Demystifying: Green Onion


Green onion is a favorite garnish and flavor that I can find it fairly easily anywhere I go. How to use it correctly though isn’t completely straight forward. I remember coming home during college and carefully watching my mother (who learned from my grandmother), how to use them.

green onion collage

First, to wash green onions, peel off the outer most layer (unless they are really fresh) by tugging down on the outer-most green sprig. Discard this peice and be sure to wash off any remaining residue from the outer layer, and cut off the root.

The green/top part and the white/bottom part of the green onion should be treated separately.  They have different cooking times and shelf lives, and therefore should be stored separately, and added at different times in a dish.

White/light portion:


  • Cooking: cook this part of the green onion similarly as you would other onions, such as at the beginning of a stir fry. It is also typically used minced inside of dumplings, like potstickers and shrimp wontons.
  • Storage: separate the white part of the green onion after cleaning (cut off from the green top), which can be stored in the fridge for much longer.  In my grandma’s fridge, my mother’s fridge, and my fridge you can always find a handful of green onion stems held together by a rubber band.

Greeen portion:

DSC_0856 v2

  • Cooking: this is a great garnish, and cooks with just a small, quick amount of heat. You can chop and add it into a steamy bowl of soup right before serving, or at the end of a stir fry. One of the best uses is to add hot oil (a few tablespoons from the stove) onto minced green onion, as shown in the top picture of this post. You can then use this as a topping onto light dishes such as steamed tofu or vegetables, adding a quick delicious flavor.
  • Storage: The green part of the green onion (as shown above) can easily be stored in the freezer.  Just mince the green onion at their freshest, and then store in a zip lock bag or tupperware in your freezer for future use over the next three months.

5 thoughts on “Demystifying: Green Onion

  1. Hey Debbie! I just stumbled across your awesome blog from Facebook,and I have to tell you that I really enjoy reading it AND … I’m seriously learning a lot about cooking from you! Both you and Nancy are such good cooks… I have so much to learn! 🙂 Thanks and I’m glad I found your blog!

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