Onion tears!

Some people think it’s silly to take measures to prevent crying while cutting an onion.  Well, those people must be blessed, because crying is the least of my problems with cutting the onion.  If I don’t protect myself in some manner, than I will be spending the rest of the day with blocked sinuses and throbbing eye pain.  So I’ve tried various suggestions throughout the years.  With the few pieces of advice I’ve combined, I’ve managed to keep the damage to a survivable minimum.  I light a candle close by, chew gum, leave the roots on till the last minute, wear glasses, cut quickly, clean up quickly, and run from the room like a squirrel on steroids as soon as I’m finished.  The very best ideas I’ve used are to have someone else do it (I still have to stay in another room) and just buy the precut onions (frozen is best…lasts a long time).

Meanwhile, I thought it wouldn’t hurt to see what other methods people employ.  Let me just say…ya gotta love the internet!  You would not believe all the ways people have of dealing with the onion tears!  Here are just the ones I managed to get through reading (in a vague alpahabetical order).  Use any of these ideas at your own risk and Good Luck;)

  • Breathe only through your mouth.
  • Breathe only through your nose.
  • Blow on onion while chopping to blow gases away from you.
  • Chew raw onion.
  • Chill onions in freezer anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour.
  • Chill in fridge for anywhere from one day to several days.
  • Chew gum.
  • Cook onion first.
  • Cut onion under water.
  • Cut onion near running water.
  • Cut out the cone where the root comes out.
  • Cut onion in half then, put in freezer or fridge.
  • Cut onion in half and lay exposed sides on cutting board.
  • Don’t use old onions.
  • Don’t use serrated knife.
  • Don’t cut through the root until the last cut.
  • Drink a bunch of water when the tears begin.
  • Go outdoors to cut onions.
  • Hold 1/2 teaspoon of salt in your mouth.
  • Hold unlit matches between your teeth (with the head of match outside your mouth).
  • Hold water in your mouth while you cut.
  • Hold the cut side of onion away from you.
  • Hold a big chunk of bread in your mouth or between your teeth.
  • Hold a spoon in your mouth.
  • Hold an apple between your teeth.
  • Keep the skin of the onion intact as long as possible.
  • Keep hands and knife under water while cutting.
  • Light a match, blow it out, then hold between your teeth.
  • Light a short candle near the cutting board.
  • Put a piece of rolled brown paper in your mouth.
  • Put a piece of cut onion on top of your head!  (My personal favorite!)
  • Put vinegar on your chopping board.
  • Put vinegar on a cloth and sniff it when the tears begin.
  • Put already cut onion in covered bowl while you finish.
  • Put cube of bread at base of knife.
  • Run cold water on inside of wrists.
  • Stand as far away as you can.
  • Soak onion in cold water.
  • Soak onion in salt water.
  • Stare at running water while cutting.
  • Turn hood fan on.
  • Use sweet onions.
  • Use bigger onions.
  • Use a small fan to blow the onion gas away from you.
  • Use salt or bread crumbs on the knife.
  • Use sharp knife.
  • Use a stainless steel knife.
  • Wet the knife
  • Wear glasses, goggles, or contact lenses
  • Wear a mask over your face.
  • Whistle while you cut. (My personal second favorite!)
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2 Responses to Onion tears!

  1. I use the freezer method which works great! I will try some of these other ideas if I forget or don’t have the time for the freezer. Some of them I will for sure use others uh, not so much! Some people are crazy!

    • admin says:

      Shh…don’t tell anyone, but I just buy the frozen ones 😉 . I did think it would be funny to have a picture of someone attempting to do as many of those as possible at one time, but that might be pretty hard since a lot of them contradict eachother!

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