Onion Turning Green: Have The Onions Gone Bad?

onion turning green
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onion turning green

Onions are a must-have in every kitchen but it’s not a very simple one to use. This is because there are different types of onions and all of them have different flavors but one thing is common; they have a pungent smell. Similarly, there are concerns about onion turning green and we have the data available on that!

Onions Are Turning Green

Generally, we don’t realize that onions are the modified leaves and are dedicated to producing chlorophyll which is generally the green pigment that leads to photosynthesis (yes, it does that even with thick leaves). For the most part, if the onion is protected by dirt and has a papery layer, it won’t be concerned with photosynthesis.

On the other hand, if the onion detects the sunlight, the chlorophyll will use light for converting CO2 into energy and oxygen.

For the most part, onions tend to have two-third above the ground, and if it has a loose outer layer, it will result in greening. In simpler words, if the onions are put into the light too much and have a loose exterior layer, it results in a green color.

The second reason behind the onion turning green might be genetics. This is because some onions are just more prone to develop green flesh. To be honest, green onions are safe to consume.

On the other hand, keep in mind that a higher chlorophyll percentage can increase bitterness. We understand that you are concerned about the green color because green potatoes aren’t safe to consume but you don’t need to be.

All in all, the onions with green pigment don’t have toxins and you can use them without any issue. When it comes down to the green color, keep in mind that it’s only associated with some onion varieties.

For instance, the onion varieties, such as young shallots, spring onions, leeks, and chives are likely to turn green. It wouldn’t be wrong to say that the green onions are the immature ones.

Onions Turn Green With Cooking

In the above section, we talked about the uncooked onions that are naturally green and the potential reasons. On the other hand, if the onions were red or white but it turned green upon cooking, there are some explanations for that as well.

Keep in mind that the pigment in the onions act as a litmus test and have red colors since they are naturally acidic. That being said, the onions will turn green if it’s placed in the alkaline environment.

To illustrate, if you add onions while cooking the beans, keep in mind that beans create an alkaline environment which results in color change. Still, these onions are safe to consume as well.

Have The Onions Gone Bad?

Whenever people spot the green onions in the vegetable basket, they are concerned if the onions have gone bad. To be honest, the green onions are safe to consume and you don’t need to worry about it.

Also, the onions aren’t bad at all and can be consumed without any second thoughts. If you have to consider if the oil has gone bad, keep in mind that onion is bad only if it has growing mold, discolored areas (blackish and brown colors), giving off the unpleasant odor, and if it’s squishy.

That being said, there is a need for proper storage of onions. For instance, you should store the raw and unpeeled onions in temperatures ranging from 40-degrees Fahrenheit to 50-degrees Fahrenheit.

For the most part, it’s suggested to store the onions in a dark, dry, and cooler area (your basement and garage are the best places). On top of everything, make sure that you don’t store onions in a humid environment because it can lead to mold growth.

In case you’ve cut or peeled onions, always store them in the sealed plastic bags or airtight containers. In addition, you can freeze the cut and peeled onions. On the contrary, if you’ve cooked onions, ensure that they are refrigerated in a sealed bag.

As far as keeping the onions fresh is concerned, if you store the onions properly, they will last for around two months. In the case of peeled onions, they hold the freshness for around two weeks with refrigeration.

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