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Onion Rings

Try this fun and tasty way to make use of all those bread crumbs.

Onion rings are often a favorite when going out to eat, but did you know that they only require a few ingredients that you likely already have at home?

This recipe uses bread crumbs that can be easily made ahead of time. For more ideas to use up excess or stale bread, scroll to the bottom of this recipe.


  • 1 large or 2 medium sized onions (any kind of onion works; you can even add the half onion you have sitting in the fridge)
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper, paprika, or other dried herbs and spices as desired (optional)
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 cup bread crumbs
  • Vegetable oil for frying (or whatever oil you like to use for frying)


  1. Cut the onion into 1/4" to 1/2" thick rings and separate the individual rings from each other (put aside the smallest inner rings for now)
  2. Combine flour, baking powder, salt, and pepper/paprika/or other herbs and spices as desired in a large bowl
  3. Toss the separated onion rings in the flour mixture until each one is coated, set them aside. Once the larger rings are coated, toss the smallest pieces into the mixture all together and remove them with a fork while shaking off excess flour
  4. Beat the egg and milk togehter and add in the remaining flour mixture; mix until there are no more lumps
  5. Prepare a shallow plate with a layer of bread crumbs
  6. Take the floured onion rings and dip them into the egg/flour mixture and shake away the excess
  7. Place the dipped onion rings onto the bread crumb plate and gently flip each one over to coat the rings evenly in bread crumbs
  8. Continue until all onion rings are dipped and evenly coated in bread crumbs
  9. Set the prepared onion rings on a separate plate or cookie sheet
  10. At the end, toss the littlest rings into the remaining batter and bread crumbs and coat them all at once, using a fork to move them around and minimize the mess. Try to keep the small pieces separate if possible (these will make tasty little onion filled nuggets as opposed to pretty rings, but they will taste just as good!)
  11. Heat about 1 inch of oil in a skillet or cast iron pan on medium-high 
  12. Drop a piece of bread crumb or batter into the oil to test when it's ready for frying. When it's ready, the batter should immediately bubble around the edges
  13. Use kitchen tongs to place the individual onion rings into the oil, making sure not to crowd the pan. Gently turn over each ring when they start to turn golden brown
  14. Once all the rings are done, gently drop in all the smaller breaded onion pieces. Use the tongs, or a mesh frying strainer to remove the small pieces when they turn golden brown
  15. Place the fried rings and pieces onto a plate with paper towel or a clean old kitchen towel that you don't mind getting oily
  16. Once they've cooled down a bit, dip them into your favorite sauce and enjoy!

Note: If you have an air fryer, replace steps 11-15 by following your air fryer instructions for fresh (not frozen) items.

Recipes to use up bread crumbs:

More tips for making the most of your bread:


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Smoothies are a great way to make use of overripe and surplus ingredients.