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Can I use Red Onions In Meatloaf?

To prepare a delicious meatloaf, you need to combine various ingredients before baking or smoking it. Onions are a primary ingredient, and your meatloaf would be incomplete without them.

What Kind of Onion for Meatloaf?

It can be challenging to decide which type of onion will work the best with your recipe. Red onions are often the best onion for meatloaf as long as it works well with your particular recipe.

There are various reasons why Red Onion works well with meatloaf. Read on to see why you can use your red onion in meatloaf.


The most common onion you can get effortlessly in your local market or the nearest grocery store is the red onion.

Since it’s the most available type of onion, you can quickly get it and use it to make your meatloaf.

Although your meatloaf recipe sometimes may state the type of onion to use, you can always substitute it with the red onion as it is readily available and relatively fresh.

Red Onion - The Best Onion for Meatloaf
Red Onion – The Best Onion for Meatloaf

The Sweetness of Red Onion

Although the red onion will make you teary while chopping, it has a mild flavor that enhances the taste of your final product.

Once this onion is caramelized to a golden-brown color, it gives your meatloaf a delicious taste. It also becomes crispy with a bit of after-taste that you cannot get from any other ingredient.

Red Onion Adds Color to your Meatloaf

Just like any onion, you can sauté, stir-fry, simmer and even caramelize with red onion.

Although it loses some of its taste, contrary to when raw, it gives your meatloaf a mild onion flavor and still gives your meal an appealing touch of color.

Moisten the Meatloaf

One way of making perfectly moist meatloaf is by adding diced vegetables such as onions. Red onions have high water levels making them perfect for moisturizing the meatloaf.

To make the onions juicer, gently sauté them in olive oil or butter before adding them to the meatloaf. They release more of their moisture into the meatloaf, making it juicer with an extra flavor.

Tips for Picking the Right Red Onion

To prepare a delicious meatloaf, you need to have all the necessary ingredients. When it comes to red onions picking the right ones, you need to follow some tips.

The following are some of the tips to consider when buying red onions.

  • Ensure the red onion has a nice red-purple color.
  • Pick the ones that are heavy, firm, and without visible bruises. To confirm they are firm enough, check the root side and the upper part by pressing.
  • Ensure the onion does not have black or brown spots underneath its skin.


If you purchase more red onions than you need for your meatloaf, store them in a cool, dry, and dark place and do not remove their outer skin.

For pre-cut onions, please place them in an air-tight container and refrigerate them. If not sure about which type of onions to add to your meatloaf, now you that red onion can come in handy.

So…What kind of onion for meatloaf? Nearly any onion will work. Can you use red onion in meatloaf? Yes! In fact, I think that red onion is the best onion for meatloaf. See the reasons above.