Hearty and Delicious Scotch Broth Soup Recipe

Welcome to my Scotch Broth recipe! As a chef specializing in British cuisine, I’m excited to share with you a traditional Scottish soup that is what comfort food is all about. Scotch Broth is a hearty, robust and nourishing soup made with lamb and root vegetables. It is a classic dish that has been enjoyed by families for generations and is one of Scotland’s most famous dishes.

Scotch Broth is about bringing people together around the table; it’s the kind of meal that warms your soul and fills your belly. Its rustic charm will take you back to an era where food was made from scratch, with ingredients that were fresh and full of flavor.

This recipe is perfect for those cold winter nights when you’re in need of something warm and comforting. The lamb makes it incredibly satisfying, while the vegetables add depth to the overall flavor.

Whether you’re new to Scottish cuisine or an experienced cook, this recipe is sure to impress. So, let’s get started and make some delicious traditional Scotch Broth!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Scotch Broth Dinner
Scotch Broth Dinner

Scotch Broth Dinner Recipe is a traditional Scottish soup that’s worth making all year round. With a hearty combination of root vegetables, pearl barley, and lamb bones, this recipe perfectly captures the warmth and comfort of traditional Scottish cooking. Here’s why you’ll love it:

First, the ingredients are easy to find and rather inexpensive. For instance, you’ll need onions, leeks, turnips (or rutabaga), carrots, water, pearl barley, lamb, and Scotch broth mix to make a delicious and filling pot of soup. You can adjust the ingredients based on your preference or dietary needs without compromising the original taste.

Secondly, it’s a great way to warm up on a chilly day. The soup is thick and wholesome with an earthy aroma that fills your kitchen with welcoming scents. This slow-cooked dish is perfect for when cold weather hits or when you need something nourishing to soothe the soul after a long day.

Thirdly, the recipe requires minimal preparation and can be personalized in so many ways. You can adjust the amount of meat used or even swap it out for chicken or beef broth. Vegans can also enjoy this soup by omitting the lamb altogether and using vegetable broth instead. The recipe will still come out flavorful and satisfying.

Finally, Scotch Broth Soup is ideal for serving and sharing with loved ones. For a cozy dinner party or family night in, whip up a big pot of this hearty soup along with some crusty breads or crackers for everyone to enjoy together.

In conclusion, Scotch Broth Dinner Recipe is one of those classic dishes that will never go out of style. Warm and filling with layers of flavor and texture – this recipe has everything you could ever want from traditional Scottish cuisine. Give it a try today!

Ingredient List

 A steamy bowl of hearty Scotch Broth to warm you up on a chilly day!
A steamy bowl of hearty Scotch Broth to warm you up on a chilly day!

Scotch Broth Recipe Ingredients

  • 1 lb lamb, diced to 50g
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, sliced into rings
  • 1 leek, sliced thinly
  • 1 small turnip, root end removed and cubed
  • 1 small rutabaga (swede), root end removed and cubed
  • 100g/1/2 cup pearl barley, rinsed (Skip it if gluten-free)
  • 12 cups water, including soaking liquid for the barley
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil

The traditional scotch broth contains split peas, which can be substituted for the pearl barley. The broth recipe ingredients include a bit of everything usually thrown into the pot. In the olden days, Scots would eat broth as a main meal, so the broth traditionally contained lamb bones and lots of vegetables including leeks and rutabaga turnips. However, this soup recipe is made with lamb cubes instead of bones to cut down on cooking time. If you want to make Scotch Broth without meat, substitute vegetable broth or use chicken broth for chicken soup.

The Recipe How-To

 This dish is a true classic in British cuisine - and for good reason.
This dish is a true classic in British cuisine – and for good reason.

Now that you have gathered all the ingredients needed for this flavorful Scotch Broth Dinner Recipe, let’s start cooking! Make sure to follow these simple steps to achieve the traditional taste of a Scottish soup:

Preparing the Broth Mix

First, you need to prepare the broth. Drain and rinse the Scotch Broth mix, then soak it in warm water for at least 20 minutes.

Preparing the Root Vegetables and Lamb

In a large pot, heat some olive oil over medium heat. Then, add diced onions, chopped leeks, and the prepared turnips, swede, and carrots. Let them cook for 5-7 minutes or until they are tender.

Next, add lamb meat and bones (lots of vegetables included such as leek, rutabaga turnip). Pour 8 cups of water and 2 teaspoons of salt into the pot.

Simmering and Cooking

Bring the mixture to boil then lower heat to simmer. Leave it to cook for at least two hours or until lamb is tender.

Add one cup of pearl barley and leave it to cook over low heat for another hour, stirring occasionally.

Adjusting Seasonings

Once everything is tender and cooked in one pot, give a good stir,some more salt and pepper can be added at this point depending on preference.

In traditional Scottish homes or in good restaurants will always serve with some crusty bread.

You can serve it with salad leaves or boiled potatoes on the side.

Enjoy that delicious traditional scottish soup made with love!

Substitutions and Variations

 The combination of tender lamb, earthy veggies, and chewy barley is a match made in heaven!
The combination of tender lamb, earthy veggies, and chewy barley is a match made in heaven!

One of the best things about cooking is that you can experiment with different ingredients and get creative with your dishes. The same goes for this traditional Scottish soup recipe. Don’t feel restricted to the ingredients listed above; there are plenty of substitutions and variations that you can try.

Instead of lamb, you can use beef, chicken, or even make it vegan by using vegetable broth and omitting any meats altogether. If you prefer not to use pearl barley, try using brown rice or wild rice instead. You can also add other root vegetables such as parsnips or potatoes to give the soup more depth and flavor.

If you’re short on time, use a slow cooker to make the scotch broth soup. Simply add all the ingredients into the slow cooker and set it on low heat for 6-8 hours. The result will be a hearty and delicious soup with minimal effort.

For those who prefer a thicker consistency in their soup, add more pearl barley or even some diced potatoes to thicken it up. Or if you prefer a lighter broth soup, reduce the amount of barley and vegetables in the recipe.

Finally, if you’re feeling adventurous, try adding some additional seasonings such as thyme, oregano or rosemary for a unique twist on this classic soup recipe.

No matter what substitutions or variations you make, remember that cooking is all about experimenting and making something that suits your taste buds. So go ahead, have fun in the kitchen, and enjoy this traditional Scottish soup made just the way you like it!

Serving and Pairing

 Don't let the long cook time intimidate you - it's worth the wait for that rich, flavorful broth.
Don’t let the long cook time intimidate you – it’s worth the wait for that rich, flavorful broth.

Now that your scotch broth soup is ready, you might be thinking about how best to serve it. Traditionally, scotch broth was considered a meal in itself and could be enjoyed any time of the day. However, there are several ways to elevate your experience with this hearty soup.

One great option is to serve it with some crusty bread such as a baguette or sourdough. This will provide a nice texture contrast to the soup and allow you to scoop up every bit of flavor.

If you are looking for something more substantial, pair your scotch broth with a meat pie or pasty. These savory baked goods can complement the broth’s richness and add some extra protein to your meal.

For something lighter, try pairing your scotch broth with a simple salad. A mix of greens, shaved carrots, and radishes dressed with lemon vinaigrette can provide a fresh counterpoint to the earthy flavors of the soup.

If you are serving scotch broth as part of a larger meal, consider pairing it with roasted meats like lamb or beef. The bold flavors and textures of these meats can hold their own against the hearty broth, making for a satisfying and complete meal.

Finally, don’t forget about drinks! A classic Scottish ale or stout pairs perfectly with scotch broth due to its malty notes and full-bodied flavor. If beer isn’t your thing, try a glass of bold red wine like cabernet sauvignon or zinfandel.

No matter what you choose to pair your scotch broth with, enjoy it slowly and savor every spoonful!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Feel free to customize this recipe to your liking - add more veggies or adjust the seasoning to your taste.
Feel free to customize this recipe to your liking – add more veggies or adjust the seasoning to your taste.

One of the great things about Scotch Broth soup is that it’s perfect for making ahead and storing. In fact, it’s recommended that you make a big batch and store it in the fridge or freezer for later use. This hearty soup has a long shelf-life and can easily last up to two days in the refrigerator.

To store, allow the soup to cool down to room temperature before pouring into an airtight container. Ensure that there is enough headspace in the container to allow for any expansion when freezing. Label the containers with date and contents and put them in the fridge. When you’re ready to reheat, simply warm up on medium heat in a saucepan until piping hot throughout.

Scotch broth soup also reheats well, which makes it a convenient meal option for busy weeknights or packed lunches. When reheating frozen soup, gradually increase to medium heat, stirring occasionally to break up any lumps. Once heated through, adjust seasoning as needed and add more liquid if necessary.

If you prefer to make this soup on-the-go, a slow-cooker can be used instead. Simply follow the recipe as directed and allow the soup to cook on low heat for 6-8 hours or high heat for 4-5 hours until vegetables are tender.

Overall, Scotch Broth Soup is an ideal make-ahead meal that can be stored and reheated with ease, ensuring you have a nourishing meal ready when required.

Tips for Perfect Results

 The arom
The arom

To make the perfect Scotch Broth soup, here are some of my favorite tips and tricks that I have discovered throughout my time in the kitchen.

The first tip for making the perfect Scotch Broth soup is to properly soak your broth mix. Drain and rinse your broth mix before filling the pot with water and letting it soak for at least 20 minutes. This helps break down the tough outer shell of the grains and allows them to cook evenly in the soup.

Another important tip is to not skimp on the vegetables. Traditional Scotch Broth soup is known for its hearty vegetables, including rutabaga turnips, leeks, carrots, and onions. Adding more vegetables not only adds depth of flavor but also texture to the soup.

When it comes to cooking with lamb, it’s important to use fresh lamb scraps or bones rather than packaged store-bought lamb broth. This helps retain the delicate flavor and aroma of fresh lamb in the broth.

Using pearl barley instead of split peas is a great way to give your Scotch Broth a different texture while still keeping that traditional Scottish taste.

If you’re looking for a vegan or vegetarian option, you can substitute the lamb with vegetable broth and add extra root vegetables such as parsnips or celery root for added earthiness.

For those who prefer their Scotch Broth even heartier or who want to turn it into a full meal, try adding in some cubed potatoes or serving it alongside some freshly baked bread for dipping.

Finally, while traditionally made over an open fire in one big pot that everyone in the family would share from, using a slow cooker or a pressure cooker can help achieve similar results whilst requiring less attention to be paid to it!

These tips should help you create a delicious, hearty bowl of Scotch Broth every time!


As with any recipe, questions and doubts might arise. I’ve put together this FAQ section to help address some of the most common concerns when preparing Scotch Broth. From ingredient substitutions to cooking methods, I hope this section will cover all of your uncertainties so that your experience preparing this soup will be a smooth one.

Is Scotch Broth good for you?

Scotch broth is a highly nutritious soup that can be considered a superfood. It contains a plethora of nutrients including root vegetables, lamb protein and high-antioxidant rutabaga/turnip/swede.

What happens if you don’t soak Scotch Broth mix?

To ensure the perfect texture of your Scotch Broth, it is important to soak the mix for a couple of hours before cooking. However, if you happen to forget this step, all is not lost! Simply boil the mix in water for 20 minutes and then leave it to soak. Otherwise, your soup might end up being too crunchy, and the soft and stodgy texture that is so quintessential to Scotch Broth might be compromised. So don’t skip the soaking step if you want to savor the true deliciousness of this classic British dish!

Do you have to pre soak Scotch Broth mix?

To prepare the broth mix, plan to soak it for at least 10 hours unless you’re using quick cook broth mix. Begin by placing the mix in a bowl and covering it with water before letting it soak. When you’re ready to cook, bring some water to a boil in a pan and dissolve stock cubes in it. Then, add the soaked broth mix to the pan and let it cook.

How do you use Great Scot broth mix?

Before I can begin preparing this recipe, I must first soak 100g of vegetable broth mix in 500ml of cold water for 8-12 hours. Once the time has passed, I should drain and rinse the broth mix before placing it into a large saucepan along with 500ml of water. I need to bring the mixture to a boil and leave it to boil for 10 minutes before reducing the heat to a simmer. The broth mix should be simmered for 40 minutes, or until it has become softened but retains some firmness upon biting. Once done, I should drain and rinse the broth mix before using it in my recipe.

Bottom Line

Now that you’ve learned about this delicious and traditional Scotch Broth dinner recipe, there’s no reason to not give it a try. The warm and hearty soup is not only perfect for cold winter nights, but also a great way to introduce yourself and your family to the wonderful world of British cuisine.

With the right ingredients and proper techniques, this flavorful dish is easy enough to make in your own kitchen. You can even play around with some of the ingredients to make it your own, as suggested in the substitutions and variations section.

Not to mention, this Scotch Broth soup is healthy and filling – a great alternative to processed or fast food meals. So what are you waiting for? Gather up your carrots, onions, lamb bones, and other ingredients, and get started on making your very own traditional Scottish Scotch Broth soup today!

Scotch Broth Dinner

Scotch Broth Dinner Recipe

To dish up in in authentic Scottish style, serve in 2 courses: broth with Bere Scones, then the meat & vegetables. From Dorinda Hafners Taste of Britain.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Scottish
Keyword < 4 Hours, Brunch, Healthy, Low Cholesterol, Meat, Stew, Vegetable
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Calories 483.1kcal


  • 1 1/2-1 7/8 kg scrag lamb
  • 175 g pearl barley, pre soaked
  • 110 g dried split peas, pre soaked
  • 4 7/8 liters water
  • 450 g carrots, diced small
  • 450 g turnips or 450 g swede, cut chunky
  • 225 g leeks, sliced
  • 3 medium onions, chopped
  • salt & pepper


  • Put lamb, pearl barley, split peas into very large pot with water.
  • Bring to boil on moderate flame.
  • Skim froth from top.
  • Turn flame to low, and simmer for 30 minutes.
  • Add all prepared vegetables,.
  • Cover & continue gently for 1 - 1 1/2 hours until lamb is tender.
  • Meanwhile peel & boil potatoes when cooked, mash with some butter & milk to taste.
  • Spoon into a warmed serving dish - keep warm.
  • To dish up serve BROTH ONLY into soup bowls & serve with Bere Scones.
  • Follow 1st course by lifting meat from pan & placing on serving platter.
  • Surround meat with chunks of vegetables.
  • Spoon some of the broth over the dish.
  • Scatter with remaining chopped parsley.
  • Serve with dish of mashed potatoes.


Serving: 931g | Calories: 483.1kcal | Carbohydrates: 44g | Protein: 33.8g | Fat: 19.3g | Saturated Fat: 7.8g | Cholesterol: 99mg | Sodium: 184.6mg | Fiber: 11g | Sugar: 9.5g

Recommended Recipes Just For You