sirke wale pyaaz or pickled onions | how to make sirke wale pyaaz

pickled onions or sirke wale pyaaz

sirke wale pyaaz or pickled onions recipe – a sour & faintly sweet accompaniment that you will get to see in north indian restaurants. these small pink or reddish colored onions are a must with punjabi food. i do make these beautifully looking as well awesome tasting pickled onions at home but never ever got to clicking the pics and posting the recipe.

in north indian restaurants they are commonly served as many people love their taste and often ask for it. so if you ask, then these pickled onions are often served complementary with the meal like pickles.

small red onions are marinated in vinegar, water and salt and kept for 2-3 days. so the onions soften with the taste of the vinegar in them and even loose their pungency. so the result are onions with a sour taste from the vinegar with their light sweet inherent taste.

whenever we go to any south indian restaurants, we always ask for sirke wale pyaaz, if we don’t see them being served with the main course. but most of the times we have been disappointed as what they serve is a red or orange colored sliced onions with lime slices….. and sometimes they do serve these pickled onions, but their taste is miles away from perfection and balance.

to make these pickled onions, we have to ideally use small red onions. you can even use shallots. in the absence of red onions, a small piece of beetroot is added for the red coloring. i have never added beetroot. I make these with small onions, white or red whatever i get locally.

its an easy pickle recipe which does not take much time in preparation. after 2-3 days, you can keep these onions in the fridge and they last for more days.

sirke wale pyaaz recipe

using a lot of vinegar makes the onions very sour. i have learnt how to make these pickled onions from my mil and she always advises not to use too much vinegar. also there is no need to cover the onions completely with the vinegar-water solution. just shake the jar for 2-3 times in a day till the pickle is ready.

these onions go very well tandoori snacks or rich curry dishes like paneer butter masala, kadai paneer, palak paneerdal makhanitandoori aloo or any rich curry dish of your choice. they also pair great with dal tadka or dal fry served with jeera rice or saffron rice. they also make a good filling for burgers or sandwiches or in pita breads instead of plain onions.

another recipe which is served with tandoori snacks is this mint chutney recipe.

sirke wale pyaaz or pickled onions recipe below:

5.0 from 5 reviews
pickled onions or sirke wale pyaaz
sirke wale pyaaz or pickled onions - sour & lightly sweet in taste,
CUISINE: north indian
INGREDIENTS (measuring cup used, 1 cup = 250 ml)
  • 15-20 small red onions or shallots
  • 1 tsp white vinegar or apple cider or balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ cup water
  • ¾ tsp salt or as required
  1. peel and rinse the onions.
  2. place all the onions in a glass jar or ceramic jar or any non reactive jar.
  3. add the vinegar, water and salt to the onions.
  4. shake the bottle.
  5. let the onion sit in the vinegar-salt solution for 2-3 days.
  6. shake the bottle 2-3 times in a day.
  7. serve the sirke wala pyaaz with any indian main course.
  8. refrigerate after the onions are pickled.

{ 32 Responses }

  1. Tenzin Andrugtsang says

    Hi there,
    I used to live in dharamsala (Himachal Pradesh) and there is a nice restaurant called the Mid-Town. I take my family to the restaurant every weekend, either for lunch or for dinner. They used to serve a special sour and spiced onion pickle which was just great. Now I moved to New York and I have always been thinking about this pickled onion. And guess what luckily I came across this website and Lo!!! I see the pickled onion again. What a pleasant reunion. And I immediately got down to making this pickled onion by following your recipe. And I am glad I know the name too…Sirke wale pyaaz….what a name..and thank you so much Dassana ji. I am also looking at your daal makhani and my mouth is already watering. I will rate and this recipe after I taste the one I tried to make. But one question though….do I refrigerate the pickled onion immediately after I added all the ingredients or after sometime? Thanks a zillion. Dhanyawaad!!!!!🙏🏻

  2. abigarv says

    Can the ordinary onions be cut into chunks and pickled in this manner? I cant get any small onions where I live and I really want to try this!

  3. Vidushi Tyagi says

    Awesome recipy…

    Mam cn u share the recipe of green chutney that is serve with these onion in restaurant

  4. sathya says

    Hi Dassana! Thanks for yet another wonderful recipe! I want to make this pickled onion. I live in mumbai. I want to know if there is any name for these small red onions so that I can ask the vendor. Also is vinegar absolutely necessary? Or will lemon juice do the same work?

  5. richa says

    Lovely presentation :)
    I wonder which type of vinegar to be used for pickling,apple cider or malt or white one..

  6. Kan says

    I have one question, after 3 days of soaking, do I remove the vinegar water from the bottle before refrigerating?

  7. prachi says

    I always wanted to learn this.What’s the shelf life of these onions!
    Bdw I love your site I always hop to this site if I in need of recipes. You are doing great job!

    • says

      prachi, better to store in fridge and stay good for a week. shelf life also depends upon climate condition in your city. so can not generalize. in room condition it will only stay good for 1-2 days.

  8. Anna says

    I sometimes add a piece of purple plum to add red color to the onion. Thanks for sharing!

  9. Shailaja says

    Hi, this recipe is very useful, thanks. We love these onions! One question- can the solution of vinegar-water be used again for second or third time to marinate more of these onions?

  10. says

    My husband loves sirke wale pyaaz. In fact that’s the only thing he enters in the kitchen to make. But now since he has stopped doing even that, I have to take the charge. Thanks for reminding me how easy they are and I shouldn’t be lazy!

  11. Ruchika says

    I thought that pickled onions are immersed completely in vinegar. but as per ur recipe it is 1 tsp vinegar to 1/4 cup water. Hope there has nt been an error. Please confirm

    • says

      the recipe is right ruchika. i generally don’t immerse them completely in vinegar. in fact, for the amount of small onions mentioned here, the water-vinegar solution was just covering 1/4 of the jar from the base. too much vinegar makes the onions very sour.

  12. says

    i was wondering how cum pink color in onion ! every time when i have this onion :) its because of vinegar :) my favorite ! i use to dip it in the kebab chutney and taste ! yummy !