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.
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