Whole Grilled Onions

Whole baked onions with herbs and butter
Diana Rattray
Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 90 mins
Total: 105 mins
Servings: 8 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
85 Calories
6g Fat
8g Carbs
1g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 8
Amount per serving
Calories 85
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 6g 8%
Saturated Fat 4g 18%
Cholesterol 15mg 5%
Sodium 70mg 3%
Total Carbohydrate 8g 3%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Total Sugars 4g
Protein 1g
Vitamin C 4mg 22%
Calcium 20mg 2%
Iron 0mg 1%
Potassium 129mg 3%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

These delicious grilled onions make a fabulous side dish to serve with other grilled foods, and they're especially good with steaks and chops. The only other ingredients you need for this recipe are salt, pepper, and butter. Use Vidalia onions in the recipe or another variety of sweet onion.

Grilling the onions is a snap, and there are some excellent variations as well. Finish the grilled onions with a bit of shredded cheese or place a bouillon cube in the cavities along with the butter. Fresh herbs are another excellent option. See the variations below the recipe for more cooking and flavor ideas.

If grilling isn't an option, bake them in the oven. Prepare the onions following the instructions below and then bake them in a 350 F oven for about 1 hour.


  • 4 large sweet onions, such as Vidalia

  • 1 dash salt

  • 1 dash freshly ground black pepper

  • 4 tablespoons (2 ounces) unsalted butter

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Slice the stem from the onions and peel them, leaving the root intact. Slice a bit of the root off, just enough to provide a flat end so they won't wobble.

  3. Working from the top and using a sharp knife, a small melon baller, or apple corer, cut the cores from the onions. You should have a cavity about 1-inch across and almost through to the bottom of the onion without piercing it. Use the cored-out onion pieces for another purpose.

  4. Salt and pepper the onion cavities and then fill each onion with 1 tablespoon of butter. Sprinkle the onions lightly with a bit more salt and pepper.

  5. Wrap the onions in foil, gathering at the top and twisting to seal.

  6. Cook in a closed grill for about 1 to 1 1/2 hours over medium indirect coals.

  7. Untwist top of foil and spread open about 10 minutes before serving.

  8. Leave them on the grill for more smoked flavor, if you like.

  9. Remove the onions to a serving platter. 


  • If the onions are very large, halve or quarter them for serving.

Recipe Variations

  • Prepare a simple herb butter for the onions. Combine 4 tablespoons of softened butter with a few tablespoons of fresh chopped herbs (such as chives, parsley, and tarragon) and a dash of garlic. Use 1 tablespoon of herb butter per onion.
  • Omit the salt and pepper and insert 1 beef or chicken bouillon cube (or equivalent granules) and a small peeled garlic clove in the center of each cored-out onion. Pack with enough mozzarella or another cheese of choice so the cavity is filled to the top. Wrap in foil and grill as directed above.
  • Instead of coring the onion, just cut a deep "X" in the top, drizzle with a bit of olive oil, and sprinkle with bouillon granules that will complement the main protein. Wrap in foil and grill. Once the onions are off the grill, open them and sprinkle with some grated cheese of choice or pass it at the table.