Onions vs Shallots: Which one to choose?

Both shallots and onions are popular ingredients used in a variety of dishes for adding depth of flavour. Check out some ways in which these two ingredients are different from each other and to easily distinguish between the two.
Onions vs Shallots: Which one to choose?
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Onions and shallots are more or less similar in appearance. They are both bulb vegetables that belong to the family of alliums. They grow from fall to late spring and are often used as seasonings to flavour different dishes.


One of the major differences between the two is that onions have a stronger taste and odour and are crunchier in texture as compared to shallots. Have a look at more such differences between the two bulb vegetables.

1. When it comes to caramelisation, it is much easier to break down the taste of shallots while cooking as compared to onions. They are quick to caramelise and are thus, perfect for adding that subtle sweet flavour to a dish.

2. Shallots have a longer and slimmer bulb as compared to the bulb of onions. They are also smaller in size than onions.

3. Shallots are rich in antioxidants. They are also rich in iron, copper, calcium, potassium and vitamins A and C. Onions are rich in fibre and have anti-inflammatory and anti-carcinogenic properties.

4. Since shallots are easier to caramelise and are sweeter in taste as compared to onions, they are mostly used in sauces. They are also used in fresh cooking and pickled shallots make a good side dish. On the other hand, onions are used in a variety of savoury dishes for adding a depth of flavour.

Also Read: Ghee vs Butter: What’s better for you?