French Onion Soup

Yield: 6 servings

French Onion Soup

French Onion Soup
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 30 minutes


  • 6 yellow onions, sliced
  • 4 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 6 cups beef broth
  • 1 Tbsp dijon mustard
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 baguette, sliced
  • 2 cups grated Gruyère or Comté cheese


Heat a heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Melt the butter and oil then add the onions and a good pinch of salt. Stir and cook, monitoring the onions to ensure they don’t brown too quickly. Reduce the heat to medium low and continue to cook and stir occasionally until deeply golden and caramelized, for a total of 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Increase the heat to medium high and add the wine. Stir and cook until the wine is reduced. Add the mustard, thyme, bay leaves, and beef broth. Season with salt and pepper and simmer until the soup has thickened slightly, about 30 to 45 minutes. Remove thyme stems and bay leaves.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Arrange the baguette slices on a rimmed baking sheet and toast until golden but not too browned, about 3 minutes per side. Set the toast aside and arrange oven safe bowls or ramekins on the rimmed baking sheet. Preheat the broiler. Ladle soup into each bowl, top with one or two baguette slices, and finish with a big handful of grated Gruyère on each. Broil until the cheese is bubbly and melted, about 5 minutes. Serve immediately.

Recipe Notes

Since this recipe is a collection of just a few simple ingredients, the quality of the ingredients used is important. Use a european-style butter, a French white wine that you would like to drink, and homemade beef stock if you have it. Choose an imported Gruyère or Comté (same cheese, different region) and a French dijon mustard. 

The only other real “trick” to this recipe is getting the onions right. It will seem like you have a mountain of onions to cook, but they will cook down dramatically once done. The caramelization process cannot be rushed, so you really do need to babysit your onions for about an hour until they are deep brown, and almost jam-like. Bon Appétit has a good article about caramelized onion techniques.

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A comfort food for chilly nights. Bold umami flavors, sweet onion and LOTS of cheese. 

Recipe Attempts

This recipe has been attempted by the author 1 time(s).