Rings, cubes, strips - there are so many shapes you can cut your onions into. But how? Cutting onions correctly is the envy of skilled chefs. Because the small vegetable is not easy to handle, and tears can even flow! But don't worry: with the right techniques and our practical tips, you can avoid tears when chopping onions and achieve perfect cuts simultaneously.


Let's start with the popular diced onions. You can always use them, but they are also a little bit of work to do. Dicing onions is a common preparation technique that is required for many recipes. Here are the simple instructions for you: 

  • Remove the skin: First, cut off the top part of the onion. Then, carefully peel off the brown outer layer without removing too much of the onion itself. 
  • Cut in half: Cut the onion in half horizontally. 
  • Dice the onion: Now turn the onion 90 degrees and cut the strips crosswise to obtain diced onions. 

Tip for safe onion cutting - claw grip: We want to avoid tears at all costs. Especially from cuts where they shouldn't be. So form your hand into a claw and hold the onion like this to protect your fingers from injury. 


Cutting onion rings is ideal for recipes such as sausage salad, onion rings in batter, tarte flambée - or, of course, onion rings from the deep fryer. And this is how it's done:

  • Remove the skin: start as before by cutting off the root and top of the onion and peeling the outer layer. 
  • Cut the onion into rings: Cut the onion horizontally into even rings.  
  • Press the rings apart: After cutting, you can carefully push the rings apart to get individual rings.  

Which knife is best for slicing onions?

We recommend the all-rounder, the classic chef's knife, or a paring and garnishing knife for cutting onions. For a particularly even result, you can also use a kitchen grater.


Depending on your needs and recipe, onions can also be cut into wedges or strips. The techniques are similar to the instructions above but differ in the size and shape of the slices. Just try it, and you'll be sure to discover all the onion shapes for yourself quickly.


But which onion will you put on the board? And what do the different onion varieties taste like? We introduce you to the three most popular varieties: 

  • Shallots: Shallots are smaller and milder in taste than ordinary onions. They are ideal for sauces and dressings. 
  • Red onions: Red onions have a striking purple skin and a mild, sweet taste. They are ideal for salads and sandwiches. 
  • Spring onions: These onions have a green tip and a mild flavour. They are often used as a garnish in soups and stews.

Instructions for cutting shallots  

Slicing shallots is similar to slicing onions. Depending on your recipe, you can dice them, cut them into rings, or slice them into strips. 

Instructions for cutting spring onions 

Spring onions are normally used up to the green part. Cut off the roots and slice the onion into fine rings used in soups and salads.


Cutting onions can cause your eyes to water. This is due to the substances alliin and the enzyme alliinase contained in onions. Here are some tips to prevent watery eyes:  

  • Safety goggles: safety goggles protect your eyes from the irritating vapours of the onion. 
  • Breathe through your mouth: Breathe through your mouth to prevent the vapors from entering your nose. 
  • Peel in water: Peel the onion under running water or immerse it briefly in water before cutting. 
  • Water in the mouth: A second possible solution with water. Keep water in your mouth to absorb the vapours before they reach your eyes. 
  • Which end of the onion should you cut off? Cutting off the root end of the onion can help reduce the amount of tears released. 
  • Reduce onion sharpness with a water bath: If you soak the onions in cold water, this can help to reduce the sharpness. 
  • And, of course, a good, sharp knife won't do any harm either because if you cut through the flesh of the onion finely, hardly any vapours will escape, causing tears. 

Cutting onions can be a simple task if you use the right techniques and know a few tricks to avoid tears. With these skills, you can successfully prepare different onion shapes in the kitchen and enhance your dishes. Good luck and bon appétit!