Home Recipes Hot and Sour Chicken Soup (Easy Recipe)

Hot and Sour Chicken Soup (Easy Recipe)

Make this better-than-takeout hot and sour chicken soup the next time you’re craving comfort food.

It’s packed with tender mushrooms and sesame chicken in a flavorful broth. So it’s tangy and savory with just the right amount of spice.

It’s also quick, easy, and perfect for chilly weeknights.

Bowl of Hot and Sour Chicken with Mushroom and Chopped Parsley Leaves
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What Is Hot and Sour Chicken Soup?

Hot and sour chicken soup is a delicious Chinese dish featuring broth, vegetables, and protein.

While it’s often served with pork, tofu, seafood, or beef, this version calls for chicken.

This punchy Sichuan soup is loaded with spice and sourness from the white pepper and vinegar (such as black rice or Zhenjiang), respectively.

It’s tangy, spicy, and savory all at once. So every bite is exciting!

The base is full of umami-rich flavors and features many Chinese soup staples, including stock, ginger, garlic, and soy sauce.

Thickened with a little bit of cornstarch, it also has ribbons of egg cooked in the broth.

As mentioned, it gets its name from the combination of spicy and sour ingredients.

In this case, you’ll add white pepper and red pepper flakes, plus red wine vinegar.

Hot and Sour Chicken Soup Ingredients - Chicken Broth, Veggies, Ginger, Garlic, Soy Sauce, Red Pepper Flakes, Chicken, Sesame Oil, Red Wine Vinegar, Cornstarch and Egg

Ingredients

If you want something bright and mild, try this chicken lemon rice soup.

But if you want heat, here’s what you’ll need for hot and sour soup:

  • Chicken Broth – To add richness and a nice meaty, umami flavor with minimal effort. Though you could always make it a turkey broth recipe if that’s all you have, and it’ll still be yummy.
  • Mushrooms and Bamboo Shoots – The recipe calls for fresh mushrooms and bamboo shoots, but feel free to add your favorites if you’re cleaning out the fridge!
  • Ginger, Garlic, and Green Onions – Aromatics add tons of flavor. Ginger is bright and tangy, while garlic and onions are on the edge of spicy.
  • Soy Sauce, Sesame Oil, and Red Wine Vinegar – For salty flavor, a hint of nuttiness, and the sour element, respectively.
  • White Pepper and Red Pepper Flakes – This pair gives you just the right level of heat.
  • Cornstarch – To thicken the broth slightly.
  • Egg – The egg drop ribbons take this soup to the next level. Make sure it’s beaten well before adding it to the hot soup.
Hot and Sour Chicken Soup with Mushroom and Herbs in a Bowl

How to Make Hot and Sour Chicken Soup

It looks and sounds complicated, but I promise this soup is a breeze to whip up!

Here’s what you need to know:

1. Make the broth

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Pour the chicken broth and water into a tall, heavy-bottomed saucepan and bring it to a boil.

Add the sliced mushrooms, bamboo shoots, ginger, garlic, pepper flakes, white pepper, and soy sauce, and stir well.

2. Season the chicken and make a slurry

Slice the chicken into thin strips and transfer them into a medium-sized bowl.

Drizzle the sesame oil over the top and toss the chicken until it’s well-coated.

Then, add the cornstarch and vinegar to a small bowl and stir until smooth. This is a slurry, and it’ll thicken the soup.

3. Cook the chicken and thicken the soup

Turn the heat up and bring the soup back to a boil. Then, carefully add the chicken and stir to break the pieces apart.

Let the chicken cook for a couple of minutes, then add the slurry. Stir continuously for a minute or two.

4. Add the egg, then serve!

When the chicken is cooked, and the soup has thickened, beat the egg in a small bowl.

Then, stir the soup in circles and slowly pour the egg into the stream. It will cook in seconds and form egg strands in the broth.

Cook for another minute, then serve with chopped scallions!

Tangy and Savory Hot and Sour Chicken and Mushroom Soup

Tips and Tricks

If you choose to use leftover chicken, check out my post on how to reheat rotisserie chicken, so it stays nice and juicy.

Other than that, below are a few other tips to keep in mind:

  • Don’t leave out the bamboo shoots. They’re an easy ingredient to add, and they taste great!
  • Use rotisserie chicken or leftover turkey. Just add it before the slurry and cook for a few minutes less.
  • Add any veggies you think will work. This is perfect for fridge clean-out day, so add carrots, broccoli, zucchini – you name it!
  • Make it vegetarian or vegan. Use veggie stock and replace the chicken with tofu. For a vegan dish, leave out the egg.
  • Make it a mushroom medley. The more traditional recipes call for all kinds of tasty mushrooms, including shiitake, wood ear, and lily buds.
  • Increase the spice level with hot sauce! Just a few dashes will do. And be sure to taste as you go.

More Soup Recipes You’ll Love

Taco Soup
Buffalo Chicken Soup
15 Bean Soup
7-Can Soup
Julia Child’s French Onion Soup

Hot and Sour Chicken Soup (Easy Recipe)

Servings

4

servings
Prep time

10

minutes
Cooking time

20

minutes
Calories

592

kcal

Make this better-than-takeout hot and sour chicken soup the next time you’re craving comfort food. It’s quick, easy, and perfect for chilly weeknights.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups chicken broth

  • 1/2 cup water

  • 2 cups sliced fresh mushrooms

  • 1/2 cup sliced bamboo shoots, drained

  • 3 slices fresh ginger root

  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed

  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce

  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

  • 1/2 teaspoon white pepper

  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast halves – cut into thin strips

  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil

  • 2 green onions, chopped

  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro (Optional)

  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar

  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch

  • 1 egg, beaten

Instructions

  • Pour the broth and water into a tall, heavy-bottom saucepan, and bring it to a boil over medium-high heat.
  • Add the mushrooms, bamboo shoots, ginger, garlic, hot pepper flakes, white pepper, and soy sauce. Stir well, lower the heat to a simmer, and put on the lid.
  • Cut the chicken into thin strips and toss them in the sesame oil. Set aside.
  • In a small bowl, mix the cornstarch and vinegar until smooth. Set aside.
  • Bring the broth back to a boil, then add the chicken. Mix to separate the pieces and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the cornstarch slurry and stir well. Cook for another 2 minutes.
  • In a small bowl, beat the egg. Then, slowly stir the soup in large circular motions and gently pour the egg into the hot liquid.
  • Keep stirring to create egg streaks in the broth.
  • Cook for another minute, then serve hot with thinly sliced green onions and cilantro (if using).

Nutrition

  • Calories: 592kcal
  • Carbohydrates: 8.1g
  • Protein: 30.8g
  • Fat: 11.7g
  • Saturated Fat: 1.1g
  • Cholesterol: 301mg
  • Sodium: 1042mg
  • Potassium: 427mg
  • Fiber: 1.1g
  • Sugar: 2.1g
  • Calcium: 25mg
  • Iron: 5mg
Hot and Sour Chicken Soup

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author avatar
Kim - InsanelyGood
Hey there! I'm Kim. I love running, cooking, and curling up with a good book! I share recipes for people who LOVE good food, but want to keep things simple :)

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