October 9, 2023

Caramelised onion chutney

Caramelised onion chutney is the favourite preserve of Mr S and we try to make it every autumn. We made 4 12oz jars of it from this recipe last night.  Our eyes were streaming as we peeled the onions, but a good cry is cleansing, sometimes. This year has been a bumper year for onions after a bad harvest last year.  We grow them from sets, and have actually had two crops this year as I planted some in March and some in June.  Onions are cheap to buy in October and are often found on offer as they are in season, and so if you do not grow your own this is a good time to buy them and make the chutney.  Mr S prefers his made with red onions, but any onions will suffice. This recipe is really simple to make and tastes delicious.


9 medium onions

1 red chilli

25ml olive oil

200g soft brown sugar

150ml balsamic vinegar

150ml red wine vinegar


  1. Chop the onions into thin slices.
  2. Chop the chilli finely.
  3. Put the onions and the chilli into a pan with the olive oil and cook gently over a low heat for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. When the onions are dark and sticky add the sugar and the vinegars.
  5. Simmer for about 30 minutes until the caramelised chutney is dark and thick in consistency.
  6.  Pour chutney into hot sterilised jars, seal, and let it cool. It is best left about a month before eating it in order to let the flavour mature.I hope that you enjoy this recipe. We use caramelised onion chutney in cheese sandwiches, in toasties and with burgers or sausages, mostly.  It also makes a lovely, home made gift for Christmas, and is often requested by our family.  How would you use it?


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  1. Sandra October 9, 2023 at 7:25 am - Reply

    After making caramelised onion chutney with white onions I will certainly be giving this one a go. You could make a onion and goat’s cheese tart but I’ve never tried goat’s cheese yet 😅. Thankyou for the recipe 😋

    • ToniG October 10, 2023 at 2:03 pm - Reply

      Mr S loves a goat’s cheese tart. That is a good idea x

  2. Kathryn Naden October 9, 2023 at 8:05 am - Reply

    I think I’d put into cheese pies or pasties . I picked up a huge tin of caramelised baby pinions from food club froze some & cooked with some including in a curry & cheese pie & chopped into cabbage I fried to use up . They weee all yummy x

    • ToniG October 10, 2023 at 2:02 pm - Reply

      I have put it in pasties and it is nice with cheese. Those caramelised onions sound nice. I have never seen any in a tin.
      Thanks for commenting x

  3. Rhiannon October 9, 2023 at 9:02 am - Reply

    My goal this winter is to learn how ti cook better and make good meals out of what i have in. I will definately try this be ideal with cold meats and pies. Thank you.

    • ToniG October 10, 2023 at 1:59 pm - Reply

      I hope that your learning goes well. It will definitely help your health and your purse, though it does take effort and time. I hope that you enjoy the chutney

  4. Paula Gatenby October 9, 2023 at 4:00 pm - Reply

    I’ve had some really poor results making caramalised onion chutney. I tried a recipe from the Betty’s tea room recipe book and it sets like toffee. I was so disappointed so tomorrow after a break of nearly 5 years I will have another go at making chutney but this time I’m making your recipe. Wish me luck!! Thanks for sharing… x

    • ToniG October 10, 2023 at 1:57 pm - Reply

      Good luck. Just don’t cook it too long. We have made it for about 4 years now and it has always turned out well x

  5. Diane Monahan November 6, 2023 at 7:43 am - Reply

    I made this yesterday, I got four jars out of it. It looks good but haven’t tried any yet, may gift some for Xmas (after I’ve tried it) Would you roughly know the shelf life if unopened in the sterilised jars?

    • ToniG November 9, 2023 at 7:54 pm - Reply

      Hi. Sorry for the late reply. I have been away. We have kept them just over a year and they have been fine. We usually make it in the summer with our own onions and then after Christmas when vegetables are sold cheaply over the festive period. I hope that you enjoy it. Mr S did not wait the four weeks for it to mature and has eaten nearly 3 jars already!

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