Crispy Baked Onion Rings



When it comes to onion rings, I’m a bit of a late bloomer.

I don’t think I tried my first onion ring until I was in my twenties, and when I did, I can’t say I was blown away. They were a bit bland and I could think of a million other foods I’d rather eat.

However, I soon realized that not all onion rings are created equal.

Years later, everything changed when I tried Fresh restaurant’s quinoa-battered onion rings. Their onion rings have been celebrated as some of Toronto’s best and I quickly agreed, being the onion ring connoisseur that I was…not.

But I do know good food when I taste it. You too?


Deep-fried, crispy, thick, and flavourful…they made me an instant onion ring fan for life.

Not long after, I was in the kitchen trying to make my own onion rings, only these would be baked instead of fried, more of an “everyday” onion ring, if you will.


My first few trials were decent, but still a far cry from what I hoped they’d taste like.

The problem? Too many breadcrumbs and not enough other goodies!

One of my first trials, heavy on the breadcrumbs:


I experimented with a few different coatings and batter mixtures until I found a combo that I loved. My first winning combo involves breadcrumbs, cornmeal, nutritional yeast, dried herbs, and black sesame seeds. Don’t fret if you don’t have one of these ingredients because they can be adapted very easily.

Oh boy, I. could. not. stop. eating. them.

The photographic evidence…


I thought I could sneak an onion ring before the timer ended and the camera fired, but I guess I wasn’t quick enough. The camera sees all!


Crispy Baked Onion Rings

Vegan, nut-free, oil-free, soy-free



Crispy, flavourful, and good-for-you, these onion rings make a great snack or addition to any meal. I could also see a big batch of these being made for a party served with a homemade dip. To make these gluten-free, use gluten-free bread crumbs and gluten-free flour (and of course, double check the rest of your ingredients). Also, keep in mind, you’ll have coating leftover that isn’t used up.
Inspired by Fresh and my Crispy Tofu Strips.

15-22 onion rings
Prep Time
Cook time
Total Time


  • 1 large sweet onion
  • 2/3 cup flour of choice
  • 2/3 cup + 1 tbsp vegetable broth
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch (or arrowroot flour)
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast (optional, but recommended)
  • 3/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1-2 tbsp black sesame seeds (optional)
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp dried herbs (I used 1tsp each basil & oregano)


  1. Preheat oven to 425F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or spray with cooking oil. Slice onion into rings, 3/4 inch in width (larger than shown in pictures as I made mine too thin), and reserve about 15-22 or so, wrapping up the leftovers for another use.
  2. In a shallow dish, whisk together the batter ingredients (flour, broth, cornstarch).
  3. In another shallow dish, whisk together the coating ingredients (cornmeal, breadcrumbs, nutritional yeast, salt, sesame seeds, garlic powder, and herbs).
  4. With a fork, dip an onion ring into the batter, coating all sides. Now transfer it to the coating mixture and toss it around a bit. Use a clean & dry hand to scoop up coating and sprinkle it all over the ring. If at any time your hands get sticky or coated, simply rinse and dry before starting again. Place onion rings on prepared baking sheets and repeat for the rest. Don’t worry if things get messy or they don’t coat “perfectly”…just consider them rustic and call it a day! You will have coating leftover that isn’t used up.
  5. 5. Bake for about 18 minutes at 425F, flipping once after 10 minutes. You can broil them for a minute or two at the end to brown. Serve with your favourite dip or ketchup. These are best served immediately.


You’ll want to create a workstation with everything set up before you begin. Also, note that I sliced my onion rings too thin and they were much better at thicker widths of about 3/4 of an inch. The thicker you slice them, the juicier and heartier they will be!

Workstation order: Onion rings, batter, coating, pan…also use shallow dishes if possible. A narrow bowl was awkward.


I tried out all kinds of batter/coating methods because the process can be a bit tricky to get right.

My favourite method was using a fork to dip the ring into the batter and transferring it to the coating mixture.


Then I used my dry hand to grab the mixture and sprinkle it over the ring, over and over. Once it was coated, I’d flip it and repeat on the other side. If my fingers got wet and covered, I would stop and rinse them off and quickly pat dry before starting up again.

Above all, don’t worry if things get messy or they don’t coat “perfectly”…just consider them rustic and call it a day! They will taste good regardless.


I loved the look of them with the black seeds.


Once I filled my pan, I cooked them in two batches since I only have 1 large baking sheet. Of course, you can use two baking sheets and cook them at the same time, rotating the pans once half way through baking.


After about 18 minutes of baking, I broiled them for a couple minutes to brown them up.


Ding, ding, ding…we have a winner!


I devoured the entire batch..all while telling myself I should “save some for Eric”.


But everyone knows onion rings are best served immediately anyways, right?


I’m pretty pumped to experiment with different flavours and coatings for these bad boys. I have several flavour ideas up my sleeve, including beer batter, pizza, and nut butter coatings!

Or maybe I should just re-create a Bloomin Onion a la Outback Steakhouse?


Link Love

+ Did you know that it’s National Eating Disorder Awareness Week in the US? I recently had the pleasure of connecting with Blisstree for an interview on my past struggles with disordered eating and road to recovery. You can check out the interview here.

+ The Homies 2012 blog nominations are going down over at The Kitchn. Nominate and vote for your favourite blogs (including your own!) until March 1st.

Have a great Tuesday!

Let's get social! Follow Angela on Instagram (@ohsheglows + @theglowspot), Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google+

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{ 194 comments… read them below or add one }

Alex @ Raw Recovery February 28, 2012

OMG I love, love, LOVE onion rings. In my eating disorder I wouldn’t let myself have them but they are so delicious. Recovery tastes amazing with onion rings. Funny because I just wrote a comment over at HTP about french fries….Delicious.


Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat February 28, 2012

Wow, these sound awesome Ange! I too have never really been turned on by onion rings, but I think it’s because as a kid, the only ones I was ever exposed to were from Dairy Queen. No thank you!! The ones from Fresh, however, are delicious!! I bet yours are as well, and I can’t wait to see what other flavour combos you come up with! Do I hear a salt and vinegar perhaps?! ;)


Angela (Oh She Glows) February 28, 2012

Salt and vinegar…genius!!!

lol, I think the first ones I tried were probably from DQ too. or fast food anyways.


Stephanie @ Legally Blinde February 28, 2012

When I saw the first picture, I immediately thought, “Oh no she didn’t!” Healthy, non-deep-fried onion rings? Yes!! I was also late on the onion ring train, but once I tried them, I fell in love. I can’t remember the last time I had onion rings, though, so I am really excited for a healthy recipe. These look and sound absolutely delicious. Thanks for such a fun recipe, and for explaining your techniques – that’s always so helpful and much appreciated. Quick question – do you think you could use homemade bread crumbs by pulsing a piece of slightly stale bread in the food processor? Or would you recommend store-bought breadcrumbs?

PS Love the picture with your hand sneaking in :)


Angela (Oh She Glows) February 28, 2012

Glad you are excited about them Stephanie! I can’t see why homemade breadcrumbs wouldn’t work. Please let me know if you try it :)


Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table February 28, 2012

I am so excited to try this! I’ve tried making rings in the past, but I was never very successful in getting the batter to stick.

This coating would probably make some awesome eggplant crisps or zucchini fries too. So many possibilities!


Angela (Oh She Glows) February 28, 2012

Definitely :)

And maybe mushrooms too….swoon.


Faith @ For the Health of It February 28, 2012

This recipe is the most exciting one EVER! I’ve been on a huge onion ring kick, and I tried to make them once for myself but it came out so disgusting. I’ve been resorting to Burger King for my onion ring fix, but I’m so excited for a healthier, homemade version!


Angela (Oh She Glows) February 28, 2012

Im glad you are excited- Let me know what you think of them, if you end up making them.


Zestful Lou February 28, 2012

Now we’re talking!!! I love me some onion rings!!!! In fact, I shamelessly ate a whole plate of Chili’s onion straws when the bf and I went out to dinner the other night.

Onion rings, here I come.

P.S. I made those gluten free seed crackers the other day. They’re perfect for shoveling large quantities of hummus into my mouth. Between the hummus and extra-seedy crackers, my breath has been kickin’ for days. ;-)


Angela (Oh She Glows) February 28, 2012

haha glad you enjoyed the crackers! I think my batch lasted 0.5 days ;)


Karen February 28, 2012

I finally made them too…LOVED them! :)


Angela February 29, 2012

Glad to hear that!


The Mrs @ Success Along the Weigh February 28, 2012

Seriously, I can’t wait to try these. I have such a hard time finding a GOOD onion ring we both like. These look like contenders for sure!


Adrienne @ Boysenberries February 28, 2012

Will be trying these FOR SURE! I did try something like this with zucchini speers on the weekend and will write about it in an upcoming post.


Jasper Naomi @ crunchylittlebites February 28, 2012

thanks for mentioning the NEDA week! there’s lots going on here in Durham! NEDA can use all the support even your promoting gives it Angela!


Rachel @ Healthy Chicks February 28, 2012

mmmmm these look phenomenal. I love onion rings, but had when they are too heavily fried or drenched in breadcrumbs. These seem absolutely perfect. Thanks for sharing!


Linda February 28, 2012

Ange, you come up with the best recipes! Thank you!


Cait's Plate February 28, 2012

I’m not the biggest onion ring fan either but I have to say these look pretty darn delicious! And hahaha – I love the picture of you sneaking an onion ring! That’s phenomenal :)


katie@ KatieDid February 28, 2012

I vote for recreating the bloomin onion- a childhood fave!!


Angela (Oh She Glows) February 28, 2012

I think there are recipes online, so hopefully it wouldn’t be too hard. Although Im not sure how baking it would turn out…I think they fry theirs right?


Jocelyn February 28, 2012

at most restaurants it has the highest amount of calories/fat out of all the dishes lol!!


Natasha February 28, 2012

These look amazing! The best part? I have everything to give them a go! Hello lunch!!


Greta @ Staying Lost February 28, 2012

I’ve never been able to get baked onion rings right- my batter always ends up falling off. I want to make these tonight to see if you’ve found the secret to perfect onion rings!


Sylvia February 28, 2012

Oh yummo!!!! You MUST make a blooming onion!!! You must!! Or onion bhajia…


Lindsay @ The Reluctant Runner February 28, 2012

I can’t wait to try these! They look great. I used to love onion rings, but they always disappoint me because, you’re right, the coating is often bland.


Heather (heathers dish) February 28, 2012

These look so crisp and yummy…I’m a believer!


Katrina Anderson February 28, 2012

I am new to your site and can’t wait to try the onion ring recipe! I am just wondering if you have the nutritional info-calories? carbs? etc. for it. I’m trying to combine healthy and weight management together! thanks.


Angela (Oh She Glows) February 28, 2012

Hi Katrina, I had a lot of coating leftover so I wasn’t sure to to factor that in. Maybe next time I make them, I can measure that out or something!


Lauren @ Oatmeal after Spinning February 28, 2012

Ooh, I love your combination of different ingredients for the coating. I’ve always had a problem getting everything to stick- but that’s probably because every attempt at onion-ring-assembly has been rushed and careless on my part! I immediately thought of cornmeal when I saw your first photo- because a cornmeal crust makes everything awesome.
And I hadn’t seen the post before that you linked to above- all of the food in that meal looks amazing- especially the wraps!!


Jess @ Tess and Jess February 28, 2012

I JUST ate the onions rings at Fresh on Sunday and was thinking of how amazing they were! These look fantastic. Thanks again for another delicious recipe! :)


Heidi @ Food Doodles February 28, 2012

Yum! I’ve been loving baked onion rings lately – I just tried them a couple weeks ago. The ones I make are pretty plain so I love the nutritional yeast, and herbs in yours. Will have to try that next time!


Jocelyn February 28, 2012

mmm those look yummy! I love that they are baked too – even more reason to indulge :D
I’m totally aware of NEDA week! I made a post about it on the bloggie as it’s pretty important to me. I was actually wondering if you have an email that we can contact you at? Have a question that I’d rather not put on here! Thanks :D


Angela February 28, 2012

yup, It’s angela [at] ohsheglows [dot] com :)


Heather February 28, 2012

I love, love, love onion rings and I’m so happy you posted this ‘healthified’ recipe. Your interview brought me to tears; you’re such an inspiration for those of us who are in recovery. I hope you realize how much your work touches others :-)


Angela February 28, 2012

Thank you Heather, I’m so happy to hear that!


Emily @ LivingLongfellow February 28, 2012

I love how I could eat these and convince myself that they’re healthy. I too would not be able to resist eating almost all of them while trying to photograph them. how addicting!


Lacey February 28, 2012

Blooming onion, please!!!!!!!!!!!!! :-)


Kale Crusaders February 28, 2012

Polenta nuggets would be great to use up leftover coating (and leftover polenta cooled in a rectangular dish). Mmm, nuggets and onion rings.


Dana February 28, 2012

All of your recipes are looking/sounding soooo delicious these days (not that they ever don’t). I am starting a running list of everything I NEED to make:
-onion rings
-millet mushroom gravy bowls
-tropical kale salad…..

Thank you for always supplying me with delicious recipes/food inspiration!


Shelley @ MileHighHealthy February 28, 2012

Much to my husband’s chagrin I could eat onion all day long. I love any kind of onion, especially crispy coated onion rings. I have yet to find a vegan recipe that I love but these look very crunchy!! And lucky me, I have all ingredients on hand at the moment. Looks like homemade onion rings are in my near future!!


Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga February 28, 2012

I don’t even like onions! And I just have a craving for these. Nooch in the dry rub? LOVE IT! I’ve seen some battered asparagus spears lately on blogs that are a similar batter…makes me want to make something like this. And any time I can go crazy on the ketchup dipper, I am all about that too :) Love ketchup.


Liz @ Tip Top Shape February 28, 2012

I’m not a big fan of onion rings, but these do look delicious!! Great pictures, per usual :D


Shannon February 28, 2012

Ah! I remember seeing those quinoa onion rings a while back, but could not remember where I saw them! I even google searched them and was horribly disappointed, but happy to see a variation here as well. How was the chipotle avocado sauce, worth replicating? Or perhaps there was another dipping delicacy that you used? Either way, looks delicious, and thanks for quenching my memory with the recipe and letting me know that I’m not delirious.


Angela (Oh She Glows) February 28, 2012

the sauce was incredible…def worth making. I’d probably puree some avocado, garlic, spices/salt, oil/water, etc together.


Val February 28, 2012

I love baked onion rings! One of my favorite “junk” foods, and they are so much better than fried since they aren’t oily and are so crispy.


Vicki February 28, 2012

Owwwww. I’ll just HAVE to try these. I was also a big fan of Fresh’ onion rings when I used to live in Ontario… *sigh*


Kristin February 28, 2012

Sometimes I feel like you read my mind. I was just thinking about veganizing a blooming onion last night. Love love love onions!


Anna @ On Anna's Plate February 28, 2012

These look awesome! I love onion rings, but have never tried baking them myself!


Moni'sMeals February 28, 2012

Now this is what I am talking about! I have not had real onion rings in ages I feel like and I would love to try these from home. The fact that they are baked is what I love. :)

We eat the onion chips all the time on another note, not really great for you. But now these…the real deal!



Deirdre @ ladies holiday February 28, 2012

You are a powerhouse, transforming what might be an occasional treat into something with nutrition?! Thank you!


char eats greens February 28, 2012

I still have those vouchers for Fresh in Toronto that I NEED to use. I think onion rings might be on that list of things to order…along with smoothies and desserts…duh!!


Lauren @ What Lauren Likes February 28, 2012

amazing!!! I could so eat those right now! Haha :)


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