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Onion and Chilli Chutney

A recipe using home grown onions

 Onion Chilli Chutney


About one month ago in  My Patch I picked my crop of red onions and garlic. They were a part of my winter garden, along with a large amount of leek seeds, these are still growing.  

Harvesting Onions

Onions are ready to pick when the stems fall over and fade in color. They should be carefully dug out of the garden, not pulled.

Storing Onions

Dry your onions in an airy position that is undercover but receives sun.  I had mine drying under the deck.  It is covered and receives sun most of the day.  Leave the onion to dry for a couple of weeks and then hang in a cool, dry location.  I harvested about 4kg of red onions and about 2 kg of fresh garlic.  

home grown onions

Eating Onions

I made a delicious chutney from some of the onions I harvested. It is a mild, chutney that has a light sweetness.  You can adjust the amount of chilli and the heat from it based on adding or leaving out the seeds.  Here is my recipe:


  • 1kg red onion
  • 1/2 kg red capsicum
  • 5 long red chillis
  • 1 lemon juiced
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 50ml White Vinegar
  • 100ml Cider Vinegar
  • 200gm white sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar


  1. Heat the mustard seeds until fragrant (a couple of minutes) and then set aside
  2. Peel and very thinly slice the onions
  3. Remove the core and seed from the capsicums and finely chop
  4. Finely chop the chilli.  Leave the seeds in if you enjoy spicy food, if not, remove them.
  5. Cook the onion and capsicum together until soft (about 20 minutes)
  6. Add the chilli, mustard seeds, the vinegar and lemon juice and bring to a simmer
  7. Add the sugars and stir to prevent sticking on the bottom of the pan
  8. Continue to cook until the mix is thick.  It is almost ready if you can run a wooden spoon through the middle to separateMake Onion Chilli Chutney the mix and no liquid seeps into the path.  Continue to cook an additional 5 minutes until “jammy”. Ensure you monitor closely at this time to prevent burning. Cooking to this point will take approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes. *This will vary depending on how wide the base of the pan is that you are using
  9. Spoon into warm sterilized jars, label and store in a cool dry place for up to 3 months.  Once open refrigerate and eat within a few weeks.

To sterilize jars and lids:

  1. Wash in hot soapy water and dry thoroughly
  2. Put lids and jars (not suitable for plastic lids)into the oven at 140 degrees on a tray for 15 minutes.
  3. Turn oven off, or onto lowest heat to keep warm until mixture is ready to pot into the jars
  4. Remove from the oven with tongs carefully as they will be very hot.

I love eating this Chutney on olive bread, or in a bread roll with ham (especially Christmas Ham).  It is also delicious to eat on baked potatoes and served with steak.

For USA information on sterilizing jars for storage of Preserves review the USD Complete Guide to Home Canning (Guide 01).

**It is important that you ensure you use safe food preparation and storage techniques when preserving. You can find detailed information via the link to the USD Complete Guide to Home Canning.





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{ 5 comments… add one }
  • Marnie November 2, 2012, 7:13 pm

    I’ve got a huge bag of red onions, just sitting here…might make this over the weekend.
    x Marnie

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