Image: Rebecca Coleman

It’s May! And to me, that means one thing: time to break out the barbeque!

Okay, so if you’re a true Canadian, you BBQ year-round, even in the snow, but for most people, they wait till the weather starts to get warmer before they take the covers off.

This month’s recipe is a savory condiment that has a wide variety of uses, but one of the best is topping off a burger. You see, something really magical happens to onions when you slow cook them. They begin to release their own natural sugars and those sugars caramelize, giving the onions a slightly sweet, jammy texture. The final taste has very little resemblance to the sharpness of a raw onion, so even people who normally don’t like onions might really love this recipe.

Add a few other simple ingredients—a little vinegar to counteract the sweetness, coffee to kick up the punch—and you have an incredibly versatile condiment that tastes great:

 As a spread on your sandwiches (it’s so good inside a grilled cheese)
 As a condiment on your charcuterie board
 As a topping on your burgers
 As a topping (or swirl it into) your mac & cheese
 As a topping on crostini
 Swirl it into your scrambled eggs or include it in your quiche
 Slather it on roasted chicken or baby roasted potatoes
 Inside a quesadilla with cheese and chicken
 Blob it onto your pizza before baking

You’ll want to keep a jar of this in your fridge all summer long! The bonus is, it’s incredibly cheap to make, and not difficult, though it does take a little time.

Image: Rebecca Coleman

Coffee Onion Jam Ingredients

2 large onions
2 tablespoons butter (use vegan butter to make this recipe vegan)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/3 cup strong coffee
1/3 cup water
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tsp salt
Freshly ground pepper


Start by topping and tailing the onions and peeling off their dry outer husks, then cut them in half, lengthwise (cut through the root ends, not the circumference).

Lay the onions cut side down on your cutting board and cut into half-moons, as thin as you can (or you can use a food processor to this part, on the thinnest slicing blade).

Heat a large frying pan or dutch oven over medium heat and add the butter and the olive oil
and allow them to melt.

Add the onions and stir them well to cover in the oil. Season with salt and pepper. Now allow them to cook down, stirring occasionally, for about 15 minutes.

By this point, your onions should be getting quite soft and picking up some colour.

Add the coffee, water, balsamic vinegar, and sugar and stir well. Turn the heat down to low and allow to cook 10-15 minutes longer, stirring occasionally, until all the liquid is evaporated and the onions are brown and take on a thicker texture.

Remove to a covered jar and keep in the refrigerator.

Let us know in the comments, how you would use this coffee onion jam at your house?