I’m pretty much always in when it comes to easy comfort food. Especially when half of the ingredients come from the pantry, so this beef and mushroom soup hits the spot on several levels. I love me a good broth-based soup but the Mr has always been a sucker for those thicker, creamier, all around heavier soups. Which are made a little more difficult to produce when you take away flour and dairy. So over time I’ve come up with a couple of different ways to thicken soups or give the illusion of (dairy-free) creaminess. The secret ingredient in this is one of those tricks: pumpkin puree. It doesn’t taste particularly pumpkin-y by the time the soup has simmered into silky texture-territory, but it does add a little sweetness which contrasts nicely with the more robust flavors of the beef and mushrooms. Added bonus: the pumpkin makes this soup much more filling, too, hence the “hearty”. This soup is a great reason to stock up on a few cans of organic pumpkin puree if and when you see it on sale. This is the brand that I use because it is organic and in a BPA-free can.
Did I mention it’s easy? You can totally make this beef and mushroom soup on a weeknight, should you choose, because half of the “cooking time” is pretty much unattended / no interference necessary. Or, even better, make this at the weekend so you have it to come home to during the week. It’s warming and comforting without being heavy. Plus, it’s a great way to stretch out a pound of grassfed beef into something more substantial. I just don’t tell Mr Meatified that there’s pumpkin in it. Shhh, it can be our little secret.
- Add half the oil to a pan / dutch oven large enough to make your soup in. At medium heat, brown the ground beef. Once cooked through, set the beef aside.
- Use the remaining oil to saute the onions until slightly transparent. Add the mushrooms to the pan. Cook until they have released their juices and begun to take on some color.
- Use a splash of the beef stock to scrape up any fond on the pan. Then add back the cooked ground beef from earlier. Also add the pumpkin puree and tomato sauce. Stir through to combine the pumpkin and tomato sauce before also adding the rest of the stock, garlic powder and oregano. If using, add the sprig of rosemary.
- Reduce the heat and simmer for 15 - 20 minutes. When it's thickened to your taste, remove the rosemary (if you used it) before serving.
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