Beef soup

Beef soup is an absolute Slovenian classic, which every ‘not so young anymore’ generation grew up on every Sunday. 😊

As with any national recipe, there are probably as many versions of the recipe as there are Slovenian families. And this is our recipe for beef soup – a family classic, with a few of my own additions.

Beef ribs are my favourite to use, because the meat is reallt tander and moist, but it has more fat than other cuts. Instead of chicken pieces I sometimes use chicken bones (left after thigh, breast and wing removal) that have been frozen for this purpose.

After the soup is cook, I put some in the frige, with meat, carrots, celery (all the veggies that haven’t fallen apart during cooking), to be used in the next 5 days. I freeze the rest in 1-2 portion cups.

For a long time I would get mad about the fat that gathers on the top of the soup after cooking, because it’s hard to get rid of it. Then I learned the trick of the chefs – take a few kitchen paper towels and put each one on the top of the soup just for a few moments, for the fat to stick to the towel, then quickly remove it. You repeat the process until most of the fat is gone. It really works!

I often put in the soup other vegetables, that I have at home and need to be used – kolhrabi, leeks, cauliflower, broccoli…

For a classic old-school Sunday lunch we eat soup with noodles for a starter, then meat with potates and creamy horseradish. The leftover meat is usually cut cold into thin slices and dresses with onion, oil and vinegar, to make a salad. You can add different vegetables, like sliced red peppers, or leeks, to make it even better.

beef soup

Beef Soup
For 7 litres of soup.
Cooking: 4 hours.

  • 1,5 kg beef meat, usually chunk or brisket (I like beef ribs, because the meat is tender and moist)
  • 2-3 pieces of beef bones
  • 1-2 pieces of chicken or hen meat (you can use chicken soup cube, if you don’t have the meat)
  • 6 big carrot, cut into big pieces
  • 1 small tomato, halved (or 1 spoon of tomato concentrate, if you don’t have a fresh one)
  • 1/4 celery knob, cut into big pieces
  • 1 small onion, cut into quarters
  • 2 cloves of garlic, cut into piesces
  • 1 small green peperrs
  • 15 black peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf
  • pinch of grated nutmeg
  • salt
  • a bunch of fresh parsley
  • other vegetables to your liking – kohlrabi, cauliflower, broccoli… Whatever you have at home and needs to be used.


  1. Put all ingredients, except salt and parsley, into a big pot and add about 7 litres of cold water.
  2. Cook on high heat until it startes to gently boil, then lover the heat to a minimum, so there are only tiny bubbles rising to the surface of the soup. Cook for 3-4 hours, until the meat os really tender. If you leave the soup to boil, it will not be clear.
  3. Add the parsley 5 minutes before end of cooking, then add the salt to your taste and the soup is done. Strain it through the sieve before using it.

Bon appetit!

Photography: Twofoodiesandacat – Fotografiranje in Stiliranje hrane

Smokey Darja

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