Portobello Mushroom Soup with Caramelized Onions and Goat Cheese Croutons

If you’re ready to roll up your sleeves for a little fall soup cookery, you’ll find the results of this recipe to be well worth the effort! This makes a terrific first course for a special dinner, a great lunch, or a simple supper. You can make the soup in advance and just broil the croutons when you’re ready to serve it. Portobello mushrooms are a little pricey but they make all the difference – don’t try this one with button mushrooms or you’ll be disappointed.

Portobello Mushroom Soup with Caramelized Onions & Goat Cheese Croutons

Adapted from Bon Appetit, February 2002

Serves 6


3 tablespoons butter

1 1/2 pounds sweet onions, halved, thinly sliced (at least 5 cups)

4 fresh thyme sprigs

1 1/2 pounds (24 oz) portobello mushrooms, stems removed,  caps halved and cut crosswise in 1/4″ thick strips

3 tablespoons Cognac or brandy

3 garlic cloves, minced

8 cups vegetable broth (I like Pacific Foods brand if you can find it – in Cincinnati it’s in the Kroger organic section)

1 cup dry white wine

18 – 1″ thick slices French bread baguette (the super skinny loaf shape), toasted

8 oz. soft fresh goat cheese, at room temperature


1. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a heavy stock pot over high heat. Add onions and thyme; saute until onions begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Reduce heat to low; cook until onions are caramelized, stirring occasionally, for about 20 minutes. Transfer to a medium bowl.

2. In the same pot, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons butter over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and saute until soft, about 12 minutes. Add cognac and garlic; stir 20 seconds.

3. Stir onion mixture into mushrooms. Add broth and wine. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer until onions are very tender, about 45 minutes. Discard thyme sprigs. Season soup with salt and pepper. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cool slightly then cover and refrigerate. Bring to a simmer before serving.)

4. Preheat broiler. Place baguette slices on large baking sheet. Spread goat cheese on baguette slices. Broil goat cheese croutons until cheese begins to brown in spots – only about 30 seconds.

5. Divide soup among 6 bowls. Top with croutons and serve.

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