My Favorite Hamburger SoupI love all kinds of soups, but this soup, made with ground beef, has been in my recipe box for years and is hands down my most favorite soup. If you are anywhere near my age, you probably remember something similar to this from school days of years past, when meals were homemade from scratch and we kids actually looked forward to what was for lunch that day, from the first aroma of it wafting through the school hallways.
Mama was a cafeteria lady at my elementary school where, because she had to go in so early, I got my first training as a sous chef, helping to punch milk cartons, push dishes into the big dishwashers and butter those wonderful homemade rolls when they came out of the oven. Oh but what I wouldn't give to have that exact roll recipe - they were the best!
Hamburger Soup is a basic beef broth and tomato base, mixed with a mirepoix of veggies and then really, whatever other vegetables you have on hand - corn, green beans, peas, whatever is in the pantry. I like to keep a container of tail-end veggies that are leftover from meals in the freezer - you know those couple of tablespoons that always seem to be left behind? I just continually top off the freezer container with leftover veggies and then when it comes time for soup, I just dump it in!
The addition of pantry staples - a good beef base like Better Than Bouillon, a bit of Worcestershire sauce and some Kitchen Bouquet - all help to add a fantastic richness to the soup. Add a few flavorful herbs and you have a soup that is simple and comes together quick, yet is loaded with flavor and tastes like you simmered it literally all day long. Hope you enjoy it as much as I do!
Recipe: Mary’s Favorite Hamburger Soup©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish
Prep time: 5 min |Cook time: 40 min | Yield: About 4 to 6 servings
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 2 big handfuls of baby carrots, sliced
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 stalk celery, sliced
- 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
- 1 pound ground beef
- 2 (14.5 oz.) cans stewed tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 (32 ounce) carton of beef broth or stock
- 4 teaspoons beef base, like Better Than Bouillon
- 4 cups water
- 1/2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- Splash Kitchen Bouquet, optional
- 2 to 3 cups of frozen, canned and drained, or leftover mixed vegetables, use whatever ya got!
- Egg noodles, medium or wide
- Parmesan cheese, grated, for garnish, optional
- Dried parsley flakes, for garnish, optional
In a large soup pot, sauté carrots, onion, celery and garlic in canola oil on medium high until veggies soften. Add ground beef and cook through; drain if needed. I don't generally find this necessary.
Add tomatoes with the juice, salt, both peppers, basil, and oregano; stir and cook on medium high, about 5 minutes. Add stock, beef base, water, Worcestershire and kitchen bouquet, increase to high and bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add any leftover vegetables or frozen vegetables you have on hand, bring back up to a boil, reduce heat to simmer and continue to cook until veggies are cooked or warmed through.
Soup can be served at this point, or reduce heat to medium low and let it slow simmer an hour or more, stirring occasionally, until you are ready to eat! Cook egg noodles, or your favorite noodle separately according to package directions; drain. Spoon noodles into soup bowl, ladle soup over top of noodles and sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese. Serve with homemade bread, or crusty rolls.
Crockpot: Sauté veggies, brown and drain ground beef, transfer to slow cooker. Add remaining ingredients (except for noodles and garnishes) down to the veggies, cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.
Tip: You can save leftover bits and pieces of vegetables from meals in a small container in the freezer. As you have leftover veggies, continue layering them into the container. This works perfect for soups like this!
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©Deep South Dish
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