Slow Cooker Vegetable Beef Soup—A Family-friendly and Budget-friendly Meal

Friday, November 1, 2019

One of the ongoing debates about eating healthy is the challenge to do it on a budget. There is often the underlying assumption that it is not possible to eat healthy on limited resources. It is certainly not easy. We are now seeing that it is possible with a little planning and taking advantage of specific things like cheaper vegetables according to the seasons, sales, as well as buying frozen and canned foods. There are also types of meals that are budget-friendly. MyPlate provides some great resources to help everyone manage healthy eating on a budget.

Soups are one of the categories of meals that are budget-friendly. There are so many varieties. Soups are flexible and can combine any number of ingredients. They can feed a few or many. We all have our favorites. Recently I bought a large bag of frozen mixed vegetables at a great price. Next I wanted to use them to make a variety of meals. One of those meals I wanted to include was a soup. Below is the slow cooker soup recipe I came up with. Everyone loved it and we all thought it got more flavorful with time. It made enough for a couple of meals, which made it the best of budget-friendly meals.

Slow Cooker Vegetable Beef Soup


  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 lb beef, stew-quality meat, cut into bite-size cubes 
  • 1 lb potatoes, cut into cubes
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped 
  • 1 teaspoon seasoned salt 
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper 
  • 2 bay leaves 
  • 2 cans (14 oz each) beef broth, low sodium 
  • 1 can (14 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained 
  • 1 can (15 to 16 oz) great northern beans, drained and rinsed 
  • 2 ½ cups frozen mixed vegetables 


  1. Heat olive oil in skillet. Add onion and garlic. Cook for 2-3 minutes on high. Next add meat and brown on all sides. Place in slow cooker. 
  2. Mix in remaining ingredients, except frozen vegetables. 
  3. Cover and cook on low heat setting 7 to 8 hours. 
  4. Add mixed vegetables. Increase heat setting to High. Cover and cook 20 to 30 minutes longer or until vegetables are crisp-tender. Remove bay leaves before serving. 

Nutritional Information:
Serves 6. Serving size: 1½ cups. Calories: 310. Fat 7.3g (Saturated Fat 2.2g); Sodium 686mg; Protein 15g; Carbohydrate 30.4g; Fiber 6.4g; Sugars 6.1g.

Menu Tip: To make it a meal add a delicious homemade muffin. Here is a link to some of our favorites: Healthy Muffins.

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