Alphabet soup

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My kids are a fan of soups, they always order chicken tortellini soup, cheeseburger soup and this delicious letter soup.

This winter, my daughters developed a love for soup. With which I totally agreed, it's easy to make, relatively healthy, and often a complete meal in a pot. One of my daughters turns down pasta and noodles about 90% of the time, but she will make an exception for the alphabet noodles, which is how this letter soup recipe came up.

How is the alphabet soup made?

This soup starts with ground beef, which is cooked with carrots, onion, and celery. After cooking the meat and vegetables, the tomatoes, the meat stock and the seasonings go to the pot. The final step is to add alphabet noodles, frozen corn, and frozen green beans. Everything is simmered until the pasta is tender. Add a pinch of parsley and you're ready to eat!

Where do you buy alphabet noodles?

Let's talk about the alphabet noodles for a minute. It ALWAYS took me to find them in the store. I am talking about months of looking at various stores. Finally, one day I bumped into them … in the ethnic food aisle with Mexican food items. I never would have thought to look there. So if you can't find them in the pasta aisle, check out the ethnic food area or order them online.

Tips for alphabet soup

  • I use 90% lean ground beef. It has a lot of flavor but is not too greasy.
  • Although I usually use frozen corn and green beans for this soup, feel free to substitute fresh vegetables if they're in season.
  • This soup makes great leftovers. Just keep in mind that the noodles will continue to absorb the broth while sitting in the fridge. When I reheat this soup, I usually add another cup of broth to the pot.
  • This soup is excellent served as is or with a pinch of Parmesan cheese on top.

Alphabet soup variations

I think this soup is perfect just the way it is, but there are many different ways to change the ingredients to suit your tastes!

  • Protein: Try using cooked minced chicken, mild Italian sausage, or ground turkey instead of beef.
  • Noodles: While this is clearly intended to use alphabet noodles, if you can't find them or don't have them on hand, any small pasta will work as a pepe orzo or acini.
  • Vegetables: You can mix and match vegetables to include the vegetables that your family likes best. Other great vegetables to try include potatoes, peppers, peas, or spinach.

This soup is meant to appeal to kids, but adults love it too! The hearty combination of meat, vegetables, and pasta is simply unmatched.

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Alphabet soup

This alphabet soup recipe is filled with ground beef, vegetables, and tender pasta, all simmered in a hearty tomato broth. The perfect option for family dining!

Preparation time: 15 minutes Cook time: 30 minutes Total time: 45 minutes

Servings: 6 servings Calories: 205kcal


  • 2 teaspoons of olive oil
  • 1/2 Cup of onion finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled, quartered and sliced
  • 2 celery stalks, thinly sliced
  • 1 pound ground beef I use 90% lean
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 15 ounces diced tomatoes will not drain
  • 8 ounces tomato sauce
  • 1 teaspoon dry Italian seasoning
  • 6 cups beef broth
  • 3/4 cup alphabet noodles
  • 1/2 cup frozen corn
  • 1/2 cup frozen green beans
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley


  • Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion, carrots, and celery to the pot.
  • Cook 5-6 minutes or until tender.
  • Add the ground beef to the pot and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Cook, breaking up the meat with a spoon, until golden and fully cooked. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds more.
  • Add the tomatoes, tomato sauce, Italian seasoning, beef broth, alphabet noodles, corn, and green beans to the pot; bring to a simmer.
  • Simmer for 10-12 minutes or until the noodles are tender and the vegetables have softened.
  • Taste and add salt and pepper as desired. Sprinkle with parsley and serve.


Calories :: 205kcal | Carbohydrates: 10 g | Protein: 19 g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 49mg | Sodium: 976mg | Potassium: 672mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 3650 IU | Vitamin C: 12.2mg | Calcium: 68mg | Iron: 3.2mg

This post originally appeared on March 24, 2015 and was updated on November 21, 2019 with new content.

Letters Soup

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