This is the very best Hamburger Vegetable Soup I’ve ever eaten. Growing up, it was a staple recipe at our house and now it’s become one of my husband’s favorites, too.
Our children also love this soup — especially when topped with shredded cheese! It’s delicious paired with Bread Machine Buttery Rolls and the perfect way to warm up a chilly winter evening.
Hamburger Vegetable Soup
- 2 lbs. ground beef
- 2 cups chopped onion
- 2 cups peeled and diced potatoes
- 2 cups sliced carrots
- 2 cups shredded cabbage
- 4 (14.5-oz) cans diced tomatoes
- 1/2 cup brown rice, uncooked
- 6 to 10 cups water
- 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 Tablespoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon basil
- 1/2 teaspoon thyme
- 2 bay leaves
Brown ground beef and onion together until meat is lightly browned. Drain off excess fat. Add all remaining ingredients and bring mixture to a boil.
Cover and simmer for two to four hours. Check periodically and add more water, if needed. Remove bay leaves and serve.
Makes 18 to 20 cups of soup. Can be stored in the refrigerator for up to four days.
A pot will usually make enough for at least three meals for our family. We like it enough that we’ll eat it two or three days in a row!
Our family loves this recipe so much that it’s been in rotation the last 3 years! It’s one of the only ways my 4 year old does not mind veggies. Thank you for this wonderful meal idea!
Yay!! I’m so glad your family loves this so much! You are so welcome! -Olivia, MSM Team
This soup is great!! Very delicious and was so happy to find it because my husband has to watch his potassium intake and everything in this soup is okay…except for the potatoes which I omitted. Instead of water I used vegetable broth.
Looking forward to great recipes
Love to the hamburger soup cause I this
Pat Johnson says
Made this soup today! Was very good, salt is the secret to the flavor.. just had a late nite bowl oh boy even better. Tasted even better after it had sat for awhile. I used beef stock instead of water. If you want to get vegetables in your diet, this soup is a winner!
denna graham says
Kacy Mcmullin says
Just realized I have yet to comment about this soup. I am making a pot tonight, figured it would be the perfect supper with homemade rolls with the cold weather We’re having. I have made this soup many times and it has become a family favorite. It is so hearty with the meat and rice in It, and I love all the veggies it has. Very delicious, thanks for the recipe!
Sounds great, but the only thing I would do different (I do this with any soup I make) is after I make it, I let it sit overnight in frig so the fat gets solid and I can remove it. Much healthier and no greasy taste.
I just made the soup with substitutions based on what needed to be used and what I had on hand. So… soft tomatoes and 1/6 jar of marinara sauce instead of canned tomatoes, grated brussel sprouts instead of cabbage, Italian seasoning instead of basil, bay leaves, and thyme, dried onions and some frozen bell peppers instead of onions, and, since my son wanted it more like a vegetable beef soup he had at school, I added some frozen mixed veggies about 15 minutes before it was served. It was soooo good! I love that it adjusts so well. I halved the recipe and we still have plenty of leftovers.
Can this soup be frozen?
It is definitely soup weather today where I am. I’m looking forward to trying your Hamburger Vegetable soup.
could you cook this in a crockpot after browning meat ?
I often do that! Works great in the crockpot, just make sure you allow enough time for the rice and potatoes to get tender.
Thanks, Crystal! My husband is not a huge soup fan, simply because it doesn’t fill him up. He has eaten this for three meals now 🙂 Thank you, thank you. I’ll be tweaking the salt next time b/c my tomatoes has salt in them, but it’s a great recipe.
Oh, and I almost forgot – A big double thanks for a recipe that gets my 4 year old to eat veggies. She and my 2.5 year old loved it!
Okay, I made this soup today with a few modifications. Just 1/2 pound lean ground beef (that’s all I had), added 2 cups diced celery (to use it up), added about 1 cup diced peeled sweet potatoes (to use them up), left the peel on the white potatoes, cooked the onion, carrot, and ground beef in 1 Tbsp canola oil, and used 4 cups beef broth as part of the water. I completely omitted salt, since I used broth and my tomatoes had salt. Upon tasting, I thought the soup was good (smelled great!), but was missing something. Crystal is right: it needs quite a bit of salt to push the flavor from good to incredible. So I added 1 tsp kosher salt and that did it. My calculations put the total sodium of my version (broth, tomatoes, and kosher salt) at 7700 mg. Thanks, Crystal, for a great and simple soup recipe!
I commented way up there, thanking you for the print option.
Okay, first off, my hubby HATES soup. As in, I’ve never seen him eat soup in over 26 yrs of marriage.
I made this soup on Saturday night. On Sunday morning, I put it in the crock pot with a bit more water, and left it to heat while we were at church.
Later on that afternoon, hubby keeps talking about how good that soup smells. He decides to taste it. He proceeds to eat 2 bowls full!! And has another bowl before bed!! Asks when I can make more. Ha!!!
Thank you Crystal!! I love soup, but have never made it much. No worries anymore!!
That’s too funny! My husband LOVES this soup, too!
Would you believe…as soon as I stood up from typing this comment, my hubby walked into the kitchen and said, “I wish we still had some of that soup left.” I died laughing!!
I made this last night, I have to agree, this is the best homemade vegetable soup. I have made a lot of veggie soups but I think its the spice combo in this one that just does it! It smells yummy as its cooking and then you get to eat it! Thanks for the recipe, it will become one of our staples. I was also thinking that leftover chicken could be used to make a chicken veggie version. Thanks again! Very tasty!
I made the soup today. i made it with the muir glen fire roasted no salt diced tomatoes and hawaiian salt…it came out really tasty. Thanks so much for sharing the recipe!
Mmmm, this sounds great! I think I’ll give it a go in the crockpot and maybe with beans instead of potatoes so I can freeze the leftovers. Thanks!
Made this last night and it was a huge hit. I have enough for lunches throughout the week. Thanks!
As soon as I read this recipe, I literally ran to the store! I knew it would make my house smell great and boy did it! We all really enjoyed it. Thanks Crystal:)!
You’re welcome; glad you enjoyed it!
I made this tonight and it was DELICIOUS! My husband really liked it too. Thank you so much for sharing!!
Becky Frost says
I have my soup cooking for tonight!! We are looking forward to eating this soup and it is making our house smell wonderfully while it is cooking.
Jami @ An Oregon Cottage says
This looks perfect- we love soup in the winter! I’ve made similar recipes and they work great in the slow cooker- just cook the beef and throw it all in the slow cooker to cook all day. I love the addition of cabbage to this- I’m always looking for other ways to use cabbage in the winter besides slaw. 🙂
Thanks! I am going to add this to my menu. I am desperate for some new things to make for dinner.
Hi, can this recipe use slow cooker? Slow cooker may be easier to cook thru all day at work.
I wonder if you put in the rice uncooked or cooked?
Also, do you think crushed tomatoes could work in this recipe?
A neighbor passed some cans on to me, so I want to use them up!
Thanks for posting this appetizing recipe!
It’s uncooked rice, I’ll go specify that on the recipe. And yes, crushed tomatoes should work.
Thanks for this recipe. I am gonna try it tomorrow and hopefully my family will love it. It sounds great!!
I’ve never had issues with freezing soup that had potatoes in them. They taste fine too me when thawed.
Dee Wolters says
Needed something for dinner tonight, and I had most of the ingrediants on hand, so made this. Just threw everything in the crockpot (I had ground beef already cooked and in the freezer). While digging around in the freezer I found some cooked black beans, so threw them in too. I have some left over spanish rice from earlier in the week, so I will add a couple of cups of that closer to serving time. Don’t want it to get mushy since is is already cooked. Great food for our super cold weather here in TN. It was 10 degees F when I got up this AM and is is supposed to be in the mid 20’s for a high. Good soup and bread weather.
My sister-in-law make a delicious crockpot beef stew but substitutes cauliflower for potatoes. The stew freezes great and you don’t get the mushy potatoes some others were concerned with. I think I’ll try using ground turkey instead of the beef too. Can’t wait!!
This looks so good! If you were to substitute barley for the rice though do you need to do anything different?
I will definitely have to try it. I freezer cook with friends and we may need to add this our recipes.
Just printed it. I’ve never made hamburger soup so looking forward to trying this. Probably will sub beef boullion for the salt, though. Thanks for sharing this!
I have a similar recipe but it makes about half this much, so for those who don’t need so much or don’t want to freeze it, I say just half it. My recipe uses barley in lieu of the rice as well and corn instead of potatoes. I throw in a can of black beans and add cumin!
My family does not like cabbage. What else can I substitute?
I think you could just leave it out. Or add other vegetables!
@Crystal, diced celery works as well if you like that flavor…
Susan F. says
I have been making soup with a VERY similar recipe for 20 years. It does freeze extremely well. Also, when I make a pot roast in the crockpot, then I will add the ingredients for the soup into the broth (leftover juices in the bottom of the crockpot) for a little extra flavor.
AND I keep a ziploc bag in the freezer with leftover vegetables from previous dinners (corn,peas,green beans, etc) and put them in the crockpot too. A good way to use those leftover vegetables without wasting them!
They used to be 16 oz until they started cutting contents but charging the same amount. Same with cereal, TP etc.
I don’t think I’ve ever seen a 16 oz can of diced tomatoes… do you mean 14.5 oz?
My original recipe says 16 oz., but it’s from way back when and I think they are 14.5 ounce cans now. I updated the recipe. Thanks for catching that!
OOOOOHHHHHH! Thios looks very yummy AND I have everything to make it tomorrow!! We love soup in our household, especially my step-daughter who is with us this weekend. 😀 Though I may substitute the rice with barley, only because I LOVE barley, rice not so much.
Yum YUm YUM!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 🙂
looks delicious! i’m assuming the brown rice is uncooked, is that right? also, would this work if i threw everything together after browning the meat into the crockpot?
Yes, the rice is uncooked. I think it would work in the crockpot — provided you let it cook long enough.
sara c says
The link for the bread machine buttery rolls isn’t working 🙁
Fixed. Sorry about that!
This may be a silly question, but can you substitute fresh tomatoes for canned ones in a soup such as this?
Yes, or we’ve substituted frozen whole tomatoes from the garden (freeze with cored with the peels on and then just run them under tap water when ready to use and the peels slide right off! Then just thaw a little, chop and dump in the soup).
Yaayy! I’ve been patiently waiting for this recipe because it looked so good when you first posted a picture of it. Thanks!
I was raised on a similar soup. Had it so much that I could happily NEVER eat it again. I make lots of other kinds of soups, but not hamburger vegetable! So be wary of overdoing it with your kids!
It all started with my French grandmother eating nothing but soup as a teenager in Nazi-occupied France. So once in America, she never made soup. Her daughter, my mother, not having been served it, made it ALL the time for us. And now, for me, see above! So I guess it skips a generation.
That looks yummy. My youngest looked over my shoulder and asked if I will make it soon?!
It looks a bit like the Pasta Fagiolo? soup we enjoy at Olive Garden. I think I’ll add a small amount of beans instead of the potatoes 🙂
Great idea on adding beans!
@Crystal, I love the pasta fagiole at OG too. I make a soup similar to Crystal’s and have always wanted to add pasta or rice to it, but I thought it would be too starchy because of the potatoes. My soup also has green beans in it. I’m going to play around with it and make it different every time to see what combination everyone likes best.
I can’t wait to try this. On a side note I make a vegetable beef soup and freeze it in in serving sizes then take one out for lunch in the morning and its thawed by lunch. I make it with potatoes freeze it and have never had an issue with it. They are cooked in the soup not left raw so it should be fine.
Mmmm….tastes like winter goodness…
Dana @ Budget Dietitian says
I make a version of this soup and we LOVE it! I will have to try adding cabbage; that sounds great!
I make a similar recipe that is our favorite too… its from Taste of Home
http://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/Wintertime-Beef-Soup. I like that yours has brown rice, I might have to add that to mine next time. 🙂
we call this Missionary soup!
Susan (FrugaLouis) says
I’m trying to become a soup person, so maybe I’ll give this a go! Thanks for sharing the recipe, Crystal!
And, like others, I’d like to know if it freezes well?
This is a lot like my recipe for vegetable soup. I do freeze mine in small batches, and eat it when my husband is on duty (Coast Guard). I haven’t had any problems with the taste. It’s also good with pasta in it.
Have you frozen this soup Crystal? And if so, for how long will it be good frozen? This looks like a good recipe to add to my list of things to cook and freeze before our fourth little blessing arrives. Thanks! 🙂
I think it should freeze well, except I’d recommend leaving out the potatoes if you were going to freeze it.
@Crystal, I guess I could always add cooked diced potatoes when warming the soup from frozen. Thank you Crystal!
Kelli @SchoneyPhoto.com says
@Crystal, Sometimes when I am making soups I want to freeze, I substitute frozen corn (as opposed to canned, which adds a distinct and strong flavor) in place of potatoes. In a regular beef stew, that works very well – I wonder if that would work well for this recipe?
I think that should — and it sounds like a great variation!
I make a soup very similiar to this but use barley instead of brown rice and add some chopped potato, omitting the cabbage. I use beef consumme as the base. The rest is very similiar. Oh, I also blend up the canned tomatoes so they aren’t super chunky.
I make this all the time too! Yummy with fresh bread!
I have meat lovers at my house so when I make this I add bulgur and when its cooked it resembles the hamburger crumbles, also I add barley just for fiber.. such a good recipe… there is no excuse not to make a good meal for your family this is a cheap cheap way to go, and my family loves it. I also grind chicken breast up and make it with that with no tomatoes and add cumin and rice,barley,bulgar and lots of fresh garlic.
@margaret, I was just thinking that barley would be really good in this in place of the rice too – will probably try it this weekend!
Was going to make MY mom’s hamburger soup tonight, too… but got begged to make chicken and dumplings instead! Maybe tomorrow night.
Tablespoons in in caps for the salt. Is that for sure? Does it depend on the canned tomatoes or something? I assume table salt, but my goodness, that seems like a lot! Looks good though, we’ll be trying.
It’s a little heavy on the sodium, unfortunately. You can definitely trim it down though (maybe try teaspoons instead of Tablespoons and then add more if needed?). The salt seems to be what really gives this soup a great flavor, compared to other vegetable soups I’ve tried. It’s a big batch of soup, so it doesn’t end up being that much salt per serving, though, but I’d certainly say this isn’t a low sodium recipe.
Michele @ Saving Money In Real Life says
@Crystal, I was thinking the same thing about the high amount of sodium in this recipe. In case anyone else is interested, I did the math. Using two Tablespoons (6 teaspoons) of salt for 18 cups of soup would mean 1/3 teaspoon of salt per cup of soup or about 735 mg of sodium per cup of soup. That is just from the salt alone – I don’t know what the tomatoes or other ingredients add to the salt content.
@Michele @ Saving Money In Real Life, You can definitely tweak the salt, but if you go much less than 1 Tablespoon, I think it loses a lot of the flavor.
@Michele @ Saving Money In Real Life, Oh and I don’t use tomatoes with salt in them. If you use tomatoes with salt, I’d cut down the salt in the recipe.
Allison V. says
I just bought some stew meat, wonder if that would substitute well? This looks yummy!
Thank you so much for the Print option!! I printed it right out and can’t wait to make it!! I really appreciate the convenience of not having to write it all out!!
That looks so yummy! I will be adding that to the list of recipes to try VERY soon. We love soup this time of year. Thanks for sharing!
Amy L says
I’d love to try this… do you think it would work well in a crockpot?? I wonder if it freezes ok for a later freezer meal???
Potatoes get weird when you freeze them in soup, they turn into wierd sort of sponges. Now I have had good luck freezing mashed potatoes, but potatoes floating in a broth just get yucky.
That is my experience.
You could ommit the potatoes if you really want to freeze it. The recipe looks like it makes a lot.
this looks awesome. thanks for sharing this!! I’m excited now 🙂