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Simple Ground Beef Vegetable Soup Recipe

Yearning for a cozy, satisfying and hearty soup? Then get your apron on and start cooking this ground beef vegetable soup recipe (with a couple of shortcuts if you like). Loaded with vegetables, nutritious and even better the next day.

The soup is a perfect complete meal with some crusty bread for a Fall or Winter night. And definitely in the comfort food category. 

bowl of beef vegetable soup beside pot

This is one of those soups that you can adapt with whatever you have on hand. There are lots of variations for the ground beef, vegetables, tomato sauce, broth and more. Check them out in our usual ‘tailor to your taste’ section. 

You can even make the hamburger soup recipe in the instant pot instead of the stove top if you prefer. Although you won’t save a lot of time because of the time it takes for the instant pot to come to pressure. 

If you’re looking for a flavorful, healthy family-friendly one-pot meal that is dairy-free, gluten-free (if you skip the flour) and even low carb (if you skip the potatoes), this vegetable beef soup with hamburger will fit the bill.

What to serve with the ground beef soup

The soup is perfectly fine as a stand-alone complete meal with perhaps some nice crusty bread, cheddar biscuits or this easy naan recipe. A side salad would be good too.

Shortcuts

There are 3 great shortcuts for this comforting hamburger soup recipe. Pick one.

  1. Dice the vegetable very small. This will cut down the cooking time significantly.
  2. Use a food processor to chop the vegetables. This will save a lot of chopping time and also reduce cooking time to about 15 minutes.
  3. Add a bag of mixed frozen vegetables instead of fresh vegetables. No chopping! (except for the onions). And the nutrition is the same.

How to make vegetable beef soup with ground beef

chopped vegetables, ground beef, passata, seasonings, onions, broth, flour
Ingredients: chopped vegetables, ground beef, passata, seasonings, onions, garlic, beef broth, flour, olive oil
broth, veggies and beef in pot
Add flour and stir for 2 minutes. Then add the rest of the ingredients. Bring to boil. Lower heat and simmer for 20-35 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
finished soup in pot
Stir in chopped baby spinach for 1 minute until wilted, Adjust seasonings to your taste.
bowl of beef vegetable soup on napkin
Serve with homemade croutons or crusty bread for dipping.
bowl of beef vegetable soup beside pot p

Tailor To Your Taste

Here’s where you can use substitutes and variations to make the soup your own and tailor it to what you have on hand.

Ground beef options

  • Instead of ground beef, use ground turkey, chicken or pork.

Vegetable options

  • Try to stick to vegetables that will cook at the same time e.g. carrots, potatoes, parsnips, celery, celery root. green beans, butternut squash, green beans, bell pepper.
  • Softer vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, cabbage, bok choy, peas, corn should be added in the last 10 minutes (or just use these types of vegetables and cook the soup for less time). 
  • If you don’t feel like chopping vegetables, add a bag of frozen vegetables. If you do this and use a broth where you add water, just add a bit less water.

Vegetarian version

  • Use a plant based beef such as Impossible Burger or Beyond Meet Beyond Beef. You will have to switch to vegetable broth and add lots of seasoning and herbs.
  • If you’re interested in trying a delicious plant based beef recipe, check out our vegetarian bolognese (very popular!) or a unique vegetarian shepherds pie.

Tomato options

  • I use tomato passata which is simply pureed tomatoes in a jar.
  • Other options are tomato sauce (any kind) or marinara sauce.
  • If you choose to use canned diced tomatoes, I would drain them and add a few tablespoons of tomato paste for deeper flavor.

Pasta or potatoes?

  • I like to use more nutrient-dense sweet potatoes instead of or in addition to regular potatoes (red potatoes, yellow or Yukon gold are best).
  • You can, instead, include small shell pasta instead of potatoes during the last 10-15 minutes of cooking. I suggest adding a bit more liquid as pasta absorbs quite a lot.

Add-ins and toppings

  • Mix in grated cheddar cheese for a cheeseburger soup 🙂
  • Feel free to add some heat with red pepper flakes.
  • One reader suggested adding a can of baked beans and said it was delicious. Interesting?
  • Top with chopped fresh chives. parsley or croutons.

Instant pot version

  • You can easily make this ground beef soup recipe in the instant pot. I’ve included the instructions in the recipe notes.

Tips to maximize flavor

A great way to amp up the flavor is to use a rich, savory beef broth. If you have a homemade broth, lucky you. If not, Epicurious tested 11 varieties and ranked the best beef broths and stocks. #1 was Brodo. Chicken broth can be substituted if needed.

To be honest, my go-to is Campbell’s concentrated (undiluted) beef broth in a can. Maybe because I grew up on it? To me, it has deep flavor and I can adjust the depth by adding less water than what is called for. Many stores will also sell it with 30% less salt which is fine too. Again, just add a bit less water.

The other big flavor booster, of course, is seasonings and aromatics. I use Worcestershire sauce, thyme, a bay leaf and lots of onion and garlic.

Make ahead

  • This is a perfect make ahead recipe. In fact, I like it even better on day 2, 3, and 4 as the flavors seem be develop.
  • Store the leftover soup in the fridge in an airtight container for 4-5 days.
  • The soup freezes well for up to 4 months. You can divide it into smaller portions in sealed zipper lock bags and use as needed.

Other hearty soups you might enjoy

Or you might love our instant pot cabbage rolls unstuffed which is delicious and somewhat similar.

bowl of beef vegetable soup beside pot
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5 from 7 votes

Ground Beef Vegetable Soup Recipe

Yearning for a cozy, satisfying and hearty soup? Then get your apron on and start cooking this ground beef vegetable soup recipe (with a couple of shortcuts if you like). Loaded with vegetables, nutritious and even better the next day.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Total Time45 mins
Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: American
Servings: 5 -6
Author: Cheryl, Two Kooks In The Kitchen

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped 1 1/4-1 1/2 cups (220-240 grams) chopped
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic 2 cloves
  • 1 pound (450 grams) lean ground beef, Note 1
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons all purpose flour (optional to add body) Skip if you prefer a thinner broth soup
  • 5 cups -6 cups (~800 grams) vegetables, diced small Note 2 (smaller pieces will cook faster)
  • 1 cup (237 ml) passata or tomato sauce, Note 3
  • 2 1/2 cups (625 ml) beef broth, Note 4

Seasonings

  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme or more to taste (or Italian seasoning)
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 bay leaf

Optional

  • 2 cups fresh baby spinach, roughly chopped

Instructions

  • SAUTE ONIONS AND BEEF: Heat oil in a large pot to medium-high heat. Add onions and sauté for 3 minutes. Add ground beef and garlic. Sauté until beef is browned, about 3-4 minutes. Drain if there is a lot of grease in pot. Add flour if you like body in your soup (I do). Stir for 2 minutes.
  • ADD REMAINING INGREDIENTS (except spinach): Add vegetables, passata (or tomato sauce), beef broth and seasonings. Bring to boil then reduce heat to medium low. Cover and simmer for 20-35 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Timing will depend on how small you diced the vegetables.
  • FINISH AND SERVE: When vegetables are tender, add chopped spinach (if using) and let wilt for 1 minute. Taste and adjust seasonings (more thyme, salt, maybe a 1/2 teaspoon sugar). Serve with crusty bread, rolls or biscuits if you like.

Notes

  1. Ground beef alternatives: use ground chicken, ground turkey or pork. Alternatively, use plant based beef (and vegetable broth if you want to make the soup vegetarian). 
  2. Vegetables:
    • I use 2 carrots, 3 celery ribs, 1 red bell pepper, 1 small sweet potato and 1 regular potato. Other options that will cook at a similar rate are: parsnips, celeriac, butternut squash, green beans. For a shortcut, dice veggies small or pulse them in a food processor. 
    • Softer vegetables like broccoli, green beans, cauliflower, zucchini, cabbage, bok choy, peas, corn should be added in the last 10 minutes (or just use these types of veggies and cook the soup for less time). 
    • Instead of chopping fresh vegetables, add a bag of frozen vegetables.
  3. Tomato sauce substitute: Instead of passata, use tomato sauce or marinara. Or use diced canned tomatoes, drained, along with 2-3 tablespoons tomato paste. 
  4. Beef broth: Use a good quality beef broth if possible such as Brodo. I use Campbell’s beef broth in the can (10 oz/296ml can – regular or 30% less salt) and add 2/3 cups water instead of a full can of water. You can also use chicken broth if that’s what you have. 
  5. To add pasta instead of potatoes: add 1 cup of small pasta e.g. orzo or macaroni in the last 10-15 minutes of cooking. I suggest adding a bit more liquid as pasta absorbs quite a lot.
  6. Add-ins and toppingsMix in grated cheddar for a cheeseburger soup 🙂 One reader suggested adding a can of baked beans and said it was delicious. Top with chopped fresh chives. parsley or homemade croutons.
  7. To make soup in instant pot (IP): Heat IP on SAUTE function to hot. Add oil and sauté ground beef, onions and garlic for 4-5 minutes until meat is brown. Add flour if using and stir for 1-2 minutes. Turn to OFF. Add vegetables, spices, broth, pasatta. Stir. Place on lid, turn to SEALING. Press PRESSURE OR MANUAL to high for 5 minutes (or 7 minutes if vegetables are cut larger). Do NOT fill pot more than 2/3 full. IP will take 10-15 minutes to come to pressure before countdown starts. Do a 5 minute Natural Release, then a NATURAL RELEASE the rest of the way until the button drops. Remove lid, stir and adjust seasonings to taste. 
  8. Make ahead:
    • Store leftover soup in the fridge in an airtight container for 4-5 days.
    • The soup freezes well for up to 4 months. You can divide it into smaller portions in sealed zipper lock bags and use as needed.
 
Nutrition values are estimates and will depend on type of meat and vegetables used.

Nutrition

Nutrition Facts
Ground Beef Vegetable Soup Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 306 Calories from Fat 63
% Daily Value*
Fat 7g11%
Saturated Fat 2g13%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Cholesterol 56mg19%
Sodium 646mg28%
Potassium 1289mg37%
Carbohydrates 34g11%
Fiber 9g38%
Sugar 4g4%
Protein 29g58%
Vitamin A 10638IU213%
Vitamin C 30mg36%
Calcium 91mg9%
Iron 6mg33%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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