Julia Child’s French Onion Soup

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Julia Child’s French Onion Soup

French Onion Soup has to be on the top of my list for favorite soups. This recipe by Julia Child takes a little longer than many simpler recipes, but it’s well worth the time spent. So get out your apron, and prepare to indulge in a classic French favorite.


  • 5-6 Cups Yellow Onions, sliced thin
  • 1/2 Yellow Onion, raw
  • Olive Oil, 4 Tbsp
  • French Bread, about 8 slices
  • Cogniac, 2-3 Tbsp (optional)
  • Parmesan Cheese, 4 ounces
  • Swiss Cheese, Grated, about 12 ounces
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Sage, Ground, 1/2 tsp
  • Bay Leaf, 1 leaf
  • White Wine, 1 cup
  • Beef Stock, 6 cups
  • Flour, 3 Tbsp
  • Sugar, 1/2 tsp
  • Butter, 2 Tbsp
  • Cooking Oil, 1 Tbsp

Cooking Instructions:

Heat a heavy, oven-safe, stock pot over medium-low heat and add the cooking oil once the pot is hot. Melt the butter into the hot oil.  Stir the sliced onions into the oil/butter mix, ensuring they are evenly coated. Cover the stock pot and cook for around 20 minutes checking to make sure they aren’t burning. Onions should be clear and very tender once finished. Turn up the heat to medium-high, and add the sugar and 1tsp salt. Continue cooking while stirring until onions are thoroughly browned (caramelized).

Reduce heat to medium-low and stir in 3 Tbsp flour. Cook 2-3 minutes until flour forms a thick paste (add more butter if needed).  Stir in 1 cup of beef stock, and stir heavily for a couple seconds.

Add the rest of the stock, wine, sage, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.

Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees F. Drizzle both sides of french bread slices with olive oil, and place on a baking sheet. Cook the bread in the oven for 15 minutes on each side.

Taste soup, and add salt and pepper as needed, then remove the bay leaf.

Add cognac, and grate the 1/2 raw onion into the soup. Add a little bit of the swiss cheese to the soup, preserving most of it for the top. Cover the soup mixture with the bread, forming a single layer bread top. Sprinkle the rest of the Swiss cheese over the top of the bread, forming a thick layer. Drizzle melted butter or oil over the cheese, and place the pot into the oven uncovered. Bake for around 30 minutes, or until cheese is melted. Turn the broiler on and brown the cheese.

Remove pot from oven and let stand to cool. Serve up to some lucky guests and enjoy all the kudos you receive.


  1. Paula Gallemore says:

    I have made Julia Child’s French Onion many times and is a fool proof recipe along with rave reviews!

  2. Jitterbug813 says:

    This is the perfect recipe! It tastes just as good as the Onion soup I got in Paris last November. With the first bite I was strolling the street of Paris on a brisk November day, surrounded by wonder. Definitely a recipe to keep!

  3. Caroline says:

    Looks good, but Gruyere or Comte for the cheese is the real deal for French onion soup (if you’re a true Francophile you will go with the Comte…wink wink;)… rounds off the soup brilliantly….not parmesan nor swiss cheese-yikes.


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