This easy Scotch broth is a delicious, hearty comfort soup, perfect for warm winter’s days.
Scotch broth is about as hearty and comforting as it gets. It’s a traditional Scottish soup that will well and truly warm your cockles on a cold winter’s day.
I love this soup because you can throw lots of vegetables in but the (optional) lamb stock and scotch broth mix adds another dimension.
Traditionally scotch broth originates from Scotland and contains mutton as well as root vegetables and scotch barley. This recipe doesn’t include any lamb or mutton though so my kids would eat it. If your kids are less fussy and you have some lamb left over from a Sunday roast, throw some in.
How can kids help to make Scotch broth?
Scotch broth is a really easy soup to make and kids that are old enough to help peel and chop vegetables will have plenty to get involved with.
Some children can help peel onions, carrots and the turnip. Make sure they hold the veg and peel away from their fingers. If your kids can safely use a knife you could get them involved in chopping the leek or celery or even the carrot.
Once you’ve prepared the veg, your kids can help add everything to the pot, cook it off and stir it all in with the stock.
Can you make it vegetarian?
Scotch broth does traditionally contain mutton and a mutton or lamb stock but as it also contains a lot of vegetables it’s easy to make it vegetarian or even vegan without feeling like you’re missing out on anything. To make it vegetarian simply omit the mutton/lamb and replace the lamb stock for vegetarian stock.
Can you freeze it?
Yes. If you make a large batch you can freeze it to eat at a later date. I find it best to freeze it in individual portions in freezer bags.
Do you need to soak Scotch broth mix?
Yes. Scotch broth mix can be very hard if you don’t soak it beforehand. Most packet instructions will recommend soaking it in water overnight or for at least a few hours. If you don’t have time to do that however, you can boil it in water for at least half an hour before you add it to the soup to cook further.
What vegetables can you use?
Scotch broth uses a range of root vegetables like carrots and turnips as well as leeks and celery. The great thing about the soup though is that you could add any vegetables you have to hand – swede, parsnip or even potatoes would also work well.
Can you re-heat it?
Yes. If you’ve got some left it will keep in the fridge in a sealed container for a few days. To enjoy it again, reheat it in a pot on the hob until it has warmed through.
What can you use instead of Scotch broth mix?
If you don’t have or can’t find Scotch broth mix in your local store you could substitute it for a mixture of pearl barley, green split peas and red lentils.
Is Scotch broth healthy?
Yes. This recipe contains vegetables, grains and broth, so it’s full of nutrients and at only 219 calories per serving, very low in calories.
What can I serve with it?
What other Scottish recipes can I make?
If you want to browse some of our other Scottish recipes you can find them all together in one place, or check out our favourites:
You might need the following baking tools/gadgets to make this Scotch broth
200g Scotch broth mix
1 celery stalk
2.5l stock (lamb or vegetable)
100g kale (optional)
How to make Scotch broth
Prepare the Scotch broth mix
Follow the packet instructions to soak the Scotch broth mix overnight or for at least a few hours in cold water.
It’s also possible to speed up this step if you don’t want to or can’t leave it overnight – simply boil it in some water for at least 30 minutes before you add it to your broth. You can do this while you prepare the vegetables.
Prepare the vegetables
Finely slice the leek and cut the other vegetables (except the kale) into small chunks.
Some vegetables are easier than others for kids to prepare but if you’ve got young children they should be able to: peel the carrots, turnip and onions, and perhaps chop the leek and celery into small pieces.
If you have older children they might also be able to cut the carrot and onion into small pieces.
I found the turnip the hardest to chop so this might be a job just for grown ups. We sliced them, then cut the slices into fingers and then small dices from there.
Make the Soup
Heat a little oil in a large pan then add all the prepared vegetables (except the kale). Cook them for 5 minutes, stirring all the time so they don’t burn.
Get your kids to add the stock and Scotch broth mix and stir it all in. Bring the Scotch broth to the boil, then cover it and simmer it for about an hour.
If you’re adding the kale, chop it up and add it about 10 minutes before the end of cooking (after about 50 minutes.)
The broth is ready when the vegetables and Scotch broth mix are soft. Season it to taste with salt and ground black pepper.
Serve and enjoy!
- 200 g (1 ¾ cups) Scotch broth mix
- 250 g carrots
- 250 g turnip
- 2 onions
- 1 celery stalk
- 1 leek
- 2.5 l stock lamb or vegetable
- 100 g kale optional
Prepare the Scotch broth mix
- Follow the packet instructions to soak the Scotch broth mix overnight or for at least a few hours in cold water.
Prepare the vegetables
- Finely slice the leek and cut the other vegetables (except the kale) into small chunks.
Make the Scotch broth
- Heat a little oil in a large pan then add all the prepared vegetables (except the kale). Cook them for 5 minutes, stirring all the time so they don't burn.
- Add the stock and Scotch broth mix and stir it all in. Bring the Scotch broth to the boil, then cover it and simmer it for about an hour.
- If you're adding the kale, chop it up and add it about 10 minutes before the end of cooking (after about 50 minutes.)
- The broth is ready when the vegetables and Scotch broth mix are soft. Season it to taste with salt and ground black pepper.
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