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Beefy Russian Borscht

Beefy Borscht is a traditional Russian soup with beets.

One of Eric’s favorite soups to eat is this recipe for Beefy Borscht.

He first introduced me to this recipe when we were dating.

I’ll admit that I was skeptical of the beets.

At this point in my life, I think I had only had beets on one other occasion and I don’t recall liking them.

I distinctly remember the first time Eric and I made Beefy Borscht together.

We were in his apartment kitchen.

He was working on the beets, because they’re so messy.

I was doing most everything else.

I tasted the soup before we added the beets and even said:

“This is tastes great without the beets.

Do we really need to add them?”

What an insult to borscht!

I obviously didn’t know anything back then!

You see, beets are traditionally considered to be one of the main ingredients.

Plus they’re what’s responsible for the gorgeous dark reddish-purple color of the soup.

Unless you’re talking about Green Borscht, then you won’t be using beets.

We have only made that variety once together.

I think we both decided that this red, Beefy Borscht was the way to go because we haven’t made the green since.

Anyway…we shared this first pot of soup with a few of my roommates and a few of Eric’s roommates for dinner that night.

One of these roommates was my friend Nila, the one who I’ve mentioned visited a few weeks ago.

She loves the borscht and asked if we could make it during her visit.

Eric was just getting home that evening from a work related trip.

It was the perfect opportunity to cook up a pot of Beefy Borscht.

There are 2 downfalls to this recipe, in my opinion.

One being that the beets make such a mess.

They stain your hands and everything so badly that anything they come into contact with ends up looking like something out of a horror show.

It’s best to wear gloves and use a cutting board you don’t care about.

I always forget about the gloves and end up with stained hands.

Secondly, this recipe makes so much that I often grow tired of it before we’ve finished the pot.

It really is best to freeze some of the extras in single serve portions to keep on hand for quick meals or lunches.

But don’t let either of those reasons prevent you from enjoying a bowl of this rich soup.

All I’m saying is that for our little family of 4…as much as I love this hearty recipe for Beefy Borscht, the smell of the house after it simmering the day away, and how genuinely pretty it looks, once per season is usually enough for me.

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Beefy Borscht
from Slow Cooker Ready & Waiting

  • 2 T oil
  • 1 lb stew beef, 1″ pieces
  • 1 t salt and pepper
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 medium carrots and celery, 1/2″ thick slices
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, 1/2″ pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups water
  • 3 medium beets, peeled and cut into 1/2″ cubes
  • 2 medium potatoes, unpeeled, 1/2″ cubes
  • 2 2/3 cups double-strength beef broth
  • 1 15-oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1/4 cups tomato paste
  • 2 T red wine vinegar
  • 1 T light brown sugar
  • 2 t dried thyme
  • 1 t caraway seeds
  • sour cream
  • crusty bread

In a skillet, heat the oil, add the beef and brown on all sides.

Transfer the beef to a plate, and season with salt and pepper.

Add more oil to skillet (if necessary).

Add the onions, carrots, celery, and bell pepper.

Reduce heat to med and cook, stirring often for about 5 minutes.

Add garlic and cook 1 minute.

Add the water, stirring to scrape up all the browned bits in skillet.

Transfer to a large stock pot or crock-pot, add beets, potatoes, beef, beef broth, tomatoes and their juices, tomato paste, vinegar, brown sugar, thyme, and caraway seeds.

Cover and cook on low until meat is tender, about 6-7 hours.

Serve with a dollop of sour cream and a piece of crusty bread.

Borscht with Beef and Beets

Beefy Russian Borscht

Yield: serves 8-10
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 6 hours
Total Time: 6 hours 30 minutes

Beefy Borscht is a traditional Russian soup with beets.

Ingredients

For the Borscht

  • 2 T oil
  • 1 lb stew beef, 1" pieces
  • 1 t salt and pepper
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 medium carrots and celery, 1/2" thick slices
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, 1/2" pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups water
  • 3 medium beets, peeled and cut into 1/2" cubes
  • 2 medium potatoes, unpeeled, 1/2" cubes
  • 2 2/3 cups double-strength beef broth
  • 1 15-oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1/4 cups tomato paste
  • 2 T red wine vinegar
  • 1 T light brown sugar
  • 2 t dried thyme
  • 1 t caraway seeds

Serve With

  • sour cream
  • crusty bread

Instructions

  1. In a skillet, heat the oil, add the beef and brown on all sides.
  2. Transfer the beef to a plate, and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Add more oil to skillet (if necessary).
  4. Add the onions, carrots, celery, and bell pepper.
  5. Reduce heat to med and cook, stirring often for about 5 minutes.
  6. Add garlic and cook 1 minute.
  7. Add the water, stirring to scrape up all the browned bits in skillet.
  8. Transfer to a large stock pot or crock-pot, add beets, potatoes, beef, beef broth, tomatoes and their juices, tomato paste, vinegar, brown sugar, thyme, and caraway seeds.
  9. Cover and cook on low until meat is tender, about 6-7 hours.
  10. Serve with a dollop of sour cream and a piece of crusty bread.

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Nutrition Information
Yield 10 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 197Total Fat 7gSaturated Fat 2gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 5gCholesterol 46mgSodium 481mgCarbohydrates 18gFiber 3gSugar 6gProtein 18g

GoodLifeEats.com offers recipe nutritional information as a courtesy and is an estimate only. This information comes from online calculators. Although GoodLifeEats.com makes every effort to provide accurate information, these figures are only estimates.

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Loanemu

Saturday 10th of October 2015

Thank you for your blog post. Want more.

Katie @ goodLife {eats}

Wednesday 6th of January 2010

Sorry about that - 2 potatoes. Editing now.

Heather Brandt

Wednesday 6th of January 2010

How many potatoes go in this recipe? I don't see a number noted here.

Damaris

Friday 6th of November 2009

love beets. I made beet soup with fresh mozzarella for Food not Bombs and it was a hit. i gotta try this recipe.ps. our blogs were both designed by rainy day...gotta love her

Shannalee

Thursday 29th of October 2009

This is just what I have been needing! I got a couple big beets in my final week of CSA shipments, and after I roasted them and used one in a salad, I was unsure what to do with the others. Borscht might be just the ticket!