These easy Crockpot soup recipes are either made right in the slowcooker OR can be prepped ahead on the stovetop, frozen, and then reheated and kept warm in the Crock Pot for a busy night dinner when you're not sure when you'll be home.
The biggest mistake most people make when trying to use a small kitchen appliance is assuming that they need a specific recipe intended exactly for their machine.
If you want to make a Crockpot soup recipe, do not limit yourself to searching for just "Crockpot soups."
Did you know that most soup recipes can actually be cooked right in your slowcooker?? They don't have to be written perfectly for a crockpot soup.
I've gathered together all my tricks and tips for turning any soup recipe into a slowcooker soup along with 16 of my favorite soups that can be made in or heated up with a Crockpot for a super easy family dinner.
The best part? Soup tastes better after it has simmered for a long time, it freezes really well, and the Crockpot heats it up perfectly!
Dinner will be waiting for you on your timetable, whenever you're ready to ladle up a steaming bowl of comfort.
Crockpot Soups vs Stovetop Soups
Our family makes a lot of soup. We're pretty obsessed with it from September - April of most years.
After making hundreds of batches of soup for my family, I can tell you the biggest difference between a slowcooker soup and one that has been simmered on the stovetop:
Browning. That's it.
If your soup recipe has ground meat that needs to be browned and broken up, it should start cooking on the stovetop.
If your vegetables need to be softened and you really want to improve their flavor, saute them in butter on the stovetop.
But the rest of it??
If your soup just needs to simmer to let the ingredients blend together, you can absolutely count on your Crockpot to do the job well.
How to Turn ANY Soup into a Crockpot Soup
If you want to make a Crockpot soup, you don't need to search for just "slowcooker soup recipes."
You can literally turn any soup recipe into a Crockpot Soup with just a few basic tricks:
1. Start on the Stovetop:
If your soup recipe has any of the following ingredients, you'll want to start the recipe in a big pot on your stovetop:
- Ground Meat: ground beef, ground chicken, ground pork, ground sausage, etc.
- Stew Meat: chunks of pork, beef, or chicken that are meant to be in whole chunks in the final stew
- The "Holy Trinity": If your soup starts with the classic mix of onions, carrots, and celery, you may want to consider browning them on the stovetop. This mellows the onions and sweetens the carrots and improves their texture overall.
2. Transfer to the Crockpot:
Once you've browned the necessary starter ingredients, simply scrape them all right into your slowcooker!
Then you can add the broth ingredients, stir, and start the slowcooker cooking.
3. Adjust the Cooking Time:
Your original soup recipe will probably call for 30 minutes to an hour for simmering time to let the flavors mingle. Some soups require a few hours.
To adjust the time on your slowcooker, here's a good rule of thumb:
Original Recipe Calls for 30 Min - 1 Hour:
Let your slowcooker cook for 2 - 3 Hours on HIGH or 3 - 4 Hours on LOW.
Original Recipe Calls for 2 Hours or More:
Let your slowcooker cook for twice as long on HIGH, 2.5x as long on LOW.
4. Check for Doneness:
The last bit of success is just making sure that all meats are cooked to a proper temperature, that the vegetables are nice and tender, and that the broth is well seasoned and full of flavor.
5. A Note on Pasta & Rice:
Many soup recipes also involve some sort of pasta or rice. If you want to cook these in the slowcooker, you have two good options:
- Cook on the Stovetop and Transfer: Cook the pasta perfectly al dente on the stovetop and then just stir it into the soup before serving.
- Reserve Until the Last 30 Minutes: Wait to add the noodles to the Crockpot until closer to the end of your cook time. They'll be overdone if you add them right from the start.
The Best Bread to Serve with Soup
If you want a totally delicious and easy dinner for your family, don't forget to add some fresh bread to your menu when planning a slowcooker soup.
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