How To Make Pickled Red Onions

This post may contain affiliate links, please read my privacy policy.

Pickled Red Onions are tangy and crisp, and the best way to store an onion for weeks in the refrigerator! Quick pickled onions make great salad, rice bowl or taco toppers. 

a fork pulling pickled red onions out of a mason jar

Are you a big fan of pickled onions in restaurants but unsure of how to make them at home? Yes? Good. Then this recipe is for YOU!

Also—good news—it’s quick and easy!

There are 2 key ingredients and 3 ingredients to make these pickled onions extra tasty. You can’t make pickled onions without onions and vinegar. The sugar, thyme, and garlic add extra flavor to make them the most delicious!

If you don’t know what pickled onions are yet, you sure will by the time you’re finished reading this post!

Pickled onions are an excellent way to store an onion when a recipe doesn’t call for the entire onion.

ingredients to make pickled red onions

What are pickled red onions?

Pickling is a process that preserves the lifespan of food by either anaerobic fermentation in brine or an immersion in vinegar. Pickling red onions transforms their original sharp taste and raw texture to a crave-worthy, tangy and crisp condiment.

sliced onion on a cutting board with a knife

How to make pickled red onions

measuring cup pouring hot vinegar into a mason jar

You can whip up a quick batch of pickled red onions in less than 30 minutes! To make these quick pickled red onions:

  1. Bring the pickling liquid to a boil. Combine the white wine vinegar and sugar in a saucepan, and bring it to a boil over medium-high heat.
  2. Thinly slice the onion. While you’re waiting for the vinegar to come to a boil, thinly slice the red onion and garlic. Then add the onion slivers to a mason jar with some fresh thyme sprigs.
  3. Combine. Pour the hot vinegar mixture  over the sliced onion in the mason jar.
  4. Pickle. Let the onions cool for about 30 minutes to room temperature with the lid on.
  5. Serve or store. You can serve them immediately or keep them in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

onions, thyme, garlic, and vinegar in a mason jar

Other ingredients for pickled onions

You don’t have to stick to the recipe 100%, in fact, I encourage you to try other variations! Experiment by using white vinegar, red wine vinegar, or apple cider vinegar instead. For more flavor, try adding peppercorns, pickling salt, bay leaves, red pepper flakes, or oregano.

Whatever ingredients you decide to add, the flavor will continue to increase as they marinate in the pickling liquid.

How to use pickled red onions

I’ve always loved pickled red onions….or pickled anything really. They enhance the flavor of almost any dish and can add a magnificent pop of color to burgers, rice bowls, or salads. They go perfectly on just about any Mexican dish, like these Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Tacos.

slow cooker pulled pork tacos

Tools you need for this recipe

These are a few of my favorite things to make and store my favorite condiment:

Pickled Red Onions in a white bowl

These pickled red onions are so quick and easy you’ll wonder why you didn’t start making them at home sooner! You can store them in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Want to try these Pickled Red Onions?

PIN IT to your condiments or onion recipes board to save it for later!
Find me on Pinterest for more great recipes. I’m always pinning!

pickled red onions pinterest long pin

Did you make this recipe? Post a photo on Instagram and tag me @JZEATS or #JZEATS so I can see what you’ve made! Leave a comment or recipe rating below and let me know what you think, too!

a fork pulling pickled red onions out of a mason jar
Print Pin
3 from 2 votes

Pickled Red Onions

Pickled Red Onions are tangy and crisp, and the best way to store an onion for weeks in the refrigerator! Quick pickled onions make great salad, rice bowl or taco toppers.
Course Condiment
Cuisine American
Keyword Pickled onions
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Resting Time 30 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 45kcal


  • 1 large red onion
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2.5 cups white wine vinegar
  • fresh thyme sprigs, you can add as many as you want


  • Combine the vinegar and sugar in a saucepan, stir until the sugar has dissolved, and bring to a boil.
  • While waiting for the vinegar to come to a boil, thinly slice the red onion and garlic. Add them to a mason jar with the fresh thyme sprigs. Once the vinegar has come to a boil, pour it over the onion in the mason jar. Let them cool to room temperature for about 30 minutes. Store it in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.


*Pickled onions can be served as soon as they are cool, but best results are seen when making them a day in advance.
This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.
Nutrition Facts
Pickled Red Onions
Amount Per Serving
Calories 45 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Fat 1g2%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Sodium 7mg0%
Potassium 49mg1%
Carbohydrates 8g3%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 7g8%
Protein 1g2%
Vitamin C 2mg2%
Calcium 9mg1%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Author: JZ Eats

Eating is my hobby, cooking is my passion. Sharing easy to follow recipes from my kitchen.

Leave a Reply