Spring Lamb Meatball Soup with Greens, Mushrooms and Mint

This lamb meatball soup recipe with young onions and greens is a great way to celebrate spring or early summer when those ingredients are at their peak. I made this as an homage to foraging lambs and goats and I use ingredients that may be new to you, but all of them can be easily substituted with staples from a supermarket or your local coop.

Grassfed lamb or goat meatball stew recipe with greens and fava beans
Spring lamb soup with meatballs and herbs.

How to Make Spring Lamb Meatball Soup

Starting with your favorite meatballs mix (or using the simple recipe I’m providing here) brown a few meatballs, then cook some young onions in the drippings. Add a few wild mushrooms (I use pheasant back mushrooms in the video but shiitakes are a good substitute), a few dried beans and some stock, then cook for a quick 30 to 45 minutes. At the end, the finish the stew with wilted greens and fresh mint to wake up the flavors. By itself, the stew will serve 2-4, but, like many good stews, you may want to double it to ensure leftovers to eat throughout the week!

Chef Alan Bergo
Chef Alan Bergo





This recipe is by chef Alan Bergo. A chef from Minnesota, Alan is a culinary industry veteran, former executive chef of acclaimed Lucia’s Restaurant, and the Salt Cellar. Founder of the website Forager Chef, he’s best known as a respected authority on Midwestern foraging. Learn more about Alan and his hunt for mushrooms, wild and obscure foods at Forager Chef. 

Shepherd Song Farm: Grass to table. We raise lambs & goats traditionally, humanely and sustainably. 100% Grass Fed, Pasture Raised, Never Confined, no Hormones, Grains or Animal Byproducts. Born, raised and processed in the U.S.A. Good for you and good for the environment.

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Grassfed lamb or goat meatball stew recipe with greens and fava beans
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Spring Lamb Meatball Soup with Greens, Mushrooms and Mint

A stew of grassfed lamb or goat meatballs with dried fava beans and mint. Serves 2-4.
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time45 minutes
Total Time1 hour 15 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Lamb, Stew
Servings: 4 People
Calories: 624kcal
Cost: 5


  • 1 3 quart soup pot or similar


Meatballs (or use 1 lb of your favorite recipe)

  • 1 lb ground lamb or ground beef
  • ¼ cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 large egg
  • ¼ lb lamb bacon optional you can use our lamb bacon, or your favorite
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ½ cup chopped onion or shallot


  • 6 oz spring onion green garlic, ramp bulbs or similar
  • 4 oz 2 cups chopped wild mushrooms
  • 3 cups chicken stock or lamb stock
  • 4 oz 2 packed cups fresh greens, like spinach, nettles, etc
  • ¾ cup dried fava beans or 2 cups cooked beans or your choice
  • Fresh mint for serving
  • 2 tablespoons cooking olive oil
  • Wild flowers to garnish (optional)


  • Soak the dried fava beans if using in twice their volume of water to cover. You can also substitute a can of cooked chickpeas.
  • For the meatballs, pulse the bacon in a food processor with the onion or shallot until smooth-ish. Mix the bacon mixture and remaining meatball ingredients, then form the meatball mixture into small meatballs.
  • For the stew, heat the olive oil in a stew pot or dutch oven on medium high heat then brown the meatballs. When the meatballs are browned, remove, then add the onions, sweat for a minute, then push to the side and add the mushrooms. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Add the meat stock, meatballs and soaked fava beans, bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook for 30-45 minutes, or until the beans are tender.
  • Stir in the greens, just to wilt, double check the seasoning for salt and pepper, adjust as needed. Ladle the soup into bowls and serve garnished with the fresh mint and wildflowers if using.



This is a simple recipe you can adapt to what you have on hand. I like fresh, spring flavors here. Finishing it with a dash of lemon juice can be nice.
Adding some curry powder to the meatball mixture is another nice variation to try. 


Serving: 8oz | Calories: 624kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 0.04g | Cholesterol: 148mg | Sodium: 735mg | Potassium: 736mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 501IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 76mg | Iron: 4mg