Shoestring Onion Rings > Thick Cut Onion Rings. Hear My Cry.


You’re gonna get a little handsy with this process because getting in the dredge with your fingers is the only way to ensure a really good coating of the rings. You can use ANY kind of onion for these rings and either hand slice them or use a mandoline, so do your thang!

Active Time: 50 Mins

Total Time: 50 mins



  • 1 pound onions (1 large or 2 small), any kind


  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • Kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • Vegetable oil, for frying (about 10 cups)
  • ½ cup pepperoncini rings


  • 2 cups buttermilk

1. Set up your fry station:

  • In a 9 x 13 baking dish whisk together 3 cups flour, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 ½ teaspoons pepper to a 9 x 13 baking dish.


  • In a separate large bowl, whisk together 2 cups buttermilk, 1½ teaspoons smoked paprika, 1 ½ teaspoons garlic powder, 1½ teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper in a medium bowl. Whisk to incorporate spices.


  • Fill a large dutch oven or heavy pot with enough oil to reach a depth of 2-inches

2. Prep the onions:

  • Trim the ends of the onion(s) and peel and discard the skins. Sharpen your knife! Slice your onions into ⅛” rings. Don’t worry if some slices are slightly thicker than the rest-- a little variation is totally fine. Alternatively, use a mandoline. If your onions are wider than your mandoline, cut them in half through the root end. Set the mandoline to a thickness of about ⅛-inch.


  • Separate the onion slices into individual rings and place the rings in the buttermilk mixture. Let sit at room temperature, tossing occasionally so as to marinate the rings evenly, at least 10 minutes and up to 2 hours before frying

3. Make the yummy dust:

  • Combine 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast, ½ teaspoon garlic powder, ½ teaspoon pimenton, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper in a small bowl.
  • Rub between your fingers to incorporate and break down the nutritional yeast.

4. Fry the rings:

  • If you have one, attach a deep fry thermometer to the side of the pot with oil and place over medium-high heat. If you don’t have a deep fry thermometer, you can just temp the oil occasionally with a probe thermometer as it heats up. Heat the oil to 350 degrees.


  • While the oil heats, using a pair of tongs or two forks, drain the rings from the buttermilk marinade. Drop the onions into the flour mixture and toss to coat thoroughly. Here’s where you’ll get your hands involved. Coating the rings super well is key to crispiness! (Note that the longer the rings stay in the marinade, the more they'll break down/collapse. You may need to take a bit more time when dredging them to ensure that every ring is individually coated in flour, but the payoff to a longer marinade is more flavor)


  • Shake off any excess flour from the rings. Using a spider or a pair of tongs, gently lower about one-third to one-half of the onions into the oil, being sure not to overcrowd the pot. Gently stir to prevent clumping and immediately increase heat to high to maintain an oil temperature of 350 degrees (and lowering it as needed). Fry until onion rings are crisp and golden brown, about 3 ½ to 5 ½  minutes.


  • Remove onion rings to a paper towel-lined plate and sprinkle liberally with spice mixture. Repeat with remaining onions, being sure to return oil to 350 degrees before dropping the next batch.


  • Toss with ½ cup sliced pepperoncini and serve piled high.