Introduction: How to Chop an Onion

About: Made in Canada, I grew up crafting, making, and baking. Out of this love for designing and creating, I pursued a BFA in product design from Parsons School of Design in NYC. Since then I've done work for Martha…

The full title of this Instructable is "How to Chop an Onion Without Crying Like Your Prom Date Just Stood You Up on Your Birthday". FYI.

Chopping an onion safely and without tears isn't as hard as you'd think! With a little bit of research and testing I've devised the perfect way to chop onions in any size, and in serious style!

Step 1: The NO TEARS How To's

For a 'NO TEARS' onion chopping experience do these four things:

1. Put your onion(s) in the freezer for 15 minutes prior to getting started.
2. Get yourself some rad looking goggles that give you a full seal to your face. (swimming goggles work great!)
3. Once peeled, soak your onion for 5 minutes in cold water.
4. Place your cutting board on your stovetop (make sure it's not on first) and turn the hood vent on.

Onion tears are caused by the fumes that are released as the onion is chopped. All of the above help keep the fumes from reaching your eye balls.

Step 2: Finger Safe Chopping Technique

SAFETY FIRST! To keep your fingertips intact, while holding your onion (or any veggie) curl your fingers over so that your fingertips are tucked in and your knuckles act as guides for the knife. (see pictured)

Step 3: Let's Get Chopping!

Once you've chilled your onion(s) in the freezer for 15 minutes, donned your goggles and turned on the hood vent:

1. Cut off the top end of your onion(s).
2. Peel the onion(s) so there is no papery skin left.
3. Soak in cold water for 5 minutes to reduce onion tears.

Step 4: Half It!

Cut your onion(s) in half.

Step 5: Chop Chop!

One half at a time, follow the images above to make your vertical cuts.

*A map for chunky chops is at the end of this Instructable.

Step 6: Get Horizontal

Now turn your onion half 90 degrees counter clockwise and do your horizontal chops. Stop when you feel you can't make any more cuts safely (aka without the knife slipping).

Step 7: End Bit: Part 1


To keep your fingers safe, the best way to cut the end piece is to flip it down onto the cutting board before doing a few more horizontal cuts.

Step 8: End Bit: Part 2


Turn what's left of your end bit and cut until you are close to the root. Compost that last little end nub along with the top bit. And you're done! Finely chopped onions without bloodshed or tears. A major kitchen victory!!!

Step 9: The Chunky Chop

*Map for Chunky Choppin'