Who says you need a ton of time to pickle onions? Not me! These Quick Pickled Onions will save you when you need a delicious topping for those nachos you’re planning on making soon.


Pickled Onions are one of our family’s favorite toppings. Pickling transforms pungent raw red onions into something tangy and crispy making them super irresistible. We love adding them to our Vegetarian Sheet Pan Nachos or using them as a topping on pork chops like these Herb Brined Pork Chops or Southern Style Pork Tenderloin. The kids even like them all by themselves! 


These Pickled Onions are so easy all you need is a few ingredients (that you most likely already have on hand) and a mason jar. Bring the ingredients (minus the onions) to a boil, allow it to cool, combine with the onions and voilà, in just a bit you’ll have perfectly pickled onions ready to go. The hardest part of this recipe is decided which recipe you want to use them on!


Pickled Onions are perfect on top of nachos, burgers, and salads. You name it, pickled onions would probably add a delicious tangy flavor with the perfect crunch. Just get them started at the beginning of your meal prep and they’ll be done by the time you’re serving your dinner! Plus they will stay fresh in the refrigerator for a few weeks so I’ll make a batch to have on hand when I need to add a little something to a dinner or freshen up a leftover.


One last tip! The key to pickling onions quickly is slicing them really thin. The thicker the slice, the longer it will take to pickle. I recommend about 1/8″ thickness which you can do with a really sharp chef’s knife or a mandoline

Let me know what you think of these Quick Pickled Onions and what you’re going to put them on! 


Quick Pickled Onions

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Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes


  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup white vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons black peppercorns


  • Place the sliced onion in a tall mason jar.
  • In a medium saucepan bring the remaining 5 ingredients to a boil, reduce to a boil and stir until the sugar and salt dissolve, about 1 minute. Allow the mixture to cool.
  • Pour the liquid over the onions, cover and refrigerate. Onions are ready when they’re pink and tender, about 1 hour. Refrigerate onions up to a month. 
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About the Author

Catherine is a mama of three. A Kentucky girl living in California. Here’s what I know: all kids can be great eaters and mealtime must be easy. I create simple, healthy recipes the whole family will love.

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