You’re going to feel warm and comforted after a bowl of this Classic Ukrainian Red Borscht (Beet Soup)! This flexible and frugal recipe is made with heaps of vegetables and a homemade beef broth. It’s the best healthy meal for those chilly days!
2beef shanks, or beef short ribs, sirloin, or stew meat
salt to taste
Red Borscht (Beet Soup)
½sweet onion, diced small
1mediumcarrot, shredded. Save the tip to slice into match sticks.
1cupparsnip, cut into matchsticks
8cupshomemade beef broth, or storebought
½mediumwhite cabbage, finely shredded
2mediumYukon gold potatoes, or white potatoes, cut into 1/4” thick smaller slices
1stickcelery, cut into 1/4 inch slices
½red bell pepper, or 1 Anaheim pepper, diced
1medium beet, red is best, either shred or cut into matchsticks
14 ½ozcan petite diced tomatoes
15.8ozgreat northern beans, canned, rinsed
1tbspketchup, plus more to taste (if needed)
3clovesgarlic, put through garlic press or grated
½bunchparsley or dill, finely chopped
2 ½tspkosher salt, plus more to taste
Homemade Beef Broth
In a large pot, add water, bay leaves, onion, and beef shanks. Bring to a boil and then lower to medium heat and cook for 1 hour. Add salt to taste and continue to cook for another hour.
Remove the meat, and drain the broth through a strainer to remove any imperfections. Set the meat aside and cut into 1-inch pieces once it's cooled.
Instant Pot Beef Broth Option
Add water, bay leaves, onion, and beef shanks and salt. Set the Instant Pot to cook on high pressure for 45 minutes-1 hour and let it self release. Remove the meat and drain the broth through a strainer. Once the meat is cooled, cut into 1-1 1/2-inch pieces. *If 10 cups of water doesn't fit in your Instant Pot, add 8 cups of hot water instead.
Red Borscht (Beet Soup)
In a large pan on the stovetop, add the beets with olive oil and cook for 8 minutes on low heat. Add tomatoes and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Turn off the heat and set aside.
In a heavy-bottomed pot, sauté the onion with olive oil until translucent. After 5 minutes, add the shredded carrots and cook for 5 minutes. Then add the parsnip and sauté for another 5 minutes. Add the beef broth and salt, and bring to boil.
Add the cabbage and potatoes, bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes. Add the celery and bring to a boil. Add the matchstick carrots and bell pepper, bring to a boil, and cook for 2 minutes. Now add the beets and tomatoes mixture. Bring to a boil.
Add in the rinsed beans and ketchup and stir gently to incorporate. Add any additonal ketchup and salt if needed. Bring to a boil, add the bay leaves garlic, and chopped parsley or dill. Bring to a final boil, turn off the heat, and let it sit for 5-10 minutes so the flavors can get to know each other.
To serve: Add borsht to a bowl, add chunks of meat, and serve with sour cream and bread.
MEAT TIP: If your meat has a bone in it, place it in the water whole. After it cooks, remove it from the broth, cut away and discard the bone and cut meat into 1″ pieces. If using sirloin or stew meat, cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces.