Creamed Onions

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This is a classic creamed onions recipe, with an extra delicious twist that adds extra onion flavor to every bite! This will soon become your new favorite side dish; plus, it couldn’t be simpler!

For more great onion recipes, why not make this Instant Pot French Onion Soup? Or learn How To Make Cajun Onions?

creamed onions in a grey bowl

Creamed Onions

Pearl onions are a tricky vegetable to use as part of a healthy dinner. They're too small to cook into a regular vegetable side dish and a bit too sweet to use in many other savory options.

This recipe, however, not only works on and improves the base sweet flavor profile of pearl onions but also uses the natural thickening powers of the onion to make a creamy and rich sauce.

While it might look a little gloopy, the taste is absolutely divine and somehow tastes sweet and savory at the same time, as well as extremely oniony.

Fresh or Frozen Pearl Onions?

This recipe used fresh pearl onions, which were almost impossible to find in the stores and were very green all the way through almost, which is unusual – but not really unusual for 2021, let's be honest. Since it's hard to find a lot of stuff this year and the quality is poor, I would actually use frozen pearl onions instead if I made them again!

Creamed Onions Ingredients

Make sure you look at the recipe card at the very bottom for the exact amounts so that you know exactly what to buy for this recipe.

• Pearl onions

• Chicken stock

• Butter

• All-purpose flour

• Salt & pepper

• Half and half cream

• Ground nutmeg

• Fresh parsley

ingredients for creamed onions

How To Make Creamed Onions

• Place the pearly onions into a medium-sized stockpot and add enough chicken stock to cover

• Boil until tender, about 10 minutes

• Drain, saving about ¾ cup of the chicken stock to use later in the sauce

• In a medium saucepan, melt the butter

• Stir in the flour, salt, and pepper until smooth

• Cook, frequently stirring, for 2 minutes until the flour has browned and smells nutty and like cooked pie crust

• Gradually whisk in the cream, as well as the reserved broth, constantly whisking to keep it smooth

• Bring to a boil, cooking for 2 minutes while stirring

• Add in about a cup of the cooked onions, and then blend it using an immersion blender, pureeing until smooth

• Add in the rest of the onions, cooking until heated through

• Stir in the nutmeg and further seasonings and serve garnished with fresh parsley   

creamed onions in a bowl with a spoon

Will The Sauce Get Thick Enough?

No side dish should be served in a thin, watery sauce. Considering that universal truth, what is to stop these creamed onions from being too liquid?

The use of a simple roux, which is flour cooked in fat and browned, is just enough to help thicken the sauce that goes with these creamed onions, but that is actually not where most of the thickening power comes from.

Instead, the thickness comes from the onions themselves! As the cup or so of pearl onions gets blended using an immersion blender, they not only thicken the sauce because of all of the blended up onion but there is a series of enzymatic reactions from the onions that helps to thicken the liquid itself.

However, if you are still finding that your creamed onions are a bit too thin, consider making a cornstarch slurry with about half a teaspoon of cornstarch mixed in the same amount of water. Pour it in after mixing it and give it a minute to thicken up, and it should stay that thick even after serving.

creamed onions in a spoon

How To Really Amp Up The Flavor Of These Creamed Onions

This recipe uses a little sprinkling of nutmeg, along with plenty of salt and pepper, to flavor the sauce and onions. While nutmeg is certainly traditional, it actually doesn’t do much to flavor the liquid other than to help bring out the natural flavors of the onions.

Instead, why not put a little bit of paprika in it to help brighten up the dish, plus provide a little bit of slight spiciness? You could even put some chilies in it as well if you are looking for something even more piquant.

Just make sure that you scrape the seeds out!

Looking for more delicious Side Dish recipes? Try these out:

Candied Carrots

Roasted Green Beans

Air Fryer Sweet Potato Fries

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Classic creamed onions recipe with a delicious twist that adds extra onion flavor to every bite! This will soon become your new favorite side dish!

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The Best Creamed Onions

Classic creamed onions recipe with a delicious twist that adds extra onion flavor to every bite! This will soon become your new favorite side dish!
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time
10 minutes
Cook Time
15 minutes
Side Dish
Karlynn Johnston


  • 5 cups pearl onions peeled
  • 2-3 cups chicken stock
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 3/4 cup half-and-half cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley


  • Place the pearl onions into a medium-sized stockpot and add enough chicken stock to cover. Boil until tender, 8-10 minutes.
  • Drain, saving 3/4 cup of the chicken stock to use later in the sauce.
  • In a medium saucepan, melt the butter. Stir in the flour, salt and pepper until smooth. Cook, stirring, for 2-3 minutes until the flour has browned and starts to smell nutty.
  • Gradually whisk in the cream, then add the reserved broth, whisking to keep the sauce smooth.
  • Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until the sauce starts to thicken.
  • Add in 1/2 to 1 cup of the cooked onions, then take an immersion blender and quickly puree until smooth.
  • Add in the rest of the onions and cook, on medium heat, until they are heated through.
  • Stir in the nutmeg, season again with salt and pepper if desired, then place in a bowl and garnish with fresh parsley to serve.

Recipe Notes

  • Pureeing the onions into the sauce not only thickens it, but also adds extra onion flavor to amp up the cream sauce! 
  • Try a sprinkle of paprika on top if you're not a nutmeg fan

Nutrition Information

Calories: 234kcal, Carbohydrates: 27g, Protein: 6g, Fat: 12g, Saturated Fat: 7g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 34mg, Sodium: 203mg, Potassium: 426mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 10g, Vitamin A: 462IU, Vitamin C: 17mg, Calcium: 84mg, Iron: 1mg

All calories and info are based on a third party calculator and are only an estimate. Actual nutritional info will vary with brands used, your measuring methods, portion sizes and more.

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Karlynn Johnston

I’m a busy mom of two, wife & cookbook author who loves creating fast, fresh meals for my little family on the Canadian prairies. Karlynn Facts: I'm allergic to broccoli. I've never met a cocktail that I didn't like. I would rather burn down my house than clean it. Most of all, I love helping YOU get dinner ready because there's nothing more important than connecting with our loved ones around the dinner table!

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