Difference Between a Spanish Onion and a Yellow Onion?

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Onions are one of the most essential ingredients we use every day when cooking any kind of cuisine. You can use them when making salads, soups, sandwiches, stews, and other foods as a way of improving their nutritional value, texture, and taste. But since there are different varieties of onions, picking the one to use in a dish can be challenging. We will compare Spanish onions vs yellow onions, which are both common types of onions used when cooking, in this piece.

Despite having a similar appearance, Spanish onions and yellow onions have some noticeable variations that can change the taste and texture of your food. For instance, yellow onions have a stronger and more pungent flavor than Spanish onions, which are renowned for their sweet and mild flavor. Additionally, Spanish onions are larger and have thicker skin than yellow ones, making them more challenging to peel and chop. This article will examine the difference between a Spanish onion and a yellow onion.

What Are Spanish Onions?

spanish onions

Spanish onions are commonly used when cooking. They are famous for their sweet, delicate flavor and big size. They are often confused with Vidalia onions, which are also sweet and mild but grown only in Georgia, USA.

Spanish onions are characterized by their flattened shape, with a wider diameter than other types of onions. They are a preferred option for raw foods like salads and sandwiches because of their light brown, papery exterior and juicy, white flesh that’s milder and sweeter than other onions.

Spanish onions are frequently added to stews, soups, and sauces to give them a delicate flavor and fragrance. They frequently take the place of yellow onions because of their stronger taste and stronger aroma.

When shopping for Spanish onions, it is important to look for ones that are firm and heavy for their size, with dry, papery skin. They can be kept in the fridge for about 2 months, or at room temperature for a few weeks in a cool, dry location. To use Spanish onions, cut off the ends and remove the outer papery layer to prepare Spanish onions before slicing, chopping, or dicing.

What Are Yellow Onions?

yellow onions

Yellow onions are a type of onion that is widely used in cooking all over the world. They are known for their round shape, yellowish-brown skin, and white flesh with yellow layers. A common component in several French, American, and Italian dishes is yellow onion. They are versatile and you can add them to soups, stews, stir-fries, sauces, and roasts.

Yellow onions have a powerful smell that makes your eyes water when cutting them and a bitter and slightly sweet flavor. They contain many nutrients like fiber, vitamin C, and sulfur compounds, all associated with better health.

When buying yellow onions, it is important to look for firm ones and free of soft spots or blemishes. You can store them for some weeks to a some months. But, it’s totally based on how fresh they are, in a cool, dry place like a pantry or basement.

You can slice your yellow onions thinly and use in salads or sandwiches, chopped into segments after the skin is removed, or cut into wedges for roasting. You can also caramelize yellow onions. The process involves cooking them slowly in oil or butter until they become soft and browned, adding a sweet and savory flavor to several meals.

What is the Difference Between a Spanish Onion and a Yellow Onion?


One of the most apparent differences between Spanish onions and yellow onions is their appearance. Spanish onions are typically larger than yellow onions, with a flatter and wider shape. In addition, they have thinner, papery skin that is a light golden-brown color. The flesh of a Spanish onion is also lighter in color than that of a yellow onion, with a white to a light yellow hue.

Yellow onions, on the other hand, are generally smaller and rounder than Spanish onions. In addition, they have thicker, darker yellow skin that is almost orange. The flesh of a yellow onion is also darker, with a yellow to light brown color.


The flavor of Spanish onions and yellow onions differs slightly as well. Spanish onions are sweeter and milder in taste than yellow onions. They are ideal for use in salads, sandwiches, and salsa because of their delicate, subtle flavor, which calls for a light onion flavor.

The taste of yellow onions is more robust than that of Spanish onions. People often use them when cooking stews, soups, and sauces because they need a richer onion flavor. Yellow onions also caramelize well, making them a popular choice for caramelizing onions in dishes such as French onion soup.


In terms of texture, Spanish and yellow onions are relatively similar. Both types of onions have a firm, crisp texture when raw but become soft and tender when cooked. Nevertheless, Spanish onions are slightly more delicate and tender than yellow onions, which may hold up better in dishes that require a firmer texture, like onion rings.


Because of their mild flavor, Spanish onions are often used raw in salads and sandwiches. Due to their delicate taste compared to the other ingredients, you can also use them when making guacamole and salsa.

Yellow onions are a versatile ingredient used raw or cooked in different recipes. They are a common ingredient in many cultures and great in stir-fries, soups, and stews.


Spanish onions and yellow onions differ in appearance, flavor, texture, and uses. Spanish onions are superior to yellow onions in size, flatness, sweetness, and delicateness, making them ideal for use in raw foods like salads and salsa. Onions that are used in a variety of cooked recipes include yellow onions because they are smaller, rounder, more pungent, and more adaptable than Spanish onions.

About Cynthia

Cynthia Odenu-Odenu is the founder of Cyanne Eats. She is an avid baker and cook of delicious delicacies. She uses this blog to share her love for different cuisines.

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