How to Julienne Onions

by Samantha Lowe ; Updated September 28, 2017

Julienning onions is a way of adding a delicate flavor and look to your meal.

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Julienning foods is a means of cutting them so they cook quickly while retaining their thin, sticklike shape. Also called matchstick cutting, julienning is most commonly used with vegetables. Preparing julienne onions allows them to be added to a variety of recipes, from soups to sauces. This task may appear daunting to many home cooks; however, with a sharp knife, a steady hand and slow technique built up over time, cutting julienne onions is the perfect skill to add to a cooking repertoire.

Cut both ends off the onions, the top and root bottom, and discard them.

Cut one long slit in the side, only as deep as the peel. Remove the peel by lifting it up on one side of the slit and pulling it away from the onion. Discard the peel.

Cut the onion in half down the length, so it creates a half-circle shape, and lay one of the halves, flat side down, on the cutting board.

Cut the onion into thin strips, about 1/16-inch thick if possible, starting at the right end of the onion and moving to the left.

Repeat step 3 and 4 with the other half of the onion.

Separate all the cut onion pieces with your fingers.


  • Try to cut the onions quickly and cover them with plastic wrap until ready to be used in order to keep your eyes from being irritated.

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About the Author

Based in Kingston, Canada, Samantha Lowe has been writing for publication since 2006. She has written articles for the "Mars' Hill" newspaper and copy for various design projects. Her design and copy for the "Mars' Hill" won the Associated Collegiate Press Pacemaker award in 2008. Lowe holds an Honors BA from Trinity Western University, and a MSc in Occupational Therapy from Queen's University where she is currently doing her PhD.