Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup Recipe (Fresh And Vibrant Flavors)

“Indulge in a culinary ballet of sweet and savory with our Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup Recipe, a delightful symphony of flavors that dances across your palate. This heartwarming dish gracefully combines tender cabbage, succulent beef, and a medley of vegetables, all harmoniously simmered in a rich tomato broth. Each spoonful is a swirl of comfort, with a hint of sweetness and a touch of spice, creating a uniquely Russian culinary experience. Dive into tradition, savor the dance of flavors, and let this Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup warm your soul and tickle your taste buds.”

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Imagine a culinary journey to Russia with each spoonful of this Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup Recipe.

This comforting classic, steeped in tradition, surprises with subtle sweetness harmonizing with fresh cabbage. Imagine frosty Russian winters warmed by a bubbling pot of this rich, hearty broth.

Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup recipe

With just the right blend of fresh vegetables, aromatic herbs, and a secret ingredient – a hint of sugar – it transcends beyond a mere recipe, echoing tales of resilience and warmth.

Discover the heart of Russia’s culinary charm in your bowl – sweet Russian cabbage soup, the heartwarming treasure of Slavic cuisine.

What Is Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup?

Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup, traditionally known as Borscht, is a beloved dish from Russia.

]The soup’s characteristically sweet profile is achieved through simmering fresh cabbage, other root vegetables, and often a touch of sugar in a rich meat or vegetable broth.

The vibrant flavors provide a comforting warmth, making it a staple during cold Russian winters.

While recipes vary, a Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup bowl typically combines savory, sweet, and tart elements, offering a delightful culinary experience.

History Of Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup  Recipe

Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup, also known as Borscht, boasts a rich history spanning centuries in Eastern Europe. Its roots trace back to when Slavic tribes used wild hogweed as the main ingredient.

Later, cabbage was introduced and became the staple component.

The unique sweetness was initially achieved from beetroots, another regional addition. As trade routes expanded, sugar was added to enhance the sweet taste.

Borscht has played a crucial role in Russia’s culinary story, serving in humble homes and royal banquets. Over time, it has been embraced worldwide for its hearty flavor and nutritional benefits.

Interesting Facts About Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup Recipe

  • Variations Across Borders: While the sweet cabbage soup is widely recognized as Russian, it’s popular across various Eastern European countries, each with its unique takes. Ukraine, for example, considers Borscht as part of its national heritage.
  • Ingredient Evolution: Before the introduction of cabbage, the original version of the soup was made with a hogweed plant. It was only later that cabbage and, eventually, beets became the primary ingredients.
  • Soup For The Cosmos: A variant of Borscht has made it into space! Astronauts aboard the International Space Station have enjoyed a specially prepared version, dehydrated and packed in tubes.
  • Fasting Food: In Orthodox Christianity, a special version of this soup is often consumed during fasting. This version excludes meat, relying on vegetables and the sweetness of beetroot.
  • Cold Borscht: In the warmer months, a cold version of the soup, often featuring cucumber, radishes, and boiled eggs, is a popular refreshing dish.

What Makes Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup Special?

  • Cultural Icon: The soup is an iconic part of Eastern European cuisine, symbolizing the region’s history, heritage, and culinary traditions.
  • Unique Flavor Profile: The soup’s sweetness, derived from cabbage, beets, and sometimes sugar, sets it apart from other soups. This distinct flavor, balanced with the savory elements of the soup, offers an unusual yet delightful culinary experience.
  • Versatility: There are countless variations of Borscht, each unique to the family, region, or country. This versatility makes it a soup for every taste and preference.
  • Seasonality: Borscht is a dish for all seasons. It can be served hot during the chilly winter, providing comfort and warmth, or chilled during the summer, offering a refreshing, tangy respite.
  • Nutritional Powerhouse: It’s packed with vitamins and nutrients from the variety of vegetables used, making it delicious and incredibly healthy.
Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup recipe

Ingredients List

IngredientQuantity
Ground lean beef1 1/2 pounds
Diced tomatoes1 (14.5 ounce) can
Tomato sauce1 (8 ounce) can
Beef bouillon4 cubes
Carrots, shredded2 medium
Onion, chopped1
White vinegar2 tablespoons
White sugar1/2 cup
Salt1 1/2 teaspoons
Ground black pepper1/2 teaspoon
Water, divided2 quarts
Garlic, finely chopped3 cloves
Cabbage, cored and cut into wedges1 head

Ingredient Tips 

  • Freshness is Key: High-quality vegetables can make all the difference in your soup. Fresh cabbage, beets, and other veggies will impart more flavor, making your soup more delicious.
  • Cabbage Selection: Choose firm and dense cabbage with shiny, crisp leaves. Avoid those with cracks, bruises, or blemishes.
  • Beetroot Quality: The sweet component primarily comes from beetroot. Look for beets that are firm, smooth, and a vibrant red-purple. They should be soft, wrinkled, and light in color.
  • Broth Choice: Meat or vegetable broth can be used. For a richer, heartier flavor, consider using bone-based broths. Use a robust vegetable broth if you’re aiming for a lighter, vegetarian version.
  • Adding Sweetness: You can control the sweetness of your soup. Some people add a little sugar or honey to enhance the sweetness of the beets. This is entirely up to your preference.

Can You Vary The Recipe With Other Ingredients?

  • Protein Choices: The soup can be made with different types of meat like beef, pork, chicken, or even fish. Vegetarians and vegans can substitute meat with mushrooms or beans for a protein boost.
  • Vegetable Variations: Alongside cabbage and beetroot, you can add other vegetables like carrots, potatoes, bell peppers, or tomatoes. Some recipes even include apples for an extra touch of sweetness.
  • Grains Or Legumes: Adding grains like barley, rice, and legumes like lentils or chickpeas can make the soup heartier.
  • Herbs And Spices: The soup is traditionally flavored with dill, parsley, and bay leaves, but you can also experiment with other herbs and spices. Add thyme, coriander, or a touch of smoked paprika for a different flavor profile.
  • Acidic Element: Instead of vinegar, you can try adding lemon juice, lime juice, or even a splash of white wine to balance out the sweetness.
Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup recipe

Recipe Directions 

  • In a large pot or Dutch oven, brown the lean ground beef over medium heat until fully cooked. Drain any excess fat if needed.
  • Add the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, beef bouillon cubes, shredded carrots, chopped onion, white vinegar, white sugar, salt, ground black pepper, 1 quart (4 cups) of water, and finely chopped garlic to the pot with the cooked beef.
  • Stir all the ingredients together until well combined. Bring the mixture to a boil.
  • Reduce the heat to low and simmer for about 30 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together.
  • While the mixture simmers, prepare the cabbage by coring it and cutting it into wedges.
  • After the simmering time, add the cabbage wedges to the pot. Pour in the remaining 1 quart (4 cups) of water.
  • Cover the pot and continue simmering for 30-40 minutes or until the cabbage is tender.
  • Taste the soup and adjust the seasonings if necessary.
  • Serve the cabbage soup hot, and enjoy!
Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup recipe

Variations, Add-Ons And Toppings

Variations

  • Protein Variation: Use meats such as pork, chicken, or fish. Vegetarian? Use hearty mushrooms or add beans for a protein punch.
  • Vegetable Variation: Mix in other vegetables like bell peppers, turnips, zucchini, or even leafy greens like spinach or kale.
  • Grain Variation: Barley, rice, or even quinoa can add a filling element to the soup.

Add-Ons

  • Legumes: Add lentils, chickpeas, or kidney beans for extra protein and fiber.
  • Spices: Introduce warmth and depth with cumin, coriander, or smoked paprika.
  • Acid: For a brighter flavor, consider adding a squeeze of lemon, lime juice, or a splash of white wine.

Toppings

  • Creamy Toppings: Instead of a traditional dollop of sour cream, try Greek yogurt, crème fraîche, or for a vegan twist, a spoonful of cashew cream.
  • Herbs: Fresh dill, parsley, or chives can be sprinkled on top for a fresh contrast.
  • Crunchy Toppings: Consider a sprinkle of toasted seeds (like pumpkin or sunflower seeds) or crispy croutons for a delightful crunch.
  • Bold Flavors: A sprinkle of crumbled feta or a few slices of pickled red onions can add a tangy element that nicely contrasts the soup’s sweetness.

Scaling The Recipe

To Scale The Recipe Up

  • Multiply all the ingredient quantities by the desired scaling factor. For example, if you want to double the recipe, multiply all the quantities by 2. If you’re going to triple it, multiply by 3, and so on.

To Scale The Recipe Down

  • Divide all the ingredient quantities by the desired scaling factor. For example, if you want to make half the recipe, divide all the amounts by 2. If you’re going to make one-third of the recipe, divide by 3, and so on.

What Is Used For Garnishing?

  • Sour Cream: This is the most traditional garnish for Borscht. A dollop of sour cream adds a creamy, tangy contrast to the soup’s sweetness.
  • Fresh Herbs: Sprigs of fresh dill or parsley are often used. They add a new, herby flavor and a pop of green color that makes the dish even more delicious.
  • Hard-Boiled Eggs: Slices of hard-boiled eggs are a common garnish, especially in colder versions of Borscht served in the summer.
  • Chopped Chives: Fresh chives can be sprinkled on top for a subtle oniony flavor and a touch of color.
  • Croutons: Toasted croutons can add a delightful crunch and an extra layer of flavor.
  • Bacon Bits: If you’re not vegetarian, crispy bacon bits can add a smoky, salty crunch to your soup.
  • Drizzle Of Oil: A drizzle of olive oil or truffle oil adds a glossy finish and a boost of flavor for a more flavorful option.
Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup recipe

Can I Make Soup In A Slow Cooker Or Instant Pot? 

  • Slow Cooker: The slow cooker is ideal for soups like Borscht as it allows the flavors to meld together over several hours, resulting in a deeply flavorful soup.
    To use a slow cooker, add all of your ingredients, set the temperature to low if you plan to let it cook all day or high if you’re starting it midday, then let the slow cooker do its magic.
  • Instant Pot: The Instant Pot, or similar pressure cookers, is perfect for when you want Borscht but are short on time. You’d use the sauté function to cook down your onions and other aromatic ingredients, add your remaining ingredients, then set the device to the pressure cooking function.
    The cooking time would be drastically reduced compared to traditional methods, allowing you to enjoy your Borscht in under an hour.

Can I Use Store Broth, Or Should I Make My Own? 

  • Store-Bought Broth: This is a convenient option, especially if you’re short on time or don’t have the ingredients to make your broth. When choosing a store-bought broth, look for high-quality, low-sodium varieties. This gives you control over the soup’s salt content. Numerous options are available, including vegetables, chicken, beef, and bone broths.
  • Homemade Broth: Making your broth lets you control the ingredients and flavor profile completely. You can make it from leftover bones, vegetable scraps, or fresh ingredients. Homemade broth typically has a fresher, more robust flavor than store-bought versions and doesn’t contain preservatives or artificial flavors.

Can I Use Different Types Of Fish/Meat/Pasta/Vegetables?

  • Fish: Although not as traditional, you could use fish, making it a Russian-style fish soup. Opt for a firm white fish, such as cod or halibut, that holds its shape while cooking.
  • Meat: Different types of meat can add flavor to the soup. Beef is traditionally used, but you could use pork, chicken, or turkey. For a richer, deeper flavor, try using bone-in cuts.
  • Pasta: While not traditional in Borscht, adding small pasta like orzo or ditalini can make the soup even heartier. This might be a good option for those seeking a more substantial, one-pot meal.
  • Vegetable: The vegetable base of the soup is usually cabbage and beetroot, but you could add other vegetables to the mix. Consider root vegetables such as parsnips and turnips or leafy greens like kale or spinach. Bell peppers, zucchini, or squash could also be interesting additions.
Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup recipe

Success Tips – Tips And Tricks For Making Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup

Success Tips

  • Use lean beef to keep the soup healthier.
  • Adjust the sugar and vinegar to your taste preference.
  • Allow the flavors to develop by simmering the soup for an adequate amount of time.
  • Make sure to cook the cabbage to maintain its texture.
  • Serve hot, and consider garnishing with fresh herbs for added flavor.

Prepping Tips

  • Organize Your Ingredients: Before starting, gather all your ingredients and tools. This simple step, known as “mise en place,” makes cooking smoother and more enjoyable.
  • Prep Your Vegetables: Chop all your vegetables before you start cooking. For uniform cooking, try to cut them into similar sizes.
  • Beet Stains: Beets can stain your hands and countertops. To prevent this, consider using gloves when handling them, and immediately wipe down any surfaces where beet juice has spilled.
  • Grate or Julienne Beets: Depending on your texture preference, beets can be grated for a smoother soup or julienned for a chunkier version.
  • Cabbage Prep: Remove any damaged outer leaves of the cabbage. Cut into quarters, remove the core, then slice into thin strips.

Cooking Time Tips

  • Saute Aromatics: Always start by sautéing your onions, garlic, and other aromatic vegetables. This helps to build a flavor base for your soup.
  • Adding Ingredients: Add hardy root vegetables, like beets and carrots, as they take longer to cook. Add softer vegetables, like cabbage, partway through to prevent overcooking.
  • Simmer, Don’t Boil: Aim for a gentle simmer rather than a vigorous boil when cooking the soup. This helps the flavors meld together without breaking down the vegetables too much.
  • Cooking Time: While cooking times can vary, a good rule of thumb is to cook until the vegetables are tender. This usually takes 30-40 minutes on the stovetop, 4-6 hours in a slow cooker on low, or 15-20 minutes at high pressure in an Instant Pot.
  • Taste and Adjust: Remember to taste your soup towards the end of the cooking time and adjust the seasonings as necessary. This includes the sweetness you can increase by adding more sugar or honey.
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Nutritional Values

The nutritional values of the cabbage soup recipe can vary depending on specific ingredients and serving sizes. On average, a serving may contain approximately 180 calories, 4g of protein, 3g of fat, 23g of carbohydrates, 4g of fiber, and 600mg of sodium.

These values are estimates and can vary based on the ingredients used and any modifications made to the recipe. Calculating the nutritional values based on the specific brands and quantities of components you use is always a good idea.

What Are The Total Calories In The Recipe? 

The total caloric content of Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup, or Borscht, can vary significantly based on the specific recipe and ingredients used. However, a typical bowl of Borscht is relatively low in calories, given its high vegetable content.

A rough estimate would be around 130-180 calories per serving for a vegetable-based Borscht. The calorie count can increase if you add meat, particularly fattier cuts or toppings like sour cream.

Dietary Restrictions Of The Recipe 

  • Vegetarian/Vegan: Traditional Borscht recipes often include meat or are made with meat-based broth. For a vegetarian or vegan version, you can use vegetable broth, omit the flesh, and add beans, lentils, or mushrooms for extra protein and heartiness. Remember to replace the traditional sour cream garnish with a non-dairy alternative for a vegan version.
  • Gluten-Free: Borscht is typically gluten-free, as the primary ingredients are vegetables and meat. However, always check the labels of store-bought broths, as some brands may contain gluten. If you add additional elements, like certain thickeners or processed meats, you’ll also need to ensure they are gluten-free.
  • Low-Carb/Keto: While Borscht is full of vegetables, it also includes higher-carb ingredients like beets and potatoes. For a lower-carb version, reduce the amount of these ingredients or replace them with lower-carb vegetables like zucchini or cauliflower.
  • Dairy-Free: Traditional Borscht is usually dairy-free, except for the sour cream garnish. Omit this or replace it with a dairy-free alternative to make the recipe suitable for those with a dairy intolerance or allergy.
  • Nut-Free: Borscht is typically nut-free, making it suitable for those with nut allergies. However, always check the labels of any store-bought ingredients to ensure they haven’t been processed in a facility with nuts.

Health Benefits Of The Recipe

  • High in Fiber: Vegetables like cabbage and beets are high in dietary fiber, which aids in digestion, helps maintain a healthy weight, and can reduce the risk of chronic diseases like heart disease and diabetes.
  • Rich in Vitamins and Minerals: The variety of vegetables in Borscht provide an array of essential vitamins and minerals. For example, beets are high in folate and manganese, while cabbage is an excellent source of vitamins C and K.
  • Low in Calories: Borscht is relatively low in calories, making it a good choice for those trying to maintain or lose weight.
  • Boosts Immune System: The high vitamin C content, particularly from the cabbage and beets, helps boost the immune system and protect the body against disease.
  • Heart Health: Beets contain a high level of nitrates, which can help lower blood pressure, reducing the risk of heart disease.

Nutrition Table

Nutrition Table

How Can I Make Soup Lower In Sodium? 

  • Low-Sodium Broth: Choose low-sodium or unsalted broths when preparing your soup. These options have significantly less sodium than their regular counterparts.
  • Fresh Ingredients: Opt for fresh ingredients over canned or preserved ones, as these often contain added salt for preservation. This includes using fresh tomatoes instead of canned and fresh meat instead of processed or cured meats.
  • Rinse Canned Goods: If you’re using canned vegetables or beans, rinse them thoroughly under cold water to remove excess sodium.
  • Limit Added Salt: Be mindful of the amount of salt you add during cooking. You can reduce the recommended amount without significantly impacting the flavor.
  • Flavorful Alternatives: Increase flavor with herbs, spices, or other flavor-boosting ingredients like lemon juice or vinegar, allowing you to reduce the amount of salt needed.

How Can I Make Soup Lower In Sugar?

  • Limit Added Sugars: The most direct way to reduce sugar is to limit or omit any added sugars. Some Borscht recipes call for a small amount of sugar to enhance the sweetness of the beets, but you can reduce this or leave it out entirely.
  • Choose Low-Sugar Vegetables: While all vegetables contain some natural sugars, some have more. If you’re trying to minimize sugar content, opt for lower-sugar vegetables like zucchini or bell peppers instead of higher-sugar ones like carrots or tomatoes.
  • Use Whole, Fresh Ingredients: Fresh, whole foods tend to have less sugar than processed or canned alternatives. For example, use fresh tomatoes instead of canned ones, which often contain added sugars.
  • Experiment with Spices: Use spices and herbs that add flavor without sugar. For example, spices like cumin, coriander, or smoked paprika can add depth and complexity to your soup.
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How To Serve The Soup At Its Best?

  • Temperature: Borscht can be served hot or cold, depending on the season and personal preference. In winter, serve it hot, straight from the stovetop or slow cooker. In summer, you could do it chilled as a refreshing meal.
  • Garnish: Add a dollop of sour cream to each bowl before serving. This adds a creamy, tangy contrast to the sweetness of the soup. Alternatively, use a bit of dairy-free sour cream or a swirl of coconut milk for a vegan option.
  • Fresh Herbs: Sprinkle herbs such as dill or parsley on each serving. This adds a pop of color and a new, herby flavor.
  • Bread: Borscht is traditionally served with a side of hearty bread. You could serve it with slices of rye bread, a crusty baguette, or pumpernickel. The bread is great for dipping into the soup and ensuring you don’t miss a single drop!
  • Time: Consider making your Borscht a day in advance. Like many soups and stews, Borscht’s flavor deepens and improves after a day in the fridge.

 Perfect Side Dishes To Complement The Recipe 

  • Hearty Bread: A thick slice of crusty bread, like rye or pumpernickel, is traditional and perfect for soaking up every last drop of soup.
  • Russian Salad (Olivier Salad): This traditional Russian salad, made with potatoes, carrots, peas, and pickles in a creamy dressing, could complement the flavors in the Borscht.
  • Pickled Vegetables: Pickled cucumbers or other pickled vegetables can provide a nice contrast to the sweet and savory flavors of the soup.
  • Roasted Vegetables: A side of roasted root vegetables like beets, carrots, or parsnips can echo the earthy flavors in the soup.
  • Grilled or Roasted Meat: If your Borscht is vegetarian, grilled or roasted meat or fish can make the meal more substantial.
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How Long Can We Store The Soup? 

  • Refrigerator: The soup can be stored for up to 5 days. Store it in a sealed container to maintain freshness.
  • Freezer: If you’d like to store the soup for longer, it can be frozen for up to 3 months. Cool the soup completely before transferring it to freezer-safe containers, leaving some space at the top as the soup will expand when frozen.
  • Reheating: To reheat, if frozen, thaw the soup overnight in the refrigerator. Then, reheat it on the stovetop over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until hot. You could also reheat it in the microwave, stirring at intervals to ensure even heating.

Can I Make Soup In Advance?

  • Allow the soup to cool completely before storing. Transfer it to airtight containers or freezer-safe bags.
  • If you plan to freeze the soup, it’s best to portion it into individual serving sizes. This way, you can thaw and reheat only the amount you need.
  • When reheating the soup, you can do so on the stovetop over medium heat or in the microwave. Stir occasionally to ensure even heating.
  • If the soup appears too thick after being refrigerated or frozen, add a little water or broth while reheating to achieve your desired consistency.

What Can We Do With Leftovers?

  • Freeze for later: If you have leftovers, you can portion them into individual servings and freeze them for future meals. Thaw and reheat whenever you want a quick and easy meal.
  • Soup remix: Blend the leftover soup in a blender or with an immersion blender to create a creamy cabbage soup. Adjust the consistency with additional broth or cream if desired.
  • Cabbage wraps: Use the leftover cabbage wedges as wraps for a flavorful and nutritious meal. Fill them with leftover cooked rice, quinoa, or shredded chicken for a tasty and light lunch or dinner.
  • Vegetable stock base: Strain the leftover soup, reserving the flavorful liquid. Use it as a base for other dishes like stews, casseroles, or risottos, enhancing their taste with the cabbage and vegetable flavors.
  • Cabbage stir-fry: Chop the leftover cabbage wedges into smaller pieces and sauté them with other vegetables of your choice. Add soy sauce, garlic, and ginger for a quick, healthy stir-fry.
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Special Tools/ Equipment Needed

  • Large Pot or Dutch Oven: A large pot or Dutch Oven is essential as Borscht is a soup. These provide plenty of space for all the ingredients and allow the soup to simmer evenly.
  • Sharp Knife and Cutting Board: These are crucial for preparing vegetables. A good, sharp knife makes the process safer and more efficient.
  • Grater or Food Processor: If your recipe calls for grated beets, having a grater or food processor can speed up the process significantly.
  • Ladle: A spoon is very helpful when it comes to serving soup. It helps distribute the soup evenly among bowls, ensuring everyone gets their fair share of the broth and goodies inside.
  • Slow Cooker or Instant Pot: These appliances can be handy to make your Borscht in a slow cooker or Instant Pot instead of on the stove. They can save you time and effort and allow for more flexibility in cooking times.
  • Immersion Blender: This isn’t necessary, but if you prefer a smoother soup, an immersion blender can blend part or all of the soup directly in the pot.

Frequently Asked Questions 

Can I Make This Recipe Vegetarian Or Vegan?

You can make the recipe vegetarian by using a plant-based ground meat substitute or adding more vegetables instead of beef. Ensure the bouillon cubes and tomato sauce are vegan-friendly for a vegan version.

Can I Use A Different Type Of Meat In This Recipe?

Absolutely! Ground turkey, chicken, or pork can be used as alternatives to ground beef. Adjust the cooking time accordingly based on the type of meat you choose.

Can I Add Other Vegetables To The Soup?

Definitely! The recipe is versatile, and you can add or substitute vegetables according to your preference. Add vegetables like celery, bell peppers, or green beans for more variety.

How Long Can I Store The Leftovers?

The leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for 3-4 days or frozen for up to 3 months. Ensure proper storage in airtight containers or freezer-safe bags to maintain freshness.

Can I Make This Soup In A Slow Cooker Or Instant Pot?

Yes, you can adapt a slow cooker or Instant Pot recipe. For the slow cooker, brown the meat first, then transfer all the ingredients to the slow cooker and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours.

For the Instant Pot, brown the meat using the sauté function; then pressure cook on high for 10-12 minutes with a natural pressure release.

Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup Recipe (Fresh And Vibrant Flavors)

Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup Recipe (Fresh And Vibrant Flavors)

5 from 7 votes
Recipe by Hanna Barnes Course: Soup Recipes
Servings

6

servings
Prep time

20

minutes
Cooking time

1

hour 
Calories

130

kcal

Sweet Russian Cabbage Soup, or Borscht, is a vibrant, hearty Eastern European soup. It’s a delightful blend of fresh cabbage, beetroot, and other vegetables, simmered to create a warming, sweet-savory broth. Often served with a dollop of sour cream, it’s a comforting, nutritious dish enjoyed in any season.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 Pounds 1/2 Ground Lean Beef

  • 14.5 Ounce 14.5 Diced Tomatoes

  • 8 Ounce 8 Tomato Sauce

  • 4 Cubes 4 Beef Bouillon

  • 2 2 Carrots, Shredded (Medium)

  • 1 1 Onion, Chopped

  • 2 Tablespoons 2 White Vinegar

  • 1/2 Cup 1/2 White Sugar

  • 1/2 Teaspoons 1/2 Salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon 1/2 Ground Black Pepper

  • 64 Fl.Ounce 64 Water, Divided

  • 3 3 Garlic Coves, Finely Chopped

  • 1 Head 1 Cabbage, Cored And Cut Into Wedges

Step-By-Step Directions

  • Preparation Steps
    Crumble the ground beef into a large pot.
    Chop your carrots and onion.
    Mince your garlic.
    Shred your cabbage.
  • Cooking
    Add the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, beef bouillon cubes, chopped carrots, onion, vinegar, sugar, salt, and pepper to the pot with the beef.
    Pour in 1 quart of water, and boil over medium-high heat. Stir to break up the beef while heating.
    Once the soup comes to a boil, cover, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 30 minutes.
    After 30 minutes, pour another quart of water and return to a slow boil.
    Add the minced garlic and shredded cabbage to the pot.
    Simmer for an additional 25 minutes until the cabbage is tender.
  • Blending
    This soup typically remains chunky, but if a smoother texture is desired, you could blend part or all of the soup using an immersion blender.
  • Final Touches
    Before serving, taste the soup and adjust the seasoning if needed.
  • Serving
    Ladle the soup into bowls. Garnish with a dollop of sour cream or a sprinkle of fresh dill or parsley if desired.

Notes

  • You can use ground turkey or chicken instead of ground beef for a lighter version.
  • For added flavor and nutritional value, add extra vegetables like celery, bell peppers, or zucchini.
  • If you prefer a thicker soup, add a tablespoon or two of tomato paste during cooking.
  • Adjust the soup’s sweetness by adding more or less sugar according to your taste.
  • Consider adding herbs and spices like bay leaves, thyme, or paprika to enhance the soup’s flavor profile.
  • Add cooked rice, quinoa, or barley to make the soup more filling during the last 10-15 minutes of cooking.
  • Don’t discard the cabbage core! Chop it finely and add it to the soup for extra texture and flavor.
  • Allow the soup to cool slightly before serving to avoid burning your mouth. The flavors will also continue to develop as it sits.
Hanna Barnes

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