10 Best Onion Powder Substitutes You Should Try

onion powder substitutes
11 min reading time

One of the most widely used spices in the world is onion. The sweet, tangy, somewhat sour, and umami flavour of onions can be enjoyed in any meal, whether it’s prepared with fresh onions, onion flakes, ground onion, or onion powder.

If you run out of onion powder, a common cooking spice, you may need to find a suitable replacement.

You can’t go wrong with either fresh onions or onion flakes because they both taste and smell similarly. Onion powder and onion flakes are easy to prepare in a home dehydrator. But let’s say you’re stuck without the best alternatives.

Alternatively, you could use onion salt, garlic salt, onion salt, chopped celery, celery seeds, leeks, onion paste, raw garlic, garlic powder, chopped chives, shallots, scallions, fennel bulbs, and/or onion paste.

What Is Onion Powder?

Onion powder is a type of seasoning that is made from dried onions. It is typically used to add flavor to food, but it can also be used as a way to add color.

Onion powder is easy to find in most grocery stores and can be used in many different recipes.

When using onion powder, it is important to remember that a little goes a long way. When adding onion powder to a recipe, it is best to start with a small amount and then taste the food before adding more.

Onion powder can be used in both savory and sweet dishes. It is commonly used in soups, stews, sauces, and vegetables. It can also be used to add flavor to baked goods such as breads and muffins.

How To Make Onion Powder?

If you love the flavor of onions but hate the hassle of chopping them, then onion powder is a great solution.

Making your own onion powder is also much cheaper than buying it at the store. Plus, you can control the level of salt and other spices in the mix.

To make your own onion powder, simply dry some onions and then grind them into a fine powder. Start by slicing the onion thinly, then Spread the slices out on a baking sheet and bake at a low temperature until they are completely dried out. This can take several hours, so be patient!

Once the onions are dried, transfer them to a food processor or blender and pulse until they are turned into a fine powder.

Add salt and any other desired spices, then store the mixture in an airtight container.

Now you have your very own homemade onion powder that you can use to add flavor to all your favorite dishes!

10 Common Onion Powder Substitutes

So whether you’re looking for a substitute to use in a recipe or just want to know what other spices you can use instead of onion powder, keep reading!

1. Grated Onion

Grated fresh onion - onion powder substitutes
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For those looking for a unique way to add flavor to recipes without relying on pre-made onion powder, grated onion is a great option! It is one of the close onion powder substitutes.

Using fresh grated onion as a substitute is often much more flavorful than the pre-made variety and requires almost no effort.

All you need is an onion, some grating tools or even julienne cutters, and you will be able to get that complex umami-packed profile with the right texture to add an extra dimension of flavor to your dish.

Start by adding half the amount of grated onion called for in the recipe, and then add more to taste. You can also use grated onion in place of chopped onions called for in a recipe.

Plus, if you don’t use all of it at once, the remaining grated onions can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for future use! Grated onions can also be used as a topping for salads, soups, and other dishes.

2. Onion Salt

Onion salt - onion powder substitutes
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Onion salt is a common seasoning that can be used as a substitute for onion powder. It is made by combining salt and onion flakes or granules, and can be found in the spice aisle of most grocery stores.

When substituting onion salt for onion powder, use a 1:1 ratio. Keep in mind that the salt content of onion salt will affect the overall flavor of your dish, so you may need to adjust other seasonings accordingly.

Additionally, onion salt can be used as a finishing touch on cooked foods, whereas onion powder is best used during the cooking process.

Whether you’re out of onion powder or simply prefer the taste of onion salt, you can add it to soups, stews, baked dishes, sauces, or toppings. It’s a handy ingredient to keep in your pantry.

3. Shallots

Shallots - onion powder substitutes

Shallots are an underrated vegetable when it comes to adding flavor to dishes. Not only can they be sliced and used to garnish dishes, but they can also be a great substitute for onion powder.

Shallots are sweeter than onions and actually have a milder flavor, making them the perfect ingredient if you want the flavor of onion without the sharpness.

They can also be minced or diced up and added to dishes as a substitute for fresh onions. Whether you’re looking for something in place of onion powder or simply want to add a unique flavor, consider using shallots – your dish will thank you!

4. Fennel Bulbs

Fennel bulbs - onion powder substitutes

Fennel bulbs can be a great substitute for onion powder. Fennel bulbs have a similar flavor to onion, but with a bit more sweetness and subtle tones of anise. Plus, they add a great crunch to all kinds of dishes.

Chopped or sliced finley, the bulbs can be used to replace onion powder in paleo and vegan dishes alike. Plus, it’s a great way to elevate your cooking with interesting flavors and textures! They’re high in moisture, so you may have to reduce the amount of water or another liquid you’re using to make your dish.

Fennel bulbs are also very easy to produce. They can be grown in most climates and do not require a lot of care.

Fennel is also loaded with vitamins and minerals like Vitamin C and potassium, making it a huge bonus for any dish you’re trying to take up a notch.

5. Scallions

Scallions - onion powder substitutes

Scallions can be a great substitute for onion powder! They have a mild onion flavor, so they can replace that flavor in recipes without being overpowering or adding too much saltiness.

You can use them in the same proportions as you would onion powder. Just be sure to chop them finely so they blend in with the other ingredients. Plus, they look great as garnishes and toppings on dishes. Scallions add color, texture, and an extra element of flavor to any dish you make.

If you want a little more kick, you can add a pinch of cayenne pepper or garlic powder to the mix. Remember that scallions will lose their flavor quickly, so it’s best to add them just before you’re ready to serve.

With a little trial and error, you should be able to find a combination of spices that suits your taste.

6. Garlic Salt

Garlic salt - onion powder substitutes

Garlic salt is an often overlooked substitute for onion powder, but it can be an unexpectedly delightful replacement.

Making the switch can add a more rounded flavor to a dish, as well as a slight garlicky tinge. It has a similar flavor to onion powder but is milder and more palatable for some people.

The two seasonings are two variations of the same: both are made from a combination of salt and dried onion or garlic.

Garlic salt has a little extra flavor pinch to it due to its blend of garlic powder and sea salt, so adding it in place of onion powder may give your recipe just what it needs! Whenever you need that onion-y kick, consider relying on the double-whammy of garlic and salt instead.

7. Celery

Celery- onion powder substitutes

Celery is an incredibly versatile kitchen ingredient, so much so that it can even act as a substitute for the classic onion powder.

Adding a savory kick to dishes without using onion powder! Celery comes with its own unique flavor that you’ll find spicing up your meal in no time. Great for any dish with a bit of a smoky flavor, celery serves as a handy and delicious alternative to onion powder. And the best part? It can be found almost anywhere and is incredibly affordable.

Whether you want extra flavor in your soup or you’re looking to cut back on sodium intake from store-bought seasoning blends, celery makes a great alternative. Plus, you have access to its nutritional benefits too: not only is celery low calorie and full of vitamins, but scientific evidence shows that it can help reduce inflammation and could even ease digestive discomfort.

Don’t be afraid to experiment – add some chopped celery to your morning omelette or sprinkle some over top of your favorite soup for an extra splash of spice. The options are endless and the results will always surprise you!

8. Onion Flakes

Onion flakes- onion powder substitutes

Onion flakes are quickly becoming the preferred ingredient among home chefs and professional culinary artists alike. With their bold flavor, versatility, and convenience, onion flakes offer an unbeatable substitute for onion powder.

All you have to do is rehydrate them with a few tablespoons of water and they’re ready to be thrown into any recipe! Onion flakes can be added for a big flavor boost without sacrificing texture or moisture. The main difference is that the flakes have a larger surface area so they provide more of an onion flavor than the same amount of onion powder.

One tablespoon of onion powder is equivalent to one teaspoon of onion flakes. Also, it’s important to add them to the dish early on so that they have time to soften and release their flavor.

Furthermore, unlike powdered onions which can make dishes too salty, using onion flakes gives you much more control over the amount of sodium in your meal.

So the next time you plan on using some onion powder, consider reaching for some onion flakes instead!

9. Chopped Chives

Chopped chives - onion powder substitutes

Chopped chives have a delicate onion flavor and can make an excellent substitute for onion powder in recipes.

They will add a bit of crunchy texture and zest, giving the normally bland dishes that extra burst of flavor you were searching for.

Chives are also more nutritious than onion powder as they are packed with antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. For the health-conscious chef looking to boost their recipe’s flavor without adding too much sodium, chopped chives are an excellent choice!

10. Jarred Minced Onion

Jarred Minced Onion - onion powder substitutes
Image Source: savorandsavvy.com

Jarred minced onion is a great substitute for onion powder. It has the same intense flavor and can be added to anything from soups to sauces.

When substituting jarred minced onion for onion powder, use half as much. This will ensure that your dish has the same level of onion flavor without being too overwhelming.

Jarred minced onion is also a great way to add Onion flavor to dishes without having to chop onions. simply add a teaspoon or two to your dish and you’re good to go.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can I substitute fresh onion for onion powder?

Yes. You can substitute fresh onion for onion powder, but the flavor will be different. Onion powder is a dried form of onion that has been ground into a powder. It has a more intense flavor than fresh onion and is often used in recipes to add flavor or to act as a thickener.

Fresh onion can be substituted for onion powder in most recipes, but the flavor will be different. Fresh onion is less intense and has a more delicate flavor than Onion powder.

Can I substitute onion powder for garlic powder?

Both onion powder and garlic powder can work as substitutes for each other, depending on what you’re looking for in a dish. If you want a strong onion flavor, then onion powder is the way to go.

Garlic powder will give more of a subtle garlic flavor. Keep in mind that both spices can vary widely in terms of their potency, so it’s always best to start with less than called for and add more to taste.

Can I make my own onion powder?

Yes, you can make your own onion powder by slicing an onion and then baking it in the oven at a low temperature until it’s dried out. You can also use a food dehydrator if you have one. Once the onions are dried out, you can pulse them in a food processor to create a powder. Store the powder in an airtight container.

Can I substitute onion powder for dried minced onion?

Yes. You can use an equal amount of onion powder in place of dried minced onions in most recipes.

How much onion powder equals one onion?

It depends on the type of onion and the brand of onion powder. Generally speaking, though, 1 tablespoon of onion powder is equivalent to about 1/3 cup of chopped onions.

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