Baked onion soup

Slow cooked onions, wine and a layer of boozy cream give this fabulous cheese-topped soup from Antony Worrall Thompson a special touch
By Antony Worrall Thompson
Baked onion soup
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6-8
  • Cook Time: 1.3333333333333333 hours 20 minutes
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Effort: medium



  • 1.5 kg brown onions, sliced
  • 85 g unsalted butter
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp caster sugar
  • 25 g plain flour
  • 1 bottles dry white wine
  • 2 litres chicken or vegetable stock
  • 175 g gruyère cheese, grated
  • 12 slices French bread, about 2cm in thickness, toasted on both sides
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 150 ml double cream
  • 2 tbsp brandy
  • 4 tbsp madeira


1. Place the onion, butter, oil, thyme, bay leaves, salt and sugar in a heavy-based saucepan and cook over a medium heat for 40 minutes. Stirring from time to time. The onions should be golden and soft.

2. Stir in the flour and cook over a low heat for a further 10 minutes. Pour in the wine followed by the stock, stir to combine, and cook over a medium heat for a further 20 minutes. The soup can be prepared up to this point 48 hours in advance.

3. Set the oven to 190°C/gas 5. Scatter a little cheese - don't use it all - over the bottom of a large ovenproof soup tureen or 6 to 8 individual ovenproof soup bowls on a baking sheet. Pour in the soup. Rub the toasted French bread with the raw garlic and float over the soup. Top with the remaining cheese and place in the oven for about 20 minutes, until bubbling and golden brown.

4. Beat together the egg yolks, cream, brandy and Madeira. When the soup is ready to be served, lift up the cheesy crust and pour the cream mixture into the soup, or serve in a jug and offer separately to your guests.

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