1 1/2 cups water
2 cups cubed russet potatoes (either scrubbed or peeled)
2 carrots, grated
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 bell pepper, chopped (red or green for contrast, orange if you need to sneak in veggies for kids)
1 garlic clove, minced
2 Tbsp beef soup base granules
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 pounds ground beef, cooked and drained
2 1/2 cups milk, divided
3 Tbsp flour
8 oz Velveeta cheese, cubed
(Optional garnishments: crumbled bacon, shredded cheddar cheese, jalapeno slices)
In a large saucepan, combine the first 8 ingredients (in blue), bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer for 15-20 minutes or until veggies are tender. Stir in beef and 2 C of milk and let it heat through. Mix the remaining 1/2 C milk with flour until smooth; gradually stir into the soup. Boil for 2 minutes until its thickened. Reduce heat and add cheese, stir until melted. Serve with garnishments if desired.
I suppose I should explain my philosophy of soup and cooking in general, down here where I know my son won't see it and hopefully the Toolman stopped reading when he saw this was a recipe post. The males of the family don't care for vegetable side dishes so I have to incorporate as many as possible into the entree. Potatoes aren't a problem, the carrots and orange bell pepper are camouflaged by the cheese. This makes the dish somewhat monotone for us. If you're family isn't so picky, you can add some contrast with the bell peppers or add green onions.