Barefoot Contessa Caramelized Shallots

You might not usually think about serving shallots as a vegetable, but they’re more flavorful and delicate than onions, a perfect accompaniment for an everyday roast chicken but special enough to serve on a holiday with a standing rib roast.–Ina Garten

LC Demurely Disrobing Shallots Note

Not only are shallots more nuanced in flavor than pearl onions, they’re far easier to disrobe from their clingy papery skins. Still, we won’t say no to shallot-stripping shortcuts, especially when in the throes of dinner party prep. So we wanted to share what the lovely Barefoot Contessa has to say on the topic. She drops whole shallots in a pot of boiling water for just shy of a minute, then drains them. The skins slip off with the utmost of ease, says the good BC. Furthermore, the good Contessa continues, you can peel the shallots hours in advance and later, when you’re juggling everything else, simply give them a quick sauté before tossing them in the oven. How easy is that?

Barefoot Contessa Caramelized Shallots Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 10 M
  • 1 H
  • Serves 8


  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 pounds fresh shallots, peeled, roots intact
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons good red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher sal
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley


  • 1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  • 2. Melt the butter in a 12-inch ovenproof sauté pan or cast-iron skillet. Add the shallots and sugar and toss to coat. Cook over medium heat for 10 minutes, tossing occasionally, until the shallots start to brown.
  • 3. Add the vinegar, salt, and pepper and toss well. Place the pan or skillet in the oven and roast until they are tender, 15 to 50 minutes, depending on the size of the shallots. (Don’t worry about the variance in cooking temperature, if the shallots are done before the rest of dinner, transfer them to a plate, hold at room temperature, and then slide back into the oven for just a few minutes to warm.)
  • 4. Season with salt and pepper to taste, sprinkle with parsley, and serve hot.
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