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Pickled Cipollini Onions with Chile and Cloves

Scott Phillips

Yield: Yields 1 pint

Available throughout the winter, cipollini onions vary in size, so choose the smallest ones you can find, preferably all the same size. Pickled, they’re great in composed salads, stuffed into a chicken before roasting, or used as a cocktail garnish.


  • 1/2 lb. small cipollini onions, peeled
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • 3/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 6 Tbs. granulated sugar
  • 3 Tbs. olive oil
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 1 dried bay leaf
  • 1 large clove garlic, sliced
  • 1 small fresh hot chile (about 1 inch long)
  • Kosher salt

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Sample Size per 1/2 cup
  • Calories (kcal) : 40
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 10
  • Fat (g): 1
  • Saturated Fat (g): 0
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 0
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 0.5
  • Cholesterol (mg): 0
  • Sodium (mg): 30
  • Carbohydrates (g): 7
  • Fiber (g): 1
  • Protein (g): 1


  • Bring an 8-quart pot of water to a boil. Immerse a pint-size canning jar, lid, and band in the water and boil for 10 minutes to sterilize. With tongs, transfer to a clean dishtowel to drain.

    Wedge the onions and thyme into the jar, packing them as tightly as you can without crushing them.

    In a 1-quart saucepan, bring the vinegar, sugar, oil, cloves, bay leaf, chile, garlic, and 1 tsp. salt to a boil over medium heat. Pour the mixture over the onions until it reaches the top of the jar. Distribute the cloves, bay leaf, garlic, and chile evenly throughout the jar. Screw on the lid, cool to room temperature, and refrigerate for 3 days before using. The onions will keep in the refrigerator for at least 2 weeks.


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Reviews (3 reviews)

  • EmmaGrace | 06/30/2020

    I made these for my parents and they LOVE them. They even bought more cipollini onions and dropped them at my house so that I can make more. I used whole garlic cloves instead of chopped garlic and I put a dried chili in each jar instead of using fresh chili peppers. I also subbed out some of the white wine vinegar for apple cider vinegar because I ran out.

  • MonkeyDunkey | 01/21/2019

    what kind of hot chili did you use?

  • Sequimite | 11/20/2011

    This is an amazing recipe, and very simple. My husband made this recently, and it was a huge success; great as appetizer topper with the wonderful lingering clove flavor and onion crispness. Another winner, Fine Cooking, thank you!

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