What is your favorite food? No, we weren’t talking about the last slice of pizza. We’re talking about food, period. And while there are a handful of foods that have defined the American palate for generations—tacos, burgers, pizza, cheeseburgers—many other foods have become obsolete or forgotten in the process. Take diner food, for example. It was once a popular dish in American restaurants and diners, but in the last couple of decades, it’s been relegated to the realms of novelty. When was the last time you saw someone eat a classic baked potato? Or a pile of French fries?

I have been making pearl onions for years, and I have tweaked the recipe a few times. Onions are onion, and this one is no exception. Let’s see what I learned the first time:

“If you love classic creamed onions, you’re gonna love the Classic Creamed Pearl Onions! These little gems are a cross between a creamed pearl with a garlic flavor and a traditional cream of onion. We like them as a side dish or appetizer with a meal, and we love them with potatoes! The result is a great tasting, creamy and savory snack!”


If someone in my family like a certain dish, it became “their dish” at every holiday dinner. My sister had to have cheesecake, my cousin Nate had to have crudités, my cousin Jonathan had to have gumdrops, and my cousin Chris had to have Pearl Onions, Creamed. We started to mix things up and try new recipes after so many years of doing it, but I have to say, I’m still devoted to these traditions.

These Creamed Onions are topped with chopped parsley and cooked to perfection in a rich creamy sauce. This meal goes best with a tasty protein and something to soak up the sauce.

A tan bowl full of Classic Creamed Pearl Onions topped with minced parsley.

Where can I get Pearl Onions?

Pearl onions are widely available at supermarkets. I found them among the other onions and root veggies in the produce area. They’re sometimes loose, although they’re more often bagged like garlic or shallots.

Pearl onions may also be found in the frozen food area of the supermarket among other frozen veggies. For this dish, I used frozen onions since they were easier to work with (from my testing I found no change in texture or taste when using frozen over raw onions).

An over heat shot of Classic Creamed Pearl Onions in a tan bowl with a silver spoon.

Pearl onion peeling instructions

Purchasing pearl onions frozen, which have already been peeled, is the most convenient choice. If that isn’t an option or something you don’t want to do, there are a few techniques you may use to peel them quickly.

Cutting the top off the onions, boiling them for 1-2 minutes, and then putting them in an ice bath is my preferred technique. After that, you may pop the onion out of the skin by squeezing the root end and pushing it out.

A spoonful of Classic Creamed Pearl Onions.

When is the best time to prepare pearl onions creamed?

On holidays including Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter, creamed pearl onions are a classic side dish. Creamed onions, on the other hand, may be made for any occasion since the method is very easy. The step that takes the most time is peeling the onions. If you purchase frozen, though, you’ll save a lot of time.

How to turn this into a dinner

Because creamed onions are such a rich side dish, I prefer to serve them with a protein that can stand up to the richness. Beef dishes are popular, and my Flank Steak with Pan Gravy, Garlic Rosemary London Broil, and Lemon Pepper London Broil are excellent options. Recipes for savory chicken, such as this Garlic Rosemary Roasted Chicken, might also go nicely.

A detailed close up shot of Classic Creamed Pearl Onions.

Required Ingredients

  • 3 Tbsp Butter
  • 3 Tbsp Flour
  • a third of a cup of chicken broth
  • a third of a cup of half-and-half
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • ¼ Cup Parsley Minced
  • 3 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese

Needed Equipment

  • Knife of a Chef
  • Board for cutting
  • Pan de Sauce
  • Saute in a pan
  • Spoon Made of Wood

Storage Suggestions

Creamed onions may be kept in the fridge for up to 4 days in an airtight container. Warm in the microwave or on the stovetop until well heated.

Creamed onions may be kept in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 2 months. Warm in the microwave until heated through to thaw.


a bowl full of creamed pearl onions

Creamed Pearl Onions


Michelle Boulé is a French actress.


With this recipe for Creamed Pearl Onions, you can make a beloved traditional side dish. It’s ideal for the holidays or a night in.


5 out of 4 votes


Recipes to Pin




15-minute prep time

45 minutes to prepare

1 hour total time




Side Dish for the Course

American cuisine



6 servings

Calories (kcal): 178






Saute Pan


Spoon Made of Wood


Knife of a Chef




StandardMetric in the United States



  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • a third of a cup of chicken broth
  • a third of a cup of half-and-half
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 14 cup minced parsley
  • 3 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese





  • Bring a big saucepan of water to a boil (8 cups). Boil for 5-7 minutes, or until pearl onions are soft. Remove the onions, drain them, and peel them. Save it for a later date. If you’re using frozen onions, cook them until they’re no longer frozen. Remove the onions from the pan and put them aside.

  • Melt butter in a large pot over medium heat. To make a roux, stir in the flour and heat until it starts to bubble. Stir in the broth and half-and-half until everything is smooth. Bring to a low boil, then reduce to a low heat and cook until the sauce has thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon.

  • Season with salt and pepper to taste. Combine the parsley and cheese in a mixing bowl.

  • Toss the onions in the cream mixture to coat them. Serve right away and enjoy!



Taste of Home and an ancient family recipe were combined to create this dish.



Calories: 178 kilocalories 19g carbohydrate 4 g protein 10 g fat 6g Saturated Fat Cholesterol: 28 milligrams 218 mg sodium 307mg potassium 3 g of fiber 7 g sugar 512IU Vitamin A 17 milligrams of vitamin C 105 mg calcium 1 milligram of iron




Creamed Pearl Onions is a keyword that may be used to describe a dish.



Before today, we had never cooked with pearl onions. Mind you, we are not talking about the small pearl onions that you can buy in a bag of frozen pearl onions, but instead we mean the real thing. The bigger pearl onions that you have to be careful not to break as you are slicing them. Instead of the normal cooking method of boiling pearl onions, we decided to try the classic method that uses cream and butter to add flavor to the onions.. Read more about barefoot contessa creamed onions and let us know what you think.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you prepare pearl onions?

You can prepare pearl onions by boiling them in water for about 10 minutes.

How do you get the peel off pearl onions?

You can use a knife, or you could try using your fingers to peel them.

Do you leave the skin on pearl onions?

Yes, I do.

Related Tags

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