Discovering the perfect onion — one that’s just the right size, perfectly ripe, and not strong enough to make you cry — is like winning the lottery. Suffice it to say that it’s almost never going to happen. Sadly, that means that every time you need onions to flavor your pasta, pizza, or casserole, you’ll have to prepare for some serious waterworks. If you’re like me, you probably always assumed that tears were simply the price to pay for enjoying onion-y deliciousness. Or at least that’s what I thought until my mom gave me her signature eye roll when she discovered that I chopped an onion every time I needed one. Unbeknownst to me, there was apparently a way to circumvent those teary-eyed evenings.

First, store the onions in the fridge and get them nice and cold. This halts some of the chemical gas from releasing into the air and irritating your eyes. Next, pre-cut the onions, and then put them into Ziploc baggies to freeze. That’s it. Once stashed in the freezer, all you need to do is reach in any time a recipe calls for onions and toss them frozen directly into a hot, oiled pan. The freezer will have neutralized the chemical gas naturally occurring in onions so you won’t tear up. Plus, you’ll save so much time not having to chop an onion every time you cook.

This is a great, budget-friendly hack, especially if you buy onions in bulk (e.g. a five- or 10-pound bag) and want to chop up about a month’s worth of onions. Also, don’t forget to store different cuts in different baggies. Small-dice some. Large-dice others. Cut some into half-moons for sautéing and others finely minced.

This simple method is life-changing, TBH. Take it from my mother and try this trick.

What’s your favorite kitchen hack you learned from your mom? Tweet us and tell us about it!

(Photo via Burhan Rexhepi /Unsplash)