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Caramelized Onion Pie on Taste and Tell

I love it when I choose a recipe to make, and everything comes together perfectly, making a delicious meal. But at the same time (and you might find me crazy for this), but I sometimes don’t mind it when I make something that doesn’t quite work out, but I learn a lesson from it. This was one of the latter. Let me explain…

When choosing the recipes to highlight from my cookbook of the month, I usually try to hit multiple chapters, so I have a wide variety of recipes from the book. So far, I had hit the side dishes, salads, and sauces & relishes. So I decided to hit up the entree chapter for my last recipe. I went through it a few times, unable to make a decision on which one I wanted to try. Then, while reading through blogs earlier this week, I came across an onion pie that sounded so good. I apologize, because I cannot remember where I found it now, but I couldn’t get it out of my head. So when I realized there was a recipe for a Caramelized Onion Tart in my cookbook, the decision was made.

When shopping for the ingredients, I saw some huge, gorgeous Vidalia onions at the store, and decided to go with them. I figured they were a sweet onion, and caramelizing onions makes them sweet, so they would be a great choice. Well, I got home to start the dish. The cookbook says that it would take 15 minutes to caramelize the onions. I have caramelized onions many times, and it has always taken much longer than 15 minutes. I would say 45 minutes is more like it. So I thought I’d do a lesson on caramelizing onions, and take pictures of the process. So my onions went on the heat. I took a picture at the beginning, and then 15 minutes later. At the 30 minute mark, they didn’t look much different, and I knew something was wrong when at 45 minutes, they still didn’t have any color on them.

So onto the internet I went. After some research, I learned that sweet onions, such as the Vidalia that I had chosen, are the worst onions for caramelizing. Go figure. So my onions never really caramelized, and the end result was a very sweet onion. I had already made it this far, so I decided to continue on.

The original recipe is for a tart, but I don’t have a 9-inch tart pan (mine is 11 inches) so my pie crust didn’t fit into the tart pan. I went with a pie dish instead, which i think worked out better because I think there would have been too much filling for a tart pan. The pie baked up beautifully, and actually smelled really good while it was baking.

After letting it cool off, I tried a slice. And although it wasn’t as good as it would have been if I had used a regular yellow onion, it still was pretty good. It did throw me off a bit because of the excess sweetness, but I can imagine how good it would have been with the right onion. And even though it was too sweet, it didn’t stop the two of us from polishing off the whole pie in about 24 hours. And I came out of the experience with a lesson learned!

Caramelized Onion Pie Recipe

Caramelized Onion Pie
slightly adapted from Vegetables by the Culinary Institute of America

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 1/2 cups thinly sliced yellow onions
3/4 cup heavy cream
3/4 cup milk
3 large eggs
salt and pepper as needed
1 1/4 cups grated provolone cheese, divided
one 9-inch pie crust, prebaked in a pie pan

Preheat oven to 350F.

Heat the olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat until it shimmers. Add the onions and sauté, stirring frequently, until caramelized (from 30-45 minutes). Remove the onions from the heat.

Whisk together the cream, milk, eggs, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Add the onions and 1 cup of the cheese and stir to combine. Pour the mixture evenly into the pie crust. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top of the pie.

Bake in the preheated oven until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean, about 40 to 45 minutes. If the crust starts to get too brown, cover it with foil. Remove the pie from the oven to cool on a wire rack. Let the pie cool for at least 10 minutes before cutting.

Pie can be served hot, warm, or at room temperature.

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25 Responses to Caramelized Onion Pie {Cookbook of the Month Recipe}

  1. Patricia Scarpin says:

    Deb, I’m with you 100% – I hate to mess up recipes, but if there’s something to be learned, I don’t feel that bad.
    I never knew that about these onions, so I have learned something, yay! Your pie looks mouthwatering.

  2. Sylvie says:

    I’ve just learned something new. Thank you! The pie looks great!

  3. Megan says:

    I hate when I cant remember where I saw something. But I wont forget where I saw this pie because I’m tagging it!

  4. glamah16 says:

    That looks mouthwatering. I prefer theless sweet onions for something like this too.

  5. kamailesfood says:

    I love onions and I love pie. This sounds tasty and must have been if you ate the whole thing in a day. 🙂

  6. JennDZ - The Leftover Queen says:

    Oh my goodness gracious, that sounds like absolute heaven from where I sit. Drool, drool, drool…ad infinitum.

  7. Paula says:

    I didn’t know that about sweet onions! The pie looks great and I bet it tastes awesome!

  8. Jeena says:

    What a great onion recipe it is very much like quiche, yum. 🙂

  9. noble pig says:

    The pie looks amazing. I’ve never heard of these onions…thanks for the lesson.

  10. giz says:

    This one really looks like a winner. I’ll just bet the onions were really really sweet.

  11. Jenny says:

    Deborah, this pie looks so good, it is photogenic too! I bet I’d love this one!

  12. Lore says:

    You said the magic word: PIE. Nooo, I’m not sharing :))

  13. Grace says:

    heck, with all that provolone, ain’t no way it could be bad! thanks for sharing and hopefully (assuming i can remember) preventing me from making the same mistake!

  14. javagirlkt's cookin' says:

    Not only did you learn something new, we did as well!!

    This does look like a delicious recipe though. I hope you get to try it sometime with the right onion.

  15. kellypea says:

    This completely sounds like the first time I made a caramelized onion pie. Exact same thought process. But I didn’t get on the internet to figure out why, so thanks, because it’s times like this that keep us from doing it all over again. Nice looking pie. Very!

  16. Kevin says:

    That pie looks so good with the golden brown layer of cheese on top. When I caramelize onions for something like French onion soup, it usually takes me 2-3 hours.

  17. Shelly says:

    I am paying you a visit from the foodie blog roll. I have never heard of an onion pie before but now that I read your blog, I want to try to make one!

  18. d says:

    Looks Yummers, no matter what onion you used … cooking is an adventure! I made that up, but it is true in my case … many times I could never repeat a recipe … oh well!


  19. Elle says:

    I didn’t know that about sweet onions! It still looks great, though, and I’m glad it as good enough to eat and enjoy.

  20. Susan from Food Blogga says:

    Just the words “caramelized onions” make my mouth water. And then seeing that tart put me right over the top. I have got to try this.

  21. Maria says:

    Deb this Caramelized Onion Pie looks really good. This is definately my type of food in the summer served with a lovely salad along-side it.


  22. Tartelette says:

    Dang that looks good! Already printed up and on the menu for next week!

  23. Craft Fairy says:

    Yumm, yumm, yumm! Great cooking and photos.

  24. Suzanna Banana says:

    I’m so glad I found you and your onion pie recipe. A few years ago I made this amazing pie, then filed the recipe away. I’ve since moved and the recipe may be in storage.

    i’ve searched the internet for an onion pie WITHOUT the cream cheese. No luck until I found you.

    Guess what we’re having for dinner tomorrow? I have homemade pastry and cheese in the freezer, eggs in the fridge, onions in the pantry and a strong craving for this pie.

    Thank you.

    • Deborah says:

      I hope it’s what you have been looking for! I’ve been wanting to remake this for some time now – maybe I need to add it to the menu this week, too! 🙂

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