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Perfect Afghan Stuffed Onions Recipe

Perfect Afghan Stuffed Onions Recipe

Perfect Afghan Stuffed Onions Recipe

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Cuisine Afghan
Servings 6
Calories 391 kcal


  • 3 large Yellow Onions
  • ½ kg Ground Lamb
  • ¾ cup Cooked Basmati Rice
  • 1 tsp Olive Oil
  • tsp Chopped Garlic
  • tsp Whole Cumin Seeds 
  • tsp Salt
  • ¼ tsp Freshly Ground Pepper
  • 10 Pitted Prunes (Alu Bukhara)
  • ½ cup Feta Cheese 
  • Fresh Ground Black Pepper
  • Olive Oil For Brushing Onions


  • Preheat oven to 350ºF. Lightly oil the bottom of a casserole dish or Dutch oven.

Prepare the Onions:

  • Trim the ends off the onions, then make a slice only halfway through each onion lengthwise (with your knife positioned end-to-end). 
  • Pull off the brown papery skin. Boil onions in a large pot of water, partially covered pot, for 20 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer onions into a large bowl filled with cold water. Pour out heated water and refresh with more cold water, and repeat again.
  • Let onions cool in the water for a few minutes. To keep from burning your hands, work under water to gently separate the softened outer layers of each onion, one by one, about 4 or 5 per onion, until you get to the stiffer middle section, which will not be used in this recipe. Put onions layers in a strainer to dry.

Make The Stuffing:

  • Put cooked rice in a medium sized bowl and set aside. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a small frying pan. Add chopped garlic (1½ teaspoons) and cumin seeds (1½ teaspoons) to pan and cook over medium heat, stirring until fragrant, about 1 minute. 
  • Turn off heat if garlic starts to turn brown. Scrape cumin and garlic into bowl with rice. Add salt  (1½ teaspoons) and pepper (¼ teaspoon). Stir rice to combine with spices. Add ground lamb and Feta cheese and gently combine with rice. (I recommend using your hands)

Stuff The Onions:

  • Pat the onion layers dry if need be. Add a generous heaping tablespoon of the meat mixture to the center of an onion layer.
  • Roll the onion layer around the meat, and put it in the oiled casserole, seam side down. Continue with all of the meat. You should have 12-14 stuffed onions.
  • Brush the tops of the rolls with some olive oil and sprinkle with some fresh ground pepper. Cover casserole with lid or with a double layer of foil. Bake in the lower third of a preheated oven for 1 hour
  • Briefly remove pot from oven. Turn oven up to "broil". Remove foil from casserole. Baste onions with pan juices. Return to oven, uncovered, and cook onion rolls for an additional 5 minutes to brown them, watching carefully to make sure they don't burn.

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