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Aug 6, 2006 03:14 PM

Fixing Burnt Soup?

Today I made a huge batch of Beef Barley Vegetable Soup. I had a bowl and it was absolutely delicious.

Unfortunately, I accidentally left the burner on while I was having the first bowl, and by the time I went back into the kitchen about 20 minutes later it had burned only a little on the bottom, but the entire eight quarts of soup tasted burned. It's not awful, and if I have to I'll eat it rather than throw it all away, but dang, it sure tastes like burning.

Is there anything that can be done to salvage it? My dad suggested putting some large-cut sacrificial potatoes into it to filter out some of the burnt taste, but before I bought some spuds I figured I'd ask if anyone knew of a home remedy for taking the burnt taste out of soup. Surely I can't be the first person to do this.

Google totally let me down on this matter.

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  1. I think you sould take it out of the burnt pot immediately. After that, I'm not too sure. Potatoes would take salt out and flavor, but they'd also soak up most of the liquid.

    I'd love to know how to rescue it, so I'll be checking back to see what anybody else can suggest.


    1 Reply
    1. re: TexasToast

      Potatoes don't take out salt -- that's been proven to be a kitchen myth by food scientists.

      Potatoes won't remove heat or burned flavors either.

    2. Thanks. I already moved it out of the pot and into containers so they could sit in the fridge while I pondered what to do with six quarts of leftover burnt soup.

      1. My mom says boiling some potatoes in the soup and then discarding them will help. Personally, I doubt it. But, if you don't mind possibly wasting some spuds - give it a try.

        In future, if the bottom gets burned, do not stir the soup at all, if a taste off the top is tastes good, imeediately pour the top half of the soup into another container. taste again. If no burned taste in the bottom half of the pot, pour that into your container, leaving the botton inch or so in the original pot. Often people lose a potentially salvageable pot of soup by panicking and stirring up the pot if they suspact burning - that mixes the burned part on the bott in with the OK top part.

        6 Replies
        1. re: niki rothman

          Ladle it out, don't pour. The less you disturb the lower contents of the pot, the better.

          1. re: greygarious

            too late! I already poured it out. Oh, doggie....

            1. re: grumpy123

              That's what I was thinking ... dogs love to make cooking mistakes disappear ;)

              1. re: foiegras

                Great idea- but please make sure the soup does not have onions in it, as it can cause devastating, potentially fatal anemia in dogs.

                1. re: JenJeninCT

                  That would be Heinz Body Anemia, which affects mammals to varying extents (cats and humans included). Uncooked garlic and onions, and both garlic and onion powder, are the more problematic forms. Cooked onion in the quantities found in soup should not be a problem for an otherwise healthy animal, unless it was fed consistently over a long period of time.

                  1. re: greygarious

                    Thanks greygarious, as a former vet tech and career dog professional, I am well aware of the issue. Unfortunately, there's no way to determine how much is "too much" for an individual dog, so my plan is to err on the side of caution when it comes to the health of my own pets- a practice I came to the "hard way"- I have a dog who acquired it and survived (the dog on the left in my avatar- turned 15 on 1/13). Because I knew of the potential, he was never purposely fed onions, but maybe got a bit here and there as described with this soup to the dogs idea. Anyway, thanks for the less- general info than I provided info on behalf of other 'hounds

        2. Once a sauce is burnt (or soup) it's beyond salvation in my experience. I've heard the potato trick but it failed for me. Throw out and start again. Sorry!

          1. The potato cure for soups is a myth that's been busted by testing, btw.