Cutting Onions Tear-Free in Three Easy Steps

I’ve had some of my best cries while cutting onions. After a few vigorous chops, the waterworks start flowing, and the rest of the cutting is done through a curtain of tears. I don’t mind the onion tears, they’re oddly cathartic, but thanks to a super-easy technique I learned in a knife cutting class at the Chopping Block, those days are history.

In three easy steps, the onion is divided into equal minced pieces. No chopping. No crying. Just beautiful onion bits, ready to be cooked.
Here’s how the magic happens.

Step 1 – Split your onion in half, through the root. Then slice off the top of the onion, but make sure you leave the root, because it holds it all together. Then peel the skin off each half.

anatomy of an onion

Step 2 – Putting the root directly away from you, cut slits about 1/4 inch apart all along the onion.

Step 3 – Rotate the onion a quarter turn, and make another set of cuts 1/4 inch apart, perpendicular to the other cuts. The onion will fall apart into perfect little pieces as you are cutting.

And that’s it. Because you’ll be doing no violent chopping and cutting, you’ll cut that onion long before it releases any tear-inducing fumes. Leaving the root on also keeps the crying to a minimum.

Now you’ll be able to save your tears for the right occasions, like watching Beaches, Parenthood, or my favorite movie of all time, Au Revoir Les Enfants.

And if you’d like to win a brand new pair of super sharp knives, enter my giveaway for Chicago Cutlery knives.

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