Avoid the sting in your eyes every time you need to chop up an onion for dinner by changing up your cutting strategies. According to Thomas Scott at the Scientific American, "Peeling, cutting or crushing an onion's tissue releases enzymes called allinases, which convert [an onion's amino acid sulfoxides] to sulfenic acids. The sulfenic acids, in turn, spontaneously rearrange to form syn-propanethial-S-oxide, the chemical that triggers tears." Here are a few methods to help minimize your exposure to the irritants and let you cook tear-free!

How to Cut Onions with No Tears

Photo from fir0002 | flagstaffotos.com.au

Chill your onions

Whether you let your onions chill in the fridge, pop them in the freezer for 15 minutes, or just dunk them in an ice water bath for a little while, getting an onion nice and cold helps reduce the release of the chemicals that cause eye irritation!

Fan away the fumes

Set up a small fan or just run your vent hood over the area where you're cutting onions. It'll blow those pesky irritants away from your eyes and help keep you tear-free.

Adopt a new method for cutting your onions

One of the better ways to minimize tears is keeping the fresh cut surfaces of your onion away from you. Start by cutting your onion in half leaving the root on and putting the cut-side down on your board. Check out this Chow video for more detail on how to cut an onion properly.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qkqOIT1m08o

Sharpen that knife

Sharp knives are one of the most useful tools you can have in the kitchen, especially when you want to cut onions cleanly and as tear-free as possible. A good, sharp knife helps minimize damage to the skin of your onion as you cut, minimizing the release of the irritants.

Cut near an open flame

Lighting a candle (or whatever kind of open flame you have at your disposal) can help reduce the likelihood of tears too! The flame will draw in and burn some of the gases released by the onion, allowing you to proceed with your cooking without a tear in sight.

Top 10 Christmas Cookies of the Season.
Hearty, Chunky Soups for a Cold Day.
Healthy, Easy New Ways to Enjoy Salmon.
10 Tasty Ways to Make Canned Tuna Gourmet.
10 Creative New Ways to Cook Salmon.
12 Terrific New Takes on Jalapeño Poppers.
Quick and Easy 5 Ingredient Pastas.
Snack Healthy with Homemade Hummus.
Every Dish is Made Better with Beer.
10 Exceptional Coffee Drinks to Make at Home.
10 Handy Meals Made in a Muffin Tin.
Vegan Appetizers Anyone Will Love.
Simple, Hearty Mexican Dishes for a Crowd.
10 Succulent Salmon Dishes for Healthier Eating.
Appetizer Ideas for the Big Game.
Italian Dishes Minus the Indulgence.
Cozy Chili Recipes and Creative Ways to Enjoy Them.
Fantastic, Flavorful 5-Ingredient Chicken Dinners.
10 Savory Curries You Can Make in a Hurry.
5 Creative Cinco de Mayo Recipes to get the Fiesta Started!.
Fun Football Shaped Bites for the Super Bowl.
The Ultimate Super Bowl Appetizer: 5-Layer Football Field Dip.
TOUCHDOWN! The Extreme Super Bowl Recipe Round-Up.
Complete Your Meal With a Perfect Wine Pairing.
Food Pairings with Sean McKenzie and Dave Matthews.
Top 10 Tips for Winning Dinners!.
From Apples to Kale to Salmon, How to Keep What You Love Fresh.
Cooking with Silk®.
Grow Your Own Ingredients: Fresh Garden Favorites.
Bring Game Day Parties to Life with Lit'l Smokies.
5 Lit’l Smokies Recipes to Bring Holiday Parties to Life.
Foods that Will Put You to Sleep.
5 Tips For Enjoying The Holiday Season, Guilt Free and Naturally.
Black Bean & Corn Guacamole.
Slow Roasted Pork Arepas with Quick Pickled Onions and Chimichurri.
Citrus Salmon and Watermelon Popsicles.