Whenever I’m planning out a meal, whether it be for a big party or a simple dinner, there’s always one detail I overlook:
I’ll have main courses for days and appetizers for weeks, but when it comes to accompaniments, I’m always a day late and a dollar short. I get so wrapped up in the main event that I get some sort of foodie tunnel vision that can only process dips and meats and pasta.
And I’ll be honest, I never had a problem being this way… until my mother-in-law visited us for Thanksgiving one year. I was halfway through cooking dinner when she pauses, looks around the kitchen, and simply asks, “What about the sides?”
I will never forget the look on her face when I told her there wasn’t any. Or how she immediately started hunting through our cupboards for anything that could be served with the honey ham.
Ever since then, I’ve been slowly collecting side dishes that are easy and can go with just about any food.
And of that list, these oven baked onion rings have quickly become one of my favorites.
Are baked onion rings healthier than fried onion rings?
If onion rings are what you’re craving, then yes, baking onion rings in the oven is a better-for-you choice than eating onion rings that have been deep fried.
To put in the simplest terms possible, deep frying foods not only leaves a residue of oil on your food but it also causes chemical reactions that contribute to all sorts of health conditions (such as heart disease, diabetes, etc). If you’d like to read more about the science behind it, check out this article: Facts on Why Baking Foods is Better Than Deep Frying Foods.
Plus, when you bake instead of fry, you don’t need to worry/store/waste a bunch of oil for just a simple meal. And I don’t know about you, but I’ll gladly clean a baking sheet before wrangling the messy aftermath of oil frying adventure.
How do you bake onion rings?
Step 1 – In a large bowl, add crushed cornflakes, sugar, paprika, accent salt, and garlic salt. Use a whisk or fork to thoroughly mix all of the ingredients together. Once mixed, set the bowl nearby.
Step 2 – In a small, wide bowl, add the two eggs and whip them until thoroughly beaten. Set this bowl beside the one with the breading mix.
Step 3 – Take a sliced onion and dip it in the beaten egg. I like to use a fork to flip the onion a few times, making sure all sides are coated.
Step 4 – Transfer the egg-coated onion to the bowl of breading mix, then toss to coat. Just like with the egg, I like to use a fork to flip the onion and toss the breading on the inside and outside of the onion ring.
Step 6 – Repeat until all the onion rings are coated, then bake.
Step 7 – Enjoy!
Can you reheat onion rings?
I personally believe that crunchy, snacky foods like this are at their best when freshly made. You can reheat them, but personally, I don’t recommend it.
However, if you have leftovers that you simply can’t part with, follow these directions:
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
- Arrange onion rings in a single layer on the baking sheet.
- Cook for 3-5 minutes or until onion rings are crunchy again.
Can you freeze baked onion rings?
Yes, you totally can!
Onion rings can be frozen for up to 2-3 months when stored in a freezer bag or air-tight container.
When ready to eat, let the onion rings thaw in the refrigerator (a few hours should do) and then follow the reheat instructions above.
More great side dishes
Baked Onion Rings
These baked onion rings are sliced thick, lightly seasoned, and cooked in the oven until tender on the inside and crisp on the outside. They're perfect for a healthier, low-hassle side dish or easy snacking.
- Cut onions into 1/2 inch thick slices. Discard the small, inside rings and inner parts of the onion. For good presentation, use only the onion slices that are at least 2 inches in diameter. Once cut and separated, set onion nearby.
In a large bowl, add crushed cornflakes, sugar, paprika, accent salt, and garlic salt, then whisk to mix. Set nearby.
In a small wide bowl, add the two eggs and whisk well. Set nearby.
- To prepare onions: Dip an onion ring in the egg mixture and use a fork to flip it a few times to coat. Transfer egg-coated onion to the dry ingredients, using a new fork to flip the onion over again, pushing the bread crumbs on the onion so that they stick. Once onion is completely coated, place on prepared baking sheet. Repeat this step until all of the onion rings are coated.
- Bake onion rings for 15-20 minutes or until breading is crispy and lightly browned.
Recipe lightly adapted from Taste of Home.