This instant pot dandelion greens with caramelized onions is one of the easiest recipes ever! Pressure cooking them yields super tender greens without bitterness, the lemony garlicky dressing brightens them up, and the sweet caramelized onions make them irresistible! This easy Lebanese dish can stand up on its own as a vegan meal, a healthy appetizer, or a side dish. Just don't forget the pita bread!
Cooked dandelion greens with caramelized onions are a very popular dish in Lebanon in spring when the greens are tender and abundant.
We like to eat it with pita bread, but you could also serve it alongside some rice for a filling meal. If you want to spread some toum on your pita before filling it with the greens, no one is stopping you.
- Dandelion greens: You can find them at farmers markets and many grocery stores in spring. Look for organic bunches with bright green leaves and no blooms. The younger the greens the more tender and less bitter they are.
- Onions: They are caramelized and added to the greens for delicious sweetness.
- Olive oil: Adds flavor to the caramelized onions and also the dressing.
- Lemon juice: The tart flavor and acidity cuts any residual bitterness and brightens up the whole dish.
- Garlic: A small amount adds delicious flavor to the dressing without being overpowering.
- Salt: Brings out the flavors of all the ingredients.
First, you'll want to wash the greens very well. To make it easier, roughly chop the greens before washing. Place them in a salad spinner with the colander and fill it with water, swishing the greens around with your hand. Pull out the colander with the greens and check the water for dirt. Change the water and repeat until the water is clear.
You don't have to dry the greens since they will be pressure cooked.
Place all the chopped dandelion greens into the instant pot insert. It's okay if it fills to the top - the greens will reduce a lot in size once cooked. Just use your hand to press down the greens to make room for more.
Add some water and a pinch of salt, then cover tightly with the lid. Set the pressure release valve to "seal", pressure cook on high for 8 minutes, then natural release for 10 minutes.
While the dandelion greens are cooking, slice the onions and saute them in olive oil with a bit of salt until deeply caramelized. This will take about 30 minutes, but only stir them every few minutes.
Add a couple tablespoons of water to the onions if they are drying out and sticking.
Once the dandelion greens are done, either let them cool on their own or rinse them with cold water to speed up the process.
Using your hands, grab a handful of the cooked dandelion greens and gently squeeze the excess water out. You don't want them bone dry, but you don't want them dripping either. Usually two good squeezes are enough for each handful.
You can squeeze the water right over the greens that are in the pot, then transfer the squeezed greens to a serving dish.
Once all the greens are squeezed, make the dressing by mixing together olive oil, lemon juice, minced garlic, and salt.
Pour the dressing all over the greens and mix it thoroughly to coat evenly. Because the greens were squeezed together, use a fork to separate them and mix together with the dressing.
Finally, top the dandelion greens with all the caramelized onions, spreading them evenly.
Serve them warm, at room temperature, or chilled with some lemon wedges and pita bread for a healthy, light, and refreshing meal.
Substitutions and Variations
- Greens - you can use chicory greens or another bitter-leafed vegetable instead of dandelion greens. If you want to use more tender greens such as spinach, you can sauté them instead of pressure cooking since they are more tender.
- Dressing - if you don't feel like mincing garlic, add a small dollop of toum to the dressing.
- Spices - I like to keep mine simple for a traditional flavor, but you can add spices such as cumin, black pepper, or chili flakes.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Can I eat the dandelion greens raw? Yes, you can. But dandelion greens are quite bitter when raw, and more so later in the season. Pressure cooking them drastically reduces the bitterness and makes them more enjoyable if you don't like bitter flavors.
- Are these dandelion greens the same as the weeds? Yep! Many delicious Lebanese dishes use greens that are considered "weeds" by some. But they are packed with nutrients, have countless health benefits, and taste great!
- What if I don't have an instant pot? Any pressure cooker will do, but if you don't have one, don't worry! You can still enjoy this delicious recipe by cooking the dandelion greens in a pot of salted boiling water on the stovetop. Let them cook until the greens are tender and less bitter, about 30 minutes or more depending on the greens, then proceed with the recipe.
- How long will this keep? Leftovers should be stored in an airtight container in the fridge and will keep up to one week.
If you’ve tried making this Instant Pot Dandelion Greens with Caramelized Onions recipe or any other recipe on Forks & Foliage, then please don't forget to rate the recipe and leave a comment below! I would be so happy to hear how it turned out for you. And if you took any photos or videos, please share them with me on Instagram @forksandfoliage so I can see the deliciousness you made!
Instant Pot Dandelion Greens with Caramelized Onions
- 4 bunches dandelion greens, roughly chopped
- ⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 2 yellow onions, thinly sliced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
- 2 large lemons, juiced
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
- Place the chopped dandelion greens in the instant pot and add 1 cup of water and a pinch of salt. Close the lid tightly, set the pressure release valve to "seal", and pressure cook on high for 8 minutes. Natural release for 10 minutes before venting the pot.
- While the greens are cooking, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pan or skillet over medium-low heat and add the sliced onions. Stir them occasionally until deeply caramelized. If the pan is drying out, add a couple tablespoons of water to deglaze the bottom and continue cooking. Set aside when done.
- Once the dandelion greens are cool enough to handle, use your hands to grab a handful of greens at a time and squeeze the excess water out. Place the squeezed greens on a serving dish.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining olive oil, lemon juice, minced garlic, and 1 teaspoon salt. Pour all over the greens and mix them throughly until evenly coated with dressing.
- Spread the caramelized onions all over the greens. Serve warm, at room temperature, or chilled with lemon wedges and pita bread.
Nutrition information provided is an estimate and may vary.