Chef John’s Crispy Onion Rings (That Stay Crispy!)


This was one of those magical cooking moments.  Don’t ask me why a person, me, who can’t be around raw onion could eat cooked onion rings, but it was great, crispy, and better than a restaurant!  My husband cooked these while I was in another room.  They were extremely crispy and stayed that way hours later.  They were the best I’ve ever tasted.  We didn’t have club soda so we used chilled beer, it worked fine.  The panko really works here, don’t substitute it!  A+!

  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons dry potato flakes
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
  • 1 cup chilled club soda
  • 2 cups panko bread crumbs, or as needed
  • 2 cups vegetable oil for frying
  • 2 large onions, cut into 1/4-inch thick slices and separated into rings
  • fine salt to taste


  1. Whisk together flour, cornstarch, dry potato flakes, and cayenne pepper in a large bowl. Whisk in club soda to make a smooth batter.
  2. Place panko bread crumbs in a shallow bowl.
  3. Heat oil in a deep fryer or large saucepan to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  4. Place a few onion rings at a time into the bowl of batter and turn to coat all sides with batter.
  5. Remove onion rings from batter and place into pan of panko bread crumbs; turn to coat completely with crumbs.
  6. Cook a few rings at a time in the hot oil until golden brown, about 2 to 3 minutes.
  7. Transfer to a cooling rack set over paper towels to drain. Season with salt to taste and serve.
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