Cooking 101: Chives vs Green Onions


Green onions and chives are remarkably similar in terms of taste and appearance. So the question is, can we use one to substitute for the other? While the two may be part of the same onion family, they still have their differences. Let’s take a closer look.

Check the stalks and bulbs. The stalks of green onions are long and slender, with a tiny white onion bulb at the end. The bulbs of chives are so small, it’s as if they’re non-existent. Their stalks are hollow and tender and resemble grass blades.

Green onion has more edible parts. Only the green stalks of chives are used since the bulb is weakly developed. The bulb is inedible and thrown away. The chives’ stalk is cut and normally used as a garnish in different dishes. On the other hand, both the stalk and bulb of the green onion are edible.

Chives are more potent. One of the most significant differences between green onions and chives is the potency. Chives are more potent even if they are smaller. You will need to use smaller amounts when cooking. It’s also interesting to note that most recipes that use chives recommend that they are used raw.

Although green onions are more pungent, they are still less potent. They can also withstand cooking better than chives.

Chives bring in more nutritional value. Chives and green onion are both helpful in adding nutrition to your meals. However, chives give more amounts of Vitamin K, which is vital in maintaining efficient blood flow. They also have more Vitamin B9, or folate, which helps keep the bones healthy. Chives are also beneficial to pregnant women since they promote the development of DNA and RNA.

Can we use green onions and chives in the same way? Since chives are used best when raw, they are commonly used as a garnish in salads. They will give the onion flavor you need without having large chunks on your plate. Green onions can be used in both raw or cooked dishes where the texture of big pieces of onion is needed.

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