Learn how to cut shallots quickly and simply. Shallots are a great onion that has a milder flavor than its cousins the yellow and sweet onion. These tasty onions are more elongated in shape and typically smaller than a yellow onion.
They tend to be more in a clove fashion rather than independent like a red onion. You will peel them away like you would garlic. When you are choosing a shallot shoot for one that is firm to the touch and not squishy.
Video – How to cut shallots
What is a shallot?
A shallot is a member of the allium family, which also includes onions, garlic, and leeks. It is a small, elongated bulb with a mild, sweet flavor that is somewhere between an onion and garlic. Shallots are often used in French cuisine, but they can be used in a variety of dishes.
6 Simple Steps to Cut a Shallot
We have two different ways to cut these shallots. Most people will end up dicing a shallot to get it really fine. Finely diced shallots are very common in a pan sauce or a dish with finely diced onion.
We will also cover slicing a shallot. You can do this to get a little bit bigger piece than a dice. You can also not cut it in half and end up with some really cool shallot rings.
Cut the stem end off
Hold the shallot in one hand and use your knife to cut the stem end off.
Peel off the skin
You can peel the shallot with a paring knife or a vegetable peeler.
You can soak the shallots in some warm water and this will help you when you try to peel the skin off. Soak them for a 1/2 hour or so and then cut them with the instructions below.
Cut in half
Place the shallot flat on your cutting board and use your knife to cut it in half lengthwise.
I have an entire post on the best pairing knife for beginners if you are not sure what to look for in a knife.
Cut towards the root end
Make a series of vertical cuts, starting at the root end and working your way up. I like to slice in the 1/8″ range. Be careful to keep your fingers out of the way while you do this step.
Keep the slices short of the root. You don’t want to cut all the way through so you have something that will keep the shallot intact as you chop it into pieces in the next step.
Cut across the shallot
Make a series of horizontal cuts, creating thin slices.
How to slice shallots
To slice shallots, you will need to follow the steps above to cut the shallot in half lengthwise and remove the core.
Then, lay the shallot flat on your cutting board, with the cut side facing down. Use a sharp knife to slice the shallot thinly, working your way from the root end to the top.
The thickness of your slices will depend on the recipe you are using.
How to store shallots
Storing shallots properly can significantly extend their shelf life and retain their flavor. Like most onions, shallots should be kept in a cool, dark, and dry place with good air circulation.
A pantry or cupboard is usually a suitable storage location. Avoid storing them in plastic bags or containers as these can trap moisture and cause them to spoil faster.
Finally, remember not to store shallots near potatoes, as potatoes emit a gas that can cause onions and shallots to spoil quickly.
Frequently asked questions about how to cut shallots
In conclusion, there are many ways to cut shallots. The most common way is to slice them thinly. You can also chop them, mince them, or dice them. The best way to cut shallots will depend on the recipe you are using.
How to Cut Shallots (6 Simple Steps)
- 3 shallot
- 1 pinch salt optional
- Cut the stem end off, not the root end. You want to cut off the end that was the stem of the shallot.
- Peel the skin off the shallot. Use a pairing knife it its easier.
- Cut in half through the root end.
- Slice into the shallot towards the root end bit not though it. You want to leave some to keep it intact.
- Cut across the shallot to dice it.
- If you want slices that dont slice into the shallot skip that step and then cut across like you diced it.