French onion soup is a delicious soup perfect for the colder weather and so easy to make. Sherry is commonly used in French onion soup to enhance the flavor while not adding too many calories or changing the consistency of the soup.
While sherry is the most popular addition to French onion soup, there are many other options you can use to brighten the flavor and keep the thickness perfect. Brandy, red wine, white wine, apple cider vinegar, white vinegar with chicken broth, and vermouth make great sherry substitutes in French onion soup.
Sherry Substitutes in French Onion Soup
Brandy is a wonderful substitute for sherry because it keeps the consistency the same, while adding a wonderfully different flavor to the soup. The flavor is very similar, however brandy adds a richness instead of the sweet flavor that sherry provides. You can spice up your soup by using a flavored brandy as well, like pear or apricot to keep the sweet flavor.
2. Red Wine
If you choose to replace the sherry with red wine, make sure you use a dry red wine so the soup doesn’t get too sweet. The red wine version of French onion soup isn’t highly popular, as the taste will change ever so slightly, some say that won’t taste like a true French onion soup. However, in a pinch, it will work perfectly.
3. White Wine
White wine is the most popular substitute for sherry in French onion soup. White wine is actually a whole version of the soup in itself that many people prefer. White wine brings a bright flavor to the soup, while keeping the texture the same. Always make sure to use a dry white wine meant for cooking so you don’t make the soup too sweet.
4. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is a good option because it will give the soup the same consistency that you would get from sherry. Apple cider vinegar also brings a nice sweetness, though balanced with a slight bitter flavor.
5. White Vinegar with Chicken Broth
The reason you must combine the chicken broth with the white vinegar is because chicken broth has a strong flavor and it’s a bit thicker than what we are looking for as an addition to French onion soup. White vinegar will help mellow the chicken broth flavor while also thinning out the broth and making it perfect for French onion soup.
Always make sure to use a dry vermouth! Vermouth is a very different sherry substitute because it has a very different flavor. A cheaper vermouth will be more bitter than a higher shelf vermouth, so if you want the soup to hold in richness and flavor, go for the more expensive vermouth.
In conclusion, sherry isn’t the only thing you need to add to French onion soup. There are many other options you have that each bring their own special flavor to the soup. If you are looking to change the French onion soup up or want to use something other than sherry, try any of these things next time!