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How To Make Easy Caramelized Onions

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Last Modified: December 6, 2023
Published: December 6, 2023

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Your Slow Cooker Works Its Magic While You Sleep

Do you love delicious golden caramelized onions? Would you love a way to make easy caramelized onions? Once I saw this idea, my immediate first response was, "Sign me up!"

Never underestimate the depth of flavor caramelized onions can add to many dishes. I adore what they bring to many recipes. But the process takes time. It's a labor of love.

It's not something you can rush, so it's not something impatient people like me want to do when mealtime looms. I have a hard time standing around waiting and stirring, stirring. Maybe you do it better.

When onions caramelize through long, slow cooking, their natural sugars come out, and the onions transform into beautiful, sweet, brown, tender shreds of deliciousness. We don't want to miss out on that, do we? Of course not!

sweet delicious easy caramelized onions

Great news! Let your slow cooker do the work of making easy caramelized onions overnight while you sleep. There's no watching and no stirring! More good news! Right now is a great time to buy a slow cooker. Prices are low, and you'll have all winter to take advantage of all the amazing ways to use one!

Better news! You can make a big batch of easy caramelized onions and freeze them for another day! It will speed up weeknight meal preparation without missing out on the magic only they can bring to a dish.

If you don't know how fabulous easy caramelized onions taste or wonder what to do with them, here's a great article from the onion people: The National Onion Association, "NOA," Seven Ways To Use Caramelized Onions.

How To Wake Up To Delicious Easy Caramelized Onions

Vidalia onions are ideal for easy caramelized onions, but any sweet onion will work. Add two tablespoons of brown sugar to the crockpot if you can't get sweet onions. Peel the onions and cut them into thin wedges to make half-moon pieces.

Put the onions, butter, Worcestershire sauce, salt, and pepper in the slow cooker, put the lid on, and walk away! Stir them a time or two again if you're around, but if you don't, it still works.

After twelve hours, the onions transform into sweet, tender, brown ones that add magic to almost any dish. You are still golden if you let them cook for up to fourteen hours. They will be a little darker and less liquid, but they'll be delicious.

You can use these onions immediately or cool them and keep them in the refrigerator for a week. For longer storage, please put them in freezer bags or containers and freeze them to use later. Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman, suggests freezing them in silicone ice cube trays so you can pop out a few to add to casseroles, soups, frittatas, pizzas, or omelets! That sounds like a great idea!

Yield: 2 quarts

Easy Caramelized Onions

easy caramelized onions

Here is the easiest way ever to make sweet, tender, delicious caramelized onions. Let your crock pot do all the work while you sleep and wake up to a beautiful batch of perfectly caramelized onions.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 12 hours
Total Time 12 hours 15 minutes


  • Four pounds of sweet onions, Vidalia onions are ideal
  • 2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 Tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar IF sweet onions are not available


  1. Peel onions and cut into thin wedges.

  2. Put the onions in a crock pot or other slow cooker on low.

  3. Add butter, Worcestershire sauce, salt, and pepper.

  4. Stir to combine, and stir again when the butter melts.

  5. Cover and cook on low for at least 12 hours. You can cook them on low for up to 14 hours to get the desired brown color and reduce the liquid.

  6. Use immediately or cool and refrigerate for up to a week, or you can put them in freezer bags or containers and freeze them for later.

I love finding a time and labor-saving method for doing things in the kitchen. We are all in a hurry and try to pack so much into every day of our lives. That's what's great about an idea like this.

You can spend a few minutes while you prepare dinner or tidy up the kitchen and create something that will enhance the flavor of several upcoming meals. That's a kitchen win!

P.S. Hang on to this post if you are a gardener and end up with a bumper crop of onions; you can preserve them this way; you will save lots of space in the pantry and have less spoilage by preparing some of the onions this way. Or pull it out when a local service organization is selling Vidalia onions by the bag!

One of my resolutions is to make better use of my slow cooker this winter. As you might guess, I'm more of a microwave and Instant Pot type of gal, 😏 but I'll be working on it! Here's one idea I do use and love! Slow cooker baked potatoes!

If you liked this recipe, you are my people! If you like this recipe, please share it on your social media accounts like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter! It would sure tickle me, and I would be ever so grateful!

If you haven't already, please look for me on Facebook and Pinterest, where I will share easy, delicious, family-friendly recipes every week!

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2 comments on “How To Make Easy Caramelized Onions”

    1. Thank you! Cook them unitl they are as brown as you like! Since the moisture and sugar content varies in the onions, the cooking time can, too!

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