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Balsamic Caramelized Onions

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Over the years, I have shared a few recipes that use balsamic vinegar.  This is not a raw product but it is much-loved in our house. It is a dark, glossy, sweetly sour, condiment that is wonderful for almost anything.  One thing that Bob and  I have learned over time is that not all balsamics are the same.  This is definitely one of those foods that unfortunately the more you spend, the better it tastes.  Try to avoid any balsamic vinegars that have caramel coloring or added sweeteners.   The very best balsamics have grape must as the only ingredient, however that is usually to expensive for most recipes.

Ok, Amie Sue, I sliced and cried over my onions, I marinated them and I just finished dehydrating them, now what?   I am glad that you asked, here are some ideas.

Salads: Caramelized onions add great texture and flavor to just about any type of salad.  Here are a few ideas…

Sandwiches: A layer of these tender onions are perfect for veggie burgers and sandwiches.  Turn something simple into something decadent.

Ingredients: yields 5 cups

  • 3 lbs white onions
  • 3/4 cup olive oil
  • 3/4 cup balsamic vinegar


  1. Slice all the onions into 1/4″ slices.  A mandolin comes in handy for this.  Place in a large bowl.
  2. Whisk together the olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
  3. Pour over the onions and with your hands mix and mix and mix.  Be sure to coat each onion.
  4. Cover and place in refrigerator for 24 hours to marinate.
  5. Place a mesh colander inside of a large bowl and drain the marinade sauce off the onions.
  6. Place the onions on the teflex dehydrator sheets and dry at 110 for 4-6 hours.  Or until they soften and take on a cooked appearance.

Want to make a smaller amount…

Ingredients for a small batch: (same directions as above) yields approx. 1 2/3 cups

  • 1 lb (5 large) white onions
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

In the photo above shows what they look like after marinating for 24 hours.
They are nice and translucent.  Below, is how they look after being dehydrated for 6 hours.
You can use them at any stage!



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14 thoughts on “Balsamic Caramelized Onions

  1. ben says:

    Looks amazing. I should try soon. You can also easily make a balsamic reduction: simply out the vinegar in a glass bowl with a TBS. or so of agave and dehydrate overnight until syrupy.

    • amie-sue says:

      Hi Ben, well that sounds interesting. Thanks for sharing the tip!! What type of vinegar do you use? Have a blessed weekend, amie sue

      • ben says:

        Depends on what’s cheapest & looks least interfered-with (preservatives, added sugar are no-no’s) in the market. Thanks. Good weekend to you as well.

  2. ben says:

    As a P.S. to my previous post: any balsamic vinegar at Whole Foods would fit the bill & work.

  3. pia says:

    They look yummy. How long can you keep them? Guess they have to go into the fridge.

  4. Lindsay says:

    This recipe looks amazing! But if I didn’t have a dehydrator and wanted to make them in the oven, which heat temperature would you suggest using and for how long? Thanks

    • amie-sue says:

      Hi Lindsay, I can tell you that if you do them in the oven, they won’t be raw at that point. Some people use their ovens on the lowest setting and keep the ajar. I haven’t tried these in the oven, so as far as time goes, I would set the timer for 10 mins and then just keep an eye on them. Or do them on the stove top as traditional caramel onions are done. Have a great weekend! amie sue

      • Lindsay says:

        Thanks! So I have been a vegan for nearly 21 months now and I’ve been loving it! I have been (over the pasts about 8 months) starting to convert from vegan, to raw/raw. I especially love using ground cauliflower as the “carb”/”grain” in crusts and other desserts! I do have a question please. About how much of the nutrients are lost when food is cooked versus dehydrated? Because the reason why I haven bought a dehydrator yet is because of the price. Haha because I’m a University student and can’t exactly afford one at the moment. Thanks!

        • Lindsay says:

          EDIT: vegan/raw instead of raw/raw

        • amie-sue says:

          Hello again :)

          I can’t really answer your question as to how much nutrients is lost when cooked. There is quite a bit of controversy out there regarding that, and not to sure that there are any scientific back ups to those claims (either direction). Is is known that some is lost. But the better approach to this is how YOUR body absorbs nutrients and how you feel when you eat cooked or raw foods. To me, that is what it is all about. I use to be 100% raw but my body didn’t respond well to that. It did for a bit but then my digestion shifted and I had to bring some cooked foods back in. When that happened, through my journey of 100% raw, I learned how to select the best quality of foods to eat; the source, is it organic, and so forth. Take your journey slow and really learn to tune into your body. Don’t let labels of raw, vegan or whatever define you. I do however feel that it is important to add in as many raw foods as your body can handle, fresh, vibrant, organic (if possible)… just do your best with the resources you have.

          As far as obtaining a dehydrator, have you ever checked your local craigslist? I have purchased 2 of them at a fraction of the price. Just an idea. :) I hope this helps. Have a great weekend! amie sue

  5. Greta says:

    Thank you so much for this recipe. It’s wonderful. Enjoying them stuffed in a swiss chard wrap, along with grated cauliflower, bell pepper, avocado and kale chips!

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