Easy French Onion Soup Recipe

Typical French food - French onion soup

Looking for an easy French onion soup recipe? I thought if I asked nicely, my friend in Paris might share hers with me — and she did! Although I’ve never cooked it myself, I’ve enjoyed this typical French onion soup at my friend’s place and she’s happy to share it with you too.

My friend said, “This is a simple French onion soup recipe – I’m sure you’ll be able to make it!” Hmm, not so sure about that :-)

She can’t remember where she got this easy French onion soup recipe from, but she said the handwritten recipe page is all tattered and well-worn.  That sounds promising :-)

Easy French onion soup recipe - onion skin

Above: Onion skin – beautiful rich colour!

During the cooking, it’s the caramelization which gives the soup the rich colour. This is caused when the onions are cooked very slowly until the melting sugars approach burning point, thereby becoming brown. This might only take a half an hour, but many chefs and cooks allow for several hours of cooking to bring out the best flavours of the onions’ sugars.

How To Make Traditional French Onion Soup

Normally serves 4, but could also feed two VERY hungry people!

You will need:

  • Easy French onion soup recipe - wineglasses1/4 cup butter at room temperature
  • 3 large onions – yellow is best – peeled & nicely sliced
  • a pinch – approximately 0.5 teaspoon – of salt
  • 1 cup of your best dry white wine [my tip:  never use wine in recipes which you wouldn’t drink out of a glass] – you might prefer Champagne like King Louis XV of France
  • 1 extra glass of dry white wine or Champagne for the Chef :-)
  • 1 teaspoon of yummy Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 tins of beef or chicken broth [not thick creamy stuff] about 14-15 ounces each
  • 1 cup of shredded Swiss cheese
  • about half a teaspoon of  thyme leaves – dried is fine
  • Easy French onion soup recipe with swiss cheese4 slices of lightly toasted French bread
  • A nice bunch of fresh thyme to garnish with.

Let’s get started!

  1. Melt butter in a large frypan,  over medium heat.
  2. Add sliced onions, cook and stir for about 15 minutes or until onions are soft and lightly browned.
  3. Add wine, stir gently.
  4. Combine this onion mixture with the broth.
  5. Pour into larger heavy based pot [which has a lid].
  6. Add Worcestershire sauce, salt and fresh thyme
  7. Put a cover or lid on the pot.
  8. You can now cook the French onion soup for approximately 4 to 4.5 hours.
  9. When ready, turn the oven griller/broiler on.
  10. Serve the soup into 4 soup bowls.
  11. Break the toast into bite-sized pieces.
  12. Put toast on top of each bowl, and sprinkle with the cheese.
  13. Place on a baking tray in the oven and bake until cheese is melted.
  14. Sprinkle with fresh thyme, if you and your guests like the flavour.

So do try this at home – no need to go out to buy traditional French onion soup unless you’re in Paris already — unless of course you’re doing PLENTY of research for your tasting tour of the City of Lights!

If you’d like to share your French onion soup adventures, photos or questions, simply click the ADD A COMMENT link below.