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Vegan French Onion Stew

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french onion lentil stew
Andrew Bui

Finishing the cheese toasts right in the soup pot makes for an impressive presentation. But if you’re meal prepping, it’s best to do that job on a sheet tray instead to avoid losing soggy pieces of bread in your leftovers.

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Yields: 4 servings
Total Time: 1 hour 15 mins
5 c.

water, divided

Extra-virgin olive oil


large yellow onions, thinly sliced


small red onions, thinly sliced

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

1/2 c.

dry red wine


sprigs fresh thyme


cloves garlic, finely chopped


bay leaves

1/2 c.

brown lentils


baguette, sliced 

Sliced vegan cheese, such as provolone or Gruyère

Chopped fresh parsley, for serving

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions, season with salt and pepper and toss to coat in the oil. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are golden brown and very tender, 30 to 35 minutes, adding a splash of water if onions start to stick to the bottom of the skillet. Stir in 1 cup water and transfer onions and liquid to a Dutch oven or other large oven-safe pot. 
  2. Add wine, thyme, garlic, and bay leaves to the pot. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes. Add remaining 4 cups water and lentils and bring up to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, skimming foam from surface and stirring occasionally, until lentils are tender, 30 to 35 minutes.
  3. When lentils are tender, remove pot from heat and preheat the broiler to high. Top soup with baguette slices, then top baguette with cheese. Place pot in oven and broil until cheese is melty, 2 to 5 minutes depending on your broiler and cheese. Top with parsley before serving.

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