Brightly colored, super delicious and comforting vegetable borscht without oil. This is a vegan and gluten-free soup. Packed with vegetables and chickpeas, this vegan beet soup is nutrient-dense.
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A few weeks back, a couple of girlfriends and I were doing cooking video calls every weekend. It was a great way to share recipes and cook together.
One of my friends graciously shared her Chinese Russian family’s recipe for borscht. Now, we all have different dietary requirements, so naturally, I made mine into vegan borscht.
Previous to this recipe, I had never had good borscht, I always found them too oily. I made my borscht oil-free. I couldn’t be happier with the way this borscht tastes, it has so much flavor!
What is vegetable borscht?
Vegetable borscht is a distinctive bright red-colored vegetable, beet and bean soup.
The main ingredient of common borscht is red beets (beetroot).
This soup originates from Eastern Europe and Northern China.
There are other variations of borscht that do not include beets. This particular recipe is a vegan beet soup.
😋Why you’ll love this recipe
- This vegan beet soup is packed with vegetables
- The color is stunningly vibrant and it’s got loads of flavor
- Vegan, gluten-free, oil-free and corn free
- Easy preparation, one-pot only
- Store wells, both fridge and frozen
✔️Ingredients You’ll Need
Notes on some of the ingredients, the full list of ingredients and their measurements can be found in the recipe card below.
Beetroot should be fresh and of good quality. Pick a bunch of beetroot with good leaves.
I like to chop up the beetroot leaves, stems and bulbs to use in my vegetable borscht, however, you can only use the bulb.
Beets in soup give the most magnificent color. Chop up into small bite-sized pieces.
You can also make oil-free braised beetroot leaves if you opt to not include them in this vegan soup.
Green cabbage - select a small-to-medium size cannonball cabbage head. Slice up an ⅛ of the cabbage head into bite-sized pieces.
Chickpeas (garbanzo beans (affiliate link)) should be cooked prior (if using dry chickpeas) to adding to this vegetable borscht soup.
The easiest option is to use organic canned chickpeas.
Bay leaves and cloves add flavoring to this soup, I don’t recommend skimping on these.
You can add these directly to the soup and take them out when serving, or place them into an empty tea bag beforehand to make it easier to find them.
Vegetable stock Use your preferred veggie stock.
Note - generally store-bought vegetable stocks contain enough sodium, however always do a taste test when cooking and decide if you’d like to add salt. If you are trying to avoid oil, check the ingredients in the stock.
Freshly squeezed lemon is added at the end, this heightens the flavour of this vegetable borscht.
Carrots, potatoes and onions, again fresh produce here is best.
Chop these all up into small bite-sized pieces. The great thing about making this vegan beet soup is you don’t have to make the pieces accurate, just similar in size so they cook evenly.
The beetroot is such a vibrant color, this is what it looks like when you sweat it with the potato, onions and carrot.
Speaking of onion and carrot, check out my popular basic celery and carrot soup.
🔪How to Make Vegetable Borscht
Step 1 - In a stockpot, over medium-high heat, sweat onions and carrots in 3 tablespoons of vegetable stock until the onions have turned translucent and the carrots have released their color.
Step 2 - Add beetroot, potato, and 5 more tablespoons of vegetable stock, stir until the beetroot has released color and both the potatoes and beetroot have softened.
Step 3 - Add tomato paste. Stir and ensure all is coated. Add the remaining vegetable stock, bay leaves, and cloves. Bring it to a boil, then turn the heat down to low-medium. Allow simmering for about 10 minutes.
Step 4 - Add cooked chickpeas, cabbage, and soy sauce. Simmer for another 10 minutes. Turn the heat off and stir through the lemon. Serve warm with some roasted chickpeas as croutons.
Continuous stirring is needed during the sweating process in steps 1 & 2. This is because we aren’t using oil, if more spoonfuls of vegetable stock are needed, feel free to add spoonfuls at a time to stop any sticking.
Got excess fresh beetroot? Try making beetroot salad.
Got excess potato? Try making my vegan potato and leek soup.
Use roasted chickpeas as croutons, they add a nice crunch.
Cannon ball cabbage can be swapped with red cabbage, Chinese cabbage or savoy cabbage.
Soy sauce can be swapped out with tamari sauce (affiliate link), to make this a soy-free soup.
Chickpeas (garbanzo beans) can be swapped with any type of white bean. Vegan borscht with beans is a great meatless option.
Dill can be chopped up and added to this vegan beet soup.
Yes, this is easy. Simply portion out the soup into individual portions into an airtight container or bag once completely cooled to room temperature. If pouring this soup into a bag, lay it flat in the freezer.
Yes, you can use red cabbage in borscht or any type of cabbage. Just replace the same amount stipulated in the recipe for red cabbage and cook as per directions.
Another Asian meal you might enjoy is my super delicious Asian brussel sprouts.
Did you enjoy making this vegan recipe? I would love to hear from you, leave me a comment below and give me a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ rating. This will help me sustain Plant Based Folk.
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Delicious Vegetable Borscht Without Oil
- In a stockpot, over medium-high heat, sweat onions and carrots in 3 tablespoons of vegetable stock until the onions have turned translucent and the carrots have released their colour.1 medium Onion, 2 litres Vegetable stock, 2 small Carrots
- Add beetroot, potato and 5 more tablespoons of vegetable stock, stir until the beetroot has released colour and both the potatoes and beetroot have softened.1 large Beetroot, 2 large Potatoes, 2 litres Vegetable stock
- Add tomato paste. Stir and ensure all is coated. Add the remaining vegetable stock, bay leaves and cloves. Bring it to a boil, then turn the heat down to low-medium. Allow simmering for about 10 minutes.3 Bay leaves, 4 whole Cloves, 2 litres Vegetable stock, 3 tablespoons Tomato paste
- Add cooked chickpeas, cabbage and soy sauce. Simmer for another 10 minutes. Turn heat off and stir through the lemon. Serve warm.⅛ head Green cabbage, 3 tablespoons Soy sauce, 1 cup Chickpeas, 1 medium Lemon
N.B., nutrition info is an estimate based on an online nutrition calculator. This will vary based on the specific ingredients you use.