How To Cut An Onion

An onion is one of the most commonly used ingredients in dishes worldwide. Knowing the correct way of cutting an onion will save you time in the kitchen and prevent your eyes from watering. Here’s how to cut an onion.

With a sharp knife, an onion must be cut in half alongside the root, not through the root. Then, peel off the skin but leave the root in one piece. Lay one half of the onion on its flat side and continue to cut the onion either in slices, wedges, rings or small blocks. 

After the basic steps for cutting an onion have been done, they can be cut differently depending on their uses. Some common uses include dicing, slicing, and wedging. Onions can be cut into strips, slices, rings, quarters, and other shapes based on the recipe or dish. 

How To Cut An Onion

There are several different ways to cut an onion, depending on how you want to use the onion later on.

It is really important to cut an onion with a very sharp knife. Regardless of the dish, there are two main ways of cutting an onion. 

Orbital slices include cutting a half onion across the equator.

Pole to pole cutting means cutting from the stem to the root.

The preferred way is pole to pole cutting, especially if you want to prevent crying. 

4 Ways On How To Cut An Onion Without Crying

To not cry while chopping onions, you must prevent the irritating gas from getting into your eyes.

Try to cover the exposed parts of the onion, like putting the halves face down on the table.

1. Leave The Onion Root Intact

The key to preventing crying when cutting onions is to leave the root in one piece. 

The root, which is the furry end of the onion, is what contains the most gas that causes your tears.

It is essential to cut the onion without cutting through the root. Once you are done dicing or slicing, you can chop off the root part of the onion. 

2. Freeze The Onion

Another way to prevent crying would be to freeze the onion before cutting it.

This can be done for about 2o minutes before slicing.

3. Leave Onion Alone After Cutting

Once you cut the onion in half. Leave it alone to air out the gasses for 15 minutes.

By the time you come back, the gasses that cause you to tear up should have dissipated.

4. Where A Swim Goggle

I know this sounds weird but swim goggles work extremely well. If you are planning on cutting a lot of onions then this is the method I would choose.

You may look weird but at least your not crying.

How To Cut Onions For Kabobs

If you want to cut onions for kabobs, the crucial part is to cut the onion in quarters.

Before that, you must remove the skin and the stem end. After you have the four main pieces of the onion cut, take each part and separate the onion layers. 

Try to cut each quarter evenly so that the onions will all cook the same.

You can do this by guessing where the middle is and then cutting from stem to root going through the middle.

Now each quarter layer can be used and placed on the kabob skewer. 

How To Cut Onions For Fajitas

Fajitas need onions to be cut into slices.

The important part here is to try and make all the portions equal so that they get cooked evenly.

Firstly, the onion needs to be peeled and cut in half. Remember to leave the root intact. 

Secondly, half of the onion can be placed flat side down on the cutting board.

At this point, you can already cut off the stem and root parts.

Lastly, turn the onion so that one side faces you and start making slices from root to stem end. 

Look for the onion lines and make slices there. This method will help you make equal slices.

Continue until you have finished cutting both onion halves, and you should have perfect onion slices for your fajitas.

How To Cut Onions For French Onion Soup

The main ingredient of French onion soup is, of course, onions.

There is a preferred way of preparing the onions to get the right aroma and flavor from the onions.

The onions should be cut into strips that should maintain their shape during the cooking process.

For French onion soup, cut the onions in half using the pole-to-pole method. By using this method, it will be easier to, later on, maintain the same shape as the strips of onions.

Half of the onion should be placed face down on the board.

Cut slices from north to south and angle the knife slightly towards the center to get even strips.

As you read the middle of the onion, turn it around and start slicing from the outside in, making the strips even. 

The strips should be about ¼ and ½ of an inch thick. This specific thickness will ensure the best caramelization.

Getting the strips even for French onion soup is even more important than fajitas. Cooking the strips evenly is vital for the soup to come together in flavor. 

3 Ways On How To Cut An Onion For Burgers

Cutting onions for burgers can involve different ways, depending on your preference. Here are three different ways to cut an onion for burgers

1. Whole Rings

Many burgers have sliced whole rings as a topping.

It is more challenging to slice an onion in this way as you cannot place the flat half side on the board for stability. 

If you decide to go with this option, peel the onion and remove the stem and root.

Lie the onion on one of its round sides and start cutting slices in the form of rings.

Doing this with a knife can be dangerous, so a mandoline may be better. 

2. Pole to Pole Onion Cuts

Pole to pole cutting remains the best way to cut onions, also for burgers.

Once again, leave the onion’s root on for as long as possible.

Once the onion is peeled and cut in half, make slices from stem to root.

For burgers, the size should be between ¼ and ¾ inches. 

3. Diced Onions

Some people also enjoy diced onions on their burgers.

Once the onion is peeled and cut in half. You will want to slice the onions thinly without slicing all the way to the root.

This will give you perfectly shaped small blocks of onion. 


An onion can be cut in many different ways, but the basic steps include peeling the onion and cutting it in half from root to stem (but keeping the root intact).

From here, it depends on what type of onion pieces you need.

Most recipes call for onion slices which require cutting strips from root to stem after placing the half onion face down.

Other cutting styles include dicing, quarters, and full rings.