CHEESE FONDUE WITH RICH, DEEPLY CARAMELIZED ONIONS AND BUBBLING GRUYERE AND SMOKED GOUDA IS A PARTY MUST! IT’S EASY TO PREPARE, CRAZY DELICIOUS AND THE HIT OF EVERY PARTY!
Are you already dreaming about Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve appetizers? Maybe that’s just me. But once you make this French Onion Cheese Fondue you will be dreaming about it too – year round! But before we dive into that cheesiliciousness, let’s talk party appetizers. It can be difficult to decide what to bring to a party, so here are a few of my favorite apps (but just because something isn’t here doesn’t mean I don’t love it!):
Favorite Appetizers for Entertaining
- Slow Cooker Sweet and Spicy Cranberry Meatballs, or THESE or THESE
- Bruschetta Cheese Ball or THIS ONE
- Cranberry Pistachio Cheese Log
- Cheesy Mexican Spinach Dip
- Homemade Cheesy Chili Dip
- Crispy Jalapeno Popper Beef Taquitos or THESE or THESE
- Cheesy Italian Sausage Ring or THIS
- Greek Chicken Gyro Flatbread Pizza or THIS or THIS
- Fresh Shrimp Spring Rolls with Pineapple Hoisin Peanut Sauce
- Sweet and Sour Chicken Egg Rolls or THESE
- Philly Cheesesteak Egg Rolls
- Thai Chicken Satay with Peanut Sauce
- Cherry Cheesecake Dip
- Key Lime Cheesecake Fruit Dip
So now that I’ve confused you with too many tantalizing options, let’s dive into this no-brainer French Onion Cheese Fondue!
This French Onion Cheese Fondue tastes 1000X better than your favorite French Onion Soup because Gruyere AND Smoked Gouda are melted right into the fondue, smothering the caramelized onions with their glory. And don’t fret if you don’t have a fondue pot, you can still make this fondue and then keep it warm in your slow cooker. So let’s get to it!
What kind of cheese do you use for fondue?
I’ve chosen beautifully melty Gruyere cheese for its rich, creamy, slightly nutty taste and probably my favorite cheese in the world and Smoked Gouda, for its meltiness and sweet yet sharp, caramelly, nutty, buttery taste. I had to pull myself away from eating the cheeses plain. Now just imagine that deliciousness exponentially improved with rich caramelized onions – wowza!
How do you make cheese fondue?
- To make our Cheese Fondue, we first saute our onions in not only butter and olive oil but in reduced sodium soy sauce, garlic powder, dried thyme, beef bouillon, dried oregano, dried parsley, paprika, red pepper flakes, a pinch of brown sugar and of course, salt and pepper AKA these will be the most flavorful onions of. your. life We cook the onions as they soak up all this flavor for approximately 20 minutes until very soft and caramelized.
- Next, we deglaze the pan (which just mean scraping up the remaining brown bits into our liquid to add flavor), with low sodium beef broth, Worcestershire sauce and balsamic vinegar.
- Bring to a simmer for about 2 minutes to slightly reduce then we reduce the heat to barely a simmer add our freshly shredded Gruyere and Smoked Gouda, a handful at a time, which we have tossed with cornstarch to keep the cheese from clumping and to thicken the fondue.
- Now just a quick note about the temperature in which you add your cheese. Too hot and the cheese will coagulate and turn lumpy or stringy, too cool and it won’t melt – no bueno for cheese fonude.
- I advise barely a simmer which will both melt your cheese and keep it from turning lumpy. You also want to stir gently as opposed to vigorously as overstirring can cause the cheese proteins to clump and turn lumpy.
- Once our Gruyere and Smoked Gouda are melted and smooth, we stir in our caramelized onions.
And now try not to eat it all with a spoon.
How to Serve Cheese Fondue
Transfer your French Onion Cheese Fondue to a to a warm fondue pot or warm small slow cooker. You want to try and keep your Fondue at a consistent warm temperature so it doesn’t thicken. If it does thicken, however, it’s not a big deal, simply whisk in some beef broth or water a little at a time until it reaches desired consistency.
What foods are good for fondue?
All of the following make fabulous dippers:
- baguette slices
- soft pretzels
- cooked potato cubes or wedges
- snap peas
- bell peppers
Now grab your favorite dippers and indulge in gloriously cheesy, decadently satisfying French Onion Cheese Fondue!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
You might also like these tasty appetizers:
- Cranberry Pistachio Cheese Log
- Slow Cooker Sweet and Spicy Cranberry Meatballs
- Brie Spinach Dip
- Bruschetta Cheese Ball
- Easy Cheesy Italian Sausage Pesto Ring
- Sweet and Sour Chicken Egg Rolls
- Cheesy Chili Dip
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French Onion Cheese Fondue
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- 6 oz. Gruyere freshly grated
- 7 oz. smoked Gouda freshly grated
- 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter
- 3 onions, thinly sliced then cut into approx. 2” pieces*
- 2 tablespoon reduced sodium soy sauce
- 1 tsp EACH garlic powder, brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp EACH dried thyme, beef bouillon
- 1/4 tsp EACH dried oregano, dried parsley, paprika, pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes more or less to taste
- 1 3/4 cups low sodium beef broth
- 1-2 tablespoon quality balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 baguette sliced
- snap peas
- Toss cheeses and cornstarch together in a large bowl until evenly combined. Set aside.
- Melt butter in a large sauté pan with sides over medium heat. Add the onions and all remaining “Onions” ingredients and cook, stirring often, until the onions are very soft and caramelized, about 20 minutes. Transfer onions to a bowl.
- Deglaze pan with beef broth, Worcestershire sauce and 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, scraping up any bits on bottom. Bring to a simmer and simmer for 2 minutes to slightly reduce.
- Reduce heat to barely a simmer and add cheese mixture, a small handful at a time, whisking after each addition until cheese is melted then adding another handful. The cheese might seem separated at first, but it will come together. Once cheese is melted and smooth, stir in caramelized onions. Taste and add additional balsamic (I add 1 more tablespoon), salt pepper/red pepper if desired.
- Transfer to a to a warm fondue pot or small slow cooker. This fondue must be kept warm to stay melted and not too thick. If fondue become too thick, stir in additional beef broth a little at a time until it reaches desired consistency.
- Serve with baguette slices and other dippers of choice.
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