Queen Victoria's Brown Windsor Soup

Total Time
2hrs 10mins
Prep 10 mins
Cook 2 hrs

The very soup reputed to have built the British Empire and one that was oh-so-fashionable in Victorian and Edwardian times! This soup was served daily, until recently, in the dining cars of British Rail. This classic hearty soup was also very popular at the castle (Windsor) in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Queen Victoria was particularly fond of it, and it regularly appeared on state banquet menus. However, this recipe has not had very good press over recent years - drab tinned brands and indifferent, greasy soups served in some lower end restaurants have given it a bad culinary name! I hope to redress that with this authentic recipe from Windsor in Berkshire, England - home to the Royal Windsor Castle. A rich and hearty soup, this makes a meal in itself when served with crusty bread, scones or bread rolls.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Cut the lamb and beef into 1-inch cubes and roll in the flour.
  2. Place the butter in a large saucepan over a low to medium heat. (It is important not to turn the heat up too high since the butter burns easily. We want it to go brown, but not black!) Fry the meat off for 3 minutes and then add the rest of the flour and fry for a minute longer until the butter/flour is a golden brown.
  3. Now add the sliced vegetables and stir in the stock, Throw in the bouquet garni, partially cover the saucepan, and simmer for 2 hours.
  4. Puree the soup before adding the cooked rice if using; serve the soup piping hot with assorted breads and rolls. Traditionally a tablespoon of Madeira would be stirred into the soup at the table.


Most Helpful

YUM YUM YUM. This was SO good. I made as recipe but added 1/2 a teaspoon of brown sugar to bring up the flavour. I used lamb chops for the lamb bit, diced the meat but put the bones in while cooking. I mashed it all at the end with a potato masher because I like that consistancy. I will definitely make this again, might add some celery as well. Thank you so much for this delicious recipe :-)

Caro NZ December 24, 2009

Interesting! I will use young lamb next time, the mutton was to strong for us ( guess we are not used to it ). The Madeira is a must! Thanks for posting!

Chef Shadows September 25, 2009

*************** I 'm tripling the stars for this one, FT! Truly a delight for a snowy and cold day Sunday lunch. Hearty and full of flavor (I used 1 bay leaf and some herbs provencale :) ) --simmered stove top in a cast iron pot for 2 hours-as indicated. I think Queen Victoria was smiling as I ate each spoonful with an exclamation of MMMMM. This will be my "GO-TO hearty beef soup now! Made for Aussie Swap#35.

Caroline Cooks December 06, 2009

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