Crispy Fried Onion Straws are crispy, crunchy deliciousness in every bite! Seasoned, thin-sliced onions are pan fried to golden perfection. These are perfect as a snack, side, or top your favorite burger!
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All of my friends know I am a 100% french fry snob. I have no problem sending them back at a restaurant if they’re not hot or fresh enough. What’s less known is that I’m also an onion rings snob. I love breaded onion rings…beer batter, not so much. Too often, the batter is too thick and the food ends up extra greasy. I always ask the server if the onion rings are breaded or battered. Yes, I get some funny looks.
I very rarely ever deep fry food at home. We all know deep frying isn’t healthy, and it uses a whole lot of oil. So I prefer to pan-fry when I want that golden, crispy crust. Crispy Pan-Fried Tofu is my first tofu and first vegan recipe on the blog, and it crisps up perfectly in a pan. Panko Parmesan Zucchini Chips also work really well, and I will practically eat them straight out of the pan.
I’ve seen quite a few onion ring recipes lately on The Food Network, and it hit me that I’ve never made them at home. So I decided to make Crispy Fried Onion Straws
Oh, I love these crispy, crunchy, beautiful bites of heaven! The seasoning mix adds so much flavor, and I love the crunch in every bite. I like the thick onion rings, but sometimes you lose the breading on the first bite. Crispy Fried Onion Straws are nice and thin, so that doesn’t happen.
KEYS TO THE PERFECT CRISPY FRIED ONION STRAWS
- Slice the onions thin! You want the slices no more than 1/4″. I use a Mandoline rather than a knife, because trying to cut slices that thin is a cut hand waiting to happen. The key for the mandoline is to make sure the blades are very sharp. If not, the onion will split as you slide it down the blade.
- Soak the onion in buttermilk for an hour. This will help add a nice bite, and also help the flour mixture stick.
- Season the flour! I use Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, Paprika, Cayenne Pepper, and Chili Powder.
- Drain the buttermilk from the onions. I use a Fine Mesh Strainer to make the process easier.
- Use tongs or a fork to transfer the onions to the flour mixture, and make sure to fully coat the onions in flour. Tap off any excess flour and add to the oil
- Season the Crispy Fried Onion Straws with Coarse Sea Salt as soon as they come out of the oil. I also add a little more paprika before serving
Note: If you don’t make all of the Crispy Fried Onion Straws at once, store the drained onions in a sealed container in the fridge overnight. Bread them the next day, and they’ll fry up crunchy and delicious!
CRISPY FRIED ONION STRAWS: PAN FRIED OR DEEP FRIED?
I have a mini deep fryer, but for these Crispy Fried Onion Straws I prefer to pan fry them. You only need 1/2″ depth, so you use less oil. I use a 12″ Nonstick Fry Pan, which has a much wider surface area than my deep fryer. For the oil I prefer Canola Oil, but you could of course use Vegetable Oil.
There are a couple more keys to remember:
- Make sure the oil is hot enough before you start adding the onion straws. If not, the onions will soak up the oil and get greasy. I drop a small piece of onion into the pan; it’s ready when the piece immediately begins to bubble and raises to the surface.
- Cook the Crispy Fried Onion Straws in batches. If you overcrowd the pan, they won’t cook properly.
- With such a thin cut, the onions will cook very quickly…about 2 minutes tops
HOW TO ENJOY CRISPY FRIED ONION STRAWS
Don’t forget to season the Crispy Fried Onion Straws with sea salt as soon as they come out of the oil! That fresh hit of salt on the scorching hot onion rings is fabulous. I also add a little more paprika.
I finish the Crispy Fried Onion Straws by dipping them in a simple garlic aioli, but you can use your favorite sauce. I’ve also used my Coconut Milk Ranch Dressing, and it is a divine combination.
SHOP THIS RECIPE
- In a bowl, combine mayonnaise, mustard, garlic, lemon and paprika. Mix well, and season to taste with salt & pepper. Allow to rest in fridge until ready to use
- Slice onion into 1/4" slices using mandoline. Separate onion pieces and place into large bowl. Add buttermilk and rest in fridge for one hour
- Drain buttermilk from onions
- Add flour, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, cayenne pepper and chili powder into plate and mix well to combine
- Using tongs or a fork, transfer onions in batches into flour mixture. Toss well to combine. Tap off excess flour and transfer to a clean plate.
- Heat oil in large fry pan. Test the oil with a small piece of onion. When onion immediately begins to bubble and raises to the surface, the oil is hot enough
- Add onions in batches to fry pan. Don't overcrowd the pan, or the onions won't cook properly
- Watch carefully, as onions will only take about 2 minutes to cook. Remove onions as they finish, and lay on paper towels to drain. Immediately sprinkle with sea salt
- When completely finished, sprinkle with additional paprika, if desired.