Ground Beef and Bean Vegetable Soup

Ground Beef and Bean Vegetable Soup

Soup is one of my favorite winter time meals and I especially like those can that be made in the crockpot while I’m at work. There is nothing like coming home from work with a meal already made! The thought that I have something simmering away in the crockpot even helps me get through some of THOSE days with a bit more spring in my step!

I have included directions for making this soup on the stove and in the crockpot. To me it is worth it to spend a little time the night before to prep the ingredients for the crockpot. This soup ranks right up there with the smokey vegetable soup I posted awhile ago. But, if you want to check that recipe out, you can find it here.

1 T. olive oil
1 lb. lean ground beef; browned and drained
1 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
2 cloves garlic; crushed
2 cans (14.5 oz.) petite dice tomatoes with juice
6 cups beef stock
1 can red beans; drained and rinsed
1 T dried parsley
1 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
salt and fresh-ground black pepper to taste
2 cups very thinly sliced and chopped green cabbage
1 cup chopped spinach
pinch red pepper flakes (optional)
2 T. balsamic vinegar
sour cream for garnish

1. Heat the olive oil in a large soup pot and cook ground beef until it’s crumbled and well-browned.
Drain well.
2. Chop the onion and celery and crush the garlic.
3. Rinse and drain the red beans.
4. Add the chopped onion, chopped celery, garlic, canned tomatoes, beef stock, red beans, dried parsley, and dried thyme to the ground beef in the soup pot. Bring to a boil; turn down and simmer for 1 hour. and cook. Taste soup and add salt and fresh-ground black pepper to taste.
5. Add the cabbage and spinach; simmer for 30 minutes.
6. Stir in the balsamic vinegar.
7. Serve hot with a dollop of sour cream.
Serves 6-8

To make in a crockpot, brown the beef the night before and refrigerate along with the chopped onion, celery, and garlic. In the morning dump the ground beef, onion, celery, garlic, tomatoes, beef stock, red beans, parsley, and thyme into the crockpot and stir. Cook on low while at work. When you get home from work add the cabbage and spinach and turn crockpot to high. Simmer for 1 hour, add the vinegar and salt and pepper to taste. Serve with the sour cream.

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