Spicy Vegetable Soup

Soup means cleaning out the refrigerator. Soup means medicine. Soup means cold weather and a glowing tummy. Soup means slurping. Soup means trying not to let your nasal drip interfere with primal consumption.

14456801_10208943043846720_830931982_oI make the best soup (source unknown). It’s hearty, it’s spicy, it keeps for a week, and it’s easy as hell. All you need are a shit ton of vegetables and a Pharoah’s tomb worth of spices.

It’s so easy to make that I decided to whip it up over a campfire.

It’s late-September in Pennsylvania right now, which means the sky’s blue is deep, the breeze is strong, and the air itself tastes like the perfect first kiss. I’m lucky enough to live in an area almost entirely surrounded by woods—if I want to have a campfire and spend the night in a hammock, I can. I will. I often do.

Last night I stayed by the fire for a little too long, and I drank a few too many beers. I clambered into my hammock around 3 AM, and the night was visible-breath cold. Despite being curled in a cocoon of both a sleeping bag and a fleece blanket, I just about froze.


The next morning, I was hungover, shivering, and unrested. After vaguely attending an 8:30 AM class, I returned to my campsite to clean up. But to my immense joy, the fire was still smoldering. All I had to do was toss a few armfuls of dried leaves onto the embers and it erupted into a giant fire ball of doom.

Naturally, I decided right then and there to make some soup. I wanted something that would help me re-hydrate, calm my stomach, and warm the frozen recesses of my heart and limbs.

I basically just threw all of my vegetables into a pot with water and spices, then let it boil on the fire for a few minutes. If you’re planning on camping, you can prepare your veggies and freeze them all in one bag until it’s time to leave.

Spicy Vegetable Soup


  • Literally any vegetables you can get your hands on. Some good choices are:
    • Carrots
    • Celery
    • Spinach
    • Black beans
    • Corn
    • Peas
    • Green beans
    • Onion
    • Peppers
  • Spices (listed in order of importance):
    • Cayenne pepper
    • Chili powder
    • Paprika
    • Onion powder
    • Garlic powder
    • Black pepper
    • Bay leaves
    • Rosemary
    • Thyme
    • Basil
    • Parsley
    • Sage
  • 1 vegetable bouillon cube per quart of soup


  1. Combine ingredients in pan and cover with one inch of water.
  2. If cooking on stove, heat pan uncovered on high until boiling. Reduce to low, cover, and let simmer for 20 minutes.
  3. If cooking on campfire (I love you if you are), combine all ingredients and plunge the covered pan into the fire. Remove when you hear boiling.

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