Chestnut Onion Soup

Chestnut Onion Soup

This Chestnut Onion Soup with brandy, rosemary, and nutmeg is a smooth, rich, hearty, and festive recipe. If you a fan of French onion soup and chestnuts, then you should try this spin on it. Perfect for winter and holiday season!

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Chestnut Onion Soup

Hello folks, how are you doing? Are you excited about the weekend?

It is December, and the holiday season has officially started. But while holidays are often associated with baking, we cannot ignore some real food. In fact, I have been enjoying making savoury dishes for Christmas more than desserts lately.

More precisely, I have been making a lot of savoury chestnut recipes over the last few years. And chestnut soup is always a good idea, in my humble opinion. It is hearty, comforting, delicious, and easily can be super festive, too.

Chestnut Onion Soup

This Chestnut Onion Soup takes inspiration from a classic French onion soup. First, onions (a lot of onions) are slowly sautéed with oil and butter. The slower and longer, the better. You should cook it for at least 45 minutes or even better, an hour. The onions should turn nice, with a lightly creamy brown colour. Then the mixture gets thickened with some flour. As for the aromatic ingredients, this recipe calls for brandy, rosemary, thyme, and nutmeg. A ton of festive flavours!

And while the topping is totally optional, it will add a lot of flavour and texture. Caramelized onions, pancetta, and rosemary plus pomegranate arils – so tasty and festive!

When you taste the soup for seasoning when cooking it, please keep in mind that the flavour will be strong and robust thanks to the brandy. However, once you purée the soup, the sweetness coming from chestnuts will balance out the profile. Trust me, you will like the result!

Festive Chestnut Soup Recipes

If you are looking for more chestnut soup ideas, then please make sure to check these recipes.

Chestnut Soup with Brandy

Parsnip Chestnut Soup

Chestnut Cheese Soup

Chestnut Marsala Wine Soup

More Festive Chestnut Recipes

Brussels Sprouts Chestnut Dip

Chestnut Dip (or Bruschetta)

Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta and Chestnuts

Chestnut Prosciutto Pasta

I hope you like this Chestnut Onion Soup, and you will make it a try.  If you make it, let me know in this post or send me an Instagram message or share your photos adding the hashtag #havocinthekitchen.


Chestnut Onion Soup

Chestnut Onion Soup

Recipe by Ben | HavocinthekitchenCourse: Soups, Main


Prep time


Cooking time





This Chestnut Onion Soup with brandy, rosemary, and nutmeg is a smooth, rich, hearty, and festive soup recipe. If you a fan of French onion soup and chestnuts, then you should try this spin on it. Perfect for winter and holiday season!


  • Chestnut Onion Soup:
  • 4-5 large sweet onions (~1 kg.), thinly sliced

  • 2-3 garlic cloves, minced

  • 2 tbsp. olive olive

  • 2 tbsp. butter, divided + 1 tbsp. more, optional

  • 1 tbsp. minced rosemary

  • 1 tbsp. fresh thyme

  • 3 tbsp. flour

  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup brandy

  • 2 to 3 cups water or light broth

  • 450-500 gr. cooked and peeled chestnuts (I used vacuum-packaged)

  • 1/2 to 1 whole nutmeg, grated

  • ~ 1 tsp. salt or to taste

  • 1 tsp. smoked paprika

  • 1/2 tsp. white pepper

  • Topping:
  • 1 large (~250 gr.) sweet onion, thinly sliced

  • 1 tbsp. olive oil

  • 100-125 gr. pancetta

  • 1 tbsp. minced rosemary

  • a splash of brandy

  • pomegranate arils, for garnish


  • Chestnut Onion Soup:
  • In a large heavy-bottomed pan, combine 2 tbsp. olive oil and 2 tbsp. butter over low heat. Add the onions and garlic cook for 45-60 minutes, stirring occasionally. Halfway this step, season with a little of salt and add the rosemary and thyme. Make sure to cook the onions over low heat not to brown them; by the end of this step, the onions should soften, reduce in volume, and become a light creamy-brown colour.
  • Add 1 tbsp. of butter along with 3 tbsp. of flour, mixing often, and cook for 2-3 minutes, until lightly browned.
  • Add the brandy and cook for 1 minute.
  • Stir in the chestnuts, cook 1 minute.
  • Add 2 cups of water / broth along with the nutmeg, white pepper, smoked paprika, and some more salt. Simmer, covered, for about 10 minutes. Try for seasonings but keep in mind the taste will be strong and robust; once you have pureed the chestnuts, their sweetness will balance out the profile. Off heat and let it cool a bit until easy to handle.
  • Using an immersion or regular blender, puree. The soup will be quite thick, so you may a little up to another cup of water or broth. When pureeing, you can also add 1 additional tablespoon of butter; this is optional, but it will make the soup ultra velvety and smooth and will enrich the flavour.
  • Topping (Optional):
  • In a pan heat 1 tbsp. of oil over low heat. Add the onions and cook for 30-40 minutes, mixing occasionally. Halfway this step, lightly season with salt.
  • Add the pancetta and rosemary and cook for about 7-10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Use some brandy to deglaze the pan, as necessary.
  • Serve the soup garnished with the topping and pomegranate arils. Enjoy!

15 thoughts on “Chestnut Onion Soup

  1. Liz says:

    Beautifully garnished and perfect for the holidays. I made some sort of dessert with chestnuts when I was doing French Fridays with Dorie. I have a feeling I deleted the post, but it was a lot of fun to try….I didn’t even know I could buy chestnuts locally!!

  2. Eva Taylor says:

    What a lovely soup. I can well imagine how delicious the chestnuts are in this application. Chestnuts are very rich so I would only serve a small bowl as a starter but having it as an entire meal, would be delicious!

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