Paleo Spare Rib Soup Recipe

Delicious paleo-friendly spare rib and vegetable soup

One of the things I find most difficult as a human being is eating. Not that I can’t physically get food into my mouth, but more like I’m allergic to everything that most other humans call food. This paleo spare rib soup takes a while to make, but I’ve found it’s worth the effort – and it doesn’t contain anything I’m allergic to, as long as I use grass-fed beef and skip the cabbage – but that’s easily replaced with kale.

As a glutard (my friend’s delightful word for the gluten-free), this is one of my favorite soups of all time – though my wife isn’t the biggest fan, she’ll eat it as long as I supply her with plenty of crusty, delicious bread on the side.

I poached this recipe (and the images) from The Perfect Pot of Primal Soup at Mark’s Daily Apple. I figure since I’m posting this on (almost) the eight year anniversary of when it was published they’ll forgive me – especially since it was such a life-changing dish for me.

This was also an excuse to try out adding Recipe Schema markup to my site – so we’ll see how that turns out as well.

Spare Rib Vegetable Soup


Spare Rib Vegetable Soup ingredients - before the soupening
  • 3 pounds of beef short ribs
  • Olive oil for browning meat
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar and more for flavoring at the end
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 4 beets, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks. Cut off the beet greens and save on the side.
  • 1 large turnip, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes in juice
  • 2 stalks of celery, chopped
  • 3 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1/4 –1/2 cup roughly chopped fresh dill
  • 1/2 a head of cabbage, shredded


Lightly salt the short ribs. Heat one tablespoon of oil in a stockpot on high heat, and brown the short ribs in batches on all sides. If the pot begins to smoke, turn the heat down to medium.

Remove the browned ribs from the pot.

Add vinegar and stir it around to loosen up any bits on the bottom of the pot. With the heat on medium, add onions and garlic. Brown the onions and garlic then return the meat to the pot and add 10 cups of water, or just enough to cover the ribs. Partially cover and simmer for 2.5 – 3 hours. If needed, add a little extra water to the pot while simmering to keep ribs covered in liquid.

Remove the meat from the pot and cut it off the bone – the meat should be tender and easily pull apart. If there is excess fat or gristle, return what you want to the pot and discard the rest.

Return the meat to the soup pot and add beets, turnip and canned tomatoes.

Simmer with the lid on for 30 minutes. Add the celery, carrots, dill and cabbage. Simmer ten minutes more. Chop the beet greens up and add during the last five minutes of cooking.

Adjust the flavor of the soup with salt and pepper if needed. Drizzle a little apple cider vinegar into the broth to heighten the flavor. The soup will have even richer flavor the day after it is made.