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Miss Mick

Onion powder—is there truly a way to keep it from clumping rock hard?

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I live in Los Angeles, where it's not typically humid. But I've grown tired of having onion powder clump into a rock-hard block. My current supply is in its original bottle; I went to the trouble of chiseling out and grinding the whole thing back to powder, and tried various "remedies": dried beans, grains of rice, keeping it in the freezer, putting a silica gel packet in the bottle, and BOTH the packet AND lots of rice grains.

 

Nothing worked. Still clumped up and starting to get hard again.

 

So, is there REALLY a remedy for clumping that truly works? Or should I give up trying to find this holy grail, or just give up on onion powder?

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I don't use onion powder myself but none of the commercial garlic powder I buy has ever clumped.  Could you give a link to the product in question?

 

 

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Jo,

 

It's happened to more than one brand of onion powder I've bought in my cooking life. The one I currently have is the Trader Joe's brand; there's no link for it.

 

I would assume that if your garlic powder doesn't clump, it probably has some kind of anti-clumping agent in it.


Edited by Miss Mick (log)

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35 minutes ago, Miss Mick said:

Jo,

 

It's happened to more than one brand of onion powder I've bought in my cooking life. The one I currently have is the Trader Joe's brand; there's no link for it.

 

I would assume that if your garlic powder doesn't clump, it probably has some kind of anti-clumping agent in it.

 

 

The only ingredient is organic garlic.

 

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1 hour ago, Miss Mick said:

I live in Los Angeles, where it's not typically humid. But I've grown tired of having onion powder clump into a rock-hard block. My current supply is in its original bottle; I went to the trouble of chiseling out and grinding the whole thing back to powder, and tried various "remedies": dried beans, grains of rice, keeping it in the freezer, putting a silica gel packet in the bottle, and BOTH the packet AND lots of rice grains.

 

Nothing worked. Still clumped up and starting to get hard again.

 

So, is there REALLY a remedy for clumping that truly works? Or should I give up trying to find this holy grail, or just give up on onion powder?

 

I use garlic powder and onion powder. I like to use it mainly in replicating the commercial product, Pasta Roni Angel Hair Pasta with Herbs. I ditch some of the weird ingredients and it's cheaper and better. I do add fresh Italian flatleaf parsley to this dish if I have it and that takes it to another level. I always keep fresh garlic and onions in the house, but there are some applications where the powders serve better. I've tried it both ways, and the powders work better in the angel hair copycat dish. Garlic powder is also superior in the Cheddar Bay Biscuits from Red Lobster made at home. Tried that with fresh garlic too, and it wasn't as good.

 

Here is my inventory of these powders and their clump status:

 

Badia garlic powder, expires 7/18 just a few rocks left and a little powder, but shaking them works to make more powder

Spice Supreme garlic powder, expires 5/29/19 completely free-flowing

Supreme Tradition onion powder, expires 3/26/17 completely clumped and must be broken up with an ice pick to chip out chunks

Spice Supreme onion powder, expires 5-17-19 completely free flowing

 

The Spice Supreme brands state on the front of the package that they are "100% Pure".

 

All of the brands list no adulterant ingredients or ingredients at all, except what is stated on the front of the label. 

 

Best advice, if you want free flowing, especially with onion powder, is to watch your expiration dates. Also, if you are a thrifty person, or cheapass like me, the flavor does not diminish, it seems, and I still chip out with an ice pick and add the solid onion powder to my dish. The chunks go into liquid and dissolve very quickly. Much easier than grinding it back to powder in a mortar and pestle.

 

All the usual stuff: keep tightly sealed, out of the light, never shake over a steaming pot, blah, blah, blah. :)

 

 

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> ^ . . ^ <

 

 

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FWIW, I keep the dehydrated flakes on hand and buzz them for a second or two in a cheapie blade-type coffee grinder when I want onion powder. Might not be the fix you're looking for, but it works for me. 

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“What is called sound economics is very often what mirrors the needs of the respectably affluent.” - John Kenneth Galbraith

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

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Penzey's Onion Powder doesn't clump...at least it never has for me.

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1 hour ago, mgaretz said:

I use granulated onion instead of powder and it doesn't clump.

Where do you get granulated?

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I use granulated as well. I don't see the powdered stuff around here. 

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That's the thing about opposum inerds, they's just as tasty the next day.

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Thanks everyone for your comments!

Kim: :D:D

chileheadmike: Maybe they don't sell the powedered form in more humid regions? I'll see if it's available in L.A.

chromedome: Great idea! Must try that, although I only have the one coffee mill so I'll have to clean it thoroughly afterward—onion-flavored coffee just does not sound that appealing. xD

Thanks for the Crepes: Thank you for there very thorough research and reporting! Thumbs up!

 

 

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I used to have a spice rack somewhat similar to this one.  I used it for the most fragile of spices and kept it in the fridge.  The fridge I have now has a bin in the door that I believe is meant for fruit but I use it for my spices.  It's very handy and holds about 20 Penzeys jars, most are ½ cup, a few are ¼ cup.

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