Sweet Onion Mustard (Canning for Christmas Gifts)

A wonderful tasting mustard that used to be available in stores but was discontinued a decade ago by the French’s Mustard Co. You can still get it in Canada but not here in the USA. This is my version of this mustard and is easy to make. Having grown up in Northeast Ohio this was a common mustard that was served at sporting events on hot dogs. It is reginal and there is a company that is local that makes it in Ohio.

In June I made a pickled sweet onion recipe that makes 4 half pints. It is delicious and I have to make more now because we ate most of it and I used 3 half pints of it in this mustard. I posted the recipe here for the sweet, pickled onions:

Pickled Sweet Onions

This past year, in my neighborhood grocery store there on the top shelf in the mustard aisle was the little round jars of French’s Sweet Onion Mustard. I bought a couple of jars but when I went back there was no more. So, I kept the 2nd jar for a special occasion. It was almost gone lingering in my refrigerator. For all I know the jar could have been lost in a warehouse for the last decade and sent by mistake with all the shortages going on. I enjoyed every bit of it anyways.

I happened to put some of my canned sweet, pickled onions on a hot dog and slathered them with a cheap yellow mustard. I realized all the recipes that I have tried canning sweet onion mustard from scratch that I didn’t like never came close. But this was very close to what I was looking for. I didn’t have to grind up expensive mustard seeds that are very hard to find these days. I could use commercial yellow mustard as the base and just tweak the flavor profile to come close to the flavor of my favorite mustard. The already sweet onion pickles were perfect

In my research online, I found that commercial yellow mustard is used in pickling canning recipes and have been for as long as there was such a product. Large containers of mustard can be recanned into small jars to store in the pantry. There are recipes that use commercial yellow mustard to make hot pepper mustard. Nice short cut from grinding up mustard seeds and cooking them. I followed the technique that was used for the hot pepper mustard and substituted my chopped sweet, pickled onions for the hot peppers. I adjusted the sugar and added honey to round out the mustard. The next time I make it I am going to use maple syrup instead. I didn’t have any when I made this batch. The last thing I used was Clear Jel to thicken it. Right now, Clear Jel is very hard to find even online. I bought some a couple of years ago to make pie filling and it takes a while to use up a container of it. It does keep for a long time. I used it in my Sweet Chili Sauce also. I plan to give the sweet onion mustard, sweet chili sauce and sweet pickled onions as Christmas gifts in a basket.

It is the sweet, pickled onions that makes this mustard so good. When you go to make the pickled onions chop them up instead of slicing them to use in the mustard, so you don’t have to chop them later. Just dump the 3 half pints in the pot with the pickled brine. Let the pickled onions sit on the shelf for several weeks before using them so they are sweet and flavorful.

Sweet Onion Mustard

Sterilize 6 half pints in a water bath for 10 minutes.

Makes about 3 pints of mustard.


  • 1 container (24 ounce) yellow hot dog mustard
  • 3 half pints (2 1/2 cups) sweet, pickled onion relish do not drain
  • 1/2 cup sugar or to taste
  • 1/2 cup honey or maple syrup or to taste
  • 1/3 cup clear jel
  • 1/3 cup water


While the jars are in a water bather sterilizing, make the mustard. Rule of thumb is hot product must go in hot jars.

In a small bowl mix together clear jel and water. Set aside to be added last.

In a large heavy bottom pot, add mustard, sweet chopped pickled onion with juice, sugar and honey. Stir and taste for sweetness as it cooks on medium heat. The amount can change depending on the brand of mustard you use. Bring to a full rolling boil that you cannot stir down. Slowly add clear jell and stir quickly. Boil for one minute as you stir quickly. It will thicken quickly. Remove from heat.

Remove jars one at a time when filling the jars. Leave a one-inch head space from the top of the jar. Clear jel expands while processing so it will need the space. You don’t want any mustard to siphon out and keep the jar from sealing. Wipe the rim of the jar with white vinegar and run your finger over the rim to hear it sing (squeak) You will be able to feel if it is not clean. This is extra insurance because you are working with clear jel. Place lid and ring on top and seal finger tight. Place back into the hot canner and get the next jar. I usually have pulled my jars up on the rack in my blue water bath canner and they are not completely in the hot water. Also don’t forget to turn the heat off. I find this works the best with clear jel to keep them from getting too thick before processing them.

Process for the time that is recommended for your altitude. I live at sea level, so I processed them for 15 minutes. Since I was recanning I added 5 minutes to it. But normally it would only take 10 minutes. Set you timer when the bath comes to a full rolling boil. When done turn off the heat and wait for the boiling to stop then remove jars. Place on a towel to cool. If the rings are real loose just finger tighten them again. They should seal as they cool. Leave them sit on the towel for 24 hours.


3 Comments Add yours

  1. slfinnell says:

    I’ve never tried the sweet onion mustard but it sounds wonderful! Worth giving it a whirl for sure!! Thanks for the sweet chili recipe too. Definitely a fan of that 😉


    1. trkingmomoe says:

      Thanks for stopping by.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Sounds like a tasty mustard – craving a hot dog right now with good mustard.


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