How to tell if an onion is bad? (3 signs)

In this brief article, we will answer how you can tell if onion is bad, how to store onion in your refrigerator for longer use and how to use onions for garnishing.

How to tell if an onion has gone bad?

An onion is bad if it has dark spots or formation of mold. Usually, you will also observe a little bit of sprouting on the onions if they start going bad. Sprouting is another indication that the onion has gone bad. Onions that are about to go bad have a very foul and pungent smell as well. The smell is different from the usual onion smell.

Onions is a staple in the kitchen. From omelets to pasta, almost every kind of food has onion as its ingredient. Apart from being a cooking ingredient, onion is also used for garnishing of the main course dishes for a fancy touch.

Onions are one of the foods that we purchase in bulk because we use them so much. We still want onions on hand because we never know when they’ll be needed. The thing is that we don’t all get through the five-pound bag of onions as fast as we planned, so learning how to tell if an onion is rotten before eating it is important.

How to tell if an onion is good?

A fresh and good onion will feel firm and smooth to touch. It also emits a strong onion smell which is a great indicator that the onion is ripe. On the contrary, if the texture is mushy and firmness is gone and the smell is different then onion is no good.

How long does onions last?

The shelf life of onions varies a lot depending on where you store them. Some people store them in their fridge, some store them in wicker baskets and there are many more ways to store onions. If you store your onions on the shelf, they will last less than a week. If you store the onions in a fridge, they will last up to a month.

Onions, whole and peeled, just last two weeks. Cut onions have an even shorter shelf life, lasting just seven days. Before throwing half an onion in the oven, make sure the cut side is well sealed. If well packaged, cooked onions can be kept in the fridge for up to five days.

Freezing onions extends their shelf life and is an excellent way to keep them fresh for your favorite fried meals. Raw onions can be frozen for up to six months, while cooked onions can be frozen for up to three months.

How to store onions for a longer use?

When kept on the table, whole onions can last up to six weeks, but in the refrigerator, they can last up to two months. The shelf life of an onion is greatly reduced after it has been chopped through, regardless of how it is saved. Sliced onions are only healthy for another week and must be kept refrigerated. Before you use the onion in your pantry, you can find out how long onions last.

How to make sure onions stay fresh for longer?

Whole, unpeeled raw onions should be stored at a temperature of 40 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit. It’s colder than the refrigerator but cooler than room temperature. They need a cold, dry, and dark setting. That’s a nice spot if you have a basement, cellar, garage, or shed that’s cooler than the house and doesn’t get sweaty.

It is safest to store onions whole at room temperature in a cool, dry position with lots of air circulation to prolong their shelf life. Mesh bags and paper bags, as well as a hanging wire mesh net, fit well. Avoid using plastic bags or any other closed containers that can’t breathe (allow oxygen to pass through), since they can trap moisture. It’s a different story after the onions have been peeled and prepared; peeled onions can be placed in a tightly closed jar in the refrigerator.

Onions can also be bought frozen, but the texture isn’t as good. Eating healthy, saving money on food, and improving the world by reducing waste are just a few of the advantages of proper food storage.

Other FAQs about Onions which you may be interested in.

How much dried minced onion equals one medium onion?

How many cups is one large onion?

How to use onion for garnishing:

You can use onion to garnish your food. It plays a vital role in representation of the food. You can garnish dishes with onion in two ways.

Finely chopped onion:

  • Take a medium sized onion and cut it in half
  • Now finely chop the onion into little cube shapes
  • While representing your food, sprinkle the chopped onion on the main dish and Viola

Your main course has become fancy and looks exquisite.

Glazed onion:

  •  Cut your onion into circular pieces
  •  Heat pan on the stove and add oil
  •  Once the oil has started heating up, you can add onion
  •  Bring the flame to medium and keep on cooking the onions till they have caramelized
  •  The caramelized onions will be brown

Now you can add these caramelized onions in your burger, your main course food or anything. They taste delicious and savory.


In this brief article we have answered the questions how you can tell if onion is bad, how to store onion in your refrigerator for longer use and how to use onions for garnishing.