Ever wonder what soup mix was? Or how to use it? Turns out it is the express route to a speedy dinner. Throw soup mix into the slow cooker with a few chopped vegetables and some vegetable stock. Eight hours later you will have this delicious thick and hearty slow cooker vegetable soup.
TOTAL TIME INVESTMENT: 8 HOURS 15 MINUTES
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Have you ever trundled past the packaged soup aisle in the supermarket and spotted various bags of mixed beans, lentils and grains tucked amongst the brightly coloured packets of instant soup? In my supermarket, they are strategically positioned on the bottom shelf, hidden just well enough that only the truly dedicated can find them.
Those mysterious bags are soup mix, and as I discovered recently, they are the express route to a hearty, filling and super easy vegetable soup.
I love a steaming hot bowl of soup in the middle of winter, and this recipe makes a lot of soup. Which suits me perfectly, because I have enough for dinner, with loads left over to freeze for later.
I regularly freeze soup during the winter months so I always have a meal ready to go in the freezer for those days when nothing goes to plan, or I am too tired to cook. In fact, I freeze so much soup I wrote a whole post on my process. And you can grab my condensed guide from my Resource Library so you always have my tips on hand. Simply click the link below or request the library password at the end of this post.
Now soup mix is not something I have previously used and if I am being completely honest, it wouldn’t have been high on my list of must-try’s had it not been for the packet that appeared in my monthly subscription box. I have to say that I am now a complete convert.
Add some stock, a few vegetables and a good amount of seasoning, and you are well on your way to a substantial dinner with very little effort. All you need is a loaf of crusty bread or some soda bread to complete the meal.
Table of contents
- So What Is Soup Mix?
- Ingredient Substitutions for This Slow Cooker Vegetable Soup Recipe
- Frequently Asked Questions About Soup Mix Recipes
- Tips and Tricks For A Delicious Slow Cooker Soup
So What Is Soup Mix?
Whilst there are many different brands and variations on the market, soup mix is essentially just a mix of lentils, peas, beans and grains that add bulk and fibre to a meal.
Soup mix does not require soaking before use, so can be added straight into your soup liquid. And as soup mix requires just that little more time in the pot to soften to eating consistency, it is ideal for adding to the slow cooker.
Ingredient Substitutions for This Slow Cooker Vegetable Soup Recipe
This slow cooker vegetable soup recipe is what I refer to as a fridge cleaner. Don’t feel at all constrained by the recipe. I simply threw in the vegetables I had, so feel free to swap in whatever you have on hand. Also:
- If you can’t find soup mix in your local supermarket, you can easily make your own. Mix together 1/3 cup split peas, 1/3 cup green lentils and 1/3 cup barley and use this in place of the soup mix in the recipe.
- Barley is not gluten free. If you need a gluten free mix, and cannot find one locally, then simply use the ratios above but replace the barley with quinoa.
- Chicken stock can be used in place of the vegetable stock. Just be aware that the soup will no longer be vegan if using meat stock.
- Any hearty root vegetables would work well in this soup. Try sweet potato or pumpkin, parsnip or celeriac.
- Kale would be a good replacement for the silverbeet or spinach.
Frequently Asked Questions About Soup Mix Recipes
Do I have to soak soup mix?
Most soup mixes are generally made from quick cooked pulses and grains, or partially cooked pulses. Soup mix does not generally require soaking, however I would recommend you read the packet carefully to ensure that this is the case for the mix you have purchased.
Is soup mix gluten free?
Most soup mixes contain barley. Barley is not a gluten free grain. If you require a gluten free mix, either purchase a blend that is specifically labelled as gluten free or make your own given the proportions I have given above.
Can you put soup mix in the slow cooker
Yes you can. Soup mix is perfect for using in the slow cooker. This recipe is case in point.
How long is dry soup mix good for?
Dry soup mix can be stored in an airtight container in the cupboard for up to 12 – 18 months. Split peas can be tougher to rehydrate as they age, so if your soup mix is old I recommend you soak the soup mix overnight prior to use.
Tips and Tricks For A Delicious Slow Cooker Soup
This recipe will make a lot of soup, so it is ideal for feeding a crowd or for stocking the freezer. I leave you with a few extra tips to help you make the most delicious soup for dinner:
- A ratio of 1 cup of soup mix to six cups of stock will produce a thick, hearty soup. Add a little less soup mix if you want a thinner soup.
- If you are short on time, don’t bother browning the onions and garlic. This is an additional step I like to take to maximise flavour in the slow cooker but it is not necessary.
- And if you are really short on time, cut up all the vegetables the night before. In the morning just toss all the ingredients into the slow cooker. Dinner will be done in less than five minutes.
- The soup will thicken on standing or freezing. Add a little extra water or stock when reheating to return it to a soup consistency.
- Freeze any leftovers in meal sized portions for ready made lunches and dinners. Make sure you check out my post on how to freeze soup for further tips.
Other Soup Recipes That You May Enjoy.
I love soup. It is my favourite meal for those busy weeknights in winter when everybody wants to eat at different times. Soup is happy to be kept warm, can be easily reheated and most soups freeze brilliantly so I always make extra so I can stock the freezer. You can find all of my soup recipes here, but some of my favourite winter soups are:
- Easy Creamy Carrot Soup
- Creamy Cauliflower Cheese Soup
- Speedy Minestrone Soup
- Red Lentil and Bacon Soup
- Hearty Winter Vegetable Soup.
And make sure you also check out all of my slow cooker recipes, which can be found here.
Made this recipe? Tell me how it went in the comments below.
And if you loved it, please don’t forget to rate it.
Slow Cooker Vegetable Soup
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil, extra*
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 2 medium carrots, diced
- 1 1/2 litres (6 cups) chicken or vegetable stock
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 400 g (14 oz) tin of chopped tomatoes
- 125 g (1 cup) soup mix
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 2 large handfuls chopped spinach or silverbeet
- 2 Tablespoons chopped parsley
- Salt & pepper
- Turn the slow cooker to low to allow it to warm whilst gathering your ingredients.
- Saute the onion in olive oil in a small fry pan until lightly browned.
- Add the garlic to the pan and cook for 1 minute.
- Place the browned onion and garlic into the slow cooker.
- Add the stock, carrot, celery, chopped tomatoes, soup mix, and oregano to the slow cooker.
- Season well with salt & pepper. Stir thoroughly
- Cook for 8 hours on low.
- Stir the chopped spinach or silverbeet, and the parsley, through the soup.
- Allow to stand for five minutes before serving.
- *The olive oil is only used if you are frying your onions and garlic. Omit it from the recipe if adding the onions directly to the slow cooker.
- A ratio of 1 cup soup mix: 6 cups stock will produce a thick, hearty soup. Add less soup mix if you want a thinner soup.
- If short on time, skip browning the onions and garlic.
- All the ingredients can be prepared the night before, and just placed in the slow cooker in the morning.
- The soup will thicken on standing. Simply add a little extra water or stock when reheating to thin the soup.
- Freeze leftovers in meal sized portions.
Update Notes: This post was updated on 14th February 2019 to add frequently asked questions and links for freezing soup. A Table of Contents and additional links to other soup recipes were added on 29th July 2019.
Elaine @ Dishes Delish
Mmmm. This soup looks so yummy. Thanks for sharing!
Thanks Elaine 🙂
Cannot go wrong with a slow cooked comfort soup during the winter. Yum!
Completely agree Erin. They are great to come home to knowing no further effort is required.
Love ‘clean out the fridge’ recipes like this – looks delicious!
Thanks Christine 🙂
Who knew that soup mix could be so wonderful in a slow cooker recipe?!?!
I’ll admit to be very surprised the first time I tried it Michelle. Turns out it is a great way of cooking the soup mix.
I love making soup in my slow cooker. It’s so easy, and a great way to get more veggies in my diet too.
It’s a great way to make a large batch of soup, that’s for sure 😀
This soup looks so comforting and delicious, I love vegetable soup!
Thanks Emily 🙂 It’s great for a wintery day.
Kate | Veggie Desserts
My mum used to use soup mix all the time. I completely forgot that it existed! I need to get some and make this 🙂
I’d never used it Kate until I made this soup. And now I know how easy it is to use I am dreamimg up other recipes for it 😀
I love how easy it is to use a soup mix and then make it your own with additions. Yours looks so good! That’s a big bowl of comfort food!
Thank you 🙂 It does make a great base for soup, doesn’t it.
What kind of soup mix? Like a dry chicken noodle mix?
Hi Michelle. Soup mix is sold in packets in the supermarket here. If you cannot find it, I have given suggestions for suitable substitutions in the Ingredient Substitution section above. I hope that helps.
I ‘m disappointed, have just made this and the split peas in the soup mix didn’t cook properly.
They are still ‘crunchy’, the rest of it of it is soft and cooked after 7 1/2 hours.
I soaked the mix overnight but I think next time I need to fast boil the mix for a while before adding to slow cooker
Hi Rachel. I am so sorry to hear this. I have never had this problem, and I don’t even soak my soup mix. I also make a split pea and ham soup in the slow cooker, again without soaking, and have never had a problem with the split peas not cooking.
I hate to say this, but if you have soaked the mix and then cooked it for 7 1/2 hours, the problem lies with your soup mix. That the peas didn’t cook but the rest of the soup mix softened suggests either the peas are really old, or they have been treated in some way (steamed, irradiated etc). You should not need to pre-cook the soup mix at all, but I would be interested to know if you achieve a different result if you do.
I do you hope you give it another go. If you do, I highly recommend trying a different soup mix.