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TIP OF THE DAY: Uses For Extra Shallots

Shallot Vinaigrette Recipe


Oysters With Mignonette Sauce

Top: Shallot vinaigrette, a French classic
from Good Eggs. Center: Shallot bulbs have
individual cloves, like garlic bulbs; photo
courtesy Burpee. Bottom: Mignonette sauce
for oysters is shallot vinaigrette without the


While they are a staple in France, most Americans don’t keep a store of shallots in the kitchen. Shallots tend to be that specialty onion you purchase for a particular recipe.

If you buy them for a particular recipe and have a extra shallots, what should you do with them?

  • Milder than onions, they are easy to add to salads, omelets, roasted vegetables and other recipes.
  • You can caramelize them or fry them into a crispy shallot garnish.
  • Use them to top a burger, bruschetta or a pizza, raw or sautéed.
  • Two classic French recipes are shallot vinaigrette and mignonette sauce for oysters. The difference: mignonette sauce has no oil.

    Prep time is 5 minutes, active time is 20 minutes.

    You can double or triple the recipe and keep the extra in the fridge.

  • 2 small shallots, minced (tiny dice, 2-3 tablespoons)
  • 2-3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 8 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

    A shallot is different from other onions in that the bulb is made up of individual cloves like a bulb of garlic, its close cousin.

    The technique for dicing shallots and onions is to leave the root end of the bulb or clove intact while you cut. This keeps the bulb together so you can cut pieces that are uniform in size. Here’s a video showing how to peel, slice, dice and chop shallots.

    1. COMBINE the vinegar and minced shallots in a small bowl and set aside for at least 15 minutes.

    2. ADD the olive oil and a pinch of salt, and whisk together until well-combined.

    3. TASTE and add another pinch of salt and pepper as desired.


    Use these to garnish anything savory. We add them to plain grilled fish, meat and poultry for a bit of pizzazz.


  • ½ pound shallots (about 6), peeled and very thinly sliced
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

    1. LINE a large plate with paper towels. In a small saucepan, heat the oil over medium-high heat until it begins to shimmer and lightly smoke.

    2. ADD the shallots and cook, stirring often, until light golden brown, about 7-9 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the shallots to the paper towel-lined plate. Sprinkle lightly with salt.



    Shallots are an allium, a member of the same botanic species as chives, garlic, leeks, onions and scallions/green onions. They are a milder type of onion, imparting a subtle flavor to recipes. Like garlic, shallots can be separated into cloves.

    Shallots are preferred by French chefs, because their mild flavor doesn’t overpower the other flavors in a dish. Unlike onion flavor, which can be prominent, shallots are a quieter member of the ensemble of ingredients.
    Meet The Genus

    The Allium genus comprises some favorite flavor ingredients:

  • Chive: Allium schoenoprasum
  • Garlic: Allium sativum
  • Green onion/scallion: Allium cepa var. cepa
  • Leek: Allium ampeloprasum
  • Onion and spring onion*: Allium cepa
  • Shallot: Allium cepa var. aggregatum
  •   Fried Shallot Garnish RecipeFried Shallots
    A crispy fried shallot garnish tops sautéed baby greens. Here’s the recipe from
    The botanical family is Amaryllidaceae, which contains mainly perennial flowering bulbs such as amaryllis and other lillies, daffodil and tuberose. Allium genus members are also bulbs and also flower, but not in the same, showy way that engenders garden and home decoration.
    *Spring onions are immature onions, harvested early in the season.

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