Old Fashioned Cheese and Onion Pie Recipe

by Charlotte Walker
Old Fashioned Cheese and Onion Pie Recipe

The filling for this flavourful and satisfying cheese and onion pie uses just two main ingredients. Cheese and onion. It might sound overly simple at first but together these two ingredients create a sensational and complex flavour. This easy to make pie proves that good food does not have to be complicated.

I’ve included my favourite recipe for a flaky, buttery pastry but you can substitute  with your own favourite pastry recipe or use a store bought shell.

Cheese and onion pie is the ultimate comfort food wrapped in a delicious buttery flaky  pastry.

Family and Tradition

Old Fashioned Cheese and Onion Pie Recipe

I have my Aunt Sue to thank for introducing me to this wonderful pie. She made it for me at a family gathering and I’ve been hooked ever since.  Everyone was quite jealous of my tasty vegetarian and authentically British pie. It smelled delicious. It was shared (of course) but my Aunt made sure I had the biggest piece.  Since that first taste, it’s become a traditional dish in our home. A tradition that’s bound to last for generations.

Authentic Flavours

Old Fashioned Cheese and Onion Pie Recipe

For the most authentic flavour consider buying British cheeses.  That said,  I have used  aged cheddar, and even a mixture of whatever was in the fridge (gouda/feta/cheddar) with wonderful results.

Side Dishes to Serve With Cheese and Onion Pie

Old Fashioned Cheese and Onion Pie Recipe

Serve this pie with a side of chips and peas, a crunchy salad or a side of  hearty baked beans. Honestly, this pie is pretty tasty even when it’s cold. I have been known to scarf down a piece whist standing in front of the fridge, before anyone else gets a chance!

Old Fashioned Cheese and Onion Pie Recipe

Old Fashioned Cheese and Onion Pie

The filling for this flavourful and satisfying cheese and onion pie uses just two main ingredients. Cheese and onion. It might sound overly… The Kitchen Old Fashioned Cheese and Onion Pie Recipe European Print This
Serves: 4 Prep Time: Cooking Time:
Nutrition facts: 200 calories 20 grams fat
Rating: 3.0/5
( 45 voted )


  • Pie Crust Ingredients
  • ------------------
  • 2 ½ cups flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 cup chilled butter, chopped into cubes
  • 6 tablespoons ice water (roughly)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1tsp sugar
  • Pie Filling Ingredients
  • -------------------
  • 2 large onions (3 medium) thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup cheese, grated (Cheshire, Wensleydale, Lancashire or sharp cheddar cheese)
  • pinch of salt & pepper
  • milk or egg white


First: Make the Pie Crust

Combine the flour, salt and sugar in a large bowl. Add your chilled butter cubes  and toss the cubes to coat them in flour. Using  a food processor or a hand pastry blender, cut the butter into the flour until it is coarse and crumbly. Work quickly and handle as little as possible. The key to a good pastry is to keep everything nice and cold.

Mix in just enough ice water to bind the mixture, about 6 tablespoons, and press the dough together. You want the dough to hold together but you do not want to knead or over work it. Divide the dough into two, quickly flatten each portion into a disc. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for a minimum of 30 minutes.

Cook the Onions

The secret to the perfect cheese and onion pie is in how you cook the onions. Done properly they are slightly sweet and rich in flavour.  To achieve this: slice two large onions into thin slices and gently sauté them in butter until they are soft but not browned (3-5 minutes). Add a pinch or two of salt. Pour in a cup of water and let the onions gently simmer until the liquid has cooked down. Its important that you do not brown the onions. When done, transfer the onions to a plate and refrigerate to cool.

As the onions cool, grate the cheese and get ready to roll out your dough.

After chilling the dough for 30 minutes it's time to roll it out. Unwrap the dough and lightly flour your counter top. If necessary, rub some flour on your rolling pin to prevent the dough from sticking.  Roll out the base of the pie. You will want it to be large enough that the edges hang over your pie plate. About 10" or so in diameter for a 9" pie plate.

Line your pie plate with the rolled out dough leaving the edges hanging over the plate. Add the cheese and onion mixture.

Roll out your second piece of dough. You can be creative with the top. Cut long strips and create a lattice, or go wild with your pie decorating imagination. Fold the edges of your crust over and press together to create the crust. Move along the crust making indents (waves) as you go.

Brush the tops and edges with milk or egg white and bake at 375 for 35-45 minutes. The crust should nicely browned and the filling bubbly.

Let cool for ten minutes before cutting. Serve it with a side of chips and peas or a crunchy salad or a side of  hearty baked beans.







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Sarah January 12, 2018 - 5:23 pm

Loved this pie. Served with salad
for lunch with a friend. Excellent

Charlotte Walker January 19, 2018 - 2:35 pm

Thanks for the feedback Sarah. It’s still my favourite and I’ve eaten a lot of them 🙂

Jody February 13, 2020 - 10:23 am

Do you just mix the cheese and onions together? You don’t specify. Most recipes I’ve seen layer them.

Charlotte Walker February 21, 2020 - 9:09 am

Thanks for mentioning that Jody. Sometimes I just sprinkle the cheese ontop of the onions and other times I’ll mix the cheese and onions together in a bowl first. I haven’t noticed much of a difference between the to methods when it comes to the final result so you can do either.

Patricia Steene May 20, 2020 - 10:58 am

Could you bake this without a top crust just add a little extra cheese?

Charlotte Walker June 2, 2020 - 8:59 am

You could, but I don’t know if that would impact how it holds together. I personally would not remove the lattice top. The traditional recipe is made with a full top crust so the lattice was my mid-way compromise to make it a bit lighter (buttery crusts are such an indulgence!).


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