Restaurant Recipes

Famous-Barr's French Onion Soup

One of St. Louis's favorite soup recipes was recently printed in the Post-Dispatch. I remember going to St. Louis when I was young and my family going into the department store's restaurant for this famous soup. Enjoy!

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Yield: 16 servings; 4 quarts


  • 5 pounds onions, unpeeled
  • 1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons black pepper, freshly ground
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 7 (16 ounce) cans beef broth, divided (recommended Swanson's)
  • 1 cup dry white wine (optional)
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour or instant flour such as Wondra
  • Caramel coloring or Kitchen Bouquet (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • French baguettes (optional)
  • Swiss cheese or gruyere cheese


  1. Peel onions and slice 1/8 inch thick, preferably in a food processor.
  2. Melt butter in a 6 quart (or larger) stockpot. Add onions; cook, uncovered, over low heat for 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally. (The long cooking time makes the onions mellow and sweet.)
  3. Stir in pepper, paprika and bay leaf; sauté over low heat 10 minutes more, stirring frequently.
  4. Pour in 6 cans broth and wine. Increase heat and bring to a boil.
  5. Dissolve flour in remaining 1 can broth. Stir into boiling soup. Reduce heat and simmer slowly for 2 hours.
  6. Adjust color to a rich brown with caramel coloring, season with salt. Refrigerate overnight.
  7. To serve, heat soup in microwave or on stove top. If desired, pour into ovenproof crocks or bowls. Top with a slice of bread and a sprinkling of grated cheese. Heat under the broiler until cheese melts and bubbles, about 5 minutes.
  8. Leftover soup can be frozen.


Posted by GayleL at Recipe Goldmine 7/18/01 10:44:38 pm.

Source: - Posted by chef Bill Hilbrich 8/18/1999

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