Recipe Review: Easy Hamburger Soup

In typical boy fashion, my husband is a big fan of dead animals… in the sense that he likes to eat them.  So, when I make soup, I usually try to throw in a soup that contains meat just for him (since I don’t like meat in my soup).  This time around, I made another Taste of Home recipe called Easy Hamburger Soup.  My husband has already eaten all of it.  Guess he liked it. 

easy hamburger soup

Easy Hamburger Soup

Serves 8

INGREDIENTS

  • 1-1/2 pounds lean ground beef (90% lean)
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 2 cans (14-1/2 ounces, each) beef broth
  • 1 cup water
  • 4 celery ribs, thinly sliced
  • 4 large carrots, halved and thinly sliced
  • 10 whole peppercorns
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup quick-cooking barley
  • ¼ cup minced fresh parsley

DIRECTIONS

  1. In a large saucepan, cook beef and onion over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Stir in the tomatoes, broth and water. Add celery and carrots.
  2. Place peppercorns on a double thickness of cheesecloth; bring up corners of cloth and tie with kitchen string to form a bag. Add to beef mixture. Stir in thyme and salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 45 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
  3. Return to a boil. Stir in barley. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 10-12 minutes or until barley is tender. Remove from the heat; stir in parsley. Let stand for 5 minutes. Discard spice bag.

THOUGHTS

  • This is a great soup for cold weather.  It’s got some ‘stick’ with the meat and the barley.  The men in your family (and women too!) will love this one.
  • I did things the lazy easy way and chose to place my onion, celery and carrots in my food processor instead of chopping them by hand.  This saved me a ton of time and trust me, my husband couldn’t tell the difference (and wouldn’t have cared regardless). 
  • I didn’t have cheesecloth so I just added a ½ teaspoon of black pepper in lieu of the peppercorns. 
  • I also didn’t have quick-cooking barley so I just used regular barley (I love it when I’m prepared).  So, instead of adding the barley for the last 10-12 minutes I read the instructions on the back of the barley box that said that it needed to cook for 45 minutes… so that’s what I did.  I plopped the barley in with 45 minutes left to spare on the timer and it cooked up just fine. 

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