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French Onion Soup Recipe (a Dinner for Two)

I have enjoyed cooking and creating delicious recipes for as long as I can remember.

You can see how the toasted half of the French hard roll is floating on top, and just look at that outer crust. It works perfectly!

You can see how the toasted half of the French hard roll is floating on top, and just look at that outer crust. It works perfectly!

Sweet Onion Soup Recipe

I do love French onion soup, but when I have it in a restaurant, I am always left wanting more. Those little bowls with the handles are cute, but more, please! The solution is to make it at home. Trust me, this is a meal with nothing else needed. Just follow a few easy steps down the path to French onion soup nirvana.

Servings: This recipe will give you two very large bowls of soup, but it can be divided into four of the traditional smaller bowls. Really, it is okay to serve the soup in a bowl without a handle. The most important thing about the bowl is that it is ovenproof, and it would be nice to have deeper bowls like the ones I use.

Prep time: Prep time is about 1 1/2 hours, so make sure you have the time available. The most time consumptive step is cooking the onions, and I must say that it is time well spent.

Tips: I prefer to place my cheese on the bread rather than trying to pick it off the sides of the bowl. An extra piece of bread works nicely for dipping after the floater is gone. My mouth is watering just looking at the picture. It is a delicious memory!

So, let’s get started with this delicious onion soup recipe for two.

Prep and Cook Time

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 1 hour 20 minutes

Ready in: 1 hour 30 minutes

Yields: Two servings


  • 3 medium large sweet onions, sliced
  • 3 or 4 tablespoons butter, (melted)
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cups cooking sherry
  • 26 oz. can Swanson’s all natural beef stock
  • 1 teaspoon beef bouillon
  • 2 French hard rolls
  • 3/4 cup apple smoked Gruyere cheese, (grated)


  1. Slice the onions and cut them in half.
  2. Melt the butter in a large pan on medium low heat. Remember, butter sometimes contains salt.
  3. Add the sliced onions to the pan of melted butter and cook gently for 1 hour, giving the onions a stir now and then. The onions will sweat down and become soft as they begin to caramelize.
  4. Sprinkle the flour over the onions and stir. The flour will absorb the butter and the golden color of the roux will be beautiful.
  5. Add the cooking sherry. Remember, it contains salt.
  6. Add the Swanson’s all-natural Beef Stock (which contains salt).
  7. Add the beef bouillon for an extra flavor boost. (Contains salt.)
  8. Add your favorite seasonings. I used ground pepper, garlic powder, Italian seasoning, and Mrs. Dash.
  9. Turn your heat up to medium for about 20 minutes. I cover and vent it. Turn the heat down if it starts to boil.
  10. Prepare your bread portion. I use large French hard rolls cut in half. I butter and put them under the broiler to lightly toast. I put two slices in each bowl and one on the side.
  11. Ladle the soup into the bowls.
  12. Float a half of a hard roll on top, toasted side up.
  13. Sprinkle each bowl with a generous amount of grated cheese. I use a delicious apple smoked Gruyere that is out-of-this-world delicious. The light, smokey flavor combines wonderfully with the onion. Cover the bread with the cheese.
  14. Place the bowls under the broiler until the cheese melts and starts to brown.
  15. Remove from the oven and enjoy with the extra half of toasted hard roll on the side.


I did not use all the broth in the bowls. I saved out about a cup to use another day, but you can serve it all up if you want.

  • You can also use your own homemade stock.
  • Vegetarians can use vegetable stock.
Two bowls of French Onion Soup baking in an oven.

Two bowls of French Onion Soup baking in an oven.

Important Step

Place the French onion soup under the broiler for the final very important step. This is a good time to stand in front of the oven because once the cheese starts to melt, it can burn very easily. I like it a little browned and will rescue it from burning in just a few more seconds.

The soup bowls will be very hot, so be careful as you remove them from the oven. I took the bowls out individually rather than trying to handle them together on the baking pan.

Soup Broiling Instructions

When you place the soup bowls under the broiler, watch carefully. This is not a time to wander away from the oven after spending so much time in the preparation perfection. Broil until cheese is melted and starts to brown. Be careful not to burn the bread or cheese. The length of time will vary according to each oven, use of high or low broiler setting, if the soup is put into a cold or preheated broiler. Stand in front of the broiler and watch. Expect about 3 to 5 minutes, adjusted according to your oven and the amount of browning you prefer

Even Martha Stewart does not commit to how long to broil, nor can I.

Cheese Ingredients

I use apple smoked Gruyere by itself or combined it with baby or lacey Swiss. If you do not like a smokey flavor, you may use any Gruyere cheese of your choice.

If making more servings than two from the recipe, you may want to add more cheese so that everyone gets a generous amount.

The Sweetest Onions Are Vidalias

The Sweetest Onions Are Vidalias

How to Select the Sweetest Onions

Sweet Onion Lovers are now feasting on what is generally considered to be the best of the best sweet onions by many onion lovers. That would, of course only be the sweet, juicy and wonderful Vidalia onion. It stands alone at #1 at the Top!

In the land of sweet onions, there is the Vidalia and then there are the others.

Other Sweet Onions that I like when the Vidalias are not available include:

  • Walla Walla
  • Spanish Sweets
  • Texas Sweets
  • Peruvian Sweets
  • Brazilian Sweets

Of the other sweet onions that I have tried, I would say the Walla Walla gets very high marks and some have actually been more pleasing to my palate than some Vidalias. The difference might just come down to the produce man’s secret.

I have gotten some onions that claimed to be sweet that have had me in tears when I sliced them. Vidalias and Walla Wallas seem to be tear free onions.


  • The flatter the onion, the sweeter it will be.
  • When picking out sweet onions, check to see that they are firm on both ends and avoid any with soft spots or bruising.

These days, with food prices going up, we have to shop smart and get the best products available for our money.

I hope that all of your onions are sweet!


A Soup Recipe That Is Nirvana

If you try my delicious French Onion Soup Recipe for two, and you have selected the sweetest onions, you will be in Nirvana as you feast with delight.

This soup recipe is a stand alone meal that is suited for special occasions for two people to share together. It is nice for a great lunch to celebrate with or as a superb dinner to satisfy your tastes.

My Original Recipes

I create recipes by feel to satisfy my tastes, and others'. I always give ingredient options and suggestions for you to use when creating one of my original homemade recipes. Usually, I provide detailed instructions that are easy to follow. Trust me when I says that my recipes are yummy good and healthy for you.

French soupe à l'oignon: French onion soup.

French soupe à l'oignon: French onion soup.


Vectrexer on June 13, 2018:

Just perfect for the long, cold, summer months of Pacifica California. Many of you will know what this means when you've spent your June in the San Francisco Bay Area on the coast side portion. Warm soups are welcome on these 50 degree days. And this delicious french onion soup will be more welcome than most.

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on November 03, 2016:

Thank you for coming by and checking out my delicious soup recipe, d.william. - Kidos!

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on November 03, 2016:

Peggy, if we make it into the 60's this time of year it would be a heat wave, that would be nice. Its been a mild fall with too many cloudy and rainy days, and that was how summer and spring went too, rain, rain, rain. - Kudos!

d.william from Somewhere in the south on October 30, 2016:

what a great article and wonderful recipe. I have bookmarked this page so i can make this ASAP. Thanks for sharing.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on October 29, 2016:

When the weather cools down a bit (we are still in the 80s here in Houston during the day) a good bowl of onion soup would be tasty. Actually we eat homemade soups just about year round. Sharing your good recipe once again. Am sure you are enjoying cooler fall weather up your way.

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on June 10, 2016:

Thank you, Glenn. I just visited your bean stew recipe hub, and am impressed with the detail and learning experience of it. I like to keep the sodium down when I am cooking when I can. Your recipe looks inviting! - Kudos!

Glenn Stok from Long Island, NY on June 05, 2016:

I love French onion soup. I never could understand why restaurants always make the cheese melt over the sides of the bowl. I like your method better, keeping it all inside the bowl.

I didn't realize there is so much sodium already in so many of the ingredients. Thanks for making that clear. I'll have to find ways to reduce that when I make my own. But you convinced me to give it a try, so I don't need to wait until the next time I eat out.

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on April 16, 2016:

Au fait, the aroma is wonderful while preparing and the delicious soup is an onion lover's delight. Thank you m'dear.

C E Clark from North Texas on March 07, 2016:

Love onions. Think they're my favorite veggie. This soup looks and sounds delicious and I just may give it a try on my next cooking binge!

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on January 19, 2016:

Au fait, thank you for the nice comment and pin. I appreciate you and your visit. I could go for a bowl of this soup right now. - Kudos!

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on July 01, 2015:

It is a comfort food recipe for sure that is a special treat during the long cold wintry months, Suzanne. But, I would like some now. - Kudos!

Suzanne Day from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia on June 30, 2015:

Yum yum! Always love French onion soup for a good winter meal, especially with freshly baked bread to dip into it!

C E Clark from North Texas on June 19, 2015:

This looks wonderful! I love cream of onion soup and it's one of the first things I learned to cook growing up, but I don't put any meat in it. This looks yummy, too, though. Pinned to Awesome HubPages!

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on June 18, 2015:

Patrica, you sure can double or triple this recipe to serve more people, that will work just fine m'dear. - Kudos!

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on June 16, 2015:

Just popping in again....French Onion Soup is one that I enjoy so much. Your photos are making me so hungry.

Can I easily turn these in to recipes for a larger group?

Thanks for sharing.

Angels are on the way ps

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on May 10, 2015:

Dan, it is really good soup. As a matter of fact it is nirvana.

Thanks for stopping by, I hope you do try it!

Dan Harmon from Boise, Idaho on May 09, 2015:

This looks really good, and easy enough for even me. It goes on the list to try.

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on May 04, 2015:

Akriti, I am happy you tried the French Onion Soup recipe. You are very welcome. - Thank you for letting me know, I appreciate that.

Akriti Mattu from Shimla, India on May 03, 2015:

I read your recipe a few days ago and tried it out. I'm happy to share with you it came out really well so thank you :)

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on March 26, 2015:

I will have to make some of this soup again soon when guests are coming to visit. It is delicious! - Thank you for being a blessing, Peg.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on March 26, 2015:

Hi Susie,

Yes, the lighter version is also good. Will help this along by giving it a tweet and another share. Will have to make some good onion soup soon!

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on March 21, 2015:

Wow, a strong apple cider instead of wine sounds very good to me. I may have experiment with my recipe again. I like that as an optional ingredient, so thank you for mentioning it.

Walla Walla onions are very good. I have had some so sweet that I liked them better than Vidalias even. Interesting how things go.

Thank you for visiting, Phyllis. - Kudos.

Phyllis Doyle Burns from High desert of Nevada. on March 21, 2015:

OMGosh, Susie - I have been looking for a good onion soup recipe and this is it !!! Years ago I had an onion soup recipe I treasured (from my Better Homes and Gardens magazine). It took three days to make the soup because the beef stock had to be made first - it was all from scratch, long before one could buy a good stock at the store. The recipe also called for a strong old fashioned apple cider (rather than wine). Anyway, I somehow lost that recipe.

It looks like your recipe will be a good replacement for the one I had. A good onion soup can be a base for other soups. I used to add sliced mushrooms sometimes when cooking the onions. Walla Walla onions are my first choice. I have never seen the Vidalias so have not tried them. My choice of seasonings is the same as yours.

Ok - I' rambling. Thank you for sharing your recipe. Voted Up, across and H+

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on March 14, 2015:

Sheila, I am well pleased with my recipe, but I like experimenting ... so it could change and just maybe for the better. Will see.

Thank you!

Sheila Brown from Southern Oklahoma on March 14, 2015:

I have never tried an onion soup, but this sounds really delicious! Thanks for sharing your recipe!

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on March 05, 2015:

I do have other soup recipes on other websites, if that is what you are asking, yes. -- Thanks for visiting Peach.

peachy from Home Sweet Home on March 04, 2015:

i love onions soup, do you have any other soup recipes?

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on February 23, 2015:

Kristen, onion lovers do love this soup.

Thank you for checking it out.

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on February 23, 2015:

You sure can use other options for ingredients, Patrica.

Thank you very much for your blessing on this hub.

Kristen Howe from Northeast Ohio on February 23, 2015:

I love French onion soup. My mom did too. I would love to try this soup, once I can master cooking a b it more. Thanks for the recipe.

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on February 23, 2015:

This sounds so good. My family loves onion soup so I will give this a try soon. Can you used reduced sodium ingredients??

Angels are on the way voted up++++ and shared pinned g+

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on February 13, 2015:

That is funny, because I actually was served this soup just as you say at a diner. It tasted fine, but it wasn't just right with the topping on the side.

Thank you.

Blackspaniel1 on February 12, 2015:

I found one place that has three sizes. I like the largest one. Alas, I also found one place that did not make it properly, served the crouton and cheese on the side. It is such a simple dish, but one place did mess it up.

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on February 10, 2015:

I am sure the soup would be very good with chicken broth. That is a great recipe option. Thank you for mentioning it, (because I just may try that next time) and for the share.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on February 09, 2015:

I love French onion soup and have not had it in some time. My hubby makes two different versions of it. One is rich and hearty like yours and the other is a lighter version using chicken broth instead of beef. Both are good. Pinning this to my soup board and also sharing. Your photos are wonderful as usual.

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on February 09, 2015:

So true, it is well worth the time spent for a great bowl of onion soup.

Thank you, @Millionaire Tips!

Shasta Matova from USA on February 08, 2015:

Good french onion soup does take a long time to make, but it is well worth it for the satisfying flavor that it provides. So delicious!

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on January 25, 2015:

FlourishAnyway, thank you for stopping by. I would love to know how you like the soup with the vegetable stock option.

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on January 25, 2015:

Mary, that would be a nice surprise for your husband. I hope you do that. (looks like my earlier reply didn't publish).

FlourishAnyway from USA on January 23, 2015:

This looks awesome. I will try it replacing the beef stock with vegetable stock.

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on January 23, 2015:

Marlene, I hope you try my recipe. And, you are very welcome on the tops to select the sweetest onions. - Thank you!

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on January 23, 2015:

amazmerizing, I hope you and your hubby will enjoy the recipe. It is very delicious. - Thanks, and have a wonderful day!

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on January 22, 2015:

My husband really loves French onion soup so this recipe is one I should learn and surprise him.

Marlene Bertrand from USA on January 22, 2015:

French Onion Soup is one of my favorite soups. If a restaurant serves it, that's the soup I order. And, like you, I can never get enough. Now, with your recipe, I can make it at home. And, thank you for the additional advice on how to recognize a sweet, sweet onion.

amazmerizing from PACIFIC NORTHWEST, USA on January 22, 2015:

I have wondered how to make french onion soup, as both the hubby and I love onions. Thanks for this!!! ;)

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on January 21, 2015:

Thank you, ChitrangadaSharan. Glad you found this recipe interesting.

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on January 21, 2015:

Deb, that really is the secret, that and selecting the sweetest onions.

Thank you, and have a great day!

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on January 21, 2015:

This sounds delicious, especially for winters. Would love to try this interesting soup recipe. Nice and helpful pictures and well presented.

Voted up and thanks!

DebMartin on January 20, 2015:

Apple Smoked Gruyere Cheese! Now there's the secret. Thanks!

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on January 20, 2015:

Pinoy, it is delicious soup, and a generous recipe for two servings.

Thanks for stopping by.

Shiela Gerona from Philippines on January 19, 2015:

This looks delicious. I haven't tasted this soup. I hope that I could create my own.

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on January 19, 2015:

Thank you, Writer Fox. With a recipe this good, I had to get detailed in the instructions. - Cheers!

Writer Fox from the wadi near the little river on January 19, 2015:

This looks delicious and perfect for a cold winter's day! I appreciated your detailed instructions.

Susie Lehto (author) from Minnesota on January 18, 2015:

Billy, just the memories of this delicious feast is enough to send me half ways to the moon. - Thank you!

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on January 18, 2015:

A great winter recipe. Thank you and you can bet we'll try it soon.

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