There are few things more comforting to me than a big cup of classic French onion soup with its thick baguette pieces on top smothered with the most amazing melted cheese. That’s what inspired me to make to make this easy weeknight French Onion Chicken Bake.
Since French onion is one of my favorite soups, but I rarely feel like cooking it up on a weeknight, I thought making up an easy casserole with all of my favorite flavors would be a second best way to get close to enjoying one of my favorite comfort foods.
This is one of those easy recipes that you can make on the fly or that you can make your own with any additions or variations. Make it your own with different herbs, spices, or cheeses.
What's In This Article
Easy Chicken Dinner
You can also make it easier by using cooked chicken (rotisserie or other prepared chicken) or you could even substitute prepared beef if you have some leftovers. If you’re meat-free, you could use veggies.
However you choose to do it, the next time you want to invoke those flavors of French onion soup without actually putting the time into making it, try this easy one-dish bake that will make your weeknight meal prep super easy.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Easy – This French onion chicken recipe is an easy way to make a complete meal in one dish with very little prep time.
- Versatile – While this French onion chicken bake can certainly be the main event at the dinner table, it can also easily be served as a side dish or as a topping for mashed potatoes, egg noodles or cauliflower rice.
- Quick – It takes little time to combine the protein, cheese, and breadiness to make a healthy casserole that has all of the classic flavors of french onion soup.
- Appealing – This is the type of meal the entire family will enjoy. With flaky biscuits and plenty of ooey gooey cheese, even the pickiest eaters might overlook if you snuck some veggies and healthy goodness into their meal.
- Little clean-up – Perhaps the best part of this easy dinner recipe is that since it bakes in one dish you’ll have very little left to do after dinner is done.
- Low sodium beef broth – You can also use bouillon – just check the substitution amounts.
- Balsamic vinegar – Balsamic complements poultry and also brings some acidity to a recipe.
- Olive oil – I like to use olive oil for its flavor and the way it works in this recipe, but feel free to use the oil of your choice.
- Dried thyme leaves – This ingredient adds so much earthy depth to the dish.
- Garlic powder – It’s easy to use powder, but you can use minced garlic if you prefer.
- Ground black pepper – I prefer freshly ground pepper, but you can use your table shaker if you like.
- Kosher salt – A little bit goes a long way with high quality sea salt. Avoid being heavy handed since the cheese and caramelized onions will also bring saltiness to the dish.
- Skinless chicken breasts – Tender chicken breasts are the best to incorporate here, but you can use chicken thighs, or even a rotisserie chicken will work.
- Caramelized onions – In a large skillet saute up any sweet onions you like — yellow onions onion and vidalia onions are some of my favorites to use. Make extra and you can refrigerate or freeze them to throw into your favorite French onion soup recipe another time (or make onion jam).
- Gruyere cheese – The slices of swiss make it easier to get it on the dish quickly but you can also shred up some fresh gruyere cheese instead.
- Mozzarella cheese – Shredding at home makes it fresher and better, but if you only have shredded mozzarella in your fridge you can use that.
- Garlic croutons – Make sure the croutons are crumbled, yet coarsely. Just throw them in a ziploc bag and crush them.
How To Make French Onion Chicken
- In a large bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients (beef broth and vinegar) with the spices: thyme, garlic, pepper and salt. Set aside.
- Heat the olive oil over medium to medium-high heat in a large skillet that is able to be placed in the oven. If your skillets have handles that are not oven-ready you can cover them with aluminum foil.
- Sear the chicken breasts on all sides until browned but without cooking all the way through. It should take just a few minutes on each side.
- Pour the beef broth and spice mixture over the chicken in the skillet. Continue cooking until it is at a low simmer — broth should be mildly bubbling
- Top the chicken with the caramelized onions. Spread them liberally so that they cover the chicken.
- Then, place slices of cheese over the chicken, and/or sprinkle depending on the cheese of your choice.
- Next, place the entire skillet into the oven.
- Once the chicken comes to temperature, and the cheese is golden brown, remove from the oven and allow to rest.
- Just before plating, garnish with the garlic croutons and herbs.
- White or red wine – You can add a dash of white wine to the onion mixture or the beef broth to add some brightness or depth.
- Seasoning – Add a dash of Italian seasoning to the chicken for subtle extra flavoring. Substitute soy sauce for salt some added umami.
- Low carb – To make this recipe low carb simply omit the croutons.
- Cheese – Consider substituting a slice of provolone cheese for each slice of swiss cheese instead, or mix the two.
- Method – You can easily adapt this recipe to make it in your Instant Pot, slow cooker, or pressure cooker.
Storage and Freezing
You can store this French Onion Chicken Bake in an airtight container for up to three days or freeze for up to three months.
More Chicken Recipes
- Creamy Garlic Chicken
- Chicken and Sausage Gumbo
- Baked Chicken Thighs
- Greek Yogurt Chicken Marinade
- Spanakopita Chicken Bake
French Onion Chicken Bake
- 2/3 cup low sodium beef broth
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 1 ½ cups caramelized onions
- 1/2 cup Swiss or Gruyere cheese , shredded
- ½ cup mozzarella cheese , shredded
- ½ cup garlic croutons , coarsely crumbled
- Minced thyme or parsley for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- In a liquid measuring cup or mixing bowl, whisk together the beef broth, vinegar, thyme, garlic pepper and salt. Set aside.
- In a large oven-safe skillet, heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Sear chicken breasts on all sides until browned. They will not be cooked the whole way through.
- Pour the beef broth mixture over the chicken, heating until at a low simmer.
- Top with the caramelized onions and sprinkle with cheese.
- Bake for 16-18 minutes or until the chicken registers at 160°F.
- Remove and allow to rest for 5-10 minutes (carry-over cooking will bring it up to 165°F).
- Before serving, sprinkle liberally with garlic croutons and garnish with fresh thyme or parsley, if desired.
- If you've tried this recipe, come back and let us know how it was in the comments or star ratings.
Why don’t you provide instructions on how to caramelize the onions? Not everybody knows how to caramelize onions. I find your recipe to be incomplete.
There is a link to how to caramelize onions- an entire post, with pictures and over 1000 words on how to caramelize them. I would appreciate it if you rated a recipe AFTER trying it.
I’m a huge fan of French onion soup but never thought to make a chicken version of it. Such a great idea!
Oh This is such a great recipe so flavorful and everyone raved about plus so easy!
Really perfect weeknight meal! I am sure my family will love this! Thanks for the recipe!
I love an excellent chicken dish. So tasty and delish!
We are always looking for new ways to cook with chicken and this was delicious. So much flavour!