Borsch – The Russian & Ukranian Beetroot Soup

20.03.2015 Posted in Red Cooking No Comments

The Spring season is quickly approaching. But it is still cold and humid. March is an excellent time to try out Borsch – one of the most well-known Russian soups. The recipes of Borsch vary. The main ingredient is beetroot, which gives Beetroot boiled and peeledborsch its famous red color. It is usually made with beef. However my preferred version is vegetarian borsch. It is still delicious and it is a bit simpler to make. As many Russian dishes borsch can be time consuming. Ideally you are supposed to start with boiling your beetroot until it is cooked. And it takes a long time. If you do not have all this time, you can buy cooked beetroot.


  • 1 Tbsp salt (or more to taste)
  • 2 large or 3 medium beets
  • 4 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 2 Tbsp tomato sauce, or paste
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 medium onion, finely diced
  • 2 carrots,
  • 2 large or 3 medium potatoes,
  • 1/2 head of small cabbage,
  • 2 tomatoes, peeled and diced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley + more for garnish
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed
  • Garnish: Sour cream, parsley or dill, olives or lemon


  1. Grate (or thinly slice) beet-root and carrot, chop onions, slice potatoes (into bite-slices) and cabbage.
  2. Place grated beetroot in a large skillet with 4 Tbsp olive oil and sauté for 5 minutes, then reduce heat and add 1 Tbsp sugar and 2 Tbsp tomato sauce. Mix thoroughly and sauté for another 10 minutes, until starting to soften, stirring occasionally. Remove from pan and set aside.
  3. In the same skillet simmer chopped onion in 1 Tbsp butter for 2 min. Add grated carrot and sauté another 5 min or until softened.
  4. Place sliced potatoes into the soup pot with 1.5 L of cold water and cook for 10 min, then add cabbage, sauteed beets, onion & carrot, and chopped tomatoes. Boil and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until potatoes can be easily pierced with a fork.
  5. Add 2 bay leaves, 1/4 tsp pepper, and more salt to taste.
  6. Chop parsley and pressed garlic then stir them into the soup pot, immediately cover and remove from heat. Let the pot rest covered for about 20-30 minutes for the flavors to meld.

Tips for Serving BorschBorscht

Sour cream, chopped dill, sliced lemon or olives are served in separate bowls or added into the plate with borsch right before serving it.

Prep time 30 min

Cooking time 1 hour

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