New French Onion Soup


For the broth

  • As many beef bones as will fit in your pressure cooker
  • 14 cup apple cider vinegar

For the onions

  • As many sliced onions as will fit in your pressure cooker
  • 8 tablespoons butter
  • 12 teaspoon baking soda

For the soup

  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 12 cup all purpose flour
  • 12 cup red wine
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • Garlic croutons
  • 1 pound gruyere cheese, shredded


  1. To make broth: Load pressure cooker with beef bones.  Add cider vinegar and water to reach max fill line.  Cook under pressure for 2-4 hours and release naturally.  Remove bones and strain broth through fine mesh strainer or clean dish cloth.  Transfer to refrigerator and chill until fat can be easily removed.  Remove fat and discard or save for another use.  (You can use this fat in place of butter to make the onions.)  
  2. To make onions:  Melt butter (or beef fat) in pressure cooker over medium heat.  Load pressure cooker with onions and toss with baking soda.  Cook, stirring, until onions have softened slightly and started to release liquid, about 3 minutes.  Seal and cook under pressure for 20 minutes.  Quick release pressure then remove lid.  
  3. Continue cooking with lid off, stirring constantly, until liquid has completely reduced and onions are deep brown, about 5 minutes.  Add tomato paste and sauté until paste begins to darken.  Add flour and stir until well coated.  
  4. Add wine and bring to simmer, scraping up any browned bits.  Cook until alcohol is mostly evaporated, about 3 minutes.  Add stock, plus enough water to reach 2 quarts, thyme, and bay leaf.  Raise heat to medium-high and bring to a simmer.  Lower heat and simmer 10 minutes.  
  5. Add fish sauce, cider vinegar, and season with salt and pepper.  Discard thyme and bay leaves.  
  6. Serve soup topped with croutons and cheese.   


This recipe is a mash-up of a number of other recipes and methods.  I think this might be The One.

Slow Cooker Italian-Style Bean Soup


  • 1 package (16 ounces) bean soup mix, flavor packet discarded if there is one
  • 1 pound sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 1 jar (26 ounces) pasta sauce (I used tomato basil.)
  • 2 empty pasta sauce jars of chicken broth
  • Parmesan cheese, grated or shredded


  1. Rinse beans well in sieve with running water.  Pour beans into large pot, cover with water, and bring to boil.  Boil for 10 minutes, remove from heat, cover pot and soak beans 1 hour.  Drain in sieve and rinse well with running water.  Transfer beans to slow cooker.  
  2. Meanwhile, cook sausage in large skillet until cooked through, breaking into pieces as sausage cooks.  Drain sausage then add to slow cooker.  Pour in pasta sauce and two jars of chicken broth.  
  3. Cover and cook on LOW for 8 to 10 hours or HIGH for 4 to 5 hours.  Serve topped with parmesan cheese.  


This recipe is from A Year of Slow Cooking.  It was really delicious and I enjoyed it quite a bit!  I think that the guys might have tried it over rice, but I just ate it plain.  Very flavorful and yummy.

Slow Cooker Hearty Beef Stew


  • 5 pounds boneless beef chuck roast, cut into 1 12-inch pieces
  • 14 cup vegetable oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 4 onions, sliced into thin half moons
  • 1 6 ounce can tomato paste
  • 2 cups beef
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 pound baby carrots, cut in half
  • 1 pound parsnips, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 pound red potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2 tablespoons Minute tapioca
  • 2 cups frozen peas, thawed


  1. Pat beef dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in large skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Cook half of beef until well browned all over, about 8 minutes. Transfer to slow cooker insert and repeat with additional 1 tablespoon oil and remaining beef.
  2. Add onions, 1 tablespoon oil, and 14 teaspoon salt to now-empty skillet and cook until browned, 6 to 8 minutes. Add tomato paste and cook, stirring frequently, until paste begins to darken, about 2 minutes. Slowly stir in broth, soy sauce, and bay leaves and bring to boil. Transfer to slow cooker.
  3. Toss carrots, parsnips, potatoes, remaining oil, thyme, 12 teaspoon salt, and 12 teaspoon pepper in large bowl. Place vegetables on one side of large piece of heavy duty aluminum foil. Fold foil over vegetables to form packet that will fit in slow cooker; crimp edges to seal. Stir tapioca into slow cooker; set vegetable packet on top of beef.
  4. Cover and cook on high until beef is tender, 6 to 7 hours (or cook on low 10 to 11 hours). Carefully open foil packet and dump vegetables and any accumulated juices into slow cooker, avoiding steam.  Stir in peas, cover, and let stand until heated through, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. 


I don’t actually like beef stew, at least that’s what I would have told you a year ago.  But I woke up one morning with a huge craving for delicious beef stew.  I scoured the internet and found this recipe from Cook’s Country.  It’s got lots of well developed umami goodness and it seemed like it would be pretty amazing.  

I’ve made it three times between then and now and it’s still amazing.  The beef pieces are tender, the veggies all retain their own textures and tastes unlike traditional beef stew where everything is cooked into a mush in the same pot.  This fixes everything that is usually wrong with beef stew and makes it perfect.  

If you’ve got a slow cooker like the Ninja, feel free to skip the skillet and just cook the components in the slow cooker insert using the stovetop function.

Pasta e Fagioli Soup


  • 1 pound sweet Italian sausage, casings removed and crumbled
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup carrots, diced
  • 1 cup celery, diced
  • 34 cup yellow onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 (8 ounces each) cans tomato sauce
  • 4 cups beef or chicken broth
  • 1 (15 ounces) can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 12 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 34 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 12 teaspoon dried marjoram
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup ditalini pasta, uncooked
  • 1 (15 ounces) can dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15 ounces) can great northern beans, drained and rinsed
  • Romano or Parmesan cheese, for serving


  1. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in Dutch oven over medium high heat.  Add sausage and cook, stirring, until cooked through.  Transfer sausage to sieve set over bowl to drain.  
  2. Heat remaining olive oil in now-empty pot.  Sauté carrots, celery and onion over medium high heat until tender, about 4 minutes.  Add garlic and sauté until fragrant.  
  3. Reduce heat to low, add tomato sauce, broth, canned tomatoes, sugar, basil, oregano, thyme, marjoram, and sausage.  Season with salt and pepper.  Cover and simmer 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are soft.  
  4. Meanwhile bring large pot of water to boil and prepare ditalini to al dente as instructed by packaging.  Drain well.  
  5. Add pasta and beans to soup and cook 5 minutes longer until heated through.  Serve with cheese.  (If soup is too thick, thin with extra broth.)  


This recipe is from Cooking Classy and I only vaguely remember making it.  I’m sure it was enjoyable.

Tons of Garlic (and Chicken) Soup

44 cloves garlic, peeled
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
2 cups onions, sliced
1 12 teaspoons fresh thyme, minced
3 12 cups chicken broth
2 cups cooked chicken, shredded
12 cup heavy cream or half and half
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
12 cup parmesan cheese, shredded
4 lemon wedges
1. Heat oven to 350*F.  Place 26 cloves of garlic on a square of aluminum foil.  Add olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Toss to coat then wrap garlic tightly.  Bake until garlic is soft and tender, at least 45 minutes.  Transfer cloves to small bowl once cooked.  

2. Melt butter in large saucepan, or Dutch oven, over medium-high heat.  Add onions and thyme and cook until onions are translucent, about 6 minutes.  Add roasted garlic and 18 remaining cloves of garlic.  Cook three minutes, stirring often.  Add chicken broth and cover and simmer until garlic is very tender, about 20 minutes.   Using a stick/immersion blender, puree soup until smooth.  Add chicken and cream then bring to simmer.  Season with salt and pepper.  

3. Serve each bowl with 18 cup parmesan cheese and juice of one lemon wedge.  


This recipe is from Gimme Some Oven.  I love soup.  I don’t care what season it is, or when people are “supposed” to eat soup.  I can eat it all year round and it’s delicious.  This soup was no exception and had a lovely mild garlic flavor in every bite.  The chicken can be omitted for a smoother and vegetarian soup, but we enjoyed the chicken.

Homemade Beef Broth

Beef bones, as many as will fit into your slow cooker.  I used a combination of soup bones, marrow bones, and bones from previously roasted prime rib, etc. 
2 tablespoons white vinegar or lemon juice

1. Heat oven to 350*F.  Spread bones out on baking sheet and roast until browned. 

2. Transfer bones to slow cooker and add water up to one inch from top.  Add vinegar. 

3. Cover and cook on LOW for at least 24 hours and as many as 72.  Check occasionally to skim off any scum that has risen to the top and to add more water as necessary. 

4. Cool broth to room temperature, remove large chunks of bone or meat, then strain through wire mesh strainer.  You can line this with a clean kitchen towel if you’d like for better straining. 

5. Cool broth in refrigerator then skim fat off top.  You can use this fat for other things if you’d like. 

6. At this point you can boil it to condense it if you’d like.  Otherwise store it in small ziptop bags, 12-1 cup of broth per bag.  Freeze flat and stack for later use. 


This method is mainly from Food Renegade but I did a lot of googling and reading of other recipes as well.  I’ve made this a few times and it’s lovely.  I like to condense it and then put 12 cup in each of my freezer bags.  I reconstitute it with 12 cup water to get 1 cup of broth.  I haven’t bought beef broth in months!  

Only make this if you’re okay with making your entire home smell like cow.  Preferably not before you have any veg*n company!

Pasta Milano Soup

10 cloves garlic, peeled
2 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound short pasta, such as bowties
6 tablespoons butter
2 yellow onion, diced
16 ounces white mushrooms, sliced
12 cup white wine
4 tablespoons all purpose flour
4 cups chicken broth
6 cups milk
1 cup heavy cream or half and half
6 cubes chicken or vegetable bouillon
3-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked or grilled, and cut into pieces
1 cup sundried tomatoes in oil, drained and chopped
1 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
4 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
Salt and pepper, to taste
Fresh chopped parsley, for garnish

1. Heat oven to 400*F.  Place garlic on piece of aluminum foil, drizzle with olive oil, and roast 30 minutes or until tender.  Remove from oven and mince. 

2. Bring large pot salted water to boil and cook pasta as instructed by package.  Drain. 

3. Heat butter in large Dutch oven over medium-high heat.  Add onion and sauté until translucent, about 5 minutes.  Add roasted minced garlic and stir to combine.  Add mushrooms and cook until tender, about 4 minutes. 

4. Add flour and stir to combine.  Add wine and simmer for 1 minute, scraping pot to loosen any stuck bits with wooden spoon.  Add chicken and tomatoes and stir to combine.  Add broth, milk, and bouillon cubes.  Stir to combine and bring soup to simmer.  Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. 

5. Stir in parsley, Parmesan cheese, and cream then simmer, covered, for 5 minutes.  Add cooked pasta and stir to combine.  Season with salt and pepper to taste then garnish with fresh parsley. 


This recipe is from Daring Gourmet and it was super delicious.  It turned out very thick which is just the way we like soup, if you want something thinner, add more broth and/or cream.  The leftovers will get thicker as well.  This was a great, warming, lovely soup for a cold winter day.

Slow Cooker Creamy Tortellini Soup

24 ounces spaghetti sauce
1 pound ground beef
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
4 12 ounces fresh spinach
4 cups chicken broth
8 ounces cream cheese
8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
16 ounces cheese tortellini (or tortellini of choice)
Parmesan cheese, shredded, for serving

1. Combine spaghetti sauce, spinach, cream cheese, chicken broth, and mushrooms in slow cooked.  Cover and cook on LOW for 6 hours, or on HIGH for 3. 

2. 20 minutes before serving, increase heat to HIGH and stir in tortellini.  Cover and cook for 10 to 15 minutes or until tortellini are tender and hot. 

3. Top with Parmesan cheese before serving. 


This recipe is from Heather Likes Food and I made it some weeks ago when I was in need of some delicious soup. 

I did make a few changes to what is shown here and I would make a few more. 
1. Omit spinach because I can’t eat it.
2. Double mushrooms.
3. Add cream cheese at the end with tortellini. 
4. I used dried tortellini by Barilla instead of frozen.

Slow Cooker Tater Tot Soup

1 pound bacon, cut into pieces
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
14 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 pounds tater tots
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup milk
2 cups shredded cheese (I used Colby jack.)
Salt and pepper

1. Cook bacon in large skillet over medium heat until crisp.  Drain in sieve set over bowl.  Return 1 tablespoon bacon fat to skillet and add onion. Sauté onion until soft, about 4 or 5 minutes.  Add garlic and red pepper flakes and continue cooking until fragrant. 

2. Place tater tots, onion mixture, broth, and milk into slow cooker.  Cover and cook on LOW for 4 hours.  Stir to break apart tater tots then stir in cheese until melted.  Season to taste with salt and pepper, and then serve. 

No photo.

This recipe is from Kayotic Kitchen and, sadly, I didn’t get a picture because I completely forgot.  Mine also didn’t look quite as pretty as Kay’s due to the color the bacon added to the soup.  If you like tater tots, and you like soup, you’ll probably like this.  It tastes like tater tots in soup form.  Good comfort food for a gray, rainy day.

Internet - Kayotic Kitchen

Red Lentil Coconut Soup

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 red bell pepper, cut into 12 inch dice
1 jalapeno, minced
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon curry powder
12 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons salt
13 cup tomato paste
7 cups water
1 can coconut milk
2 cups red split lentils
1 (15 ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 tablespoon lime juice

1. Heat oil in Dutch oven or large soup pot.  Add onion, bell pepper, and jalapeno.  Cook 5 to 7 minutes or until vegetables have softened and start to color.  Add garlic, ginger, curry powder, cinnamon, salt, and tomato paste and continue cooking 2 to 3 minutes or until mixture is toasty and fragrant. 

2. Add water, coconut milk, lentils, and chickpeas.  Cook 20 to 25 minutes or until beans are tender.  Add lime juice and check for seasoning.  Add additional salt and lime juice if desired. 

No photo

This recipe is from Scaling Back.  It’s another one that I’ve seen bouncing around the blogosphere for some time but I finally got around to making it thanks to Amazon delivering red split lentils to me.  Sadly I didn’t take a photo, but it was pretty delicious.  Art and I enjoyed it with naan and rice.  It’s very similar to a dal and I was happy with how it turned out.

Internet - Scaling Back