Onion powder is a seasoning made from dried onions that has a strong onion flavor. It is commonly used in recipes as a flavoring agent or as a replacement for fresh onions.
If you’re out of onion powder and in need of a substitution, don’t worry, there are plenty of substitutes that you can use. From granulated onion to celery salt, there’s bound to be a substitution that will work for you.
The best onion powder substitutes are granulated onion, dehydrated onion flakes, dehydrated minced onions, onion salt, onion juice, fresh onions, shallots, chives, scallions, garlic powder, onion soup mix and celery powder.
Top Substitutes For Onion Powder
1. Granulated Onion
If you are looking for an exact substitute for onion powder that offers the most similar features, then you may refer to granulated onion. It is a ground form of dehydrated onion that looks like powder and can be used instead of powdered onion.
There is a little difference between granulated onion and powdered onion and it’s just the texture. Onion powder is finer in texture than granulated onion.
2. Dried Onion Flakes
Another dehydrated alternative to onion powder is dried onion flakes made of chopped and dehydrated onions. This is easy to find in stores and easy to store for later uses just like onion powder and many other herbs and seasonings.
If you like, you can grind onion flakes and get homemade onion powder. Use it by 1:1 ratio.
3. Dried Minced Onions
Dried minced onions are made of white onions and they carry the desired oniony taste similar to onion powder. You can find them in the herb and spice section next to other dried onion varieties. They are basically used in cooked dishes, soups and stews.
Just like in the case of onion flakes, you can grind minced onions and have your homemade onion powder. Us in 1:1 ratio.
4. Onion Salt
As for onion salt, it’s a blend of dehydrated and powdered onions and salt. This seasoning perfectly works instead of onion powder and not only. If you have salt in your ingredient list, then you can skip it because this condiment will provide saltiness to your dish.
You can use a 1:1 ratio with onion powder and test the saltiness before adding table salt.
5. Onion Juice
Onion juice is usually used to marinate meats and add juiciness and onion flavor to dishes without having its pieces and tasting its texture in the dish. Therefore, it’s a good idea to use onion juice in place of onion powder.
You can choose it for liquid dishes, but keep in mind that besides onion water, onion juice also contains vinegar and salt.
6. Fresh Onions
You can make onion paste to use instead of powdered onion in cooked dishes. All you need is a kind of onion available in your kitchen. It can be red, white or yellow onion and you can even mix them to get a richer taste.
Fresh onions have a stronger flavor than dried ones, so the best ratio is 1:3. To make the paste you need to blend onions. The best part about this paste is that you can freeze it and use it later too.
If you want to get a milder and more delicate flavor, then use shallots instead of fresh onions or dried onion. They perfectly work in any recipe that calls for onions. Therefore, if the juiciness of fresh shallots won’t ruin your dish, you can safely use it in cooked meals, salads, sandwiches and not only.
You can use 1 medium shallot to replace 1 tablespoon of onion powder.
Chives are green leafy herbs similar to green onions. They have an oniony taste and you can choose them as onion powder alternatives for many dishes. They can serve as topping, seasoning and many more.
Depending on what you make, you can even add a fresh color with the help of these fresh greens. They go well with soups, salads, sandwiches and sauces.
9. Scallions/Green Onions
Scallions, also popular as green onions, are other fresh substitutes for onion powder. They have a mild oniony taste with some sweetness and come with subtle leaves. Unlike chives, scallions are considered as green vegetables.
They go well with a number of dishes calling for powdered onion such as salads, sandwiches, soups and sauces as well as serve as a dressing for meat dishes, roasted vegetables and the like.
10. Garlic Powder
Since onion and garlic come from the same allium family, they are often used interchangeably in several dishes. When cooked, both garlic and onion lose their strong flavor and become mild.
As for powdered garlic, it tastes a bit stronger than onion powder. If you don’t mind a bit of garlic flavor in your dish, then this can be another suitable substitute to consider.
It is also easy to get and store for later use. You can use it not only in cooked dishes but also in baking where onion powder is required.
11. Onion Soup Mix
Maybe you have a small bag of onion soup mix somewhere in your pantry. You can use it in soups and cooked meals to replace onion powder.
It works well just in a pinch because different onion soup mixes come with different mixtures of seasonings. Besides dehydrated onions, they may also contain salt and other condiments which you should consider before adding to the dish.
12. Celery Salt
Finally, there is celery salt which is similar to onion salt and is a mixture of grinded celery and salt. It may not taste the same way as onion, but it will add some bitter and robust taste to cooked dishes.
You can use celery salt in a 1:1 ratio in salads, stews, soups and casseroles.
How to make onion powder?
Making onion powder is simple and only requires a few ingredients. First, you will need to gather fresh onions. Choose onions that are firm and have a bright color. Once you have your onions, begin by peeling off the skin.
Next, slice the onions thinly and spread them out on a baking sheet. Be sure to give them plenty of room so they can dry evenly.
Then, set the oven to its lowest setting and place the baking sheet inside, allowing the onions to slowly dehydrate for several hours.
Once they are completely dried out, remove them from the oven and allow them to cool. After they cool down, grind the onions into a fine powder using a food processor or coffee grinder. Once ground, transfer the powder to an airtight container and store in a cool, dry place.
Onion powder vs Onion
Onion powder is a spice made from dried and ground onions. It’s commonly used as a seasoning for savory dishes like roasted meats or vegetables. Onion powder has a more intense flavor than fresh onions, so it’s best used sparingly.
The powder offers a convenient way to add onion flavor to a dish without having to chop and prepare fresh onions. However, it’s not the best substitute for fresh onions.
So, there you have it. All of our substitutes for onion powder. With so many options, there’s no need to run out to the store when you’re in a pinch. We hope this list is helpful and that you will be able to find the perfect substitute for your recipe.