Growing up I loved the French onion soup made from dried soup packets (now I make the same mix at home with real food ingredients). Now, I love serving a big pot of homemade soup for dinner. One pot meals are always really convenient and make great leftovers. And soups usually fit the healthy requirement as well. This French onion soup packs a lot of nutrients and health benefits and is warm and filling too.
Making French Onion Soup From Scratch
The most important step of making French onion soup is in the very beginning. You’ve got to allow the onions the time they need to cook down and caramelize. Slice them, toss them in a pot with butter (or coconut oil) and some salt, and just let them slowly cook until they’re syrupy.
After that, it’s just a matter of adding the remaining ingredients at the right time and simmering. I like to use Kettle and Fire’s bone broths or homemade bone broth for all my soups. Bone broth is so rich in amino acids, minerals, and collagen that it really ups the nutritiousness of soups and makes them a complete meal. Read more about the incredible health benefits of bone broth here.
Also, if you want to try making your own bone broth (or already do) save the peels from the onions you use for this soup and use them in the bone broth.
How to Top French Onion Soup
Every picture of French onion soup shows a bowl of soup topped with a slice of toasted bread and melty white cheese.
I use gluten-free French or Italian bread, sliced nice and thick. I toast it on both sides under a broiler, place it atop a bowl of soup in an oven-proof bowl, and top with cheese. Then I stick it back under the broiler until the cheese is melted and slightly toasty.
Traditionally, the cheese used for this soup is gruyere; not always the easiest to find. I like to use a combination of provolone and asiago.
If you don’t have oven-proof bowls you can just melt the cheese on top of the toasted bread and then put one piece on top of each bowl of soup. I’ve even seen recipes that use garlic croutons and shredded cheese sprinkled directly on top of the soup.
However you choose to top your soup, know that the soup itself is warm and nourishing. And excellent for lunch the next day!
French Onion Soup Recipe
For Bread and Cheese Topping:
- 10 thick slices gluten free French or Italian bread
- 10 slices provolone cheese (or gruyere)
- ½ cup asiago cheese (shredded)
- 4 pinches paprika
- Melt the butter in a large pot over medium-high heat.
- Stir in the salt and sliced onions and saute for about 30 minutes, stirring frequently, until onions are caramelized and almost syrupy.
- Add beef broth, red wine,Worcestershire sauce, parsley, and thyme.
- Simmer another 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Reduce the heat to low and add balsamic vinegar and season with additional salt and pepper to taste.
- Simmer 5 minutes and remove from heat.
For Bread and Cheese Topping:
- Preheat oven broiler.
- Place the bread slices on a baking sheet and broil 1-2 minutes per side until toasted.
- Remove from heat and leave broiler on.
- Ladle the soup into oven safe bowls and place on a baking sheet.
- Top each with a slice of bread, 2 slices of cheese, and a sprinkle of the asiago and paprika.
- Broil 4-5 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
- Serve right away and enjoy.
Looking for more healthy comfort soup recipes? Try these:
- Creamy Broccoli Cheddar Soup
- Easy Egg Drop Soup Recipe
- The Best Chicken Vegetable Soup Recipe (+ Variations)
What do you top your French onion soup with?