Crispy Thin Onion Rings (With a Secret Ingredient!)

Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes

Crispy Thin Onion Rings are just like the ones you’d find in your local steakhouse. Covered in a thin layer of crispy onion ring batter, you’ll want to make a second batch just to be willing to share.

Onion Rings on baking dish with sides of ketchup

Onion Rings

Is it too early to give up on New Year’s Resolutions yet? Yes? Darn. Okay, fine… at least these aren’t beer battered onion rings, so that makes them slightly healthier right?

Homemade onion rings are a side dish most people don’t make because they aren’t really a popular frozen food in the grocery store, they aren’t nearly as awesome baked and people tend to be a bit fearful of frying.

How to make Homemade Onion Rings

To make these onion rings you really don’t need any special equipment. I use my trusty cast iron skillet, tongs and a couple of large Ziploc bags. The onion rings are thin enough you only really have to care about the color of the outside. The onion ring batter here isn’t a batter to be concerned about cooking through.

and the Onion ring batter secret ingredient is…

You ready for the secret ingredient? It’s pancake mix for the onion ring batter! I use a fancier variety than you need to (a gift from my husband’s aunt, she loves sending us Williams-Sonoma pancake mixes), but truly, Bisquick works great for this onion ring batter recipe. I have made it with Bisquick probably…oh I would guess 20 times? It is delicious. I think any pancake mix would work for you and for the most part, this onion rings recipe is very hands-off and easy.

Also, if you go the lazy route like me and use the two Ziploc bags, you won’t have pancake mix spilling or any mixing bowls to wash! There is a New Year’s Resolution I am helping you keep, keeping the house as clean as possible! Enjoy these onion rings, they are delicious!

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Crispy Thin Onion Rings (With a Secret Ingredient!)

Easy delicious steakhouse-style Crispy thin onion rings! Made with just five ingredients and so good you'll eat most of them as you cook them!
Yield 8
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 4 medium white onions
  • 1 cup milk , whole or 2%
  • 3 eggs , beaten
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 cups pancake mix
  • Canola Oil , for frying


  • Slice your onions into rings ¼ inch thick.
  • In a large ziploc bag as the onions, eggs, milk and salt.
  • Close the bag TIGHTLY with some air in it so it is kind of like a pillow and carefully shake until all combined.
  • Let the air out, reclose and put in the fridge for as long as you can up to 2 hours.
  • Drain the onions and toss with the pancake mix (ok I will be honest here I use a second large ziploc bag, add the pancake mix and onions and shake....NO dishes or mess! Only a frying pan to wash!
  • Using tongs tap excess pancake mix off onions against the side of the bag.
  • In a cast iron skillet add oil ⅓ the way up the pan (I use my skillet, if you use a pot, add a couple inches worth of oil)
  • Fry rings until golden brown 1-2 minutes.
  • Drain fried onion rings on brown paper bag or on a cooling rack.


Calories: 135kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 87mg | Sodium: 493mg | Potassium: 208mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 220IU | Vitamin C: 4.3mg | Calcium: 126mg | Iron: 0.8mg


Onion rings made with thin onion ring batter for extra crisp


Easy delicious steakhouse-style Crispy thin onion rings! Made with just five ingredients and so good you'll eat most of them as you cook them!
Easy delicious steakhouse-style Crispy thin onion rings! Made with just five ingredients and so good you'll eat most of them as you cook them!

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.


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  1. Must use sweet vidalia onions, this is the most important thing. If you can find Drakes coating it’s so much better!

  2. Hi Sabrina! I was wondering what the temperature the oil is supposed to be at please? Thank you And I cannot wait to try this recipe!

  3. These sound really good.
    I would love a copycat recipe for the dipping sauce that a specific restaurant serves with their onions.
    Would you happen to have one?
    I would surely appreciate it.

  4. I use Bisquick with seasonings for fixing fried chicken. I never thought to use it for onion rings. I know they’ll be good!

    1. When I first saw the idea of it I thought it sounded terrible. But it was used in a copycat recipe I needed to make for nostalgia purposes and it was SO good it is the only way we batter onion rings now unless we beer batter! It also helps that it is SUPER easy.

    1. Me too! I always Yelp stalk a restaurant before ordering their onion rings. I need to see them to make sure they aren’t awful/frozen premade looking! Yes, I am crazy, I know it!

  5. I think my husband will be extremely happy if I cook these onion rings for him! I’m going to be shopping for the ingredients for them tomorrow. I have a feeling the whole family is going to enjoy this recipe! Thanks for sharing. 🙂

    1. Yes, definitely not an every day food. But moderation with everything is key and these onion rings are awesome, so they’re worth the extra 20 minutes on the treadmill.

  6. I’ve tried making my own onion rings a few years ago and was never successful! I must give your recipe a try!

  7. Wow, I don’t even like onion rings but would totally try these. Is it weird that I think they’re pretty? lol

  8. Pancake mix for onion rings… I never would have imagined that. I can not believe the entire process is so easy either!

  9. I can’t wait to make these onion rings. I never knew that you could use pancake batter as a coating for frying. I will definitely be trying it for all of my frying now.

    1. Crazy right? It is the only way I make onion rings now… well unless I am doing fish and chips with a beer batter, then I throw some onions in that for good measure.