How to Perfectly Dice Onions Like a Professional Chef

Dicing onions like a professional chef requires proper technique and practice. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you dice onions perfectly:

1. Choose the Right Onion:

Select a firm onion with minimal signs of sprouting or spoilage. Yellow onions are commonly used for dicing due to their balanced flavor.

2. Gather Your Tools:

You’ll need a sharp chef’s knife, a cutting board, and a bowl to hold the diced onion.

3. Prep the Onion:

  • Trim: Cut off the stem end of the onion (the root end will help hold the onion together as you cut).
  • Peel: Remove the outer papery skin and the first layer of the onion to reveal the clean layers underneath.

4. Cut in Half:

Cut the onion in half vertically (from stem end to root end).

5. Make Horizontal Cuts:

Hold one onion half flat on the cutting board, exposing the cut side. Make horizontal cuts across the onion half, making sure to keep your fingers tucked in and your knuckles against the blade as a guide. The closer the cuts are together, the finer the dice will be.

6. Make Vertical Cuts:

Turn the onion half so that the flat side is facing the knife. Make vertical cuts from the root end toward the stem end, while keeping your fingers tucked in and your knuckles against the blade.

7. Finish Dicing:

As you make the vertical cuts, the onion will naturally fall apart into diced pieces. Continue making vertical cuts until you reach the stem end.

8. Repeat with the Other Half:

Repeat the horizontal and vertical cuts with the other onion half.

9. Keep Your Fingers Safe:

To avoid cutting your fingers while dicing, always keep your fingertips tucked in and use your knuckles to guide the knife. Curl your fingertips back to form a “claw” grip and rest the side of the blade against your knuckles.

10. Practice and Consistency:

Consistency is key to achieving professional-looking results. Practice will help you improve your speed and accuracy in dicing onions.


  • A sharp knife is crucial for clean cuts and preventing the onion from getting crushed.
  • Keeping the root end intact while dicing will help hold the onion together and prevent it from falling apart.
  • If you find that dicing onions makes your eyes water, consider chilling the onion in the fridge for about 15 minutes before cutting or cutting it near an open flame to help reduce the vapors that irritate the eyes.

Dicing onions like a pro takes practice, but with time and patience, you’ll develop the skills to create uniform and finely diced pieces for your recipes.

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