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Vegan Traditional Scottish Hotchpotch Soup (Hairst Bree)

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Vegan traditional Scottish Hotchpotch soup is a delicious, economical, wholesome, tummy-filling meal that has been enjoyed in Scotland for hundreds of years.

It’s a chuck everything and anything in soup so perfect for cleaning out your fridge or using up a glut or inexpensive seasonal veggies. Hotchpotch is a great way to use up leftover veggies during the festive season and provide inexpensive meals.

Others names for this soup include Hodge-Podge and Hairst Bree which translates to Harvest Soup.

A pot of vegan Scottish Hotchpotch with three bowls full to side, and two empty bowls, brown leaf tea towel background featured image.

Quick Origins of Scottish Hotchpotch Soup

Hotchpotch soup goes way back to Medieval times. A recipe can be found within the Medieval cookery book The Forme of Cury. During Medieval times the soup was termed Ochepot or Hogge.

A Hotchpotch simply means a variety of ingredients and can be prepared as a soup or stew. Although as Hotchpotch soup is so full and thick with ingredients it can teeter on the brink of being labelled a stew or something in between.

Traditional Scottish Hotchpotches’ would have contained many different veggies and herbs.

Lettuce, peas and turnip were common additions, along with parsley, thyme, bay and chervil. And several different kinds of meats but most commonly lamb or mutton.

The large assortment of ingredients would have been cooked bubbling away within a large pot over an open fire. During the early 1800s Hotchpotch was so popular that it was considered by many to be Scotland’s National dish.

Other countries have versions similar to the Scottish Hotchpotch. The Dutch Hutspot contains cheese, potato, carrot and onion. While a Canadian version features butter, cream and veggies.

close up of bowl of vegan traditional Scottish Hotchpotch soup, two bowls behind, bowls have brown wheat leaf pattern.

Vegan Scottish Traditional Hotchpotch Soup

Preparing this vegan Hotchpotch soup couldn’t be simpler. First the stock is brought to a simmer while the rest of the ingredients are chopped and diced.

Each ingredient is chucked in the pot until everything is added. Although I do like to add the barley first to get it started. Add a good few pinches of salt and pepper, and a bay leaf.

Once the soup is boiling, the heat is reduced and the pot is left to gently bubble for 45 minutes. A few minutes before the soup is ready the spring/green onions are stirred through. Before serving the last thing to do is to check the seasoning and add more salt and pepper to taste.

The soup will be very thick and packed so if preferred add more hot veggie stock to loosen it up or enjoy this hearty soup as is for a filling, wholesome and delicious traditional meal.

How To Prepare Vegan Scottish Hotchpotch Soup

close up of pot with wooden handles full of vegan traditional Scottish Hotchpotch soup, with grey ladle and small soup bowl to side.
Dish it up for full satisfied tummies! Perfect with a wedge of crusty bread.

Recipe Notes And FAQS

How do I store leftover vegan Hotchpotch?

Leftover Hotchpotch can be stored in a covered container for up to 3 days in the fridge.

Or freeze for up to 4 months.

How do I reheat leftover Hotchpotch soup?

Place the soup in a pot and bring to the boil, lower the heat, and simmer for a few minutes or until piping hot. Extra veggie stock will likely need to be added as the soup will thicken as it sits.

Can I substitute any of the ingredients?


Hotchpotch is the ultimate versatile soup and is naturally made with whatever veggies, herbs, grains or other ingredients that are available.

Whatever is seasonal is usually what is inexpensive, so fill your Hotchpotch with tasty seasonal veggies, or reduced price veggies, or veggies that are past the best and lurking around your fridge!

Any fresh or dried herbs that you have available are perfect for the Hodge-Podge soup pot.

Instead of jackfruit you can use pieces of tofu, tempeh, seitan, meat-free chunks or mince, etc.

Not keen on barley? Add rice, spelt, wheat grains, buckwheat, rye grains, or any other grain. Butter beans are a tasty alternative.

Although do consider the cooking times and preparation needs required for a different grain and adjust the recipe times accordingly.

Is vegan Hotchpotch soup suitable for a gluten-free diet?

Yes, although a few changes need to be considered.

As barley is not free of gluten, a different grain will need to be added. Your favourite variety of rice is perfect. Although a grain is not strictly essential it is a nutritious addition and adds to the soups satiety. Which helps to keep us feeling fuller for longer, which is a bonus especially for plant-based diets which tend to be low in calories.

Also use a gluten-free vegan stock.

What can I serve with vegan Hotchpotch soup?

This soup is filling so all that is really required for an accompaniment is something to dip in and mop up the tasty veggie soup juices.

* a wedge of wholemeal Irish soda bread

* 3 ingredient vegan quick dinner rolls

* traditional Scottish oatcakes

* oil-free traditional Scottish oatcakes

* vegan oil-free cheesy traditional Scottish oatcakes

* cornbread

* plain scones

* American biscuits

* saltine crackers

* your favourite crackers

* rice cakes/ rye cakes/ corn cakes

* bread sticks

* vegan garlic bread

A pot of vegan Scottish Hotchpotch with three bowls full to side, and two empty bowls, brown leaf tea towel background featured image.

Vegan Scottish Traditional Hotchpotch Soup

Print Recipe
A delicious, economical, wholesome, tummy-filling meal that has been a Scottish Harvest favourite for centuries.
Course Dinner, Lunch, Main Course, Soup
Cuisine British, Scottish
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 50 mins
Total Time 1 hr
Servings 6
Calories 161
Author Jacq


  • Soup pot/Dutch oven/Large saucepan etc


  • 2.5 litres vegetable stock use a vegan chicken flavour stock if available
  • 60 g barley rinsed to remove dust
  • 100 g jack fruit, canned rinsed to remove brine, chopped and pulled apart.
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 200 g carrot 1 large or a few small, diced
  • 130 g onion 1 medium-large, diced
  • 270 g potato 1 large, diced
  • 125 g celery 2 large ribs, diced
  • 200 g courgette 1 large, diced
  • 150 g cabbage sliced into small pieces
  • 150 g broad beans fresh, frozen or canned
  • 270 g swede diced
  • 12 g parsley chopped

Add near the end of cooking:

  • 5 spring onions sliced, or replace with a ½-1 cup of peas either fresh, frozen or canned


  • Pour the vegetable stock into the soup pot, along with the bay leaf. As the stock comes to the boil prepare the veggies and ingredients, chucking each one in the pot as you go.
  • Add the barley first so that it can get started cooking as the barley needs the longest in the pot.
  • Once everything is in the pot, season with salt and pepper and once the soup has come to the boil, lower the heat and simmer for 40-50 minutes (depending on whether the barley is soft).
  • Five minutes before the soup is ready mix through the spring/green onions. Or use the onions as a garnish. If replacing the onions with peas add 5-10 minutes before the soup is ready.
    Add more salt and pepper as required.
  • If the soup is very thick and you'd like it thinner simply pour in a a cup or two of extra veggie stock and heat through.
    Remove the bay leaf before serving.


  • Nutritional information is provided for guidance only and is not a strict calculation as ingredients vary.
  • Leftovers can be stored in the fridge, within a covered container, for up to 3 days.
  • To reheat leftovers place the soup in a pot and bring to the boil, lower the heat, and simmer for a few minutes or until piping hot. Extra veggie stock will likely need to be added as the soup will thicken as it sits.
  • For a gluten-free diet replace the barley with a gluten-free grain such as rice, and use a gluten-free vegetable stock.
  • Replace the jackfruit with pieces of tofu, seitan, tempeh, meat-free chunks/mince or a can of butterbeans.
  • If the soup is too thick add extra hot veggie stock, once cooking has finished, if preferred.
  • The veggies and herbs can be substituted for any you have to hand, especially older veggies in your fridge needing used up. leftover veggies during the festive and holiday periods, reduced price veggies from supermarket, or especially good is inexpensive in-season veggies.


Calories: 161kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 176mg | Potassium: 809mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 6031IU | Vitamin C: 45mg | Calcium: 92mg | Iron: 2mg

More Delicious Scottish Traditional Soups To Try:

Time For A Tasty Vegan Traditional Dessert!

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