Oven-Fried Onion Rings

These oven-fried onion rings are less mess than the deep-fried version, but just as crunchy and delicious!

These oven-fried onion rings are less mess than the deep-fried version, but just as crunchy and delicious!

Yesterday, I teased you with a recipe for a copycat version of the dipping sauce that is served alongside the bloomin’ onions at Outback Steakhouse… today I’m back with a killer recipe for oven-fried onion rings. All of the fabulous flavor and crunch but without the hassle of deep frying!

These onion rings are absolutely delicious – crunchy and full of authentic fried flavor without needing to actually boil a vat of oil and smell up the house. I baked them up for an appetizer a couple of Sundays ago and everyone absolutely raved about them – they couldn’t believe how crunchy they were, and all agreed that the accompanying dipping sauce definitely put them over the top.

These oven-fried onion rings are less mess than the deep-fried version, but just as crunchy and delicious!

The secret to these amazing onion rings? The breading is made from crushed saltines and kettle-cooked potato chips! The saltines help to absorb extra grease from the potato chips, which keeps them from becoming too oily while still retaining a great “fried” consistency and flavor. Genius!

I also love that the seasonings (cayenne, salt and pepper) are added to the buttermilk mixture instead of the initial flour dusting. I think this helps give the onion rings great flavor, as the buttermilk batter adheres in a much more pronounced way than the initial dusting of flour does.

If I haven’t convinced you that these are amazing, I have a killer recipe for beer-battered onion rings that’s amazing, but I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised by how great this recipe is. More than one person said that these were the best onion rings they’d ever had!

These oven-fried onion rings are less mess than the deep-fried version, but just as crunchy and delicious!

One year ago: Banana Cream Pie
Four years ago: Cookies and Cream Ice Cream Cake
Five years ago: Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie
Six years ago: Black Forest Cake

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Oven-Fried Onion Rings

These oven-fried onion rings are less mess than the deep-fried version, but just as crunchy and delicious!


Ingredients:

½ cup (71 grams) all-purpose flour, divided

1 egg, at room temperature

½ cup (120 ml) buttermilk, at room temperature

½ teaspoon salt

¼ ground black pepper

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

30 saltine crackers

4 cups (106 grams) kettle-cooked potato chips

2 large yellow onions, cut into ½-inch rings, discarding any less than 2 inches in diameter

6 tablespoons vegetable oil


Directions:

1. Adjust oven racks to lower-middle and upper-middle positions and heat oven to 450 degrees F. Place ¼ cup of the flour in a shallow baking dish. Whisk the egg and buttermilk together in a bowl. Whisk the remaining ¼ cup flour, salt, pepper and cayenne into the buttermilk mixture. Pulse the saltines and potato chips together in a food processor until finely ground; about 8 to 10 pulses. Place the crumb mixture in a second shallow baking dish.


2. Working one at a time, dredge each onion ring in flour, shaking off excess. Dip rings in buttermilk mixture, allowing excess to drip back into bowl, then drop into crumb coating, turning rings to coat evenly. Transfer coated onion rings to a large plate or tray.


3. Pour 3 tablespoons oil onto each of two rimmed baking sheets. Place the baking sheets in oven and heat until just smoking, about 8 minutes. Carefully tilt the heated sheets to coat evenly with oil, then arrange onion rings on the sheets. Bake, flipping onion rings and switching and rotating position of baking sheets halfway through baking, until golden brown on both sides, about 15 minutes. Briefly drain onion rings on paper towel-lined plate. Serve immediately.


Note: The onion rings can be breaded in advance and refrigerated for up to an hour. Let them sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before baking them; if baked while still chilled from the refrigerator, the onions will not cook enough to soften and will remain crunchy.


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(Recipe from Summer Entertaining from Cook's Illustrated)


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This recipe was originally published on June 16, 2010.