Cozy French Onion Soup (Recipe)

Is there anything more perfect on a cold day than a bowl of hot, cheesy soup? This time of year, I make some sort of iteration on French onion soup at least once a week. But I always come back to Jacque Pepin’s recipe. It’s just so simple — really, the most involved part is slicing up all those onions — and so perfect.

Jacques Pepin’s French Onion Soup.


  • 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 Cups thinly sliced yellow onions (3-5 onions)
  • 10 Cups vegetable stock (or water)
  • 1 Clove garlic, crushed and chopped very fine
  • 1 Teaspoon salt (or more, to taste)
  • 1 Teaspoon pepper (or more, to taste)
  • 24 Very thin slices French bread
  • 1 Pound gruyere or emmenthaler

6 12-ounce ramekins or oven-proof bowls

1. Preheat broiler.
2. In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Stir in onions and cook until just browned. Add stock, garlic, and salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and cook for 30 minutes.
2. While the soup is boiling, arrange bread slices on a large baking sheet. Toast in oven until browned. Adjust the oven temperature to 400 degrees.
3. Place ramekins on a baking sheet. Divide toast evenly among ramekins. Pour soup over bread, filling each ramekin half way. Add more stock to each bowl gradually, filling to the top. Sprinkle about 2 1/2 ounces of cheese over each bowl, making sure the cheese doesn’t fall into the liquid (the cheese won’t brown properly if it sinks into the bowl.) Press the cheese along the sides of the bowl so it forms a nice crust.
4. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the cheese has browned. Serve immediately.

Recipe Adapted From: Jacques Pepin.

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Oleg Kobetz
Oleg Kobetz1 years ago

Thank you

Natasha Salgado
Natasha Salgado1 years ago

Love French onion soup+it's just as good+healthier without the cheese. Thanks

Brian M.
Past Member 1 years ago

I love French onion soup. Thanks for the recipe.

Rudy V.
Rudy V.1 years ago

Onion soup is so good!
I like to eat lots of onions during the flu season because they are healing to the body.
Not only for wounds, but also for a sniffle nose. Cut a fresh raw sweet onion and breathe in
the vapor ( yes it will burn!) But it will clear out a stuffy nose in no time!

Dale O.

It has been a very cold blustery winter day with snow squalls and high wind chill factors. A piping hot bowl of this soup will certainly warm one just after coming in from doing the winter shovelling of the snow or going for a walk.

Onions make for a marvellous and flavourful soup. Very hearty and satisfying is the mighty onion.

Dale O.

Correct, John S, it is true that Jacques Pépin did use chicken stock, not to mention he even knows the correct spelling of Jacques. Author, if it is at all possible, please add/ajouter an 's' to his first name in your third sentence. Merci.

I love French onion soup on cold winter days and evenings. Not to mention in the Spring, Summer and Autumn. So true, as others have mentioned, a dash of wine is very delightful. So very true, Jane R when you mention those marvellous caramelized onions and the delightful melted cheese.

Dale O.

Pamela W, those "Salle des Fêtes" certainly sound wonderful, I am sure that those truly were the days!

A lot of fascinating and marvellous food, bien sûr/mais oui!

JC C, as to your vegan finger wags about dairy, some of us are not vegan and like the recipes as they were originally written. Instead of copying and pasting the exact same comment for any recipe/topic involving dairy, try writing an original comment for every article. By the way, I am healthy and kind and you implying that I have to be vegan to be either is both pompous and sanctimonious, especially in a recipe thread. Get off your soapbox and leave us to our original recipes. (Okay, John S, our almost original recipe, lol!)

Heidi Aubrey
Heidi Aubrey1 years ago

Thanks Katie.

Jane R.
Jane R.1 years ago

I looked up his recipe, this is what I found:
Pépin sometimes adds a splash of port or egg to his broth to add flavor and richness. Our version hews to classic, comforting principles: Silky soft caramelized onions are stirred into a rich, meaty broth and topped with crusty bread and melty cheese. But it is far lighter.

View Recipe: French Onion Soup

Manuela C.
Manuela C.1 years ago

Interesting recipe.