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4.91 from 10 votes

Vegetable Soup for a Cold Winter Day

A soul-warming brew. Feel free to adjust the ingredients and measurements as your palate -- and your pantry -- dictate.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Course: Main Course, Dinner, Soup
Cuisine: French
Servings: 10


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/4 Lbs lean ground beef
  • 6 medium carrots, sliced (at least 2 cups)
  • 2 large leeks, the white and tender green parts diced
  • 3 celery stalks, sliced
  • 4 medium-large red potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 3 Lb butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and roughly diced
  • 10 ounces frozen, cut green beans
  • Water to cover the above ingredients
  • 1 1/2 cups POMI strained tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons beef "Better than Bouillon," dissolved in 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 1 tablespoon (or more) dried parsley
  • 5 ounces baby spinach leaves


  • Form the ground beef into 3 or 4 patties. Tip 1 tablespoon of the olive oil into an 8-quart stock pot over medium heat, and then add the patties. Cook until well-browned -- about 4 minutes per side. Transfer the beef to a plate and set aside.
  • Meanwhile, add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil to the pot. Then stir in the carrots, leeks, and celery. Saute over medium heat until the leeks soften and the carrots begin to color -- about 8 minutes.
  • Crumble the beef and then add it to the pot, along with the potatoes, butternut squash, and green beans. Stir briefly to mix. Then add enough water to the cover the ingredients. Bring to a boil, and then reduce the heat, partially cover the pot, and let simmer until the potatoes and squash are tender -- about 20 minutes.
  • Stir in the strained tomatoes, bouillon, thyme, and parsley. Taste carefully for seasonings, adding salt and pepper if necessary. Off heat, add the baby spinach leaves, stirring just until the leaves wilt.
  • Serve hot. If you wish to refrigerate the soup, let it cool completely. Then cover and refrigerate for up to five days. For longer storage, freeze the soup.