What is an Onion Holder?

wiseGEEK Writer

If you love adding the savory taste of onions to your food, but hate how difficult it is to chop round onions, there’s a kitchen gadget that you’re likely to enjoy: the onion holder. This utensil looks like a comb or pick and is often made of stainless steel. Instead of holding the onion in your hand as you chop, you insert the teeth into the onion, and hold onto the top grip of the onion holder. This allows you to chop safely without putting your hands in the way of your knife, and it can also help you line up your onion slices so they are chopped in uniform size.


Another benefit of the onion holder is that chopping onions can cause onion smell to linger on your hands, no matter how hard you scrub. Since you’re not holding onto the onion, you’ll miss out on having to scrub and scrub to remove the onion scent from your hands. This can be quite a bonus if you love onions in your food but find the price of smelly hands too high to pay. You still will need to peel the onion by hand, which means you won’t entirely get rid of the onion smell.

Onion holders can also be used to make thinly sliced onions for cooking.
Onion holders can also be used to make thinly sliced onions for cooking.

You can’t say the onion holder is a miracle worker. It still won’t keep you from having your eyes tear up when you chop onions. But it certainly can be a useful if you love adding onions to your cooking. Certain dishes, like onion rings, which require you to chop in fairly even width circles, are made much easier because the teeth of the onion holder do provide that extra guide for keeping sizes approximately the same. Some do complain that the holder may not be large enough if you’re using especially large onions. This is true; the gadget is best used on medium-sized yellow, white, red or purple onions.

If you already have enough kitchen utensils and don’t want another gadget in your home, there is a way to get around using an onion holder, especially if you are chopping onions into pieces rather than trying to create even round slices. To create more stability, slice the onion in half, and then place it flat side down on your cutting board. With the flat side down, the onion can’t wiggle or wobble as you cut, and if you’re not an expert with knives, this may save you from cut fingers. When you do want those round slices though, the onion holder is of benefit, and the price, about $8-10 US Dollars (USD), is modest.

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