Oven-Fried Onion Rings with Dipping Sauce

Note: I have since updated this recipe with a version that eliminates some of the problems that readers have had with this one. Please go to the Oven-Fried Onion Rings, Take II post to check it out!

I adore onion rings. Love them, really. Although I hardly ever order them in place of French fries, I jump at the chance to get them as an appetizer. And now that Lent has rolled in and fish fries are in full swing, I love ordering onion rings to much on alongside that battered and fried cod sandwich. (I never claimed to be a health fanatic, now did I?) I wonder how many times a variation of the word “fry” was uttered in those first two sentences? It seems like a lot. Well, you’ll be happy to know that these are absolutely fabulous, flavorful onion rings that taste just like the best of restaurant appetizers, and they were not deep fried. They were pseudo-fried, in the oven. We’ll get to the details in a minute, but first – every good onion ring needs a spicy, kicky dipping sauce to go along with it. Sort of like the old saying that “behind every good man is a good woman”? Same thing. I did a little digging and found a copy cat recipe for the dipping sauce that is served at a certain chain restaurant alongside a certain blooming onion. The recipe rocks – it tastes just like the original. Now, on to the details of how you bake these beauties up…

Some how, some way these taste ridiculously good without being deep fried. The trick to this is a spicy flour coating (cayenne, anyone?) and thick batter (why hello, buttermilk), a roll in the hay with some potato chips, and then (the real trick) is that you coat a baking pan with oil and put it in the oven to heat up before you put the onion rings on it. When you pull it out of the oven the oil is piping out and as soon as you put the onion rings down, they start to sizzle. It’s really comparable to pan frying; it traps in all of the flavor and then the bake in the oven allows the onion to get dark and just a tad caramelized. The combination of the flavors, slight caramelization, the crunch, the kick from the dipping sauce, and you will be hard-pressed to find an excuse for not making onion rings at home. I’m sure I’m going to find some excuse (how about any Olympic event?) to make them as a snack again very soon.

What is your favorite restaurant appetizer?

One year ago: Italian Walnut Pillow Cookies
Two years ago: Chicken and Dumplings
Three years ago: Slow-Cooked Maple-Hazelnut Oatmeal

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Oven-Fried Onion Rings

Ingredients:

2 medium (or 1 large) sweet onions, sliced ½-inch thick


¼ cup all-purpose flour

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper


½ cup buttermilk

1 egg

¼ cup + 1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour


1½ cups crushed potato chips (kettle-cooked chips, if available)


3 Tablespoons vegetable oil


For the Dipping Sauce

½ cup mayonnaise

2 teaspoons ketchup

2 Tablespoons horseradish

¼ teaspoon paprika

¼ teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

1/8 teaspoon dried oregano

Dash ground black pepper

Dash cayenne pepper


Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.


2. Combine ¼ cup flour, salt, black pepper and cayenne in a bowl.


3. In another bowl combine the buttermilk, egg and additional flour, whisking until a smooth batter is formed.


4. In a third bowl, place the crushed potato chips.


5. Prepare the onion rings by first dipping a ring into the seasoned flour, then into the batter (let the excess batter drip off), and then coat with the crushed potato chips. As you finish the rings, place them on a large plate. Repeat with all rings.


6. Cover a baking sheet with a piece of parchment paper. Drizzle the vegetable oil on the parchment-lined sheet and place in the oven for 8 minutes. Carefully remove the sheet from the oven and tilt to evenly coat with oil.


7. Working quickly, place your onion rings on the baking sheet and return to oven. Bake for 8 minutes, then flip onion rings and bake for an additional 6-8 minutes, or until golden brown.


8. While baking, prepare your dipping sauce! Combine all Dipping Sauce ingredients and refrigerate.


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Leave a review below, then snap a picture and tag @thebrowneyedbaker on Instagram so I can see it!

(Recipe for Onion Rings adapted from Not Without Salt, Recipe for Dipping Sauce adapted from CopyKat.com)


All images and text ©

Oven-Fried Onion Rings

2 medium (or 1 large) sweet onions, sliced ½-inch thick

¼ cup all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

½ cup buttermilk
1 egg
¼ cup + 1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour

1½ cups crushed potato chips (kettle-cooked chips, if available)

3 Tablespoons vegetable oil

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.

2. Combine ¼ cup flour, salt, black pepper and cayenne in a bowl.

3. In another bowl combine the buttermilk, egg and additional flour, whisking until a smooth batter is formed.

4. In a third bowl, place the crushed potato chips.

5. Prepare the onion rings by first dipping a ring into the seasoned flour, then into the batter (let the excess batter drip off), and then coat with the crushed potato chips. As you finish the rings, place them on a large plate. Repeat with all rings.

6. Cover a baking sheet with a piece of parchment paper. Drizzle the vegetable oil on the parchment-lined sheet and place in the oven for 8 minutes. Carefully remove the sheet from the oven and tilt to evenly coat with oil.

7. Working quickly, place your onion rings on the baking sheet and return to oven. Bake for 8 minutes, then flip onion rings and bake for an additional 6-8 minutes, or until golden brown.

8. While baking, prepare your dipping sauce!

(Adapted from Not Without Salt)


Dipping Sauce

½ cup mayonnaise
2 teaspoons ketchup
2 Tablespoons horseradish
¼ teaspoon paprika
¼ teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon dried oregano
Dash ground black pepper
Dash cayenne pepper

Combine all ingredients and refrigerate.

(From CopyKat.com)

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