Cooking with Dried Onion Flakes: Tips for Substituting Fresh Onions in Recipes

user366312 Asks:

How to use dried onion flakes as a substitute for fresh onion?

In Poland, onions are very juicy. In addition to that, gas has low intensity. As a result, it takes a lot of time to sauté onions, and onions are almost impossible to deep fry on the pan. To fight the situation, I bought 1kg of dried onion flakes.
Today, I tried to cook pilaf/plov/pulau/polao using onion flakes. The onion quickly acquired the color of chocolate, and the dish tasted bitter.
What can I do to cook pilaf/plov/pulau/polao using onion flakes properly so that the dish doesn’t taste bitter?


400g of basmati rice
4 cups of water
2/3 cup of dried onion flakes
1 teaspoon of ginger powder
1 tablespoon of dried garlic flakes
1.5 teaspoons of salt
three tablespoons of butter chunk
0.25 cup of sunflower oil
0.5 teaspoons of cinnamon powder
0.5 teaspoon of cardamom powder
10 whole black peppers
5 cloves


take a Chinese wok
heat butter and oil together in the wok
fry onion, garlic, and ginger in the oil for a few minutes until they seem fried
add rice
add salt
roast the rice and mix it well with onion, garlic, and ginger until the rice looks well roasted
add water and cover the wok with a lid
cook for 10 minutes

Best Answer:

Dried onion flakes are a fantastic substitute for fresh onions. It is essential to know how to use these flakes in cooking. Unlike fresh onions, these flakes do not require time for chopping or sautéing. They also have a longer shelf life, making them convenient for daily use in cooking.
To use dried onion flakes to substitute for fresh onions in your recipes, it is best to hydrate the flakes before using them. The easiest way to do this is by soaking the flakes in water for about 10-15 minutes before cooking. This will ensure that the flakes are soft and absorb moisture.
When cooking with onion flakes, it is essential to go easy on the amount you use as they are highly concentrated. For our recipe, you can use 2/3 of a cup of dried onion flakes instead of one medium-sized fresh onion. This is enough to provide enough flavor to your dish. However, if you prefer a more robust onion flavor, you can increase the amount of flakes you use.
It is best to add the hydrated onion flakes to your dish towards the end of the cooking process. This will ensure that the flakes do not become bitter and lose their flavor. In our recipe, we recommend frying the onion flakes together with garlic and ginger until they seem fried. This will give the dish a richer flavor.
In conclusion, dried onion flakes are a great substitute for fresh onions, but they require proper preparation and usage. By following the tips mentioned above, you can cook delicious dishes with onion flakes without losing their flavor or making them taste bitter.

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