Braised Cipollini Onions with Spring Pea Puree

  • Prep-time: / Ready In:
  • Makes 2 cups onions + 1¼ cups pea puree
  • Print/save recipe

While it might sound strange to eat onions whole, small cipollini onions are a delicious treat that have a much milder, sweeter flavor than their larger counterparts. For this company-worthy side dish, the little bulbs are braised in a tangy-sweet reduction of grape juice, balsamic vinegar, and fresh rosemary until they get melt-in-your-mouth tender and are then spooned onto a bed of pea puree that’s jazzed up with savory shallot and a kick of black pepper. The earthiness of the peas perfectly complements the sweet glaze on the cipollini, making this a simple-but-scrumptious side dish that’s bound to be met with plenty of “oohs” and “aahs” at the dinner table. Serve with an extra crack of black pepper, and enjoy!

Tip: To easily remove the skins from cipollini onion, dunk them in boiling water for 60 seconds. Cool in ice water. Cut off onion ends and squeeze to pop onions out of their skins.

For more onion-forward recipes, check out these tasty ideas:

By Ellen Boeke,


  • 1½ lb. whole cipollini onions, peeled
  • ⅔ cup white grape juice
  • ⅓ cup white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen peas
  • ¼ cup unsweetened, unflavored plant-based milk
  • 1 tablespoon sliced shallot
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  • In a large skillet cook onions over medium 5 minutes, stirring occasionally and adding water, 1 to 2 tablespoons at a time, as needed to prevent sticking. Add grape juice, vinegar, rosemary, and ⅛ teaspoon of the salt. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer 10 to 15 minutes or until onions are tender when pierced with a knife. Uncover and simmer 35 minutes more or until liquid reduces and glazes onions. Using a spoon, baste onions occasionally with thickened liquid during the final 10 minutes of cooking. Remove and discard rosemary.
  • Meanwhile, place peas in a steamer basket in a large saucepan. Add water to saucepan to just below basket. Bring to boiling. Steam, covered, 4 minutes or until tender. Transfer peas to a food processor. Add milk, shallot, pepper, and the remaining ⅛ teaspoon salt. Process until smooth.
  • Serve onions over pea puree. Sprinkle with additional pepper and, if desired, drizzle with additional vinegar.

Comments (1)

(5 from 1 vote)

Recipe Rating

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Linda Goudelock

I haven’t seen these onions in my stores for years! I’ve traveled the US in an RV and haven’t seen them anywhere. Love them

About the Author

Ellen Boeke headshot

About the Author

Ellen Boeke

Ellen Boeke has more than 25 years of experience as a recipe developer and food editor. She holds Bachelor's of Science degrees in consumer food science and journalism from Iowa State University and attended Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, France. Find her on LinkedIn.
See More from this Author

Join our mailing list

Get free recipes and the latest info on living a happy, healthy plant-based lifestyle.

By providing your email address, you consent to receive newsletter emails from Forks Over Knives. We value your privacy and will keep your email address safe. You may unsubscribe from our emails at any time.