How to cut an onion properly

December 16, 2014


Learning how to cut an onion properly is one of the first things you learn in cooking school. It’s not common knowledge. You’re not supposed to know how to cut an onion instinctively. But it’s cooking fundamentals 101. You need to know this if you want to become a better cook. Knife skills matter if you want to be efficient in the kitchen.

It’s not hard to learn.  And since onions are used in cooking so much, it’s something you need to know.

So, here’s how to cut an onion properly.  

 1. ALWAYS cut through the root. This keeps the onion intact for the next step.

cutting an onion
2. This is what your onion should look like after you slice through it.  Cut off the little tail at the top.  I know you’re tempted to cut the root off.  DON’T DO IT.

onions cut


3. Now, use your knife to make two horizontal cuts through your onion – one a little bit above the bottom of the onion, and one a little bit below the top.

slicing onion
4. The onion has natural lines you can follow to 5-6 vertical incisions through the onion.

cutting an onion properly

5. Now for the magical part. Make 4-5 incisions this way – and your onion is now diced perfectly.  Making smaller incisions makes a smaller dice, whereas making bigger incisions will make a larger dice.onion cutting


That’s it. This is how you cut an onion. It’s not hard. But you have to follow the series of logical steps to save yourself a whole lot of trouble.


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