Slow Cooker French Onion Soup — Damn Delicious

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Slow Cooker French Onion Soup

Did you know you can make French onion soup in the crockpot?! It’s ridiculously easy with basically no stirring and no work!

It’s finally Fall.

I mean, it’s been Fall for weeks.

But, it’s finally a little bit cooler in LA.

And when I say cooler, I mean 75 degrees.

That’s basically sweater and scarf weather for us.

And French onion soup season.

Except, no one is babysitting the caramelized onions here.

Nope. We’re throwing them all in the crockpot, and letting it do all the work for us.

All we do is add our bread slices and cheese.

Then we broil the crap out of it until golden brown.

Slow Cooker French Onion Soup

Yield: 8 servings

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 10 hours 5 minutes

Total Time: 10 hours 20 minutes

Did you know you can make French onion soup in the crockpot?! It’s ridiculously easy with basically no stirring and no work!

Ingredients:

  • 3 pounds sweet onions, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 6 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 6 cups beef stock
  • 2 teaspoons sherry vinegar
  • 1 (12-ounce) French baguette, sliced
  • 1 cup shredded Gruyère cheese
  • 1 cup shredded asiago cheese

Directions:

  1. Place onions into a 6-qt slow cooker.
  2. Stir in butter, brown sugar and 1 teaspoon salt; top with thyme and bay leaf. Cover and cook on high heat for 8-10 hours, or until onions are caramelized and browned.*
  3. Stir in beef stock and sherry; season with salt and pepper, to taste. Cover and cook on high heat for 2-3 hours, or until heated through. Remove and discard thyme and bay leaf.
  4. Preheat oven to broil.
  5. Place baguette slices onto a baking sheet. Place into oven and broil until golden brown on both sides, about 1-2 minutes per side; set aside.
  6. Divide soup into ramekins or ovenproof bowls. Place onto a baking sheet. Top with baguette slices to cover the surface of the soup completely; sprinkle with cheeses. Place into oven and broil until golden brown and cheeses have melted; about 2 minutes.
  7. Serve immediately.

Stir halfway, as needed, to prevent burning.

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43 comments

What an inventive recipe! Do you have a favourite brand of beef stock? I haven’t been able to find anything at the store with really good beefy flavour.

I actually don’t have a preferred brand!

Is there a replacement for the sherry vinegar?

Here is a great list of possible substitutes – hope that helps!

Thank you, thank you, thank you, for a recipe where one does not have to babysit the onions!
Can’t wait to make this recipe!
Theresa

It’s the best, right?!

Is it really high heat for 8-10 hours? That seems like a long time to me at a high temperature.

Yes, that is correct!

High heat in a slow cooker is not the same as high heat on a stove.

I think that is an awesome idea to use a slow cooker for this dish. Slowly letting the flavoured infuse in the soup. Love it! (:

This soup is absolutely wonderful. I only had 1 sweet onion so I added a red onion. That is the only change. My husband will ask for this often!

Hi
I’m not sure about your total time for this recipe. You said total time is 10 hours and 20 min. But if the onions first take 8-10 hours and then we have to add in the broth, etc, and cook another 2-3 hours we’re looking at *potentially* 13 hours.

When does have to get started in order to have dinner at a reasonable time?

If the onions take 8 hours, and you cook an additional 2 hours with the broth, that is at least 10 hours.

Do you think that using a crockpot liner would affect the onion browning process? I adore my crockpot, but I can’t stand the cleaning after so my recipes live and die by whether or not I can use a liner. Thank you for this!

What a great idea! I love a crockpot liner – it truly makes my life so much easier. But I honestly have not tried it with this recipe so it’s hard for me to say with certainty. Sorry!

Mandy
I think you should experiment and tell us how it because I had the exact same question!!

I have never used a crockpot liner but I always spray my crockpot with oil before putting anything in it, and I’ve never had a problem with stuff sticking. It really does help. Looking forward to trying this recipe!

My slow cooker manual says it must be 3/4’s full before turning it on. That would not be the case here until the beef broth is added?

This looks absolutely delicious. I wish I had some cooking in the oven as I type. Yum!

thank you for adapting this for a slow cooker, I never think to make a lot of things other than roasts, or similar thick meats with a slow cooker, but why not? Nice not to have to keep stirring, etc.!

I’ve never made soup on a slow cooker before, so I must say I’m really eager to try it after seeing these pics. Can’t wait!

Silly question perhaps, and I know French Onion soup is tricky to eat politely in the best of circumstances, but how exactly do you eat the baguette on top?

That does get tricky! I usually use mine as sort of a dipper and just eat it with my hands haha. Not the politest, but it does the job and is delicious!

I’m the same way. The dipper is the way to do it for sure!

Could you carmelize the onions the day before you want to serve it and put them in the refrigerator? The next day, bring the onions to room temperature, add the remaining ingredients and finish cooking?

Unfortunately, without further recipe testing, I cannot answer with certainty. As always, please use your best judgment regarding substitutions and modifications.

Yes. Start the onions the night before, cook all night, turn off if carmelized to your satisfaction, then finish when ready. I don’t even refrig, That’s me. Depending on your slow cooker, I might start on hi and switch to low for the night. I also put a piece of wax paper under the lid to keep a tighter .

Love the recipe! I have an Instant Pot but no crock pot. Any idea how to adjust the cooking times / directions to make this soup? Thanks!

Unfortunately, without further recipe testing, I cannot answer with certainty. As always, please use your best judgment regarding substitutions and modifications. Sorry, Ally!

Could you use vegetable broth instead of beef?

I made this last night/this morning and it’s some of the best French Onion Soup I’ve ever had. The only tweaks were I used red wine vinegar instead of sherry (didn’t have any,) and I went traditional with Swiss cheese. I can’t believe how good it is! I let the onions go for 8 hours on high, then added the broth and cooked that for 6 hours on low. I will make this at least once a week, most likely!

I’m seeing a lot of liquid in with my onions. Should I strain it off to help them caramelize?

It should still be fine.

Can this recipe be cooked in the Instant Pot?

Unfortunately, without further recipe testing, I cannot answer with certainty. As always, please use your best judgment regarding substitutions and modifications.

Making this right now, and to be honest I’m actually floored that these onions are not even the slightest bit burnt. To avoid having to wake up at the crack of dawn to make this, I put the onions in the crock pot and left them on low overnight and when I woke up hours later BAM. They look perfect! I know typically when you do low instead of high you double your hours (I’m doing 16), but according to my timer I’ve got 5 more hours left and they already look scrumptious. Looking forward to the finished product! Just letting some know that it can be done overnight!

I cooked mine, added broth/stock & waited until next day to finish & it worked great! I had no sherry vinegar so used red wine & mozzarella/asiago/parmesan blend of cheeses & it was delicious. I doubled the recipe so I have enough to share. Delicious!

I cooked mine, added broth/stock & waited until next day to finish & it worked great! I had no sherry vinegar so used red wine & mozzarella/asiago/parmesan blend of cheeses & it was delicious. I doubled the recipe so I have enough to share. Delicious!

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