I have made French Onion Soup frequently in the past, but never took the time to caramelize the onions for the soup. I've seen so many rave reviews over caramelized onions and the flavor difference they make that I had to try this. Overall, it was very easy, though just a tad time consuming. Mine took about an hour and I stirred them every 5 minutes to prevent any major burning.
The onions definitely came through in this soup, sweet with a silky texture. My version of French Onion soup is really the easy way to do it - instead of toasting French bread slices, I use bagged seasoned croutons. Because the cheese is pretty much the best part, my trick is to lay a slice on the bottom of the bowl, then top with croutons, soup and another slice of cheese, that way when you scrape the bottom, you get a bite of cheese as well!
This recipe is also lower in sodium than regular French Onion Soup.
Caramelized French Onion Soup
- 3 large white onions, sliced thinly
- Olive oil
- 3 cans reduced-sodium beef broth
- 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
- 1/2 tsp. pepper
- Seasoned croutons - I used Garlic & Cheese
- Slices of cheese - I used no-sodium Swiss this time, but love it with Provolone also
- Cover the bottom of a heavy-bottomed large pot with olive oil.
- Heat the olive oil over medium heat.
- Place the sliced onions in the pot and stir to coat with the oil.
|It looks like a lot - trust me, they shrink down a LOT.|
- Leave onions alone and let cook away, stirring every 5 minutes for approximately 1 hour. It could take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour, but you're looking for an even deep golden brown color. Caramelizing brings out the sugars and sweetness of the onion.
|After about 10 minutes|
|After about 40 minutes|
- After onions are caramelized, pour in the reduced-sodium beef broth.
- Add garlic powder, thyme and pepper and stir.
- Let simmer for about 20 minutes.
- In an oven-proof bowl, lay 1 slice of cheese on the bottom, top with some croutons, ladle the soup over the croutons and then top with 1 slice of cheese.
- Place bowl in oven under a broiler set to high, keep an eye on it and take it out when the cheese is gooey and delicious!