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French Onion Soup – Recipe

My husband and I love French Onion Soup, however, the ones we have been sampling in our local restaurants, are either too salty or quite bitter tasting.

I have been researching different recipes online to come up with one to try at home, which will closely match the taste we savor from upstate New York.

Based on several recipes I found online, today I put together a recipe of my own, and we were very pleased with the finished product.  I did not have the Gruyere cheese on hand, so I shredded some Swiss cheese, and it was a wonderful substitution.

I used the Dagger Leaf Pinot Noir to adjust the flavor of the soup, and of course, the rest of the wine was a perfect after-dinner palate cleanser…:-)

This recipe yields at least 6 servings.

French Onion Soup – Recipe

French Onion Soup – Recipe


  • 3 yellow onions
  • 1 white onion
  • 2 red onions (see note below)
  • 3 Tbs Extra Virgin Olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp brown sugar
  • 2 large garlic cloves , minced (the garlic chopper came in very handy here)
  • 6 cups of beef stock (I used beef bouillons)
  • 2 cups of chicken stock (I used chicken bouillons)
  • 1/2 cup of extra dry Vermouth (or other wine you might like)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 8 slices of French bread or Baguette, toasted
  • 1 1/2 cups of Gruyere cheese, shredded or sliced


  1. Peel the onions, remove stems, and chop coarsely.
  2. Heat up a medium size soup pot, pour in the oil, and add the onions.
  3. Saute the onions to a darker golden color, mixing frequently to prevent from sticking and over browning.
  4. Add the brown sugar, and saute for few more minutes.
  5. Add the chopped garlic and and saute another minute.
  6. Use ready made stock, or prepare the beef, or chicken, stock from the bouillons, per package directions.
  7. Pour stock into caramelized onions.
  8. Add the Vermouth, and bay leaf.
  9. Simmer, partially covered, for another 20-30 minutes.
  10. Remove the bay leaf, and add salt and pepper, to your own taste.
  11. Place the toasted French bread (or Baguette) at the bottom of ovenproof, individual bowls, pour the onion soup over the bread (bread will float to the top).
  12. Sprinkle 1/4 cup of cheese over the bread.
  13. Set the oven on low broil.
  14. Place bowls on a cookie sheet, for easier handling.
  15. Broil until cheese bubbles and browns slightly, but watch so it does not burn.
  16. You may also toast the sliced bread, spread it with garlic butter, place the cheese over it and broil on high until bubbly and melted, but not burned. Then place it on top of the very hot soup, sprinkle chopped chives and serve immediately.


If you don't have white or red onions, or for an interesing adjustment to flavor you may use chopped shallots and chopped leeks, but add them to the caramalizing onions later on, once they are getting golden looking and staute for at least 15-20 minutes longer.

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