French onion soup in two bowls with onions

French onion soup

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
(81 ratings)

Prep: 15 mins Cook: 55 mins


Serves 4

Our French onion soup is deliciously rich and easy to make at home. This savoury soup is perfect for using up a garden glut and great for dinner parties

Nutrition and extra info

  • soup only

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal618
  • fat27g
  • saturates14g
  • carbs59g
  • sugars17g
  • fibre9g
  • protein26g
  • salt2.6g
Save to My Good Food
Please sign in or register to save recipes.


  • 50g butter



    Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 1kg onion, halved and thinly sliced



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 1 tsp sugar



    Honey and syrups made from concentrated fruit juice were the earliest known sweeteners. Today,…

  • 4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • 250ml dry white wine
  • 1.3l hot strongly-flavoured beef stock
  • 4-8 slices French bread (depending on size)
  • 140g gruyère, finely grated



    Gruyère is an undoubted pinnacle of traditional Swiss cheese-making, a culinary masterpiece as…


  1. Melt 50g butter with 1 tbsp olive oil in a large heavy-based pan. Add 1kg halved and thinly sliced onions and fry with the lid on for 10 mins until soft. 

  2. Sprinkle in 1 tsp sugar and cook for 20 mins more, stirring frequently, until caramelised. The onions should be really golden, full of flavour and soft when pinched between your fingers. Take care towards the end to ensure that they don’t burn.

  3. Add 4 thinly sliced garlic cloves for the final few mins of the onions’ cooking time, then sprinkle in 2 tbsp plain flour and stir well.

  4. Increase the heat and keep stirring as you gradually add 250ml dry white wine, followed by 1.3l hot strongly-flavoured beef stock. Cover and simmer for 15-20 mins.

  5. To serve, turn on the grill, and toast 4-8 slices French bread. Ladle the soup into heatproof bowls.

  6. Put a slice or two of toast on top of the bowls of soup, and pile on 140g finely grated gruyère cheese. Grill until melted. Alternatively, you can complete the toasts under the grill, then serve them on top.

You may also like

Comments, questions and tips

Sign in or create your My Good Food account to join the discussion.
goodfood604's picture
3rd Jul, 2020
Oh my days, what a complete waste of an hour of my life - not to mention a kilo of onions
Francis Smith
4th Jun, 2020
I personally thought it tasted great and the outcome was worth the time put into caramelising the onions, although I didn't add all the wine and used chicken stock (which also worked great)
Veronica Jones's picture
Veronica Jones
23rd May, 2020
This recipe only works well if you have really good highly flavoured onions. If you don't, like I didn't, it can be rather bland. But squeeze in a dollop of tomato puree and a slug of Worchestershire sauce, season well and it transforms it. Agree caramalising takes longer than said unless you keep the heat quite high, then stir or toss regularly to stop the onions catching.
16th May, 2020
Some mixed reviews here, but I thought it was really good. Some points Struggled to get the onions to caramelise, maybe the pan was not hot enough, but didn’t want to risk burning them. Used two Knorr Rich Beef stock pots for the stock. Gave good colour and taste. Only had mature cheddar in the house, worked ok. Will make again
skerries's picture
17th Apr, 2020
I love this recipe the only thing I do differently is add a good glug of brandy just before serving and it is delish
Ell Stokes's picture
Ell Stokes
5th Apr, 2020
Tasted awful
14th Nov, 2019
Gorgeous flavour soup!well worth the time spent making. I didn't have enough beef stock,so topped up with some veg stock ,with yeast extract and miso paste added for a beef flavour. To caramalize the onions,I turned up the heat a bit and ended up adding another TSP of sugar.lid off.worked perfectly
29th Oct, 2019
Like many other commentators here, I was very disappointed with the outcome of this recipe - at least at first. Whilst the BBC are bound by rules preventing mentioning specific brands - I am not. The mistake I made, was using Knorr beef stock pots. These give you an orangey-coloured, poorly-flavoured soup. I rescued the colour and flavour by adding three Oxo beef stock cubes. Colour and flavour are now correct.
28th Dec, 2018
This is a really awesome recipe! Advice is to be careful how strong you want the stock to be as it really flavours the soup (along with the wine). Fantastic recipe, will be making this again!
9th Nov, 2018
Didn't rate this. I WANTED it to work. I WANTED to love it. But, nah! :( Onions took forever to carmelise. Not sure if it's the stock I used (Heston Blumenthal beef stock from Waitrose) but there was absolutely NO depth of flavour. Had to add several Knorr Rich Beef Stock Pots.


14th Dec, 2014
Is this recipe suitable for home freezing? If not, how far in advance of a special meal can this be made?
22nd Jul, 2014
Would using non-alcoholic wine be an appropriate substitute for the white wine in this recipe? If not, what would be?
goodfoodteam's picture
4th Aug, 2014
Yes using non-alcoholic wine would be a great subtitiute. Leave the pan uncovered once the sugar has been added, thanks.
28th Dec, 2013
Great recipe thank you, just unsure whether should recover pan after adding sugar in step 1?
14th Dec, 2013
Does the wine not need reduced before adding the stock to get rid of the raw alcohol flavour?
goodfoodteam's picture
18th Dec, 2013
Hi there,The red wine in this recipe gives the soup a great flavour. However, if you want to reduce it before and burn off some of the alcohol then go ahead. Best wishes. 
Ruralcookkate's picture
15th Nov, 2018
I have made this recipe using a pressure cooker - it worked beautifully. I halved the recipe as well for 2 - there was plenty! For the pressure cooker it took about 3-5 mins for the first step (cooking with lid on- about 3 mins after got up to pressure) then cooked only for about 10-15mins to caremelise (lid off). For the final soup step with all ingredients in the pan after getting up to pressure I still cooked it for about 18mins but it could’ve been done quicker if I hadn’t put as much stock liquid in. (I used 700ml.)
Felix Thompson's picture
Felix Thompson
3rd Jan, 2018
If you're looking to make it veggie, but want to keep the flavour. Use vegetable stock, with two tea spoons of marmite (weird but it works!) and some lea and perrins. Gives it the same rich flavour
4th Jul, 2016
Great recipe, followed it exactly. Make sure you have a huge pot! I would say this was for more than 4 people, next time I'll halve the recipe to avoid wastage as I was serving it as a starter not a main meal.
Want to receive regular food and recipe web notifications from us?