Homemade Onion Soup Mix

onion soup mix


Do you remember those onion soup packets that your mom used to throw into a slow cooker with meat and turn on low all day?  Well, they are still around.  There are a million Pinterest recipes that use them for “fast and easy” dinners and soups and stews and slow cooker meals.  But even if they are fast and easy, are they healthy?

Do you know what’s in the most popular brand of onion soup mix?  See for yourself:

Onions (deyhydrated), salt, cornstarch, onion powder, sugar, corn syrup, hydrolyzed soy protein, caramel color, partially hydrogenated soybean oil, monosodium glutamate, yeast extract, natural flavors, disodium inosinate, disodium guanylate.

As you can see, these are far from whole foods, and some ingredients are downright dangerous.  Monosodium glutamate is the full name for MSG, which is a known excitotoxin.  MSG is also a component of other ingredients in this list: hydrolyzed soy protein and yeast extract.  (source)

As for the last two ingredients:  disodium guanylate and disodium inosinate, these are similar to MSG in their chemical makeup and use.  Disodium guanylate is almost always used in conjunction with MSG since it is slightly more expensive (source).  And disodium inosinate is almost always used with the disodium guanylate.  So just consider these two additives as part of a Holy Trinity of Neurotoxins with MSG and avoid them.

We also have “natural flavors” in the onion soup mix.  Natural flavors are also problematic, since they are not specifically any one flavor and can mean any number of things.  The definition of “natural flavor” under the Code of Federal Regulations is:

the essential oil, oleoresin, essence or extractive, protein hydrolysate, distillate, or any product of roasting, heating or enzymolysis, which contains the flavoring constituents derived from a spice, fruit or fruit juice, vegetable or vegetable juice, edible yeast, herb, bark, bud, root, leaf or similar plant material, meat, seafood, poultry, eggs, dairy products, or fermentation products thereof, whose significant function in food is flavoring rather than nutritional. (source)

While sometimes this can mean simply the oil from a natural substance, it can also mean the derivation of a specific chemical through the process of enzymolysis, or something even more processed through fermentation in a lab using non-organic yet “natural” ingredients.  Definitely not fool-proof.

And if my cynicism is any indication of truth, I just don’t trust food companies to use the best quality ingredients they can find.  I trust them to look at their bottom line and use the cheapest ingredients they can still feed us while maintaining a level of safety they are not liable or responsible for.

But back to the ingredient list in the onion soup mix: even if the MSG and natural flavoring don’t scare you, just remember that all the ingredients are not organic, and therefore contain pesticides and most likely genetically modified (GMO) ingredients.  The cornstarch in particular is suspect for being a GMO, since a large percentage of non-organic corn crops are genetically modified.

And let’s not forget the partially hydrogenated soybean oil.  Soybeans are another highly likely GMO ingredient, on top of which the hydrogenation process increases the likelihood of heart disease and just a general sense of “ew, gross, that’s not really ‘food'”. (source)


Fortunately, you can mix up a jar of onion soup mix from scratch in about one minute!  I’m not even kidding.  One “packet” of the commercial stuff is the same as 2 tablespoons of the homemade.  Use it just as you would in any recipe that calls for a “packet”, but know that you aren’t giving yourself a chemically-laden meal!

Equipment Needed:

Onion Soup Mix

2/3 cup dried minced onion
1 tablespoon dried parsley
1 tablespoon coconut sugar or whole cane sugar
2 teaspoons onion powder
2 teaspoons turmeric
1 teaspoon celery salt (or 2/3 teaspoon sea salt plus 1/3 teaspoon celery seed powder)
(find all organic and non-irradiated spices here)

1 teaspoon sea salt (find unrefined sea salt here)
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper (find organic peppercorns here)

*2 tablespoons of this homemade mix equals one “packet” of the storebought version

  1. Put all the ingredients in a pint mason jar, shaking to combine.
PAID ENDORSEMENT DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog.


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  1. Kimberly says:

    is this equivelent to one packet of soup mix?

  2. Mickie Blair says:

    2 tablespoons equals 1 packet…..:) 🙂 🙂

  3. I haven’t used one of those packets in years, but I used to love the taste before my real food conversion. I always have dried minced onion, I will need to try this myself. Love the addition of turmeric, I am always looking for more ways to include that spice in our diet. Wonder if the sugar can be left out?

  4. Rebecca Hutchinsonr says:

    how do you dry your own minced onion

  5. can this be made with out salt .. my sister cant have ANY salt and is looking for ways to season without it

    • jasmine says:

      how can your sister not have ANY salt? that sounds drastic lol. I’m perplexed because without any sodium at all she will die

  6. MsMcCoy says:

    Is there any way you can add a Pinterest button? Pretty please:)

    • There is a pinterest button under the recommended for you posts next to the twitter and google plus buttons. 🙂

  7. Would you be able to make the actual soup out of this? I thought it had beef bouillon in it?

  8. Love, love this recipe – and the addition of turmeric! I had to leave out the celery salt because I didn’t, well, have any, but I’ll be sure to put it in the next batch and it’ll be even better!

  9. Theresa says:

    Can you omit the sugar to make gaps compliant? I have date if you think that would work instead.


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