A delicious appetizer for special occasions, this air-fried blooming onion is a much healthier version of a favorite crunchy treat. Paleo, vegan, gluten-free.
A healthier option than a deep-fried blooming onion
I’ve had my air fryer for several weeks now and it’s been one of my favorite kitchen tools ever, for sure! It’s so fun and easy to use, and I keep coming up with new ideas all the time!
I was browsing through the air fryer cookbook that came with it, and found a recipe for a blooming onion. I mentioned it to my husband and he pretty much demanded that I make one. So here we are!
This recipe is loosely inspired by that recipe (from the Cosori Air Fryer Cookbook), which was based on regular flour and some other ingredients I didn’t want to use. I also customized the cook time and the spices, as I found it was far too long.
So really, it’s my own recipe, but I still wanted to give credit for the inspiration!
If you’re in the market for an air fryer, I highly recommend the Cosori brand, which my husband found as a Cyber Monday deal. It’s a really nice size and we use it all the time!
Blooming onions are a tasty appetizer or side dish!
You’ll want to start by chopping the top off the onion. Place the onion face down (with the root side up) on a cutting board and make vertical slices down through the entire onion to the cutting board.
You’ll want to cut around 12-16 times to create the blooming onion shape. The key here is to keep the root of the onion intact, so that it all stays as one big piece.
This can take a little bit of practice, but don’t fret if you accidently cut off a piece or a section, it still tastes just as delicious!
One of the tips I learned about making a blooming onion is that soaking it in water for an hour really helps to widen up the onion “petals”. I definitely think it helps, if you have the time to do so. It is by no means a necessary step though.
After the onion soaks (if you choose to do so), make sure to dry the onion thoroughly. Make the batter mixture with the following ingredients:
- Blanched almond flour + a bit more reserved
- Tapioca flour (aka tapioca starch)
- Garlic powder
Mix them all together and add in enough water to make a thick batter. Spread the batter all over the onion, ensuring you get it in all the crevices. Using your fingers here tends to work best. Sprinkle with the reserved almond flour.
Spray cooking spray onto the bottom of the air fryer tray, then place the onion inside, cut side up. Spray with a bit more cooking oil.
Cook until the edges begin to brown (mine might have been a wee bit overdone…), then remove from air fryer and allow to cool for a minute before digging in. Best served immediately.
How do you reheat the leftovers?
This recipe is best enjoyed fresh, but you can also reheat the leftovers in the air fryer again. I recommend 370F for 3-5 minutes.
You may also enjoy:
Blooming Onion (Paleo, Vegan)
- 1 large onion
- 1/3 cup blanched almond flour + 2 tablespoons reserved for sprinkling
- 2 tablespoons tapioca starch
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 cup water
- Cut top off onions, leaving the bottom end with the roots intact. Place onion root side up onto a cutting board. Make vertical cuts down through to the bottom, all around the onion to form small strips. Be sure to leave the onion attached at the root. You want the onion to "fan" out to form that blooming onion shape, but still all be attached.
- Add the onion to cold water and allow to soak for 1 hour. This will help to plump up the pieces and also to help it fan out better. Remove from water and pat dry.
- To a bowl, add remaining ingredients, except for the 2 extra tablespoons of almond flour. Stir in water to form a thick batter. Coat the entire onion in the batter. Sprinkle with the remaining 2 tablespoons of almond flour.
- Coat bottom of the air fryer in cooking spray, and place onion inside, root side down. Spray with cooking spray.
- Cook for 25 minutes at 375F.