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French Onion Chicken

August 11, 2023

We’re embracing gal-entine’s day and inviting all of our closest girlfriends over for an indulgent feast, starring this cheesy, savory indulgent French onion chicken.


French onion chicken in a braiser with gruyere cheese and caramelized onions

Girls’ Night IN!

In our 20s, galentine’s day would have been an excuse to bar hop with our whole crew until the wee hours. But, now that we’re busy with kids and work and all of the demands of adult life, although we crave time with our friends more than ever, it can be so hard to come by. Gathering a group of close friends is no small feat—with everyone’s busy schedules, just picking a date can be tricky. But once you’ve locked it in—hundreds of text messages later—you want to make sure that you can get the most out of your time together. And nothing encourages connection and conviviality more than gathering around a cozy meal. When we host a girls’ night in, our checklist looks like this:

  • Lots of fresh flowers! (easy to grab—vases, too!)
  • Wine (duh) like prosecco, Champagne and a good, hearty French red wine, as well as some good non-alcoholic options, too. We always at least have bubbly water handy, and if we’re feeling ambitious we like to offer a mocktail, too.
  • A solid playlist, because a party without music is just awkward. Play whatever you like, but remember that you want something people can easily converse over. We usually keep it classic—think Eartha Kitt and Ella Fitzgerald.
ingredients laid out for French Onion Chicken gruyere cheese, white wine, garlic, thyme and beef stock
skin on Chicken thighs browning in a braiser
raw onions in a braiser ready to be caramelized
onions caramelizing in a pan

What You’ll Need to Make French Onion Chicken

You love French onion soup, right? Insanely savory and covered in gooey cheese, what’s not to love?! Well, French onion chicken is basically French onion soup, made into a hearty one pot dish. It’s easy to love, and it’s nearly a meal unto itself—just add some crusty bread and a small side salad and you’re good to go! Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Chicken thighs. We prefer bone-in skin-on chicken thighs, because they’re so flavorful. But this recipe can be made with boneless, skinless thighs if that’s your preference.
  • Olive oil
  • Butter
  • Onions
  • Fresh thyme
  • Bay leaf
  • Garlic cloves
  • Dry white wine. We used Sauvignon Blanc, but any dry white wine that you like to drink is great.
  • Beef Stock
  • High-quality Swiss cheese, like Gruyère or Comté.
caramelized onions in a braiser
French Onion Chicken 7
hand pouring white wine into caramelized onions for french onion soup chicken
french onion chicken casserole

How to Make French Onion Chicken Casserole

This easy chicken thigh recipe cooks in just one skillet, but you’ll need a big one and one that can go from stove top to the oven. Cast iron is ideal, but anything oven-safe will work. Here’s how to make French onion soup chicken!

  1. Brown the chicken thighs.
  2. Caramelize the onions! The key is not to rush—patience makes perfect. For more info about caramelized onions, check out our how-to guide here.
  3. Season the caramelized onions and deglaze the pan with the wine (and if you “sample” the wine as you cook, we fully endorse that.)
  4. Pour in the stock and give the whole delicious thing a simmer.
  5. Add the chicken thighs to the pan and move the chicken thigh bake to the oven to bake for about 15 minutes. Reminder! With chicken thighs, you’re looking for an internal temp of 170°F to indicate doneness.
  6. Cover the chicken thighs with cheese and broil (just as you would with French onion soup) until the cheese is bubbling and melty.
braised chicken and onions for french onion soup chicken
french onion chicken in a pan with melted gruyere

Tools You’ll Need:

french onion chicken garnished with parsley
french onion chicken with gruyere cheese being scooped out of a pan with a wooden spoon

More Chicken Thigh Recipes to Try

They’re just as healthy as chicken breasts, and so much more flavorful. Are you convinced yet? Here are four of our favorite, go-to chicken thigh recipes.

french onion soup with wine
f1 serving of french onion soup in a bowl

Galentine’s? Valentine’s? Or Just Another Tuesday.

Whenever you serve this easy French onion chicken recipe, we want to hear about it! Snap a photo of your chicken thigh bake and maybe even a video of the beautiful people you feed it to. Tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper. Happy eating!

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French Onion Chicken

  • Serves: 6
  • Prep Time:  15 min
  • Cook Time:  1 hr 15 min
  • Calories: 762


  • 3 lbs chicken thighs, bone-in skin-on (at least 6 thighs)
  • 2 tsp salt, divided
  • 1 tsp black pepper, divided
  • ¼ cup olive oil, divided
  • 3 medium onions, sliced into ¼ inch rings (about 4 cups)
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 garlic cloves thinly sliced
  • ¾ cup dry white wine (like Sauvignon Blanc)
  • 2 cups Beef Stock
  • 8 oz Gruyère or Comté cheese, grated


  1. Season the chicken with 1 teaspoon of the salt and ½ teaspoon of the black pepper.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium, high heat. Add in chicken, skin side down, and cook, undisturbed until browned about 5-7 minutes. Turn chicken and repeat on other side for about 5 minutes. Remove chicken from pan and set aside.
  3. In the same pan add in remaining olive oil and reduce heat to medium/low. Add onions and cover for 15 minutes. Remove the lid and continue to cook the onions, stirring often, until a nice golden brown color is achieved. The caramelization process should take about 25 minutes, don’t rush it.
  4. Once the onions are caramel in color add butter, nutmeg, thyme, bay leaf, garlic, and remaining salt and pepper. Stir and cook for 3 more minutes.
  5. Increase heat to high and add wine. Bring to a boil and cook until reduced by half, about 3-5 minutes.
  6. Preheat oven to 375.
  7. Add beef stock, bring to a simmer and cook for an additional 10 minutes.
  8. Remove thyme and bay leaf and add chicken back into the onions. Bake uncovered on center rack of preheated oven for 15 minutes.
  9. Sprinkle chicken with cheese and place back in the oven under the broiler. Watch carefully so your cheese doesn’t burn.

    **Serve immediately with crusty bread and maybe even mashed potatoes.
    Note: This recipe works just as well with boneless skinless thighs and breasts if that is your preference.

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories762
  • Protein51 g
  • Carbohydrates6 g
  • Total Fat43 g
  • Dietary Fiber1 g
  • Cholesterol254 mg
  • sodium613 mg
  • Total Sugars3 g

French Onion Chicken

Questions & Reviews

Join the discussion below.

  • Ashley

    Can i cook in stainless steel and transfer to oven safe dish with no change in time to cook?

    Hi Ashley, that should be ok. You can always preheat your oven safe dish in the oven before you transfer to it.

  • Roni

    I can't eat beef. Can I use chicken stock? I know won't have the same dark color beef stock adds.

    Yes of course!

  • Roni

    I can't eat beef. Can I use chicken stock? I know won't have the same dark color beef stock adds.

    Sure, that will work fine!

  • Amy

    Has anyone tried to put in a few slices of baguette when it’s time to broil with the cheese? I have space in my pot since I am only cooking four chicken breasts…

    Would probably be yummy!

  • Ann

    I used Sauvignon blanc in this recipe but it came out tasting sweet to me. Is it the wine? Should I use something else? I think for French onion soup Sherry is used? I was so exposed for this recipe but it was sweet and not what I had in mind. Was going it would taste just like French onion soup! Suggestions?

    I am guessing the sweetness came from the caramelized onions. I don't think Sav blanc would've caused the sweetness you were tasting. Sherry would also be lovely.

  • Bub

    I had some leftover gruyère from a quiche recipe and was intrigued to try this. Absolutely delicious (I did the bone-in, skin-on thighs). Very creative.

    Thanks Bub, glad you loved it!

  • Rachel

    I made this dish for my husband and me and we were both impressed with how well it turned out. It is probably one of the best meals I have made. Thanks for a great recipe!

    Thanks Rachel, we are so glad you both loved it!

  • Lisa

    Y’all! I just finished cooking and eating this. So good! I chose this recipe because you cook the onions in the chicken fat (skin-on, bone-in) and man, does the flavor pop. I don’t eat the skin, even when rendered slowly as one poster suggested, but the flavor is non-stop. Seriously, you will not be disappointed in this recipe!

    Thanks Lisa, we are so happy you loved it!

  • LKO

    Oh my! I’ve been wanting to make a French onion soup chicken dish and I’m so glad I picked this one. The flavors are perfect! The only difference is I cook my skin side down on low heat to render so it takes a bit longer and I grate the cheese on the non-skin side. Either way it’s delicious especially with crispy sourdough bread slices. So darn good. Thank you❤️

    Thank you, we are so happy you loved it!

  • Sarah

    Great recipe, encore worthy! We used breast’s cut in half and chicken stock and it was still good. But if you do the breast they need a little more precook time. Add another 10-12 minutes.

    Thanks Sarah, we are so happy you loved it!