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A bowl of Grandmama's soup with crackers and cheese.

Grandmama's Soup

A hearty chili-based soup/stew.

Course Soup
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 8


  • 3 large potatoes (cut into bite sized chunks)
  • 3/4 yellow onion (chopped)
  • 8 cups water
  • 1/3 package spaghetti noodles
  • 2 cans Beef with Vegetables and Barley soup
  • 24 oz can Chili with no beans
  • salt and pepper (to taste)


  1. Peel and chop potatoes into bite-sized chunks.

  2. Chop onion to desired size.

  3. Place chopped potatoes and onion into a large pot or dutch oven and add water. Cook on stove over medium-medium/high heat until potatoes are almost done (boiling approximately 8-10 minutes). 

  4. Add spaghetti, beef with vegetables and barley soup, and salt and pepper to taste. Bring back to a boil.

  5. Add chili and simmer until done; stirring and scraping the bottom of the pot occasionally.

Recipe Notes

  • To get a thinner soup, slightly increase the water and/or reduce the simmering time at the end. 
  • For a thicker, more stew-like consistency (this is how I usually make it), allow it to boil/simmer at the end until thickened. 
  • I've found that Wolf Brand Chili will make the soup a bit spicier and Hormel will make it a bit milder. 
  • We always eat this soup with saltines and cheddar cheese on the side.