Soups & Stews

We've got some secrets to help you prepare tasty soups and stews. Learn how to enhance flavors with spices and herbs, deal with too much salt and reduce fat!

A green ceramic bowl full of beef stew and vegetables.

Add More Flavor

Soups and stews taste better if made a day or two in advance and reheated just before serving.

A pile of salt from a salt shaker on a black surface.

Too Salty?

If your soup ends up salty, add a few slices of peeled raw potato and simmer for about 10 minutes to absorb the salt.

A bowl of vegetable soup with thin noodles and cilantro.

Reducing Fat

To reduce fat, make the soup the day before and refrigerate to remove the fat that rises to the top. If you don't have time to chill the soup, use a white paper towel to absorb the fat that rises to the surface.

A piece of steak is seared in a skillet.

Brown Meat First

For a flavorful soup or stew, brown the meat in a small amount of oil before making the soup or stew. This will produce intense flavors.

A ceramic bowl of stew garnished with radish and cilantro.

Adding Herbs

Herbs will have a more intense flavor if added at the end of the long cooking process. So if you don’t want to overpower the flavor of the soup, add herbs and spices at the beginning of the cooking process.

Water boils in a pot with a lid and steam rises from it.

Simmering vs. Boiling

To simmer, don’t cover the pot tightly, and always leave a small opening for steam to escape. This will prevent the temperature from reaching a boiling point and drying out the meat. Soups and stews should simmer (never boil) while cooking to prevent meat from getting tough.