One Pot Hamburger Cabbage Soup

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Hearty and extremely delicious, this one pot hamburger cabbage soup recipe is easy to make and always a huge hit! Simple ingredients for a family favorite soup everyone loves!

Cabbage soup with meat and beans.
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A bowl of cabbage soup with burger meat on a wooden table.

Beefy Cabbage Stew

I’m going to start out this recipe with an admission – I don’t love cabbage soup – which is sort of a funny thing to say at the start of a recipe for cabbage soup.

I like sautéed cabbage, and I LOVE fresh shredded cabbage on tacos and in salads – but the cabbage soups I’ve had (excluding some I’ve had in Ireland and Poland which were amazing) didn’t really leave me with warm and fuzzy feelings.

If I’m honest, most of the cabbage soups I’ve had are overly bitter and a bit thin – not something I crave on the regular – but this soup? So good.

It is so incredibly good – it’s made me a believer!

Rich, full of flavor, and not the least bit bitter.

And while I don’t usually put beans in non-chili soups, the addition of kidney beans make this soup’s texture fantastic – not too thick, not too thin.

This cabbage soup has tons of meaty flavor, and the cabbage cooks down with the meat for a rich buttery taste, without the bitterness cabbage can sometimes have.

It is so easy and simple – seriously anybody can make this soup!

This soup can also be made in the slow cooker for an easy soup you can place in the crockpot and come home to after a long day – or can be made in big batches to be frozen as individual serving meals. 

This is an incredibly versatile soup too – you can swap out the beans or vegetables if you don’t love them and try out other flavors you love to make your own delicious hamburger soup recipe that you’ll cherish for years and years. 

I hope you love this hearty soup as much as I do! 

A bowl of soup with cabbage and meat.

How to Make Hamburger Cabbage Soup

To make this recipe, we will need the following ingredients:

  • Ground Beef: Adds a hearty, meaty base, and tons of flavor.
  • Celery: Provides a crunchy texture and earthy taste.
  • Cabbage: Adds bulk and nutrients, as well as a mild sweetness.
  • Canned Tomatoes: Offers acidity and sweetness, while the juice adds depth to the broth.
  • Kidney Beans: Adds fiber, protein, and a contrasting texture.
  • Beef Stock: Deepens the meaty flavor and richness of the soup.
  • Beer: Imparts a unique depth and slightly bitter notes.
  • Water: The liquid base for the soup; dilutes the stronger flavors.
  • Garlic Powder: Infuses the soup with a robust garlic kick.
  • Paprika: Provides a smoky, sweet note.
  • Celtic Sea Salt: Enhances all the flavors; this particular type also adds trace minerals.
  • Pepper: Adds a slight heat and rounds out the flavor profile.
  • In a large dutch oven, brown ground beef and cook into crumbles (about 8 minutes).
  • Add diced celery and cabbage, cook until soft (about 10 minutes), stirring occasionally to prevent burning. Add salt and pepper. Add diced tomatoes (with the liquid from the can- don’t drain it off!) and kidney beans (go ahead and drain these off). Stir to incorporate. Add garlic and paprika, mix. Add beer or stock and water, stir.
  • Let simmer on low until soup has thickened and turned a darker red, 1 hour (or 4 hours on low in a slow cooker).
  • Serve immediately, soup tastes even better the next day!
A bowl of cabbage soup with ground beef and vegetables.

Tips to Perfect Hamburger Cabbage Soup

Let vegetables brown: Cooking the meat, celery, and cabbage before adding stock helps give the cabbage a buttery, rich flavor and take away bitterness. This is an extra step, sure, but the difference it makes on the flavor is what makes this soup so special and crave-able. Take a few extra minutes to pre-brown your cabbage and don’t rush it – it really is worth the payoff!

How To Freeze Hamburger Cabbage Soup: If you’d like to make a big batch of this soup and save some for later – or you can’t finish all of this recipe, this soup can easily be frozen for later using some simple and easy tips and tricks: 

  • Place soup in ziploc bags that hold roughly the serving you’d like to reheat. If you can only eat about 1-2 cups of soup at a time, don’t put all of your soup in a huge gallon bag, since you’ll have to thaw and re-freeze some soup. 
  • Portioning out soup in smaller bags isn’t just convenient for managing your portion, it also helps prevent freezer burn and helps to thaw evenly. 
  • Freeze soup by laying plastic bags flat in your refrigerator so it doesn’t bunch up into a big “ball” shape – the soup will thaw more evenly if first frozen to lay flat, making it a longer and thinner shape. 
  • Let soup thaw naturally in the refrigerator overnight. 
  • Reheat soup by placing in a pot on the stove and bringing to a quick boil, remove and serve when piping hot. 

Slow Cooker Hamburger Cabbage Soup: To make this deliciously easy cabbage soup in the slow cooker, I suggest browning all of the vegetables and the meat, and then tossing it in the slow cooker to cook. This will give your soup SO much more flavor and a better texture. While it is an extra step to pre-brown vegetables and meat when tossing this soup in the slow cooker, it is totally worth the flavor that you get.

Instant Pot: This can also be made in an Instant Pot, by browning everything then sealing and cooking about 5 minutes with a natural release.

Meat Quality: Use good-quality ground beef for more flavor.

Sauté Veggies: Sauté the celery and cabbage before adding liquids for extra flavor.

Tomato Paste: For a richer tomato flavor, add a tablespoon of tomato paste when sautéing the veggies.

Beer Choice: Pick a beer that complements the beef, like a stout or amber ale.

Bean Rinse: Rinse kidney beans if you’re not a fan of their canned liquid.

Spice Level: Feel free to adjust spices like paprika or even add a pinch of cayenne for heat.

Simmer Time: The longer you simmer, the more the flavors meld. Just don’t let it reduce too much!

Taste As You Go: Always taste and adjust the seasoning, especially before serving.

Fresh Herbs: A sprinkle of fresh parsley or thyme before serving can add a fresh twist.

Storing: This soup stores well and often tastes better the next day as flavors meld overnight.

A bowl of cabbage soup.

Recipe FAQ’s

Do I have to add beans to the soup?

This recipe was designed to taste great with or without the beans – we often skip them when trying for lower carb meals, and it still tastes fantastic.

Can I use fresh garlic?

Of course! This recipe doesn’t call for fresh garlic because it’s an old family recipe and powder was often easier. For fresh, add 2-4 cloves garlic, minced, then cooked and softened to fragrant when cooking cabbage for soup.

Can I add bacon or other vegetables?

Yes! This soup is super adaptable – you can add other vegetables or meat to this soup.

Can I freeze the soup?

Yes, this soup freezes well. Just make sure it’s cooled before transferring to an airtight container. It’ll keep for up to 3 months.

Can I use ground turkey instead of beef?

Absolutely! Ground turkey is a leaner option but will change the flavor profile slightly.

Can I make it vegetarian?

Yes! Swap the beef for a plant-based ground meat substitute and use vegetable stock instead of beef stock.

What’s the best cabbage to use?

Green cabbage is usually the go-to, but feel free to experiment with Savoy or Napa cabbage.

Is this soup keto-friendly?

Skip the kidney beans and use a keto-friendly beer or more beef stock, and you’re good to go!

How long does it keep in the fridge?

This soup tastes even better the next day and will keep in the fridge for up to 4-5 days.

Can I make it in a slow cooker?

Totally! Just brown the meat beforehand and then throw everything into the slow cooker on low for 6-8 hours.

A cabbage soup with hamburger meat and vegetables.

What to Serve With Hamburger Cabbage Soup

Crusty Bread: Perfect for soaking up that delicious broth.

Green Salad: Light and refreshing, it balances the meatiness of the soup.

Grilled Cheese Sandwich: Because who doesn’t love a soup and sandwich combo?

Cornbread: Adds a slightly sweet contrast to the savory soup.

Roasted Veggies: Keep up the hearty theme with some roasted carrots or Brussels sprouts.

Mashed Potatoes: For when you’re in ultimate comfort food mode.

Pasta Salad: A cold pasta salad could provide a nice texture contrast.

Fruit Salad: A simple fruit mix can cleanse the palate and is a light way to end the meal.

Keywords: cabbage soup

Hamburger Cabbage Soup Recipe

If you love this One Pot Hamburger and Cabbage Soup Recipe as much as I do, please write a five star review, and be sure to help me share on facebook and Pinterest!

A bowl of One Pot Hamburger Cabbage Soup.

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A One Pot Hamburger Cabbage Soup with vegetables.
Print

One Pot Hamburger Cabbage Soup

Hearty and extremely delicious, this one pot hamburger cabbage soup is easy to make and always a huge hit! Simple ingredients for a family favorite soup everyone loves!
Course soups
Cuisine American
Keyword cabbage soup with ground beef, hamburger cabbage soup, one pot hamburger cabbage soup
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 219kcal
Author Courtney O’Dell

Ingredients

  • 1 lb beef ground
  • 2 Celery rinsed well and diced
  • ½ cabbage diced
  • 1 8 oz tomatoes Can and diced, do not drain
  • 1 8 oz kidney beans
  • 4 oz beef stock
  • 4 oz dark beer or your favorite beer
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 tbsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp celtic sea salt
  • 2 tsp pepper

Instructions

  • In a large dutch oven, brown ground beef and cook into crumbles (about 8 minutes).
  • Add diced celery and cabbage, cook until soft (about 10 minutes), stirring occasionally to prevent burning.
  • Add salt and pepper.
  • Add diced tomatoes (with the liquid from the can- don't drain it off!) and kidney beans (go ahead and drain these off).
  • Stir to incorporate.
  • Add garlic and paprika, mix.
  • Add beer or stock and water, stir.
  • Let simmer on low until soup has thickened and turned a darker red, 1 hour (or 4 hours on low in a slow cooker).
  • Serve immediately, soup tastes even better the next day!

Video

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 219kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 50mg | Sodium: 680mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 1g

About Courtney

Courtney loves to share great wine, good food, and loves to explore far flung places- all while masting an everyday elegant and easy style. Courtney writes the popular creative lifestyle blog Sweet C’s Designs- a site devoted to delicious everyday recipes, home decor, crafts, DIY inspiration, and photography tips to help make your every day extraordinary.

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4.61 from 338 votes (323 ratings without comment)

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95 Comments

  1. Kristen says:

    I found your recipe and told my husband what I was going to cook. He said he didn’t like the way it sounded. So I made it anyway, while he was napping. He woke up and said “Smells like Cooking and it smells amazing”…. He ended up eating two bowls and loved it. Thank you!!!

    1. Tammy says:

      In your soup can i use a different bean i really dont care for kidney beans

      1. Courtney ODell says:

        Of course! I’ve also made this without the beans and it was just as tasty!

  2. Elaine says:

    I made it. I left out the beans and added fresh garlic. It is very tasty!

  3. Mari says:

    Seriously THE BEST. My husband hated stuffed cabbage as a kid and was none too thrilled that I made this until he ate a bite. HE ARE TWO BOWLS! I added some carrots and used smoked paprika and Better than Beef Bouillon paste. Keeping this one in the files for making again and have shared to my friends and family!

  4. Rita Matthews says:

    I was excited about making this soup because I love cabbage and my husband doesn’t. He’s not home right now, and I can make what I like. I was terribly disappointed. It lacks something, not quite sure what it is, but I will end up throwing out the rest, and will not ever make it again.

    1. Anita says:

      I added a tablespoon of worchester sauce make a nice difference

  5. Alisa says:

    I thought the soup was very good. Hearty and delicious. I did prepare the cabbage as you suggested and yes I thought that made a difference in the flavor. I will probably add fresh garlic next time in addition to the garlic powder. I also used beef bone broth (to up the health of it) and did not add water as I think that would dilute the flavor too much. Everything taste better the next day and I can’t wait to try it today… thank you for your recipe!

  6. Loretta says:

    Hi I would like to make this in the crock pot , looks very yummy !!,I love onion in soups ,How much onion do you think i would need to add to this ?Could i use minced garlic instead of the powder, if so how much fresh minced garlic would i need to replace the powder?
    Thanks