Total Time
Prep 10 mins
Cook 50 mins

A classic French recipe, easy to make. The recipe calls for 'a croutes' which is roasted vienna bread. Instead of Vienna bread you could use other crusty bread. If you like a more garlicy soup you could rub the bread with garlic prior to roasting. You could also use croutons although this might alter the flavour of the recipe.

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 1 12 lbs onions, very thinly sliced
  • 3 shallots, finely diced
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon cognac
  • 12 cup red wine
  • 3 cups beef stock
  • salt and pepper
  • 4 12 slices vienna bread, roasted in oven until dry
  • 1 cup gruyere cheese, for garnish


  1. Melt the butter in a soup pot and sauté the onions until very soft, at least 20 minutes.
  2. Add the Cognac and the wine and cook for one minute.
  3. Add the stock. Simmer, covered, 45 minutes.
  4. Check the seasonings.
  5. Ladle into oven-proof soup bowls and set on a baking sheet. Top each with a croûte (roasted Vienna bread).
  6. Sprinkle the top generously with cheese. Broil in oven until the top is lightly brown, about 2 minutes.
Most Helpful

The flavors of this were spot on! I subsituted brandy for congac since that's what i had. I did find that a lot of the broth boiled away so i had to keep adding water but perhaps I just prefer soupy vs. stewy. Regardless, this made a completely rich and satisfying meal!

sofie-a-toast July 24, 2012

So delicious! I always make a simple French Onion Soup and can never pinpoint what I am missing. I really think the wine made this dish. I didn't have cognac or shallots and instead of beef broth I used a simulated "beef" broth (vegetarian). Came out excellent! As nice as it would be to have Gruyère cheese it is way too expensive here, so I used Havarti instead.

Veggie Girl Kacey February 10, 2011

This is a wonderful soup to say the least! My children and I couldn't get enough of it! I did add about 1 tsp. sugar while sauteing the onions and shallots. I loved the addition of the wine. This is my go to recipe from now on and we will have it often this winter too!

**Angie** November 19, 2010