There were many, many onions harmed in the making of this recipe.

First I tried winging it and creating a crispy batter from scratch. Those were inedible.

Then I tried again and things didn’t get much better.

Then I looked at how other recipe developers were making egg-free baked onion rings, which, as I was learning, is a daunting challenge. But even other people’s recipes didn’t work!

I began wondering if I had unintentionally summoned some kind of onion ring curse…

All was not lost, however, as each of these failures helped me piece together what is certainly the holy grail of “one ingredient” snacks: a simple, crispy, baked, oil-free, egg-free onion ring that actually tastes like an onion ring (imagine that).


Makes 2-3 dozen onion rings


  • 2 large sweet onions
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup non-dairy milk
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2 slices whole wheat bread
  • 1 cup finely ground cornmeal
  • 3 tablespoons ground flaxseed
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat the oven to 425º F

Step One

Peel and cut off the ends of the onions. Then slice them into 1/2 inch thick rounds and break apart the layers into the rings. Set these aside on a cutting board.

Step Two

In a large bowl, mix the flour, non-dairy milk, and apple cider vinegar. This is the first step of the batter.

In a separate bowl or baking tray, make the second step of the batter by tossing together: whole wheat breadcrumbs (see below), 1 cup cornmeal, flaxseed, garlic powder, and salt.

To make quick breadcrumbs, toast 2 slices of whole wheat bread (Ezekiel works great) until very dark, but not burned. Then, break it into chunks and throw in your blender on high until it’s broken down into crumbs. Done.

Step Three

To batter the rings, dip one into the wet milk/flour mixture, then transfer to the dry cornmeal/breadcrumb mixture and coat evenly, and finally onto a baking sheet. It’s best to use different hands for the wet and dry mixtures – you’re not trying to batter your fingers!

Step Four

Bake these for about 10-15 minutes at a very high temperature of 425º F until the batter is fully crispy but not burned. Allow to cool and enjoy. These onion rings are best served immediately, but they can be stored in sealed containers and reheated in the oven.