Under Pressure: Deconstructed Cabbage Roll Soup

What happens when you decide to make borscht and then realize you don’t have any beets on hand? You make a thick and hearty soup with what you do have…and discover a new favorite!

I’m a big borscht fan, and I routinely make it when I have beets. Unfortunately, produce has been less than stellar in quality and availability at the grocery store, so I’ve been sticking to buying veggies that last – like cabbage. I had everything needed to make borscht, except for that one (key) ingredient.

Even without beets, the other ingredients in the borscht recipe I used as the base would make a tasty soup: cabbage, cauliflower*, carrots, onion, beef bones**, dry beans, water, tomato sauce and paste, stevia***, bay leaves, salt, and pepper.

Gorgeous and inexpensive soup bones…just look at that marrow! The marrow and the bits of meat left on the bones add wonderful flavor.

The ingredients are layered in a specific order in the Instant Pot (I used my 10 quart – yeah! – to ensure there was plenty of room for the veggies like the cabbage without overfilling), then cooked for 35 minutes on Manual followed by a natural release****.

I served the soup over hot jasmine rice (sub cauliflower or shirataki rice, if desired, for a lower carb option – or just skip the rice, the soup doesn’t really need it), thereby completing the cabbage roll-like flavor profile.

Verdict: this is delicious, nutritious comfort food and I’ll be making it again!

My changes were as follows:
▪️Cauliflower was a lower carb sub for the base recipe’s potatoes
▪️Beef bones add richness and umami to the soup, but mushrooms could also be a tasty vegetarian substitute
▪️I subbed stevia (lower carb) for the maple syrup
▪️I chose Natural Release over 15 mins NR + Quick Release to ensure that the soup had a tender, stew-like consistency