Onion rings are a takeout favorite worldwide that go perfectly with fried chicken, fries, steak, and any other indulgent meal for that matter. We also all move leftovers, but onion rings and other fried food are notoriously hard to reheat, and more often than not, you are left with a slimy and soft mess that is less than appealing.
There is no denying that onion rings are a staple part of a dish, but who invented them? The truth is, we don’t actually know! Some people believe that the first onion ring recipe was featured in a British cookbook back in 1802, whereas others are adamant that chefs invented onion rings in the Texas-based Pig Stand during the 1920s.
The fact of the matter is that it doesn’t really matter who invented them; actually, I believe onion rings evolved over time to become the delicious side dish they are today. In this article, you are going to learn about how to reheat your leftover onion rings correctly, along with other fun facts. I also hope to answer some of your crispy onion ring questions in the frequently asked questions section at the end.
How Long Do Onion Rings Last?
Before thinking about how you are going to reheat your leftovers, you need to make sure they are still suitable for consumption. Onion rings can be kept in the refrigerator for no longer than three days.
If the batter looks very wet, or if it has discolored in any way, you should dispose of it immediately. You should also smell the onion ring to ensure it hasn’t turned sour. If anything looks or smells ‘off,’ then throw it out.
Do you know what the best way to store onion rings in the fridge is? Like with all fried food or food with a high-fat content that should be served crispy, you need to line the container with kitchen paper. Place kitchen paper at the bottom of the container and between every layer. This will keep your onion rings crisp and fresh.
Oven or Toaster Oven
Reheating onion rings in the oven is, in my opinion, the method with the best results. You can expect this method to take you about 10 minutes from start to finish. Follow the steps below for the best results.
- Preheat the Oven to 350 °F
It is important to preheat the oven to the right temperature before placing the onion rings into the oven to preserve their crispness. The aim is to keep the onion rings a crisp, golden color but not to burn them.
- Arrange and Cover With Foil
Line the baking tray with baking paper and arrange the onion rings so that they are all lying flat and none of them are overlapping. Once the baking tray is full, cover it with foil and place it in the oven.
It should take about 10 to 15 minutes for your onion rings to bake. Make sure that you flip them over halfway through so that both sides get equally crispy.
Microwaving onion rings is by far the easiest and most convenient method on the list. Microwaving your onion rings is a good reheating solution if you plan on taking your leftovers to work with you or if you are in a rush.
- Place them in a Microwave-Safe Dish
Choose a microwave-safe dish and line it with some kitchen paper. Next, arrange the onion rings so that they aren’t overlapping and place them in the microwave.
- Heat in 10 Second Intervals
You should blast the onion rings in 10-second intervals, checking to see how hot they are every time. Overheating onion rings in the microwave could result in them becoming chewy and unpleasant.
The thought of refrying onion rings may not sound very appealing, but if you want to get that freshly fried onion ring texture, refrying is a great option. You will need a small frying pan or skillet and some vegetable oil for this method.
- Heat the Oil in the Pan
Make sure that the oil in the pan is boiling hot before throwing in the leftover onion rings. If the oil isn’t hot enough, it will cause the batter to become soggy and even separate the batter from the onion, which is not what you want to happen.
- Cook Evenly on Both Sides
Once you can see that the underside has become nice and crisp, flip the onion ring over so that the other side cooks just as well.
The cooking process will only take about a minute or two on either side, so make sure that you are ready to serve the onion rings immediately. Place kitchen paper onto the plate before serving the fried onion rings. This will stop the onion rings from becoming soggy before they make it to your plate.
Onion Rings Fun Facts
You might think that there isn’t much to know about onion rings, but you would be mistaken. Here are some fun facts about onion rings that you might not have heard of before. Enjoy!
- Onion Rings Contain Lots of Sodium
It won’t surprise you that onion rings are not the healthiest option on the menu, and that is thanks to their high levels of sodium and calorie content. Food that contains a lot of salt is highly addictive and very bad for your health. This shouldn’t be a problem for people who treat themselves to onion rings every now and then, but frequent consumption will lead to health problems down the road.
- Onion Rings Were One of the First Seven Items on the Burger King Dollar Menu
Onion rings have been featured on the Burger King dollar menu since 1998. These cheap and tasty sides are a favorite worldwide, and it doesn’t look like they are going to be taken off the dollar menu any time soon.
- Onion Rings Don’t Contain Much Onion
The onion rings sold at fast-food chains don’t contain much onion at all. They aren’t made using battered slices of onion, as you have probably noticed; this reduces the cost of onion rings but also makes them easier to eat as you don’t risk pulling the onion out of the batter every time you take a bite.
Q: How long can I leave onion rings out?
A: Onion rings shouldn’t be left out of the refrigerator or freezer for longer than six hours. This is especially true for defrosted onion rings, so it is important to remember never to refreeze defrosted onion rings.
Q: Why should I soak onion slices in ice first if I want to use them to make onion rings?
A: Soaking your onion slices first will remove some of their sulfur content, making them sweeter and milder once cooked. Onion rings are not supposed to have a strong oniony taste, so soaking them first helps give your side dish the best flavor.
Q: How do I stop my onion rings from getting soggy?
A: There are a few steps that you can take to avoid soggy onion rings. First, you must make sure that you aren’t slathering your onions in batter. You should also line the plate and container with kitchen paper to soak up any excess oil.
Q: Can you eat day-old onion rings?
A: Yes, you can eat day-old onion rings, as long as they have been stored and refrigerated correctly. If the onion rings have been out on the kitchen counter for longer than six hours, you should dispose of them immediately.
Q: Why is the batter falling off my onion rings during the frying process?
A: Fresh onions are full of moisture and need to be dried out before frying. Place the onion slices between two tea cloths or pieces of kitchen paper before adding the batter and frying.
Q: How do I crips up onion rings in the oven?
A: Making sure that the oven is hot enough before placing the onion rings inside is a big factor. You can also proxy cooking oil on your onion rings before baking to get that extra crisp.
Q: Can I freeze cooked onion rings?
A: Yes, you can! Make sure that you cook the onion rings thoroughly before freezing them. You shouldn’t defrost and refreeze onion rings or any other food for that matter as it changes the taste and texture of the food.
Q: Why do onion rings make you feel sluggish?
A: Onion rings are very hard to digest, which is why you may feel sluggish and tired after indulging in your favorite takeout side dish. You will notice this more if you don’t eat takeout or unhealthy food frequently as your body isn’t used to it. Fresh raw food is the easiest to digest, so you can see why you might feel a little unwell after eating lots of fried food.