5 Answers

I am wondering what difference there is, if at all any, between “sauteing” onions and “sweating” them.
A recipe I have for white sauce calls for sweating onions but most other recipes I use call for sauteing.
Thank you so much in-advance.

Posted by cherz, 15th December 2014

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  • the difference is when you sweat the onions you want to cook without coloring, thats why this is the usual method for a white sauce or a light colored meal. but when you saute you slightly color the onions as cooking to add flavor

  • I wasn’t sure but now know by reading Kelly’s comment.

  • I think sautéing involves a little bit of browning where sweating just softens them without adding colour. Just gives a slightly different flavour and appearance I think

  • thanks sooo much for your perfect answer Kelly.

  • Sweating is the process of releasing flavours with moisture and low temperatures so the onion will retain a lot of its flavours and stay soft.
    where sauteing uses a small amount of oil and its done in a uncovered pan using high heats so the cooking process occurs quickly and you lose some of the flavouring out with the oils.

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