Instant Pot Russian Beet Soup Recipe

Photo Credit: Tatiana Volgutova/Shutterstock

I was standing in my grandma’s kitchen, where she would spend days cooking up a storm to feed our family of six. While I was stirring and dropping the ingredients in to make this beautiful ruby-red soup, she was lying paralyzed in her hospital-like bed in the living room. She was still managing to shout out each step of the recipe.

The homemade Russian beet soup, a.k.a. borscht, is that rare soup that is delightful year-round — it is a dish that can be eaten hot or cold. My grandmother had immigrated to the United States several years after my parents and I moved, right before the fall of the Soviet Union. She left the home she loved and moved to a whole new country without knowing a word of English because she knew that she was the foundation of our family and had to be close to us.

I still have her recipe book in my home, with her secret and delicious recipes. Whenever I need to make something special, I always search for recipes that she used to make for me as a child. I sincerely hope that this Russian culinary staple recipe brings empowerment and joy, and spreads amazing smells throughout your own home.


  • 6 beets, cooked
  • 2 carrots chopped in circles or 1 cup of baby carrots
  • 1 onion
  • 1 can of tomato paste
  • 1 celery stick
  • 4 small potatoes, each potato cut into 4 pieces
  • 1 pack of shredded cabbage
  • 3 pieces of chicken breast or thighs   
  • Spices: pink Himalayan salt, pepper, Turmeric, lemon pepper
  • Avocado oil or coconut oil


Rinse the chicken breast or thighs and throw them into the Instant Pot.   

Wash celery, carrots, potatoes, and half an onion and toss them into the Instant Pot, cut up into slices (you can also put half of the onion in as a whole instead of cutting it up).   

Toss the shredded cabbage in. Leave half of the onion to fry later. Sprinkle the spices in, 1 Tablespoon of each spice. Add water to the maximum amount and close the lid and put Instant Pot on cook for 20 minutes.   

While Instant Pot is cooking, grab a pan and pour oil of choice to cover the bottom. When heated, throw in the other half of the onion sliced and fry until the onion browns. Add in the tomato paste when the onion browns.  Put on medium heat and leave for 10 minutes.   

When the soup is done, release the pressure, open the Instant Pot and add in the beets by shredding them (this will turn the soup that rich beet color). After adding in the beets, add in the onion and tomato mixture and stir.   

Let it sit on the “keep warm” option for 10 minutes. Serve it hot. I like to add a tablespoon of sour cream, along with slices of garlic (sprinkled with pink salt) and a slice of fresh bread.

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