5+ best Condensed French onion soup substitutes & way to use

If you are a fan of French onion soup but don’t have any condensed French onion soup in the cupboard or don’t want to use it, never fear!

There are plenty of excellent substitutes that will help you get a dish that is just as good as the original.

As an experienced cook, I’ve tried and tested several substitutes for condensed French onion soup. Here are my top six picks.

What is Condensed French onion Soup? What does French onion soup taste like?

Condensed French onion soup is an intensely flavored and aromatic soup made of onions that are slowly cooked in butter or oil until they become rich and golden brown.

The soup typically includes beef stock, fresh herbs, and seasonings such as salt and pepper. This creates a broth that is full of flavor with a touch of sweetness from the onions. 

A classic French onion soup tastes of rich, caramelized onions and a hint of sweetness with a savory beef broth base.

The dish is usually topped with croutons and melted cheese for added texture and flavor. It’s the perfect comfort food on cold days and can be served as a starter or as an entree.

However, it’s a flexible soup that can be easily adapted to your tastes and dietary needs. Enjoy!

Uses of Condensed French onion Soup

Condensed French onion soup is a flavorful and convenient way to add delicious flavor to a variety of dishes.

It is used as an ingredient in casseroles, soups, and sauces. Its intense flavor adds depth to any dish, making it a great choice for creating complex and tasty meals.

This soup also makes an excellent base for making hearty and comforting soups. The soup can also be used as a topping for hamburgers, crostinis, or bruschettas.

French onion soup is also great over baked potatoes or french fries for an easily-made side dish.

Additionally, the soup makes a flavorful addition to homemade pizza crusts or flatbreads.

Finally, a bit of condensed French onion soup added to marinades can quickly add flavor and depth to any meat or vegetable dish.

It can also be heated up and enjoyed as-is, either on its own or with some of your favorite garnishes.

With so many uses, it’s no wonder that this soup is a popular pantry staple for home cooks everywhere.

Why is it called French onion soup mix?

French onion soup mix is not actually from France. It is an American invention originating in the 1950s.

The name of the French onion soup mix was derived from the use of yellow onions that were turned into soft and caramelized “French-style” slices.

The term was used to encapsulate the essence of the dish, which had a French-influenced flavor accentuated by the different ingredients, such as onions, garlic, and beef broth.

Potential buyers could easily make the connection between this soup and its origins with just a glance at its name.

This is why French onion soup mix has become an iconic culinary product in the US – it’s a convenient way to make a delicious-tasting concoction that tastes like a million bucks in no time!

Why is French onion soup important?

French onion soup is a definitive dish that has been taken for centuries. It’s often seen as the perfect comfort food due to its rich flavor and variety of textures.

In fact, French onion soup can be traced back to Roman times, when it was used as a low-calorie food source.

The combination of slowly caramelized onions and beef broth creates a flavor that cannot be replicated with any other ingredients.

Its popularity only continues to grow, so much so that there are countless varieties available in restaurants worldwide.

Whether you’re enjoying it in Paris or in your own kitchen, French onion soup can be a memorable experience.

Best Condensed French Onion Soup Substitute

1. Beef Broth and Sherry Substitute 

This substitute works best if you want to make a larger batch of French onion soup rather than just one serving.

The recipe calls for beef broth, sherry, butter, and onions. 

Begin by sautéing your onions in melted butter until they become soft and lightly browned.

beef broth and sherry work well as a good condensed french onion soup substitute

Then add sherry to the pan and allow it to reduce by half before pouring in beef broth until it reaches your desired consistency.

Simmer everything together for around 10 minutes or until the mixture thickens slightly. This mixture makes a great substitute for condensed French onion soup!

2. Vegetable Broth and Balsamic Vinegar Substitute 

For those who prefer vegetarian options or don’t have access to beef broth, this substitute is perfect!

To make it, start by sautéing your onions in melted butter until they become soft and lightly browned again.

Then add balsamic vinegar to the pan and allow it to reduce by half before pouring in vegetable broth until it reaches your desired consistency.

Simmer everything together for around 10 minutes or until the mixture thickens slightly.

Voila! You now have a delicious vegetarian version of condensed French onion soup that tastes just as good as the original!

3. Cream of Mushroom Soup Substitute 

If you’re searching for something quick and easy, then this cream of mushroom soup substitute might be perfect for you!

Simply mix together one can of cream of mushroom soup with one can of water (or more if necessary) in a saucepan over medium heat—frequently stirring—until the mixture has reached your desired consistency.

This makes an excellent substitute for condensed French onion soup but isn’t quite as flavorful because it doesn’t contain any onions or sherry/balsamic vinegar (depending on which substitution recipe you choose).

4. Beef Broth with Caramelized Onions 

The first substitution is beef broth with caramelized onions. I have tried this option, and it is great if you want to recreate the flavor of French onion soup without having to use canned condensed soup. 

To make this substitute, start by caramelizing onions in butter or oil over medium-low heat until they become soft and golden brown.

Then add beef broth and simmer until it reduces down and thickens up.

The result will be an intensely flavorful broth that can stand in perfectly for condensed French onion soup in your recipe.

5. Tomato Soup with Onions 

Another option is tomato soup with onions. This substitution works best if you’re using the condensed French onion soup as part of a sauce or stew.

Simply replace it with an equal amount of tomato soup and then add finely chopped, sautéed onions to help mimic the flavor of French onion soup.

The result will be a rich, savory sauce that can stand in perfectly for the original recipe.

Read more: Best condensed tomato soup substitutes

6. Vegan “Soup Base” 

Finally, if you’re looking for an animal-free alternative, try making your own vegan “soup base” out of the vegetable broth and sautéed mushrooms and onions (or other vegetables).

Simply sauté the vegetables until they are soft and golden brown, then add vegetable broth and simmer until it reduces into a thick liquid similar to condensed French onion soup in texture and flavor.

This vegan substitute works great as part of creamy sauces or soups!

What cheese Can you substitute in French onion soup?

French onion soup is a trending recipe that may need some updating from time to time.

If you want to add a different flavor profile to your soup, you may want to consider what cheese can be substituted in French onion soup.

Popular variants of cheese used in substitution include Gruyère, Swiss, Emmental, and Comte cheeses due to their sharpness and nutty flavors that pair well with the caramelized onions and beef bouillon base of the french onion soup.

vegan soup base works well as a good condensed french onion soup alternative

You could also get creative and opt for a more daring option, such as Gorgonzola or Boursin, for an added layer of creamy texture and pungency to the overall flavor.

The possibilities are endless!

What is the difference between an onion and a French onion soup?

The difference between an onion and French onion soup is like day and night. Onions are a vegetable, brown and crunchy, that can be cooked into dishes in numerous ways.

In contrast, French onion soup is an aromatic broth with melted cheese on top of toasted croutons; it’s definitely one for the senses!

The origins of this canine delight go back to pre-revolutionary France, where it was traditionally cooked over a fire with stale bread added to intensify the flavor.

Onions are still a key ingredient, but the French onion soup comes with various tweaks, such as using beef stock or adding red wine for even more depth.

Ultimately, their flavors are wildly different and depend on one’s culinary preferences – so why not try both?

Conclusion on Condensed French onion soup substitute

No matter what kind of recipe you’re making, there are plenty of great alternatives to using canned condensed French onion soup.

From vegan options to flavorsome broths made from beef or tomatoes, so don’t worry if you don’t have any on hand!

With these helpful tips, finding the perfect substitute should be easy!

Experienced cooks, chefs, and experts alike will find this overview useful when they need an ideal substitution because they don’t have condensed French onion soup on hand or can not use it due to dietary restrictions.

Now that we’ve explored some excellent alternatives to using canned condensed french onion soups get cooking! Bon appétit!

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