This meatball and potato soup, from the community of old order Amish we grew up in, is quite possibly the best soup I have ever had! The homemade meatballs are well flavored with herbs and a savory seasoning and the soup is flavored with bay, beef broth, Italian seasoning, tomato juice and a splash of cream. The cream is optional and can be added for more of a creamy twist to this soup packed with hearty meatballs, potatoes and veggies. This meatball soup with homemade meatballs is a little more time consuming than some of my easier soup recipes such as Crack chicken soup or Amish golden stew, but if you wish to cut back on time and still enjoy a great flavor you could add frozen meatballs instead of the homemade meatballs listed in the recipe.
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Amish Meatball and Potato Soup (crockpot or stovetop)
- 7 quart crockpot (linked below)
- Non-stick skillet (linked below)
- Mixing bowl (linked below)
- Cutting board (linked below)
For the Homemade Meatballs:
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon season all (Lawry's salt)
- 2 teaspoons dried parsley
- 1 tablespoon whole milk
- 1 large egg
- 1/3 cup crushed cracker crumbs Ritz crackers
For the Soup:
- 1 cup diced onion white or yellow
- 3 medium potatoes, cubed peeling optional
- 1 1/2 cups sliced carrots
- 15.25 oz. whole corn kernels, drained or 1 1/2 cups frozen corn
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt or add to taste
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 3 cups beef broth *see note
- 2 cups tomato juice *see note
- 2 bay leaves
- 2/3 cup heavy whipping cream optional
Crockpot/slow cooker method:
- Combine the ingredients for the meatballs until the mixture is well combined and holds its shape when rolled. Roll the meat mixture into small walnut sized balls, then place into a large non-stick skillet coated with 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil. Fry over med-high heat on both sides until browned, but not cooked through.
- Place the browned meatballs into the bottom of a 6-7 quart crockpot, then layer the onion, carrots, potatoes and corn on top. Season with salt and Italian seasoning, then add the broth, tomato juice and bay leaves.
- Cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours or on high for 3-4 hours until the potatoes are softened and the meatballs have reached an internal temperature of 160 degrees (Fahrenheit). Stir in heavy cream (optional), then serve and enjoy!
Stove top method:
- Combine the ingredients for the meatballs until the mixture is well combined and holds its shape when rolled. Roll the meat mixture into small walnut sized balls, then place into a large stockpot coated with 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil. Fry over med-high heat on both sides until browned, but not cooked through.
- Add the onions, potatoes, corn and carrots to the browned meatballs, then add seasonings and stir everything (carefully) to combine.
- Pour the tomato juice and broth over top, then add bay leaves. Bring to a simmer and cook over medium heat for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally until the veggies have softened and the meatballs are cooked through (160 degrees Fahrenheit). Stir in heavy cream (optional), then serve and enjoy!
Equipment needed for this Amish Meatball and Potato Soup:
- Crockpot I use my 7 quart crockpot when cooking this meatball soup in the slow cooker. You can also use a 6 quart if you have it on hand.
- Non-stick skillet You will need a large non-stick skillet with a flat surface area for browning the meatballs in.
- Mixing bowl I like to use my stainless steel mixing bowls for mixing up the meatball mixture in. My stainless steel bowls are quite durable and also dish washer friendly!
- Cutting board A cutting board and Chef’s knife makes the chopping and dicing process with the potatoes, carrots and onions much easier!
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Ingredients needed for this Amish Meatball and Potato Soup: Potatoes, tomato juice, corn, heavy cream (optional), salt, Italian seasoning, bay, beef broth (or bouillon and water), carrots, and onion. For the meatballs: Ground beef, black pepper, season all, dried parsley, milk, egg and crushed cracker crumbs.
As mentioned above, you can skip the process of making homemade meatballs and toss a bag (1-2 pounds) of frozen meatballs into the soup instead.
Step 1 (crockpot method): Shape the meatballs into small walnut sized (or bite sized) balls, then place into a large non-stick skillet coated with several tablespoons of olive oil. Fry over medium high heat until browned on both sides, but not cooked through.
Because the meatballs will continue cooking with the remaining soup ingredients in the crockpot, or on the stove top, you do not need to cook the meatballs through at this point. The best method is to fry the meatballs hot and fast over medium-high heat and only 30-60 seconds per side until they have a nice brown on the top and bottom. Browning the meatballs before adding them to the soup keeps the meatballs intact while cooking with the remaining ingredients.
Step 2 (Crockpot) : Place the meatballs into a large crockpot, then place the veggies and seasonings over top.
Step 2 continued: Pour the broth and tomato juice over the seasoned veggies and meatballs, then add the bay leaves.
If you are not a fan of the bay flavor or simply don’t have the bay leaves in hand, you can omit the bay and add additional herbs to taste later, or simply leave the soup as is.
Step 3: Cover and cook the soup as directed in the recipe card. Once the potatoes are softened and the meatballs are cooked through (160 degrees Fahrenheit), then the heavy cream can also be stirred in. Serve and enjoy!
Sides to pair with this Amish meatball soup:
We enjoyed this meatball soup with fresh slices of homemade bread and jam, or as garlic bread toasted with butter, garlic powder and fresh parsley. Amish pretzel garlic knots or Copycat Red Lobster biscuits would also make great sides to this soup!
Storage for this Amish Meatball and Potato soup:
This soup tastes as good as leftovers as it does fresh. You can keep the leftovers refrigerated for up to 5 days, or you can freeze the leftovers in airtight containers for up to 3 months. Be sure the soup is fully cooked before freezing to prevent the potatoes from turning mushy due to their high water content.
Tip from the Amish ladies:
“If the meatballs disappear after the first meal, you can add other meat to the soup.” You could add cooked, shredded chicken, browned beef, cubed ham or cooked sausage to the leftovers if needed.
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