This caramelized Gluten Free Easy French Onion Soup recipe is going to bring back memories for you! It is that good. I am going to show you how to slow-cook your onions so that they caramelize, adding a whole new layer of flavor to this comforting soup recipe.

A spoon lifting up caramelized onions and cheese from a bowl of French onion soup.

(*This post is sponsored by Milton’s Craft Bakers. All crunch and joyous opinions are my own.)

Traditional French onion soup is a meat broth-based soup, and it is well-known for its famous crouton and melty cheese on top. As the name implies, it is from France and usually served as a starter. Since we are all gluten free, we will sub out that giant crouton under the cheese.

Well, I found the perfect solution! Milton’s Gluten Free Crackers!! You may ask how crackers make this soup so good. Milton’s Gluten Free Crispy Sea Salt Crackers are the perfect substitute for the crispy crouton in traditional French onion soup recipes.”

Follow along, and keep reading because I have included an easy video to show you how to make this classic soup recipe. If you love soup as much as we do, check out my delicious gluten free soup recipes!

The top view of a bowl of onion soup with a cracker on top of the cheese.

Milton’s also supports community causes like Celiac-related hospital advocacy, autism support groups, and children’s charities that promote health for our families and communities.

My fav soup. I have become in love with Valdallia onions..they are so sweet. Would they be good for the soup?”

Marti I.

Ingredient Notes:

  • Sweet Onions – See the recipe FAQ for other onion variety options.
  • Beef Broth – I use low sodium, but regular beef broth is also fine.
  • Butter – Use salted or unsalted butter.
  • White Wine – A cheap wine is acceptable to use—no need to buy expensive wine.
  • Thyme – I used dried thyme.
  • Coconut Sugar – You can also use brown sugar.
  • Garlic – I like freshly minced garlic, but if you have jarred, that will be fine.
  • Bay Leaf – This if for flavor and is removed after cooking.
  • Gruyere Cheese – This is for topping the soup.
  • Milton’s Crackers – If you can’t find Milton’s, make some Gluten Free Croutons.

Recipe Step-By-Step Directions:

Butter melting in a large skillet.

The first step is to melt a stick of butter in a pan.

Adding sliced onions to the butter.

Add the thinly slivered onions and sauté 5 minutes until the onions become soft.

Stirring the cooking onions as they caramelize.

Add coconut sugar (or brown sugar) and spices. I usually wouldn’t add sugar to a soup recipe, but the sugar helps the onions caramelize. Cover and allow the onions to cook for 20 minutes or until they are caramelized, like in the next picture.

Holding up the caramelized onions.

Add the caramelized onions to a soup pot.

Adding the broth to the pot.

Pour in the beef broth. Add two bay leaves and thyme. Cover and allow to simmer on low heat for one hour.

Spooning soup into a bowl.

Use a ladle to fill bowls with the gluten free French onion soup.

Adding crackers on top of the soup.

This is my favorite part. Grab a bag of Milton’s Gluten Free Sea Salt Crackers. Take about 4 or 5 crackers and place them on top of the onion soup.

Adding the cheese.

Top with a thick slice of gruyere cheese. Place the soup bowls in a baking dish and place under a broiler until the cheese melts.

Serve the soup hot with Milton’s Gluten Free Crackers.

A spoon full of French onion soup.
Gluten Free French Onion Soup

Recipe FAQ:

What is the best onion to use for French onion soup?

My favorite onion to use is a large, sweet onion. Some stores have Hawaiian sweet onions. Their mellow sweetness adds to the caramelized flavor of this soup. You can also use red onion, which adds a deeper onion flavor.
Yellow onions are just okay…they give off an initial bitter taste, which my son didn’t like as much.

Does it matter how you cut the onions for this soup?

It really does matter how you cut the onions. In traditional French Onion Soup, the onions are cut to be slivered and not diced. You also want the onions cut uniformly so they all cook evenly.

How do you store French onion soup?

Store leftover soup in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 4 days. You can also freeze the soup in Souper Cubes. I love these cubes because they freeze soup in single-serving cubes.

The top view of a bowl of onion soup on a tablecloth.

More Gluten Free Soup Recipes to Try:

A spoon lifting up caramelized onions and cheese from a bowl of French onion soup.

Gluten Free French Onion Soup

Sandi Gaertner
A simple cheesy French onion soup recipe that is naturally gluten free.
4.98 from 40 votes
an egg free allergen icon
gluten free allergy icon
nut free allergen icon
soy free allergy icon
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 15 minutes
Course Gluten Free Soup Recipes
Cuisine French
Servings 6 servings
Calories 295 kcal


  • 4 cups sweet onions slivered
  • ½ cup salted butter
  • 4 cups beef broth regular or low-sodium
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2 teaspoons coconut sugar or brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ½ cup white wine
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 cup gruyere cheese


  • In a pan, add a stick of butter. Allow it to melt a little then add the sliced onions to the pan. Cover.
  • Cook the onions on medium heat for 5 minutes until they soften.
  • Add garlic, coconut sugar, salt, and pepper to the onions. Stir it in and cover the pan. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes until the onions are caramelized.
  • Pour the onions into a soup pot. Add broth, wine, water, thyme, and bay leaves. Cover the pot and simmer on low for an hour.
  • When the soup is done, use a ladle to pour into bowls. 
  • Top each bowl with several Milton’s Gluten Free Sea Salt Crackers and then the Gruyere cheese.
  • Place bowls in a baking dish and put under the broiler until the cheese is melted.



  1. I recommend using sweet onions for this recipe. Yellow onions will also work well.
  2. To make this Gluten Free French Onion Soup dairy-free, use a dairy-free cheese and plant-based butter.
  3. Store in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the refrigerator. You can also freeze this soup. Store in freezer bags.


Please know that every gluten free flour blend has a different starch to grain ratio. If you use a blend I didn’t test, you may need to adjust your moisture levels in your baked goods.


Serving: 1gCalories: 295kcalCarbohydrates: 10gProtein: 10gFat: 23gSaturated Fat: 14gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 65mgSodium: 1278mgPotassium: 258mgFiber: 1gSugar: 7gVitamin A: 692IUVitamin C: 6mgCalcium: 268mgIron: 1mg
Tried this Recipe? Pin it for Later!Mention @FearlessDining or tag #FearlessDining!

Nutrition Disclaimer

Nutritional information is an estimate provided to you as a courtesy. You should calculate the actual nutritional information with the products and brands you are using with your preferred nutritional calculator.

This post was updated from an old May 2018 post with more detailed instructions.

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    I really want to make this however I’m a recovering alcoholic and no alcohol crosses my threshold. What can I use instead?…

    1. 5 stars
      I would not use cooking sherry. It is a myth that all alcohol burns off in the cooking process. You cannot depend on that and as you said you do not want alcohol in your house. You can just leave that out of the recipe, it will be delicious even without the alcohol.

  2. 5 stars
    I had to make some substitutions, as I was out of Thyme, and had no white wine so used red (which is used in traditional French Onion Soup anyway) also due to dairy allergies and healthier cooking options I replaced the butter with 1/4 cup of butter flavored olive oil, and 1/4 cup of vegan butter (I had MELT on hand). The results were outstanding, and my husband who is French Canadian loved it! Will be making it again. Only thing was, during softening stage it took more than the 5 minutes for the onions to soften, maybe because I didn’t want the onions to burn my heat was too low, or because didn’t use a big pan but the actual soup pot. But aroma built up the anticipation!

  3. I love all your recipes! I’m making this tonight and I’m wondering if I can use regular sugar instead of coconut? Or another alternative? I’m allergic to coconut. Thanks!

      1. This looks amazing! I’m going to make this today as I’ve come into a lot of onions recently and my wife is gf. I’m curious though, can this be frozen safely if I were to make a double batch?

  4. 5 stars
    I’m a sucker for French Onion Soup. And it’s nice to have options for those who don’t eat gluten. Your soup looks super comforting! I wouldn’t mind having it for dinner tomorrow.

  5. 5 stars
    What a fantastic way to make a gluten free French Onion Soup! And, this looks amazing too!

  6. I absolutely love French onion soup! I’m not gluten-free, but I don’t love the mushy bread that’s often at the bottom of a bowl of this soup – a cracker is such a perfect alternative! Great idea!

  7. 5 stars
    All I can think of when I see these photos is ccchhhheeeesssseee!! Oh so good. A big bowl of comfort right there.