Best Ever Blooming Onion
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This mouthwatering Blooming Onion is crispy on the outside and tender on the inside, rivalling the Outback Steakhouse classic. Here you’ll find the secrets for making this impressive-looking appetizer you’ll want to make it again and again… Plus video recipe tutorial!
A Blooming Onion or Bloomin’ Onion is an appetizer consisting of one large onion that’s cut to look like a flower, seasoned, battered and deep-fried to crispy perfection. To eat it, you just break off a piece with your fingers and dip in the special blooming onion sauce. It never fails to impress with its presentation or taste!
It reminds me of Guacamole Stuffed Onion Rings and Bang Bang Shrimp I made before, which are also amazing appetizers that are great to share! You can serve these appetizers at a party or before entrée such as Honey Garlic Chicken, Sirloin Steak, and Baked Chicken with Potatoes and Green Beans.
How to Make a Blooming Onion
The good news is that this Blooming Onion recipe is easy to make with a few tricks that I am going to show you. Find a medium size saucepan if you don’t have a deep fryer.
There are some baked blooming onion recipes out there, but they don’t have that nice golden look, and aren’t crispy either. So if you’re going to make it, you’ve gotta go all the way baby!
Step 1: Slice a Blooming Onion
You’ll need a large white onion to get started. Follow these steps to make an onion blossom:
1) Cut off ½ inch from the pointy stem end of the onion while leaving the other end of root intact, which is important for holding it together. Then remove the papery skin.
2) Position the onion cut-side down and root-side up on a cutting board. With a sharp knife and starting ¾ inch from the root, make a downward cut all the way through to the board.
3) Repeat and cutting vertical slices around the onion about 1/4″ apart at the root, try to make cuts evenly and avoiding overlapping with the previous cut. You will get about 12 to 16 vertical cuts depending on the size of your onion.
4) Turn the onion over and gently spread the “petals” of the onion apart. Open from the outside and working towards the center. If any cuts break off during this process, just remove them. Don’t worry and it happens often. Once complete, it should look like an onion flower. You can also try using one of these onion bloom cutters to make it a bit easier.
Note: 1) Buy the largest white onion you can find at your local grocery store. 2) In case your onion doesn’t open enough after the cut, you can place it in cold water for about 1 hour to help them open. Make sure to drain it well and use paper towel to pat dry.
Step 2: Make the Batter
Prepare two separate medium-large bowls (larger than the size of your onion). In one bowl, combine flour, paprika, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, oregano, salt and pepper, then mix well. In the other bowl, beat eggs, add milk and mix well to make egg wash.
Step 3: Dip the Onion
Double-dipping process is the secret to getting the best crispy texture of the blooming onion. It takes a few more minutes, but you will agree that it’s totally worth the effort! Here is how to do it right:
First, place your onion flower cut-side up into the bowl with the flour mixture. Spoon the drying coating between the cuts. Once the onion is fully coated, lift the onion and turn over to shake off the excess. Reserve the flour mixture.
Then dip the onion cut-side up into the bowl with egg wash, and submerge the onion completely. You can spoon the mixture onto the onion to make sure it’s thoroughly coated with the batter. For the best result, let the onion soak in the batter for 10 minutes.
Lift the onion and let the excess egg wash drip off and place it cut-side up into the flour mixture bowl one more time. Coat it with dry coating again. This process makes sure all that great stuff clinging to the onion turns into deliciously crispy bits by the time it’s finished cooking.
After finishing the dipping process, you can lift the onion and place it on a plate. Freeze for 30 minutes to 1 hour. It’ll solidify and hold together better while cooking.
Step 4: Deep Fry the Bloomin’ Onion
Heat oil in a medium-sized deep pot or deep fryer to 350°F (make sure there is enough oil to cover your onion completely). Take precautions since this is hot oil — use a large slotted spoon or tongs to move the onion slowly into the oil, cut-side down. Make sure the temperature stays close to 350°F.
Fry for about 3 – 4 minutes, and turn the onion over. Fry another 3 – 4 minutes until the onion has turned golden brown. It’s about 7-8 minutes total to get your onion fully cooked. Remove it from the oil and place it on paper towels to drain off the excess oil.
Step 5 (Optional): Make the Blooming Onion Dip
If you like the signature dipping sauce from Outback, here is a really easy way to replicate it: Mix together Thousand Island dressing and creamy horseradish sauce. Adjust the amount of horseradish depending on how spicy you’d like your sauce to be.
This dip recipe is also great for other snacks or appetizers such as veggies or crackers.
How to Serve Blooming Onion
To take your blooming onion to the next level and make it look as amazing as that of Outback. Place the fried onion on a plate and gently open it wider from the center. Then place a small bowl of dipping sauce in the center. Serve it warm with the dipping sauce. You will lick your fingers after every single bite!
Best Ever Blooming Onion (with Video)
- 1 large white onion
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons paprika
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 large eggs
- 1 1/2 cups milk
- 1 quart vegetable oil
- Chipotle, Thousand Island or other dipping sauce, optional
- In a medium bowl, combine flour, spices, salt and pepper. Reserve.
- In another medium bowl, whisk together eggs and milk until combined. Set aside.
- Cut off ½-inch from the pointy end of the onion while leaving the other end of root intact. Then remove the papery skin.
- Place the onion cut-side down on a cutting board. Starting ¾-inch from the root, cut vertically downward all the way to the board using a sharp knife.
- Repeat vertical cuts downward about 1/2-inch apart on the edge, taking care not to overlap with previous cuts. You should get 10-15 cuts in total.
- Turn the onion over and gently open up the "petals" of the onion with your fingers until it resembles a flower. Set aside.
- Dip the onion into reserved flour mixture to cover completely. Then gently shake off excess flour.
- Gently dip into reserved egg mixture to cover completely. For best results, let the onion soak in the batter for 10 minutes.
- Return onion to the flour mixture one more time and cover completely.
- Place the onion on a plate and freeze for 30-60 min to set.
- Fill a deep fryer or medium saucepan with 3 inches of oil and heat to 350°F. Line a plate with paper towel and set aside.
- Fry onion for 3-4 minutes until golden brown. Then turn it over using a slotted spoon and cook several minutes more until golden brown.
- Remove onion to a prepared plate. Serve with optional dipping sauce and enjoy!
- You'll find it helpful to watch the video for this recipe before making it.
- For the dipping sauce, you can mix Thousand Island dressing with creamy horseradish sauce, adjusting the amount of horseradish depending on how much heat you want.
Please read our nutrition disclaimer.
Editor Note: Post first published on August 1, 2016 and updated March 29, 2018 with additional details.