When it comes to comfort food, my French Onion Chicken recipe should be near the top of your list. This savory dish was inspired by a French Onion Soup recipe. Just imagine tender, juicy chicken thighs, seared crispy, served with caramelized onions and gooey melted cheese in a rich, hearty onion broth.
My French onion chicken with melty cheese is a chicken dish the whole family will love.
My French onion soup chicken is an easy recipe that is perfect for a busy weeknight or a dinner party. The caramelized onion sauce and melted cheese elevate the humble chicken thigh to a whole new level of deliciousness!
If you love savory onion dishes, make sure to try my Smothered Pork Chops.
Ingredients for French Onion Chicken
Let’s start by gathering the ingredients we need to make French Onion Chicken. In Chef Speak, this is called the “Mise en Place,” which translates to “Everything in its Place.”
Not only does setting up your ingredients ahead of time speed up the cooking process, it also helps ensure you have everything you need to make the dish.
Made with simple ingredients
- Chicken thighs
- Gruyere cheese (or Swiss cheese)
- Beef broth
- White wine or dry red wine
- Olive oil
- Fresh garlic
- Black pepper
- Fresh thyme
- Bay leaf
My favorite onions are Vidalia onions (sweet onion), but you can use yellow onions, white onions, or red onions to make this delicious meal. Red onions have a sweeter flavor, but they will change the color of the dish slightly.
I used beef broth to mimic a classic French onion soup, but you can use chicken broth or vegetable broth if you prefer.
You can use boneless skinless chicken thighs or boneless skinless chicken breasts to make this easy dinner recipe (cooking time for the chicken will be reduced). Just keep in mind that the skin and the bone add flavor.
How to make Skillet French Onion Chicken
- Pat the chicken thighs dry on both sides with paper towels. Then, season them with salt and black pepper.
- Add the olive oil to a large skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the seasoned thighs skin side down. Let them cook for 4-7 minutes without disturbing them so the skin can brown and get crispy.
- Turn the chicken to the other side and cook for 4-5 minutes. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside until needed.
- Using the same pan, add in butter and reduce the heat to medium low.
- Add the sliced onions to the pan. Let them cook for one minute, stirring to get them all coated in oil. Cover the skillet and let the onions cook for 15 minutes. *Open once or twice to stir the onions during the process.
- Remove the lid and continue to cook the onions for 7-10 minutes (stirring often) until the caramelized onions are a nice golden brown. *Caramelization takes time. Don’t rush the process.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Once the onions have a nice caramel color, add the thyme, bay leaf, and chopped fresh garlic. Let the onions continue to cook for 2-3 minutes.
- Increase the heat to high, then and add the white wine to deglaze the pan. Scrape all the tasty browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Then, add the beef broth and bring the onion mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and continue cooking the onion gravy for 7-10 minutes until the liquids have reduced by about 50%.
- Remove the bay leaf from the pan and place the chicken on top of the onion soup mixture.
- Place the skillet French onion chicken in the oven, uncovered, for 10 minutes to finish cooking.*If you don’t have an ovenproof skillet, you can finish the dish using a baking dish or casserole dish.
- Remove the pan from the oven and add shredded gruyere cheese and a sprinkle of chopped Italian parsley on top of the chicken. Place the pan back in the oven for 5-7 minutes or until the cheese has melted.
Serve my French Onion Chicken with mashed potatoes, roasted potatoes, rice or egg noodles, and green beans (or your favorite green vegetable) for a complete meal your entire family will love!
Store any leftover chicken in an airtight container for 3-4 days. It can be frozen, but the onions will get mushy when defrosted.
Gruyère is traditionally used in French Onion Soup and works beautifully with this dish, but you can also use Swiss, mozzarella, or provolone cheese.
My favorite onions are sweet onions, but you can use yellow, white, or red onions to make this dish. Red onions have a sweeter flavor, but they will change the color of the dish slightly.
Yes, you can. You can caramelize the onions and finish the mixture the day before. You can also sear the chicken ahead of time, but you will lose some of the crispness in the skin. When you’re ready to serve follow the last steps of the recipe. The chicken will take an additional 10 minutes to fully heat if it has been refrigerated.