This tasty and hearty Ground Beef Vegetable Soup is loaded with colorful vegetables in a rich tomato broth. Eat a rainbow!
Hooray! Soup season is here!
I love having a warm bowl of tasty soup when the weather starts to turn. After all, how good is it to get cozy and healthy all at the same time!
This Ground Beef Vegetable Soup is overflowing with vegetables and full of brilliant color—eat a rainbow! And instead of a base of broth, it uses V8 vegetable juice, for even more healthy goodness. You could even take it vegan or vegetarian by leaving out the meat or using a meat substitute!
I had never heard much about this recipe’s origins, but over the years noticed that it bears a strong resemblance to Russian Cabbage soup, sometimes called Russian Vegetable Soup or Shchi soup.
My personal introduction came via a long-time friendship with former coworkers who stayed friends, despite many life and job changes. We were accustomed to going out for regular lunches to keep in touch—well, right up until the 2009 recession when we were all hit with financial challenges.
But rather than stop, we simply moved our lunches home. And in the end, it was almost more fun! Even better we could focus on healthy salads and soups including this Ground Beef Vegetable Soup!
Why You’ll Love This!
Healthy. There are so many healthy vegetables in this soup–and it’s also light on meat and added fat.
Easy & versatile. The hardest part of this soup is browning the meat! And depending on whether you have a pantry full of fresh and home canned veggies or not, you can use your own or head to the grocery store.
Tasty. With lots of complimentary flavors and just enough meat to satisfy carnivores, this tasty soup should make everyone happy.
What You’ll Need
- Olive oil. This is used to sautee the onions and celery.
- Onions, Celery. These add flavor. You can substitute minced celery root if you don’t have celery.
- Ground Beef. This adds flavor, nutrition, and heartiness.
- V8 Juice. This is the “broth” of the soup. Consider using low sodium if you can get it.
- Cabbage, Carrots, Green Beans, Tomatoes, Potatoes, Corn. These are the vegetables in the vegetable soup and add texture, flavor and nutrition.
- No special tools required!
Step by Step Directions
Heat oil in a large stockpot. Chop, then add onions and celery and cook until tender, about 10 minutes.
Add ground beef to the pan and cook until browned.
Add tomatoes, juice, chopped cabbage & chopped carrots to stock pot. Bring to boil and simmer 1 hour.
Add remaining ingredients and cook for another ½ hour.
How to Serve
Ground Beef Vegetable Soup is light enough to work as a first course soup. And it would be especially good to balance out a meal that might be lower in vegetables. I like to top it with a big dollop of sour cream or thick plain yogurt and maybe some chopped parsley.
But where it really excels, is as a main course soup. Just add a crusty bread and butter, maybe with some cheese on the side and it’s the easiest light lunch or dinner ever! And as regular readers know, I’ll add a salad to (almost) anything.
And don’t forget the classic combinations of soup and (half) sandwich or cup of soup and salad.
Variations and Special Diets
This soup is easy to make with store produce or you can use local produce from your garden, CSA or farmer’s market. Just substitute equivalent quantities. And feel free to edge the amounts up or down a bit to clear out the spare fridge in the garage. It’s tough to break this soup!
And as I mentioned, this would go vegan or vegetarian, just by omitting the meat or using a plant-based substitute.
This soup makes a lot, so you are likely to have leftovers. They should stay good in the refrigerator for 3-4 days with little to no loss of quality.
This is a favorite soup to freeze. I freeze some in individual serving sizes and some in multi serving quantities. And on days where I’m short of vegetable servings (do you count your 5-a-day servings of fruit and veggies?), I put a container out for dinner and all is good! For best quality, freeze it shortly after making it, rather than waiting until the 4th day.
Tips and FAQs
The recipe makes a large quantity so feel free to cut it in half. I’d probably halve the ingredients that are easy to divide like the V8 and carrots, then stick with the full amount on those that aren’t easily divisible, like the ground beef and anything in a single can. Or make the original and freeze your extras (see above).
As previously mentioned, I recommend the low sodium V8 if you can get it to keep this lower in sodium.
Hearty Ground Beef Vegetable Soup
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1-2 Onions chopped
- 5-6 stalks celery chopped (can substitute peeled & diced celery root)
- 1 pound ground beef or turkey
- 6 carrots peeled and chopped
- 2 1 qt 14 oz V8 juice 2 large cans
- 1 head cabbage small, red or green, chopped
- 30 ounces diced tomatoes 2-15 ounce cans or 1 quart chopped peeled fresh or home canned
- 8 ounces green beans fresh or frozen
- 2 potatoes large, chopped
- 15 ounces corn 15 ounce can or 2 cups fresh
- Heat oil in a large stockpot. Add onions and celery and cook until tender, about 10 minutes.
- Add ground beef to pan and cook until browned.
- Add tomatoes, juice, chopped cabbage & chopped carrots to stock pot. Bring to boil and simmer 1 hour
- Add remaining ingredients (green beans, potato, corn) and cook for another ½ hour.
- Serve hot.
Updated from original, published on Jan 25, 2018.
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