Authentic Cowboy Soup |

This homestyle cowboy soup with beef, bacon, and beans is guaranteed to fill you up.

Updated March 23, 2023

Texas Cowboy Soup

Texas Cowboy Soup

This image courtesy of Mark T. Shapiro

Editor’s Note: Round up your family and friends for some homemade Texas Cowboy Soup! This easy soup recipe is hearty and filled with ground beef, tomatoes, seasonings, and even some heat. You’ll love serving this soup for a casual weeknight dinner or even at your next game day event. When serving this soup, don’t forget to make the authors’ recipe for Cornbread Croutons for some added flavor. You can also keep a bottle of hot sauce on the table so your family and friends can add the right amount of heat to a bowl of this soup. City slickers and farmhands alike will want to slurp up every drop of this soup!

When you’re cooking out of a chuckwagon, necessity is the mother of invention, especially when you’re feeding armed, hungry cowhands. Many a meal has been made of beef, beans and whatever else was available, and a soup similar to this was surely on the menu for many nights around the campfire. If you can’t find canned tomatoes with green chiles, just use canned diced tomatoes and add a small can of chopped green chiles. Instead of canned corn, you can use 3 cups (750 mL) frozen corn kernels. Thaw and drain before adding to soup.

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Serves8 to 10


OccasionBuffet, Buffet Meal, Card Night, Casual Dinner Party, Family Get Together, Game Day, Tailgate Party

Recipe CourseAppetizer, Main Course, Side Dish

Taste and TextureGarlicky, Hot & Spicy, Meaty, Savory, Spiced

Type of DishHot Soup, Soup


  • 6 slices bacon, chopped
  • 1 1/2
    pound (750 g) lean ground beef
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons (25 mL) chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon (5 mL) ground cumin
  • 1/2
    teaspoon (2 mL) salt
  • 1/4
    teaspoon (1 mL) freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 baking potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 2 cans (each 14 to 19 oz/398 to 540 mL) pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (14 oz/398 mL) diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 can (14 oz/398 mL) diced tomatoes with green chile peppers, with juice
  • 4 cups (1 L) beef stock
  • 1 can (14 oz/398 mL) corn kernels, drained
  • Cornbread Croutons

Cowboy Soup Recipe


  1. In a large pot, sauté bacon over medium heat until starting to brown. Add ground beef and sauté, breaking up with the back of a wooden spoon, until no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, onion, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper; sauté until onion starts to soften, about 3 minutes.

  2. Add potatoes, beans, both cans of tomatoes and stock; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are just tender, about 20 minutes. Add corn and simmer for 10 minutes.

  3. Ladle into heated bowls and garnish with croutons.

Editor’s Note: Ranch Style Beans

Many cowboy soup recipes are made with canned ranch style beans. This delicious ingredient is popular in Texas, and it’s basically a type of seasoned beans. Ranch style beans are usually pinto beans, and they come in a rich seasoned chili sauce that adds ton of flavor.

This recipe doesn’t call for pre-seasoned beans, but it does include plenty of seasoning to make up for it. Chili powder, cumin, garlic, and bacon all add tons of flavor to this soup recipe, so you’re getting all the delicious flavor of ranch style beans without having to hunt down an ingredient that might be hard to find in your area.


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