French Onion Soup is made the classic way with a delicious caramelized onion soup topped with a toasted baguette and gooey melted Gruyere cheese. This soup is a restaurant favorite!

French onion soup in a soup bowl.

It is soup weather in The Stay At Home Chef house right now. November and December can be deceptively warm, and then January hits and we remember what winters in the midwest really look like. We are chilled to the bone, and crave soup for months on end until spring finally arrives. Not only is French onion soup delightfully warm in this cold weather, it is so savory and hearty with a toasted baguette and our favorite gruyere cheese on top! You are not going to want to miss this one!

French onion soup is a meal that transcends class and socioeconomic status. In 18th century France, basic onion soup was especially prevalent in poor communities, where onions were cheap and in abundance. Restaurants dressed up that basic onion soup by adding cheese and then placing the bowls under the broiler, broadening its appeal to the well off communities in Paris and creating the classic French Onion Soup we know today. It eventually made its way to New York and became wildly popular in the 1960s along with all French Cuisine. 

What bread is best for French Onion Soup?

We think that a good quality French baguette just can’t be beat in this recipe. However, any artisan bread should work, and we’ve even seen croutons used! The higher the quality of your bread or croutons, the better this will taste.

Dry Sherry: Optional

The use of dry sherry is completely optional in this recipe. You can substitute with white wine if you simply don’t have access to sherry. You can also omit the alcohol entirely. 

What kind of bowls can I use for individual servings?

A broiler-safe and deep bowl is the name of the game with French Onion Soup. If you’ve never used your soup bowls under the broiler and they don’t say oven/broiler safe, you will want to find something else to use. We’re a big fan of the traditional soup crocks or large ramekins.

If you do not have oven-safe bowls, you can simply put your cheeses onto your toasted French bread slices and melt under the broiler to make little cheesy toasts. When your soup is ready to serve, ladle soup into regular soup bowls and top with your cheesy toasts. 

Make-Ahead Instructions:

You can prepare your soup earlier in the day or the night before and refrigerate. When you are getting ready to serve, reheat it on the stovetop and then proceed with toasting your bread and adding the cheese and broiling.

A soup bowl filled with French onion soup.

Storage and Reheating Instructions: 

French Onion Soup is best eaten fresh. If you are planning on making enough for leftovers, you’ll want to wait on adding the sliced baguette and cheese topping until ready to serve. Store the leftover soup without baguette or cheese in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Reheat in a saucepan on the stovetop over medium-low heat until warmed through, then proceed with the rest of the recipe to add the sliced baguette and cheese. 

If you like this recipe, you may be interested in these other delicious soup recipes: