45-Cent Potato Soup with Optional Bacon

Creamy, hearty, rib-sticking potato soup with optional bacon for the meat-eaters. It's so easy to make, and at less than 50 cents per serving, this easy potato soup recipe is just a winner all around.

Total Time: 1 hour


I originally posted this recipe on my first blog a couple of years ago. Come wintertime, it’s a regular in our rotation. The fact that it’s a hugely frugal dinner is a bonus; we just love how delicious it is – not to mention how easy it is to make. Simply cook up some bacon for the meat-eaters to crumble over the top and the whole family will clamor for more – vegetarians and meat-eaters alike.

October 23, 2009

Initially I was going to round up the amount and call this 50 Cent Potato Soup, but then I remembered the rapper (aka: “Fiddy”) and wasn’t sure how a frugal soup recipe could successfully have anything to do with a guy whose big album was “Get Rich or Die Tryin’.”

And so, introducing: 45 Cent Potato Soup!

It’s super easy to whip up a pot of this hearty and flavorful soup, and it’s one of my go-to weeknight meals for that reason. It’s great comfort food for a blustery cold day, perfect with a big hunk of crusty bread. And did I mention that, by my estimation, it costs only about 45 cents per serving?


Print Recipe

45-Cent Potato Soup with Optional Bacon

Creamy, hearty, rib-sticking potato soup with optional bacon for the meat-eaters. It's so easy to make, and at less than 50 cents per serving, this easy potato soup recipe is just a winner all around.

Yield: 6

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour


  • 4-5 medium russet potatoes, peeled and diced (about 6 cups)
  • 1 medium onion, diced (about 2 cups)
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 1/2 cup chopped carrots
  • 1 cup 2% milk
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 or 2 slices of bacon for each bowl of soup you'd like to top with it, cooked, drained, cooled, and crumbled


  1. In a large pot over medium heat, add the potatoes, onion, celery, and carrots. Add water to about 1/2 inch below the top of the vegetables.
  2. Heat on medium, stirring occasionally, until the mixture comes to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cover. Simmer for about 30 minutes, until all the vegetables are soft.
  3. Using a potato masher, carefully mash most of the soup, leaving a few chunks for texture.
  4. Stir in the milk and the parsley. Add salt and pepper to taste. The soup will take a lot of salt - I usually start with a teaspoon of kosher salt, taste, and end up adding quite a bit more.
  5. Over low heat, return the soup to a simmer. Serve topped with additional parsley, butter, bacon bits, grated cheese, or any other topping you dream up.

Adapted from Food.com

Comfort food on the cheap. Rap about that, Fiddy!

This post may contain affiliate links, which means if you click on a link and make a purchase, I may receive a portion of the proceeds.

Karen Raye

Kare is a vegetarian home cook living among carnivores. She loves creating irresistible and flexible recipes that help multi-vore families like hers keep the peace - deliciously.

10 Responses to “45-Cent Potato Soup with Optional Bacon”

  1. Sonia posted on October 23, 2009 at 6:06 pm

    YUM. I am so making this tomorrow night! Who knows how to PAR-TAY on a Saturday night?! ME!! LOL!

  2. Andrea posted on October 24, 2009 at 3:31 pm

    i just made this (well, basically – i added leek and cauliflower.)
    Topped it with toasted squash seeds, really yummy. Thanks!

  3. Sonia posted on October 25, 2009 at 7:52 pm

    Made it tonight for company Kare, and OH MAN it was good!! Thanks, what an easy meal. :) That’s in the rotation permanently. I also made Pioneer Woman’s Onion Rosemary blue cheese bread to go with it. MMMMM! I put some chives in the bread, and chives as a garnish for the soup and it was wonderful.

  4. Kare posted on October 25, 2009 at 8:49 pm

    Andrea and Sonia, I love this feedback! :) Toasted squash seeds, that sounds amazing. And with Pioneer Woman’s onion rosemary blue cheese bread? Perfect. I’ve been meaning to try that recipe.

  5. Kiersten @ Oh My Veggies posted on October 26, 2012 at 1:06 pm

    I love potato soup, but CHEAP potato soup is even better! :D I wish I was having this for dinner instead of leftovers…

  6. Abigail posted on January 26, 2014 at 4:52 pm

    I just made this without the celery and added extra carrots and some baby clams and cheese to make a sort of clam chowder, and it was great! Super easy and really delicious. And I’m in a dorm, so if I say it’s easy, it definitely is! Thanks so much!

    • Karen Troughton posted on January 30, 2014 at 7:01 am

      I’m so impressed that you’re making from-scratch meals in your dorm room! Nice!

  7. Ann posted on May 23, 2014 at 6:55 pm

    I am making this right now sans the carrot and added butter and bacon fat (no bacon available) to add body to the soup. I’m fighting bronchitis and wanted something easy to make and comforting. Thanks for posting!

  8. Ann posted on May 23, 2014 at 7:08 pm

    I wanted to add that I was not worried about calories. I don’t feel well and don’t have an appetite so I think I deserve some calories. Also decided to add some grated pizza cheese blend, a pinch of nutmeg and Hungarian paprika. I cheated and cooked my potato in the microwave. This is probably the laziest I have been regarding cooking in YEARS! But we all have those days, don’t we? All I need now is some nice bread to dip in and soak up the soup! Buttered bread. :)

  9. Sallie posted on January 25, 2015 at 2:08 am

    Yummy can’t wait to fix it.

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