Department Store Onion Soup

Department Store Onion Soup

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"This is an awesome French Onion Soup made at some of the old Famous Barr Department Store Cafeterias."
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2 h 55 m servings 369 cals
Serving size has been adjusted!

Original recipe yields 12 servings



  • Calories:
  • 369 kcal
  • 18%
  • Fat:
  • 14.3 g
  • 22%
  • Carbs:
  • 43.4g
  • 14%
  • Protein:
  • 14.7 g
  • 29%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 37 mg
  • 12%
  • Sodium:
  • 1514 mg
  • 61%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet

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Nutritional Information

1 Serving
Servings Per Recipe:
Amount Per Serving
  • * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  • ** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.
  • (-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.


  • Prep

  • Cook

  • Ready In

  1. Melt the butter in a large pot over low heat. Add the onions; cook, stirring occasionally for 1 1/2 hours.
  2. When the onions are ready, add the pepper, salt, bay leaf and flour. Stir over low heat for 10 minutes. Pour in the beef broth and white wine. Simmer for 2 hours over low heat. Adjust the coloring to a rich brown with the browning sauce. Taste, and adjust salt if needed.
  3. Preheat your oven's broiler. Ladle the soup into oven-proof bowls, and place them on a baking sheet. Float a slice of French bread in each bowl, and top with some Swiss cheese. Broil until cheese is browned. Serve immediately.


  1. 64 Ratings

Most helpful positive review

Very, very good. This is a much heartier French onion soup than my previous recipe, which I seem to have misplaced. This and a salad actually filled my husband. I found the salt level to be ple...

Most helpful critical review

I really tried to like this recipe but there is way too much paprika and the directions need to be clearer. I thought something was wrong noting to cook the onions 1.5 hours but it is right and ...

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Very, very good. This is a much heartier French onion soup than my previous recipe, which I seem to have misplaced. This and a salad actually filled my husband. I found the salt level to be ple...

A St Louis favorite! This is well worth trying. If you don't have the browning sauce but have a hearty beef broth you'll be fine.

I have been making this soup for the past 20 years and there is no other like it! The addition of the paprika adds a richness both in color and in taste and I often find myself adding more than...

Delicous and always hits the spot! If you have homemade beef stock use it, otherwise use 1/2 canned chicken broth and 1/2 canned beef broth. Canned beef broth can get too tinny tasty when redu...

Rob, there's no doubt that this is an excellent FOS recipe. I used low sodium beef broth, red wine (didn't have white) and added a few more seasonings. The recipe called for paprika, but I didn'...

This was so much better than most of the onion soups I've ever had out!! Wow!! I made a huge batch of this (6x? can't remember now) for a church "SoUUper Sunday", and it was a huge hit. Every la...

THANK YOU, THANK YOU. I grew up with Famous Barr and I'm 59 years old! Their French Onion soup was a "must" for lunchtime shoppers and this IS IT!!! I followed the recipe exactly and wasn't dis...

It's true, you do need to cook the onions for at least an hour. I used mozzarella instead of swiss, also skipped the browning sauce. It's great with the white wine (don't skip that!).

Just made this today, and it's a great recipe! We just moved in, so we didn't have wine or a bay leaf (had to borrow the flour!), but it's a easy, hardy soup to make for a cold rainy day. Now if...

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