Red wine French onion soup and gruyere toast is one of our favorite soup recipes to make. Caramelized onions, red wine, beef broth or beef stock come together with a bit of thyme. This is such a simple soup. You just need a little patience to allow the onions to caramelize.
If you plan things out, you can actually get home from work, get the onions going, and let them do their magic. We like to serve this French onion soup with a crispy, cheesy baguette slice. Bruce came up with the idea of making the cheese toasts in the oven on parchment for easy clean up. You can then just serve them on top of the French onion soup, and pour a glass of red wine!
Can I use white wine instead of red wine?
Absolutely, you can make the swap for wine depending on your taste. The red wine will give it a deeper, richer look and flavor, but a crisp white wine will also be very flavorful. And don’t worry, the alcohol cooks out!
Can I make this soup vegetarian or vegan?
Of course! Swap the beef broth out for vegetable broth. Use vegetable or garlic bouillon instead of beef bouillon. When making the toast, just substitute a plant based cheese for the top of the baguette.
Does this soup store well in the fridge?
Yes! If you have any leftovers, they make a perfect lunch for the week, or heated up later for dinner. Simply warm the soup up, and heat up a leftover piece of the cheese toast and you have the most amazing leftovers!
What is a good side dish to serve the French Onion soup with?
Our favorite pairing for this French onion with red wine is a caesar salad. We make up our homemade caesar dressing and keep it in the fridge. All you need is romaine lettuce, as you can use one of the pieces of cheese toast for the crouton! How delicious is that?
What you will need to make this French onion soup with red wine:
Beef broth or stock
Salt and Pepper
What is the history of French Onion soup?
French onion soup originates in Paris, France in the 18th century, made from beef broth, and caramelized onions. It was introduced to the United States by the New York restaurant of Henri Mouquin in 1861, where his wife Marie Julie Grandjean Mouquin was the chef.
Does the red wine cook out of the French onion soup?
Yes, you can serve soup with alcohol to children since the alcohol is burned off in the simmering process. Regardless if you use red wine, white wine or brandy, the cooking process will burn off all the alcohol.
What are the best onions to use in French onion soup?
Most onion varieties will work. We find that the combination of sweet onions, shallots & red onions give this soup a nice depth of flavor.
Ingredients for Red Wine French Onion Soup:
- 2 shallots sliced in rings
- 3 sweet onions
- 3 red onions
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 1 cup good red wine
- 2 teaspoon beef bouillon
- 6 cups of beef broth
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 10 grinds of pepper
- Salt to taste
Ingredients for the cheese toast
- 8 slices of French or sourdough bread
- 8 ounces of Gruyere cheese
Instructions for French Onion Soup:
- Melt butter in an 8 quart pot. Thinly slice ice shallots and onions. We use a mandolin, but a sharp knife works well. Add shallots and onions into melted butter and cook at medium high for about 15-20 minutes. Look for them to become translucent, not browned. Now reduce the heat to low, and continue to cook with lid on for another 20 minutes. You are looking to slightly caramelize them.
- Add in the red wine to de-glaze the onions. Allow wine to cook down, reducing by half. About 15-20 minutes.
- Toss in 2 bay leaves. Add thyme and pepper, and a pinch of salt. Stir in the beef broth. Allow to cook for another 10-15 minutes.
Instructions for cheese toast:
- Pre-heat oven to 350 F.
- Slice baguette. Arrange on a parchment covered sheet pan. Place in oven for 5 minutes to toast. Freshly grate the Gruyere cheese. Remove bread from oven, and turn over. Return to oven for 5 minutes. Remove bread from oven, and cover tops of each slice with a mound of the shredded cheese, covering the surface. Return to oven for about 5 minutes to melt. Then turn broiler on to slightly brown the cheese. Watch carefully so the cheese does not burn.
Serve the Soup:
- Remove the bay leaves from the soup, and taste. Add salt or pepper as needed. Ladel soup onto small bowls or medium ramekins, and top each with a cheese covered baguette.