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Pickled Red Onions

A canning jar overflowing with pickled red onions and a fork resting on the jar.
Shannon Bard

Prep 15 mins
Cook 4 hrs 15 mins
Total 4 hrs 30 mins
Tex Mex
8 servings
10 kcal


  • 1 large red onion peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 to 1 cup fresh lime juice (from 6 to 10 limes)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano preferably Mexican (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin (optional)


  • Toss the red onion and salt in a nonreactive bowl and stir in the lime juice. Set the mixture aside and let the ingredients hang out at room temperature for 30 minutes, stirring fairly frequently, until the onions begin to turn bright pink. At first the onions will be stiff so you’ll need to toss them with the lime juice frequently so as to expose as many of the onions to the lime juice as possible. But after a little while the onions will begin to collapse.
  • After half an hour, stir in the oregano and cumin, if desired.
  • Cover and refrigerate the red onions and the lime juice for at least 4 hours, stirring occasionally, before serving. (Any leftover pickled red onions—as if!—can be covered and refrigerated for up to 1 week. As for ideas what to do with your pickled onions, see the LC Straight Outta The Bowl note above and the Testers Choice comments below.)