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a jar of pickled red onions on a grey surface with red onions in the background

Spicy Pickled Onions

These quick pickled red onions are the best way to add a punch of flavour to burgers, tacos, salads, and more. I love making homemade spicy pickled onions. It takes only a handful of ingredients, a few minutes of hands-on time, and is an easy low sugar recipe you'll make again and again.
Course condiment
Cuisine American
Keyword pickled onions, quick pickled
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 12
Calories 23kcal


  • 2 cups red onion thinly sliced
  • 1/2 medium red chili thinly sliced
  • 2 tsp whole black peppercorns
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt


  • Thinly slice your red onions using a sharp knife or mandoline. Thinly slice the chili pepper.
  • Pack 2 cups thinly sliced red onion, 1/2 - 1 a thinly sliced chili pepper, and 2 tsp of black peppercorns into a wide-mouthed mason jar.
  • In a small saucepan, combine 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar, 1/2 cup water, 1/4 tsp sea salt, and 2 tablespoons of sugar.
  • Heat the vinegar mixture over medium heat until the sugar has completely dissolved.
  • Carefully pour the hot vinegar mixture over the onions.
  • Press the onions down using a glass so they are fully submerged.
  • Set aside on the counter top to cool for 30-60 minutes.
  • Transfer the pickled onions and liquid into a container with a lid and keep in the fridge.


  • Nutrition values are an estimate only and is based on 12 servings.
  • Pickled red onion will last indefinitely in your fridge in an airtight container so long as the onion is submerged in liquid. 


Calories: 23kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 51mg | Potassium: 62mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 20IU | Vitamin C: 4.7mg | Calcium: 9mg | Iron: 0.2mg