Salisbury Steaks in French Onion Sauce

Salisbury Steaks with French Onion Sauce

This recipe takes the mundane frozen food classic known as Salisbury Steak and kicks it up a notch by pairing it with a french onion sauce and cheese toasts. Even at its best the ‘steak’ itself is merely a glorified burger but when paired with the sauce dare I say gourmet in the same sentence?

The sauce is made in a similar way to french onion soup but with fried onions rather than caramelized ones. Like french onion soup beef broth and red wine are added along with a smidgen of tomato paste, garlic and thyme. The cheese toasts are made with a baguette or Italian bread and seasoned with garlic, paprika and Swiss cheese.

The flavors do resemble that of Salisbury steak. Only better. The sauce is amped up with flavor and the cheese toasts are a nice touch for adding a little something special. These are fairly fast and very easy to make. Don’t let the long ingredient list sway you. Everything can be made right on the stove top including the toasts which I made in my cast iron skillet so I wouldn’t have to turn the oven on.

Supposedly Salisbury steaks were around long before the TV dinners we associate with them were. They scream 1950’s to me. I like to imagine what life was like…curling up on the couch with your family…TV trays loaded down with Salisbury steaks…I Love Lucy on the black and white TV…you know…in the good old days…

French Onion Salisbury Steaks
(adapted from Cuisine At Home)

1 + 1/4 lb. ground Chuck
1/4 cup fresh Parsley, minced
2 tablespoons Scallions, minced
1 tsp. Kosher or Sea Salt
1/2 tsp. Black Pepper
2 tablespoons all-purpose Flour
2 tablespoons Olive Oil
2 cups Onions, sliced
1 teaspoon Sugar
1 tablespoons  Garlic, minced
1 tablespoons Tomato Paste
2 cups Beef Broth
1/4 cup dry Red Wine
3/4 teaspoon Kosher or Sea salt
1/2 teaspoon Thyme
4 teaspoons fresh Parsley, minced
4 tsp. Parmesan cheese, shredded
Cheese Toasts
4 slices French or Italian bread or baguette, cut diagonally (1/2″ thick)
2 tablespoons Unsalted Butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon Garlic, minced
Pinch of Paprika
1/4 cup Swiss cheese, grated
1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese, grated

1. Combine ground meat, parsley, scallion, salt and pepper. Divide evenly into 4 portions and shape each into 3/4″-1″ thick oval patties. Place 2 tablespoons flour in a shallow dish; dredge each patty in flour. Reserve 1 teaspoon flour.

2. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a saute pan over medium-high heat. Add patties and saute 3 minutes on each side or until browned. Remove from pan.

3. Add onions and sugar to pan; saute 5 minutes. Stir in garlic and tomato paste; saute 1 minute, or until paste begins to brown. Sprinkle onions with reserved flour; cook 1 minute. Stir in broth and wine, then add the salt and thyme.

4. Return meat to pan and bring soup to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer 10 minutes.  Meanwhile make the cheese toasts.

For the Cheese Toasts

1. Preheat oven to 400º F.

2. Place bread on baking sheet.

3. Combine butter, garlic and paprika and spread on one side of each slice of bread. Combine cheeses and sprinkle evenly over butter. Bake until bread is crisp and cheese is bubbly, 10-15 minutes.

4. Serve steaks on Cheese Toasts with onion soup ladled over. Garnish with parsley and Parmesan.

Print Recipe

Salisbury Steaks with French Onion Sauce



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  1. Nancy McGuinness says

    Well hi there,I don’t know how i got to your wonderfull site but i did and real glad i did.This recipe i will try sounds good i usually use the pkg. one but only because i use to work long hours.For many years everything was from scratch and i even made my own bread,but it seems since i don’t work i’ve cut corners finding easy things in a jar or can.I’m diabetic and my feet hurt also the stores have made it easier to cook fast.So seeing this recipe might woo me back to my ol ways of cooking.Seems your site was a god send.My 2 kitchen cats luv to sing to me while i cook and i lean over and feed them and off they go and pass out gosh their annoying! O.K. nice meeting you.

    • Reeni says

      Hi Nancy! Glad you found me! My cat does the same thing when I’m cooking! He wants a taste of everything. I hope you give the recipe a try sometime! Let me know how it turns out. Great meeting you too! Have a good night!

  2. Debbie says

    This sounds so good. I have a Blue Point Siamese who talks to me while I cook, too. And he thinks he wants to taste everything! LOL Your kitty looks like a Flame Point to me, is he?

    • Reeni says

      Hi Debbie! That sounds exactly like my Moon! He was born a stray – I adopted him when he was 5 weeks old so I’m not sure. The lady who I adopted him from said he looked like the neighbors Siamese. A lot of people tell me so and he has all the qualities so I’ve always assumed he was. I know we were meant for each other because our favorite place is the kitchen!

      • Debbie says

        I’ve had nothing but Siamese for 59 years now, and he definitely has Siamese in him. His coloring is flame or red point.

        Both of our Siamese are rescues. Shadow is a Blue POint and Stormy is a Seal Point.

  3. Faye says

    I have been searching for a recipe just like this.I made it year’s ago and lost it.We love salsbury steak.Thank you for posting.

  4. Shannon says

    I feel so lucky to have stumbled on your site. I made this recipe for dinner last night and the kids loved it! It’ s very tasty and my husband said it was a lot better than the Salisbury steaks he had in elementary school. Let’s hope!
    This is the 5th recipe I’ve made from your site in the last week. I guess I’m addicted.
    Thank you so much and I hope you keep blogging for many years to come!

    • Reeni says

      Hi Shannon! You’re welcome and thank-you back for your sweet comments – you made my day! I’m glad you found me and are enjoying my recipes! That makes me VERY happy. I hope you keep in touch! :-)

  5. Frances Joy Barker says

    I have always loved Salisbury steak every since I was in school I am so glad to find a recipe like the one I used to make!! So thank you so much for sharing this recipe with us and God Bless You and Keep Up The Good Work!!!

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