Skip to content

Pickled Shallots

Pickled Shallots 1

When I was growing I loved pickled onions. Not the tiny, cocktail type silver-skins, but whole, regular onions. Sadly, in these past many, many years, I have been unable to buy them in local stores. The cocktail types are easily found, and I like them too, but they just aren’t the same.

Unfortunately, after deciding to remedy the situation and make my own, I waited in vain for suitable size ‘pickling’ onions to appear in my store. Accordingly, I hit on using shallots as a suitable substitute as the ones available are about the same size as the onions I would have liked to have used. Naturally, if you wish to reproduce the basic recipe here, you can use onions instead…

The Ingredients

  • 2 cups, more or less, of Shallots (or smallish onions);
  • 1 Tbsp. Coarse Salt;
  • Pickling Spice (see below);
  • 1 tsp. Sugar (or more if you prefer);
  • White Vinegar (I forgot to record the amount, but it was I believe, 2 cups also).


Pickled Shallots 2

First you need to peel your shallots. The easiest way is to trim the ends, put them in a bowl and pour over boiling water to cover. After a few minutes, drain them and slip off the skins. After that, sprinkle over the salt, rub it well in to the shallots and let them sit in the refrigerator overnight.


Pickled Shallots 3

Next make your pickling mixture by putting your spices, sugar, and vinegar in a saucepan and let it come briefly to the boil. For the spices, you can use a tablespoon or so of a commercial ‘pickling spice’ blend, or use whatever suits your fancy. I used a teaspoon each of green peppercorns, coriander seed, and brown mustard. For good measure, I also added a single dried red chilli.


Pickled Shallots 4

Next, put your shallots in a suitable jar, pour over the pickling mix and cap immediately. Store the jar in a cool place (I used my kitchen window which is pretty darn near refrigerator cold). I would suggest you leave them for a month to pickle properly and allow the flavors to blend and infuse).

Finally, a couple of notes…

First… these were delicious; easily as good as any I remember. I thought of using Malt Vinegar instead of white as that seems to be what I recall as being used in the pickles I used to enjoy. I could find none, though, but the white turned out just fine. I was rather tempted to dilute it a little in case it was too sharp but I decided against it and, in the end, I think that was the better choice.

Also, I was rather surprised that the end result was sweeter than I expected for the amount of sugar. This may not be the case with onions instead of shallots but I would be hesitant about adding more sweetener unless you really want a sweet product.


One Comment Post a comment
  1. Love pickled vegetables and want to try these! I don’t dilute my pickling brine either. If I find a pickle is too salty or too sour, it is easy to soak it in a little water a few mins before serving to tame the flavor without losing the picklyness.

    May 18, 2017

Comments, thoughts or suggestions most welcome...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Meet & Eats

The food that I've had the pleasure of meeting and eating.

Uncle Grumpy's Playroom

Current events, humor, science, religion, satire

Food Travel Lover

走过的地方 尝过的美食 留下的回忆

The Odd Pantry

Essays on food

Reputable Sources

Organizing ferments since 2013

that Other Cooking Blog

. food . photo . sous vide .


My Virtual Cookbook to Share My Love and Joy of Food and Cooking One Recipe at a Time

lola rugula

my journey of cooking, gardening, preserving and more

Yummy Lummy

I cook, photograph and eat food with the occasional restaurant review!

Eye Of the Beholder

A pair of eternally curious eyes and a camera...Life is beautiful.

gluten free zen

Taking The Stress Out Of Gluten-Free Grain-Free & Dairy-Free Living

Clayton's Kitchen

Big flavors and fun cooking from a cubbyhole kitchen

Bunny Eats Design

Happy things, tasty food and good design


Dentist chef, just a dentistry student who practice the dentist's cooking recipes in a dentist's kitchen

Mad Dog TV Dinners

Guess what's coming to dinner?


Real Food & Real Opinions

Bento Days

Making bentos for kids

Garden to Wok

Fresh and tasty!

Bam's Kitchen

Healthy World Cuisine

Trang Quynh

everyone is special in their own way :)

Farm to Table Asian Secrets

Full-Flavored Recipes for Every Season


If people say that life is too short to drink bad wine, it means also that life is too short to eat crappy food!

The Blog

The latest news on and the WordPress community.

The Unorthodox Epicure

Confessions of an Aspiring Food Snob

The 好吃 Challenge

1 girl, 273 days, 100 recipes


a recipe sharing and bento blog


Just another site

The Food Nazi

Never try to eat more than you can lift

Expat Chef in Barcelona

From my kitchen to yours

Keeping Up With the Holsbys

a journey into my head and my pantry

Nurul's Culinary Adventures

I Love Food, the Universe and Everything!!


home-cooking recipes, restaurant reviews, International cuisine ,

Naked Vegan Cooking

Body-positive Vegan Goodness

Bites of Food History

Sharing my Experimental Archaeology of Food

Stefan's Gourmet Blog

Cooking, food, wine


A Journey About Food, Recipes And Destinations


Fresh, exciting and adventurous food journey

One Man's Meat

Multi-award winning food blog, written in Dublin, Ireland.

%d bloggers like this: