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Air Fryer Blooming Onion Recipe

an air fryer blooming onion on a plate

Crispy Air Fryer Blooming Onion


The iconic blooming onion is reimagined in the air fryer, offering a lighter version of the deep-fried favorite. This Crispy Air Fryer Blooming Onion recipe captures the essence of the classic appetizer with less oil, featuring tender onion petals encased in a crispy, seasoned coating. Served with a spicy dipping sauce, this dish is perfect for sharing and is sure to be a hit at any gathering. Enjoy the delicious crunch and flavor of a blooming onion made easy and healthier in the air fryer.

Ingredients List - Air Fryer Blooming Onion Recipe

  • 1 large sweet onion

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika

  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • Salt and pepper to taste

  • 2 large eggs

  • 1 tablespoon milk

  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs

  • Cooking spray

For the Spicy Dipping Sauce:

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise

  • 2 tablespoons ketchup

  • 2 teaspoons horseradish

  • 1 teaspoon paprika

  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

  • Salt to taste

Step by Step Cooking Instructions

  1. Prepare the Onion: Cut off the top of the onion, peel it, and then cut the onion into a blooming shape by making several downward cuts all around, being careful not to cut through the bottom.

  2. Mix the Dry Ingredients: In a bowl, combine flour, smoked paprika, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper.

  3. Prepare the Wet Mixture: In another bowl, whisk together the eggs and milk.

  4. Bread the Onion: Dip the onion in the flour mixture, ensuring it's fully coated. Then dip it into the egg mixture, and finally into the panko breadcrumbs, making sure the petals are well-coated.

  5. Preheat your air fryer to 360°F (182°C) for about 3 minutes.

  6. Cook: Place the breaded onion in the air fryer basket and lightly spray with cooking spray. Air fry for 10-15 minutes or until golden and crispy.

  7. Prepare the Dipping Sauce: While the onion is cooking, mix together mayonnaise, ketchup, horseradish, paprika, garlic powder, and salt in a bowl.

  8. Serve: Serve the blooming onion hot with the spicy dipping sauce on the side.

blooming onion in an air fryer basket

Pro Tips and Suggestions

  • To ensure the onion petals separate and bloom nicely, soak the cut onion in ice water for a few hours before drying and breading.

  • For an extra crispy coating, double bread the onion by repeating the flour and egg dip process before coating with panko breadcrumbs.

  • Serve immediately after cooking for the best texture and to ensure the onion petals are as crispy as possible.

Interesting Alterations You May Want to Try

  • For a gluten-free version, use gluten-free flour and breadcrumbs.

  • Experiment with different spices in the flour mixture to customize the flavor to your liking.

  • Try a yogurt-based sauce for dipping for a lighter, tangier complement to the spicy blooming onion.

Key Takeaways and Calories

  • The Crispy Air Fryer Blooming Onion offers a healthier alternative to the traditionally deep-fried appetizer, maintaining the crunch and flavor with significantly less oil.

  • This dish is perfect for entertaining, providing a visually impressive and deliciously satisfying option for guests.

  • A serving of this blooming onion, excluding the dipping sauce, is approximately 400-500 calories, making it a lighter indulgence.


The Crispy Air Fryer Blooming Onion recipe is a testament to the versatility of the air fryer, allowing you to enjoy classic favorites in a healthier way. This dish brings the fun and flavor of a blooming onion to your table with less guilt, making it perfect for sharing with friends and family.

Whether you're hosting a party or simply craving a savory snack, this air-fried blooming onion with its spicy dipping sauce is sure to satisfy.



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