This stovetop or crockpot old fashioned vegetable beef soup would make your grandma proud. Easy to make recipe using stew meat or ground beef, mixed vegetables and potatoes in a tomato-beef broth.
This homemade, old fashioned vegetable beef soup going to take you way back in so many good, wholesome ways.
Grandma would be proud of this vegetable soup.
First, I don’t know about your grandma, but mine made a mean pot roast. I don’t know if it was because crockpots weren’t invented until 1940, or if she just liked the way the oven warmed up the house and made it smell divine, but she always roasted her beef in the oven as far as I can remember. Peeking through the oven window to see what I could make out was one of my favorite things to do.
So this recipe, and pretty much anything involving large chunks of beef, always remind me of my grandma. My grandma and my own crockpot actually. Guess that’s one way we are different. I love to stuff whatever-will-fit into my crockpot, set it and forget it for a few hours.
This vegetable beef soup may be old fashioned but it’s easy to make.
This vegetable beef soup is made from scratch but it’s very easy to make. Do you remember the mixed veggies that your mom made you eat when you were 10? Well they’re back. And your adult-self will love how they add to the health and flavor factor of this soup.
Throw in a diced potato (and serve with a side of garlic bread for good measure) and we are talking a full homemade meal, with very minimal effort.
By the way — frozen dough is my favorite cheat for quick and easy fresh baked bread.
Be sure to sear your meat.
It may be tempting to skip this step, but you should sear stew meat. When you take a couple extra minutes to sear the outside of the beef, it locks in juices and moisture. This prevents the meat from becoming dry and overly chewy. Instead, it melts in your mouth and bursts with flavor when you take a bit. Sounds good right? Totally worth it.
Watch this recipe being made, step by step.
This method calls for sauteing and then slow cooking but there are other ways to prep using a dutch oven or Instapot also. See below for more details.
You can make this using one pot using a dutch oven or an Instapot, or you can use a combination of a skillet and a pot or slow cooker. There’s no right or wrong method, just choose what fits your lifestyle or your day best.
Want to make this vegetable beef soup in a dutch oven?
I love my dutch oven because you can saute and cook in the same pot. Perfect for recipes like soups and roasts. It’s kinda like an old school Instapot, without the pressure cooking feature.
Here’s the dutch oven I have and use frequently: 6-Quart Lodge Dutch Oven
Sometimes I use this method of cooking when I’m going to serve this soup right away. If I’m starting the soup early in the morning for later that day I’ll saute everything and then transfer ingredients to my crockpot to simmer on low for a few hours before I switch it to warm. You can choose whatever method works best for your style of cooking, or your plans for the day. But just make sure you sauté first for the best flavor.
Prefer to make this vegetable beef soup in a slow cooker?
As I mentioned, the slow cooker is ideal for the kind of days where you have a little time in the morning to get a jump start on dinner, saving time later in the day. You can prep and add all your ingredients and then set it to cook while you go to work or run errands, then come back to a ready-made meal.
Make sure if you are purchasing a crockpot, to go for one that has a timer built in that switches to keep warm when you want it to. This prevents overcooking if you plan to be gone longer than the cook time. Check out this one. if you’re in the market for your first slow cooker or looking to upgrade.
Can this soup be made in an Instapot?
Yep! The nice thing about an Instapot is you can sauté everything in the same pot. You’ll need to use this setting to sear your meat and sauté the onions then you can use the Instapot to heat the remaining ingredients and broth quickly.
Once you saute, this soup needs just 12 minutes on high pressure to cook the vegetables and be ready to eat. Follow the directions provided with your Instapot for sautéing, heat up time and for releasing pressure safely.
Don’t own an Instapot?
You can shop Instapots on Amazon and get one fast!
What is the best cut of meat for vegetable beef soup?
I like to use stew meat that’s already cubed. You can typically find this at the grocery store. I enjoy the big chunks and the tenderness of the cubed steak.
Ground beef though, also works really well with this recipe. The flavor will be similarity to stew meat, you’ll just experience a different texture.
If you’re looking for a delicious and natural option, you may want to try grass-fed beef. I recently have become a fan after purchasing a grass-fed steak at the new market that opened up in town.
How to Add More flavor to You Beef Soup
Here’s the big secret to supremely flavorful soup: bullion!
To make a really flavorful soup, just add a little bouillon! Even if you’re starting with beef broth, a little extra of the beef flavor goes a long way.
In general, when making soups, you want to match the meat and/or broth flavor when you add bullion. You only need a teaspoon or so of bullion at a time. The great thing is you can stir in some extra bullion at the end of preparing the recipe. So you can add a little at a time, taste test, and then add more (or not) as your heart desires.
What kind of beef broth is best with this soup recipe?
You’ll be getting some natural juice from the stew meat, but you’ll need a bit more meaty flavor for a rich broth. You can go with a variety of options for your broth: beef bullion + water, canned beef broth, or beef stock paste + water.
I like to use beef broth then add some extra beef bullion for a boost of beefy flavor. This is my secret to rich and delicious broth you can eat by itself!
Try de-glazing your pan for another boost of flavor.
If you want to be fancy and add flavor to your soup, you can de-glaze the skillet after you’re done sautéing.
To do this, transfer all the solid ingredients out of the skillet then add 1/2 cup beef broth to the empty skillet.
Bring broth to a boil and carefully scrape the bits of leftover gristle from the sides and bottom of the skillet until they blend in with the broth. Then add the flavor-infused broth to your soup. YUM!
Love homemade soup for dinner?
Check out my other easy soup recipes!
Old Fashioned Vegetable Beef Soup
- 2 lbs cubed stew meat or 2lb pot roast
- 1 small onion diced
- 2 tbsp butter
- 2 cups mixed vegetables
- 3 potatoes diced
- 3 ½ cups beef broth
- 1 beef bullion cube
- 14 oz petite diced tomatoes
- 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 2 bay leaves
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Heat butter in a dutch oven or large pot over high heat. Add stew meat and sear so that outside edges are brown, turning over as needed to brown all sides of the meat. Add diced onion to saute while searing the beef. Continually stir onions to prevent sticking. Cook for about 3 minutes total.*If finishing in a slow cooker, transfer both onions and beef to your crockpot set on low once fully seared.
- Add mixed vegetables, cubed potatoes (I leave the skin on like my grandma did for extra vitamins and flavor but you can peel them if you prefer), diced tomatoes, beef broth, beef bullion, Worcestershire sauce, and bay leaves.
- Bring to a boil then reduce heat to a low boil. Cook for 20 minutes or until potatoes are soft all the way through. Add salt and pepper to taste before serving.*If using a crockpot, cook for 1 hour on high (or 2 hours on low). Check potatoes to be sure they are fully cooked through, then serve.