Typically, I don’t do copycat recipes, but the onion rings from Sonic Drive-In take me back to being a kid like nothing else. I had to do this one for myself.
Back in the mid-eighties, I was in elementary school in Giddings, Texas. We lived in the country just outside of town.
Going to the Sonic Drive-In in town was one of the highlights of that time in my life. Back when it was legal, my brother and cousins and I would pile into the back of my dad’s or my uncle’s truck and we’d all head to Sonic. It was an event.
It was a burger, onion rings, and a milkshake for me. Pretty much every time. I loved those onion rings. They had a sweetness to them that no other restaurant had.
With a little research, I’ve figured out that they used vanilla-flavored milk. That can be replicated with vanilla ice cream.
Even better, replace it with Blue Bell Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream. You get the added bonus of a gold star if you use Texas Sweet Onions.
This recipe is super simple to throw together whenever you want. Just melt some ice cream, cut some onions up, throw them in some water, take them out, dip them in flour, then into the melted ice cream, then the cornmeal. Let them dry for a bit, then fry them until golden brown.
Copycat Sonic Onion Rings
- 2 lbs. Texas sweet onions
- water - to cover sliced onion rings in a large bowl
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 12 oz. vanilla ice-cream - you get a gold star for using Blue Bell
- 2 cups yellow cornmeal
- vegetable oil - for deep frying
- Peel the onions, then slice them into 1/2-inch rings. Separate each ring out, then drop them in a bowl of water.
- Place a large bowl on the counter with the flour in it, then the melted vanilla ice cream, then the cornmeal. Finally, place an empty cookie sheet next to your fryer.
- Preheat your deep fryer to 350 degrees. Remove an onion ring from the bowl, shaking off some of the water, then dip it into the flour, then the melted ice cream, then the cornmeal. Place it on the cookie sheet to dry. Repeat with the balance of the onions, then let them air dry a bit. About 5-10 minutes.
- Drop a portion of the onion rings into your fryer basket, ensuring that they don't crowd each other too much, then fry in batches until golden brown. About 3-4 minutes per batch.
- Serve with plenty of ketchup.