What do shallots taste like? 

In this brief guide, we will answer the question, “What do shallots taste like?”. We will further talk about the types of shallots, how to cook shallots, their nutritional profile, texture and much more.

What do shallots taste like? 

Shallots taste like a blend between onions and garlic. Shallots are not too spicy, so they can be added to dishes without dominating other ingredients.

Raw shallots are more robust, sharp and pungent similar to onions while cooked shallots are sweet, particularly when prepared slowly over low flame and permitted to caramelise.

What are shallots?

Shallots belong to the onion family. They can come in diverse colours including golden, brown, and red. Shallots are used in many different recipes and salads. They improve the flavour of the recipe and can be eaten as it is. But they taste even better when cooked with other ingredients, like garlic or butter.

Shallots typically have white or purple flesh and are often used in dishes that demand a caramelising agent.

Shallots are enriched with iron and many important minerals. They are a great source of antioxidants and may support blood sugar control, blood circulation, heart, and bone health. They may also defend against infections and help to maintain an overall healthy weight.

What is the nutritional profile of shallots?

Shallots are good for nutrition. A 100 gram serving of chopped shallots provides:

  • Calories: 75 Kcal
  • Proteins: 2.5 g
  • Fats: 0 g
  • Carbohydrates: 17 g
  • Fibres: 3 g
  • Folate: 9 per cent of the daily value (DV)
  • Calcium: 3 per cent of the DV
  • Magnesium: 5 per cent of the DV
  • Iron: 7 per cent of the DV
  • Potassium: 7 per cent of the DV
  • Phosphorus: 5 per cent of the DV
  • Zinc: 4 per cent of the DV

What do shallots look like?

Although shallots have quite a resemblance with onions, they do have a few indifferences that will allow you to differentiate them. Shallots typically have the following features:

  • They are smaller and much longer than onions
  • The flesh of shallots has a nearly white to purple colour
  • The outermost peel of shallots is extremely thin and papery with copper-pink or purple colour
  • Similar to garlic cloves, shallots grow in bulbs but only comes with 2 or 3 cloves

What are the 3 types of shallots?

Generally, there are 3 major types of shallots:

French grey shallots

French grey shallots have a greyish tint to their outermost skin. These are known to be the best kind of shallots and are used in various recipes. French grey shallots are also called the ‘true’ shallots.

Jersey shallots

Jersey shallots have a more reddish colour and are the most typical type found in US supermarkets. The flavour of pink or jersey shallots is much like the French grey shallots and can also be used like them.

Echalion shallots

Echalion shallots are also known as “banana” shallots. They are formed by a blend between regular shallots and onions. Echalion shallots hold most of the good qualities from each parent vegetable, which include the large size of onions and the mild flavour of shallots.

What are the best ways to enjoy shallots? 

Some of the best ways to enjoy shallots include:

  • Shallots can be added to raw salads. You only need to cut them well and add some salt, pepper and lemon juice.
  • You can prepare shallots rings as you do with onions.
  • You can pickle the shallots
  • You can use fresh shallots having fresh green stems for garnishing just like you use spring onions.
  • Shallots can be used in gravies instead of onions.
  • You can use shallots to make any soup and quiches.

How can you know if shallots have gone bad? 

Due to the papery skin of shallots, it can be challenging to determine when shallots have gone bad. Still, there are many ways that can help you differentiate the bad shallots. 

Shallots that have become old may feel less colourful, even on the exterior. They may turn yellow or just less freshly coloured. Oftentimes, old shallots get somewhat squishy or hollow. In both of these circumstances, they have likely gone bad. If everything else fails, an unpleasant odour may help you determine a bad shallot.

What is the texture of Shallot?

Whole shallots have a firm, crispy and juicy texture, but are thinner as compared to an onion.

On the contrary, cooked shallots have a softer and translucent texture. They become silky and smooth as they are caramelised. 

Other FAQs about Shallots that you may be interested in.

What is a shallot?

What does a shallot look like?

Why use shallots instead of onions?


In this brief guide, we have provided an answer to the question, “What do shallots taste like?”. We have further talked about the types of shallots, how to cook shallots, their nutritional profile, the texture of shallots and much more.