Red Onion Marmalade

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Red Onion Marmalade

I had promised myself to try and develop some vegan recipes in 2013. This red onion marmalade turned out pretty well and is my first vegan post of the year.The onion-y condiment is a cross between a savory jam and a chutney, but with less spice than I usually add to chutney.

The marmalade is a cinch to make, slowly cooking down to a gooey spread delicious on toasted bread. It would also make a nice pairing when served on the side with chicken or beef dishes. Actually, it tastes good right off the spoon…

Because I had some walnut oil in the pantry, I used that, but grape seed oil would be another choice and much less expensive. The original recipe I found in an old “Gourmet” called for half a stick of butter instead of oil, but this turned out fine without using any butter.

The slow cooking of the onions allows them to caramelize and elicits all the sweetness from them. I thought about trying this with Maui onions, also known for their sweetness, but I prefer the color from the red onions.

TIP:  This will keep well in the fridge for several days. In fact, the flavors will actually deepen and intensify. The marmalade can also be frozen for up to 6 weeks. Once thawed, gently reheat before serving.


Red Onion Marmalade
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1 to 1½ cups
A savory jam made from slowly cooking red onions in a sweet and sour base.
  • ¼ cup walnut oil
  • 1 pound red onions, peeled and thinly sliced (about 2 large onions)
  • ¼ cup sherry vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon thyme leaves (or any fresh thyme)
  • 1 pinch kosher salt
  • 1 pinch ground white pepper
  1. Heat the oil in a medium-sized saucepan with a heavy bottom. Add the onions and cook over medium heat, stirring, until they are limp, about 5-6 minutes.
  2. Add the vinegar, honey, thyme, salt and pepper. Reduce heat, partially cover the pan and cook for 1 hour. The onions will become very tender.
  3. Serve the marmalade warm or at room temperature.


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21 Responses to Red Onion Marmalade

  1. The Wimpy Vegetarian February 28, 2013 at 6:00 pm #

    Oooohhh. I love red onion marmalade! It’s such a wonderful condiment to have around. And I love that you used honey instead of granulated or brown sugar. Yay!!!

    • Liz February 28, 2013 at 7:41 pm #

      I learned from the masters – like you – in fact, I think I remember a similar recipe from you back in food52 days.

  2. Mare February 28, 2013 at 6:32 pm #

    It’s beautiful. Red onions are so sweet to begin with and the color is brilliant. Delicious!

    • Liz February 28, 2013 at 7:42 pm #

      Yum – shared this with Larry tonight – grilled lamb chops. Thanks, Mare and hope you enjoyed a happy birthday.

  3. Cookin Canuck February 28, 2013 at 8:38 pm #

    I love how you lightened this up, Liz! This marmalade be perfect to dress up my standard lunchtime sandwich.

    • Liz March 1, 2013 at 7:36 am #

      Thanks – leftovers going on my sandwich today 😉

  4. Lynda - TasteFood March 1, 2013 at 1:19 pm #

    Mmmmm, this would taste great with a cheese plate.

    • Liz March 1, 2013 at 1:25 pm #

      Great idea – throwing some on our pizza later tonight.

  5. Wendy Read March 1, 2013 at 2:47 pm #

    Just a gorgeous color Liz! I do an onion jam, but mine is of so brown from the Port Wine and Molasses, love the look of yours, I must try it out!

    • Liz March 1, 2013 at 3:04 pm #

      But I will bet that yours tastes better, Wendy –

  6. Suzanne March 1, 2013 at 3:24 pm #

    I love onion marmalade, yours looks wonderful. Interesting that you use walnut oil! I would have this with just about anything, a grilled cheese slathered with this jam would be amazing. Really great recipe.

    • Liz March 1, 2013 at 4:01 pm #

      Grilled cheese sounds great. And I used the walnut oil only because I had it on hand. Red wine vinegar could sub for the sherry vinegar as well.

  7. Kim March 1, 2013 at 9:49 pm #

    Beautiful marmalade! I think I’ll have to add this to my sandwich, too.


    • Liz March 2, 2013 at 7:55 am #

      I know I will make some more of this – healthy condiment.

    • Liz March 2, 2013 at 7:55 am #

      I know I will make some more of this – healthy condiment.

  8. Jayne March 3, 2013 at 3:56 am #

    I love the way the onions kept some of their color and its lovely and quick to prepare! Sounds great Liz!

    • Liz March 3, 2013 at 3:26 pm #

      That is why I used the red onions – love their color.

  9. Dorothy at ShockinglyDelicious March 3, 2013 at 7:24 am #

    YUM! I would stir this into roasted taters!

    • Liz March 3, 2013 at 3:26 pm #

      Sounds good!

  10. Francesca March 4, 2013 at 2:52 am #

    Look delicious Liz! I especially like that there’s no butter. I know what’s going on my next sandwhich/pizza/potatoes

  11. Oui, Chef March 5, 2013 at 10:46 am #

    YUM! No need to say more.

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