The BEST homemade Dill Pickle Soup Recipe. Tender beef chunks with pickles, vegetables, barley, and potatoes in a hearty broth. This soup is so unique but the best bowl of soup for cold evenings.
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what is dill pickle soup-
Though a lot of people will argue that dill pickle soup originates from Poland, I remember my Ukrainian mom serving the soup as far back as I can remember. This soup sounds like a weird combination, but I just LOVE it! The seasoned tender meat in a hearty broth loaded with pickles, potatoes, barley and sauteed vegetables is a treat to be had. I also love adding dried mushrooms, they add so much flavor but that is totally optional.
This is one of those soups that just get better the longer it sits, kind of like borscht. I love to make a huge pot and then just enjoy it for days.
how to make pickle soup-
This pickle soup is so simple to make. If you don’t have time to season the meat, that’s fine, just skip that step. However, I’d highly recommend you try that sometime, it’s AMAZING!
1. Season the meat. Cube meat into about 3/4″ even pieces. Season with the salt, pepper, sliced garlic, and crushed bay leaves. Cover meat and refrigerate until ready to use (see detailed instructions in THIS recipe). You want to allow the meat to sit for two days (and up to five days), or at least overnight.
2. Soup. In a large pot (or Dutch oven), bring water and broth to a boil. Rinse the seasoned meat and add to the pot along with the rinsed barley, bay leaf and drained mushrooms. Cook 30 minutes, frequently removing impurities that rise to the top.
TIP: If using dried mushroom, soak them in hot water according to the package instructions while the liquids are coming to a boil. THESE are the mushrooms we used.
2. Sauteed vegetables. In a skillet, saute the onion until tender, add the carrots and cook until carrots are tender. Stir in the garlic, tomatoes and ketchup and cook until fragrant. Set aside.
3. Potatoes and dill. Meanwhile, cube the potatoes and grate the dill pickles. Add potatoes, pickles, brine, sauteed vegetables and seasonings to pot and cook 10-12 minutes, until potatoes are tender.
Herbs: Add your favorite herbs to the soup once it’s cooked. You can use cilantro, parsley, dill or a combination of the herbs. I love herbs so I add a generous portion to the soup.
mom’s special soup-
Growing up, we were very poor. We lived in a really small town in Ukraine and soups were an affordable meal for the entire family. My mom would pickle cucumbers while we had them fresh in the garden and then make the soup from homemade pickles.
Growing up, I didn’t care too much for the soup. Actually, it wasn’t until I started having kids that I started to really enjoy the soup. Then, it became my “favorite” soup my mom would bring me whenever I was ill or we were traveling and came home and all you want is soup. She’d bake her famous bread and make this soup and we’d all go to her house for dinner. So, this soup truly has a special place in my heart and I hope you’ll love it just as much as we do.
Do you have a recipe that is this special to you with a story behind it? I’d love to hear about it in the comments. 🙂
Enjoy this classic Russian/Ukrainian soup (or Polish, ha). This is my go-to soup when I am not feeling good. I don’t know what it is about it that just makes everything better. 🙂
try these other favorite soup recipes:
- Crockpot Chicken Noodle Soup- so easy in a slow cooker.
- Meatball Noodle Soup- kids’ favorite.
- Pasta Fagioli Recipe– Olive Garden copycat.
- Sorrel Soup– classic Ukrainian soup.
Dill Pickle Soup Recipe
- 1/2 cup dried mushrooms, optional
- 32 oz chicken broth
- 6 cups water
- 1/4 cup pearled barley, rinsed
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 carrot, grated
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 cup tomatoes, finely chopped
- 1 Tbsp ketchup
- 3 potatoes, cubed
- 1 1/2 cup grated pickles
- 1/4 cup pickle brine
- 1 tsp salt
- ¼ tsp ground black pepper
- 3 Tbsp herbs
- 1 lb beef, cubed
- 1 ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp ground black pepper
- 4 garlic cloves, sliced
- 4 bay leaves, crushed
- Pour boiling water over the dried mushrooms, allow to sit per package instructions.
- Cut meat into bite-size pieces. Slice the garlic cloves. Break the bay leaves into small pieces. Add the bay leaves, garlic, salt and pepper to meat and mix. Refrigerate until ready to use.
- In a large pot, bring chicken broth and water to a boil.
- Rinse seasoning off meat. Add the meat, bay leaf and barley to pot. Turn heat down to medium, cook about 30 minutes. Remove scum and fat that accumulates and floats to the top during cooking.
- Chop the onion finely. Add to a large skillet with 1 Tbsp oil and saute 3 minutes over medium heat. While the onion is cooking, grate carrots.
- Add carrots to the skillet with another 1 Tbsp oil. Cook until carrots are tender.
- Add the minced garlic, diced tomatoes and ketchup; saute until garlic is fragrant.
- While meat is cooking, peel and cube the potatoes. Add to a bowl and cover with cold water so they don’t turn color. Set aside. Grate the pickles.
- Cook the soup 10-12 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Add your favorite herbs.
- Serve and enjoy!