko and used season all salt. That made a big difference in taste and just as good as your original recipe! Thank you so much, we now have something else to add to our tailgate menu!

all the best,
Glen

Cerberus Bindweed said...

Hi Chef John

I am from Aus and I just wanted to double check cornstarch is the same as conflour and club soda is the same thing as soda/sparkling water correct?

Chef John said...

Yes and yes! :)

lay said...

I don't have all-purpose flour at home, can I use pancake mix or more corn starch for substitute?

AquaJoe said...

Onions rings turned out great! I used Italian bread crumbs instead of panko, and sweet water 420 IPA instead of club soda. Very flavorful had to add a little more corn starch and instand potatoes to thicken it up a bit more! Thank you Chef John for all the videos!!

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