Caramelized Shallot & Grape Chutney Recipe - Skillful Cook
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Caramelized Shallot & Grape Chutney

7 reviews / 4.4 average

Today's post is sponsored by Grapes from California.

Okay, imagine this for a second.

Yourself sitting around with friends, significant other, or let's be honest - happily by yourself - with a plate of crispy crackers topped with a jammy savory-sweet caramelized shallot and red grape chutney and a thin slice of Manchego cheese, and maybe even a glass of red wine to boot. I'm not saying you have to make this happen, but COME ON. We're fast approaching crazy holiday season and you sort of have to make this happen.

Let me tell you what that might look like, if you're anything like us:

Me: Bjork, you should try this grape chutney.
Bjork: Wow, that's really good.

Bjork and Lindsay: (eating crackers with grape chutney and Manchego cheese)

(eating more crackers with grape chutney and goat cheese)

(forgetting all other dinner plans and settling in for a few more crackers with grape chutney and cheese)

This is our real life and I'm not mad about it.

It could also be your real life - like how about this? I have a friend who does a once-a-week date night with her husband where they put their kids to bed and then just have an easy dinner featuring a crackers + cheese spread with wine. Does that not sound like the most simple, wonderful, romantic thing ever? Goals.

Whether date night or holiday party or just a random crackers and cheese situation - this grape chutney is going to make for some happy snacking, and it is so super easy to make.

Also: I bet you have grapes in your fridge right now. Maybe just go check real quick. See? We are co-captains of team CONVENIENT together.

Caramelized Shallot and Grape Chutney! Made with shallots, grapes, red wine, cinnamon, bourbon, and vinegar. So good with plate of crispy crackers! |
Caramelized Shallot and Grape Chutney! Made with shallots, grapes, red wine, cinnamon, bourbon, and vinegar. So good with plate of crispy crackers! |

For this recipe, I recommend grapes that are really deep, dark red or maybe even darker than that. Like, black. There is such a thing as black grapes. The color can start to fade as you cook the grapes down, so if you want a really rich color, start with darker grapes and boost the color with that splash of red wine.

For my US readers, I also recommend that you use grapes grown in California, seeing as to the fact that 99% of all grapes grown in the US are specifically grown in California. These are our local grapes, friends!

And not only are they our local grapes, but they are in season all the way through JANUARY. Big win. The amount of fruit in my grocery cart every week has gone down dramatically as winter has started approaching, but every week: grapes. Always grapes. Even when there is almost NO other fruit in season for us, I can rely on grapes to be delicious and seasonally perfect all the way into cold and snowy January.

This particular recipe is also a smart choice for holiday party snacking - the chutney itself has no added sweeteners: just the rockin' flavor of the caramelized shallots and the jammy grapes to keep us coming back for more. One serving (about 1/4 cup) has just over 100 calories. Pair that with a few whole wheat crackers and a slice or two of cheese, and yes, yes, yes. I feel so much better about that as a simple, elegant, and so totally delicious snack than many of the other options at holiday parties (I'm looking at you, chips + creamy dips).

Caramelized Shallot and Grape Chutney! Made with shallots, grapes, red wine, cinnamon, bourbon, and vinegar. So good with plate of crispy crackers! |
Caramelized Shallot and Grape Chutney! Made with shallots, grapes, red wine, cinnamon, bourbon, and vinegar. So good with plate of crispy crackers! |

How about this? Call or text someone you love right now and schedule a cheese + crackers + wine night with them. Maybe even a pre-Thanksgiving one. You can even use the new cheese emoji. 🧀

Ready? One, two, three...

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Caramelized Shallot and Grape Chutney in a jar with spoon.

Caramelized Shallot and Grape Chutney

  • Author: Skillful Cook
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 1 1/2 cups chutney 1x


Caramelized Shallot and Grape Chutney! Made with shallots, grapes, red wine, cinnamon, bourbon, and vinegar. So good with plate of crispy crackers!


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 shallots, finely minced or sliced
  • 1/4 cup bourbon
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup red wine (I used Merlot)
  • 3 cups red or purple grapes, cut in half
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 bay leaf
  • crackers and cheese for serving


  1. Heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the shallots and stir occasionally for 5-10 minutes until very soft and fragrant.
  2. Add the grapes and turn the heat up to get everything hot. Pour in the bourbon, vinegar, and wine - it should sizzle a little bit to get the browned bits off the bottom of the pan. Add the cinnamon stick and bay leaf. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 30 minutes or until the grapes have started breaking down.
  3. Smash the grapes into a jam-like consistency using the back of a wooden spoon. Remove from heat, cool, and serve on cracker with cheese (Manchego cheese and goat cheese are my favorite with this).
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 40 mins
  • Category: Dip
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: shallot and grape chutney, shallot chutney, grape chutney

Today's post is sponsored by Grapes from California.

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  1. Skillful Cook Logo

    allllll the heart emojis.

    I will be looking for THOSE grapes in the store next time I purchase because I was totally burned by my previous grape bags…BITTER nastiness. And naturally I bought three bags -_-

    that Chutney is most definitely in my future <3

    Happy Thanksgiving Bjork, Lindsay and sweet sleepy Sage!

  2. Skillful Cook Logo

    The idea of savory-sweet caramelized shallots is so great. In my country, we often make the pickled shallots for the Lunar New Year. I’m surprised that shallots can combine with grapes to make the delicious chutney. That’s an interesting way to eat with crackers. Thank you so much for sharing.

  3. Skillful Cook Logo

    I love the idea of this chutney, cheese, and wine for dinner. The manchego you suggested would be divine, but I’m imagining this with some aged goat cheese. Yum.

  4. Skillful Cook Logo

    Heck, if I was sitting around munching on this caramelized shallot and red grape chutney and a thin slice of Manchego cheese and crackers I wouldn’t be mad or complaining! Time outs with a snack like this helps reboot the soul! Happy Thanksgiving to you and Bjork!

  5. Skillful Cook Logo

    Ohhohhh! The blog-world is really pushing me into the Christmas mood at an accelerating speed! I am surrounded by appetizer-recipes that make my heart explode. Is it okay to throw appetizer-only dinners? 😉

    xx b

  6. Skillful Cook Logo

    MMMMmmm! This sounds particularly delicious! I am such a fan of chutneys when I go out to Indian restaurants but have never tried to make my own. Bookmarking this recipe!

    Rae | Love from Berlin

  7. Skillful Cook Logo

    This grape chutney looks fabulous! I like the tip to use darker grapes. And I’m already imagining that sweet and salty taste. And who needs a date night to have this with cheese and crackers! I will be sitting with myself and a bottle of wine munching these down!

  8. Skillful Cook Logo

    Okay, okay, I’m with you. I can do this. Let’s see: family+cheese+crackers+wine=6 ounce red wine glasses and many smiling faces!

  9. Skillful Cook Logo

    One of the best Christmas Eve meals we ever had– according to my hubby– was one where we had just a multitude of appetizers. They filled the house, every nook and cranny. Family grabbed a plate and went for it. Now my daughter and I, who did all the work, say we’d rather have a meal. Now we want the appetizers like your grape chutney before the main event but all of those appetizers to fill lots of male appetites took a lot!! I love the sound of the chutney. Definitely a to do for Christmas!!

  10. Skillful Cook Logo

    This looks amazing, Lindsay! I’m pretty much obsessed with both shallots (who needs onions when they’re around??) and grapes. I’ve made caramelized whole shallots and more recently tried roasted grapes with a few sliced shallots thrown in. This chutney sounds like the natural epitome of that grape-and-shallot trajectory and I’m sooo excited about it.

  11. Skillful Cook Logo

    Your chutney sounds amazing. Manchego cheese is one of my favorites. I actually just got a whole seven pound wheel of Manchego at a restaurant supply store for 25 bucks. Yay me!

  12. Skillful Cook Logo

    This chutney would go well with my whole wheat bread. Let’s be honest, whole wheat doesn’t taste that good so spreading some chutney would make it taste better.

  13. Skillful Cook Logo

    Could you make this with cranberry for Thanksgiving? Like would the recipe itself be conducive to cranberry…

  14. Skillful Cook Logo

    Just a quick question : Really cook off the excess liquid, correct? I don’t think I cooked it long enough, so made another batch. I then reopened the jars I had sealed (a few hours ago) and cooked again until there was no excess liquid. The taste is divine!

  15. Skillful Cook Logo

    Hello Lindsay,

    What can I substitute for bourbon and red wine? I have shallots and green grapes I want to use up. Thanks!