Three Onion Panade

"This is like a really thick french onion soup that bakes in one big casserole dish in the oven. Make sure to choose a dense chewy bread and a wide casserole dish."
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Ready In:


  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 12 lbs onions, sliced thin
  • 3 leeks, sliced thin (white and light green part only)
  • 34 lb shallot, sliced thin
  • coarse salt
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 34 lb dense bread, cut in 2 inch cubes
  • 6 cups chicken stock or 6 cups beef stock
  • 12 lb gruyere, grated
  • 1 -2 tablespoon brandy


  • Melt 4 tbsp butter in a large heavy pot over medium low heat. Add the onions, leeks, shallots and a couple pinches of salt. Stir, and then cover pot and cook for 1 hour, stirring a few times. Onions will reduce by half and be very limp.
  • Take lid off pot, add in sugar and crank pot up to high heat. Cook, stirring frequently, for about 15 minutes. The juices will brown and stick to the sides of the pot. Use a wooden spoon to scrape browned bits back into the onions, making sure to scrape the bottom of the pot as well. Once the onions have turned creamy and light brown in color turn the heat off and cover the pot.
  • Heat oven to 350.
  • Spread the cubed bread onto a baking sheet and bake until lightly toasted, about 15 minutes.
  • Bring the stock to a boil. Add the bread to the onions and stir. Scrape bread and onion mixture into a wide casserole. Use the stock to rinse out the onion pot and then pour the stock into the casserole dish. Let rest for 5 minutes. The bread will have absorbed some of the stock, but there should still be enough to barely cover the bread. If not, add in some hot water.
  • Spread the cheese over the top and sprinkle with brandy. Dot with the remaining butter. Bake in oven for 1 hour, or until cheese has formed a rich, dark crust.
  • Spoon into bowls and serve hot.

Questions & Replies

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  1. Abby Girl
    Wish I could give more stars....this was pure heaven!!! I used French bread that had been sitting on the counter for 4 days, so I didn't bother with the toasting of the bread. I also used up some green onions and chives that I had floating around in the fridge. I had some fresh beef broth made up and added some canned to come up to 6 cups. Yummy goodness! What a treasure!!! I would put this in one of the top 10 recipes that I have tried over the year! Kudos on a great find!!!
  2. kitty.rock
    Brookelynne, this was WONDERFUL. As my family are not big fans of french onion soup, I made this for myself only. It has a wonderful flavor. I cheated and used prepared croutons, but that was all I was able to do, as I didn't think gluten-free bread would work real well in this. So I improvised. I used additional chicken broth, and I left out the brandy as I didn't have any, but I don't think it detracted from the flavor at all. Wonderful dish, so glad I chose to make it. Made for your Football Pool Win, January 2010!


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