Shallot vs Green Onion – What’s the difference?

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Shallot vs Green Onion what is the difference between the two? 

Members of the allium family, which means that they are related to chives, garlic, and onions, both shallots and green onion are used in cooking to improve the flavor of the dish.

Shallot vs Green Onion

Before you run to the store, however, it’s important that you understand the difference in these two foods and the best time to use each one. While they both taste amazing, they have different uses and different ways that they need to be stored so knowing what to expect will ensure that your meals taste the best.


A shallot is actually a type of onion. However, unlike onions that you can easily buy in the store, they don’t divide into layers but rather in cloves or bulbs. This means that they resemble garlic more than they do a typical onion.

Each of the shallot’s bulbs is tightly wrapped in a papery layer that protects it. They taste similar to very mild onions and can add onion flavor to a dish without being overwhelming. In addition, they add a pungent garlic smell and flavor, which can really enhance a dish without having to actually add garlic.

Make sure that the shallots you buy feel heavy for their size and are not at all soft as this will indicate rot. Any shallots that have already sprouted can still be eaten but will be more bitter.

Shallots are often used raw in meals where they are can add mild flavor without overwhelming the rest of the dish. They become very sweet when they are roasted, which adds another layer of flavor to a meal.

Shallots need plenty of air circulation when they are stored and should be kept cool and dry.

Green Onions

The shoots of young onions, green onions have a distinct onion flavor that is a lot more mellow than the bulb of an onion. You can eat both the green shoots and the white bulb of a green onion and should make sure that any you buy in the store are firm and not wilted as any discoloration or signs of wilting indicates that the green onions are well past their prime.

Usually eaten raw as a garnish on a dish, green onions add a pop of bright flavor to any meal. They can be grilled, which will cause them to taste a little bit sweeter and will diminish some of the onion flavor.

They can be stored in the vegetable drawer of a refrigerator for three to five days as long as they are wrapped in a plastic bag. Due to their sharp odor, make sure that other foods such as mushrooms, which absorb odors, aren’t near the green onions.

Both shallots and green onions, when used correctly, will elevate your cooking. Use shallots when you want a mixture of soft onion and garlic flavors in your food and reach for green onions for a bright finish and pop of onion. While they both can be cooked, they are traditionally eaten raw due to their mild flavor and aroma.