This Greek avgolemono soup is always a hit if you enjoy a good chicken and rice combination. For a hearty, well-balanced meal, rice, chicken that has been chopped up, and a few basic vegetables are combined with a silky, lemon-and-egg broth.
SO, WHAT’S AVGOLEMONO ANYWAYS?
If you've never had it before, avgolemono is a silky Greek sauce made from a combination of broth, lemon juice, and eggs. Although it is frequently spooned over a variety of cooked vegetables and meats, the flavor in soup form is much more satisfying.
I know I may be partial to this recipe given how much I enjoy dishes with a Mediterranean influence (hence my one-pan chicken and rice, Greek sheet pan chicken, or Greek chicken kabobs), but I have no doubt you'll enjoy it as much as I do. and keep making it throughout the soup season. Because what could be cozier than curling up with a big bowl of hearty chicken soup?
HERE ARE THE INGREDIENTS YOU’LL NEED
Although I will admit that I took a small shortcut, the ingredients are fairly straightforward. To make the shredded chicken and broth, I'm not cooking a whole chicken from scratch; instead, I'm using a rotisserie chicken and canned chicken broth. Additionally, I'm using precooked white rice.
Is this avgolemono soup the real deal? Technically, it doesn't, but the idea is the same, and the outcomes and flavors are very similar. You know me; for a seamless (and simple!) cooking experience, I'm all for simplification. What you'll need is the following:
- Vegetables: The only vegetables required for this soup's chicken are celery and onions. I have some suggestions for additional vegetables to add, though, below.
- Chicken: There are a few ways to go about this. You can make my shredded chicken recipe with chicken breasts, make my slow cooker whole chicken, or shred a pre-cooked rotisserie chicken from the market (which is how I'm doing it today).
- Chicken broth: The same broth that you would use to cook a whole chicken. However, if you're using a pre-cooked bird from the store, reach for your preferred low-sodium chicken broth.
- Eggs: To balance the lemon ratio, just two large eggs are required.
- Lemons: Freshly squeezed lemon juice is needed here – no bottled versions!
- Rice: For a fluffier texture that complements the creamy texture of the soup, stick with short-grain white rice, like arborio. In addition, I have an entire video on how to cook rice in a pot if you don't have a rice cooker. For the sake of making this recipe even easier to prepare during the week, I advise making the rice a day or two in advance (meal prep!).
- Herbs: Fresh dill or parsley can be added to the soup or sprinkled on top as needed.
HOW TO MAKE AVGOLEMONO SOUP (THE EASY WAY)
While there are many variations on the traditional avgolemono soup, I'm going to show you a quick and simple version that makes use of some meal preparation so that you can quickly serve this filling soup. Basically, it's a quick weeknight meal!
Prepare the vegetables. For three to four minutes, or until they're just beginning to soften, saute the onion and celery in oil in a large pan.
Put the broth in. After that, add salt and pepper and simmer the dish.
Make the sauce for avgolemono. The eggs and lemon juice were traditionally whisked separately by hand, and the eggs were then continuously whisked while being tempered with ladles of simmering broth.
Combine all of the ingredients. Add the rice, chicken, and lemon-egg mixture to the stock that is just simmering. Continue cooking for a further 5 to 10 minutes, or until the rice and chicken are thoroughly heated. After that is finished, add some freshly chopped dill as a garnish and get ready to serve!
To store: Put any leftovers in an airtight container and store them in the fridge for 3–4 days.
To Refrigerate: If you want to freeze the soup, pour it into a freezer-safe container or silicone soup tray (like my favorite Souper Cubes). In the freezer, it can last up to three months.
For Reheating: Make sure to use medium-low heat whether you're reheating from the refrigerator or freezer. One serving can be reheated in the microwave, or a larger quantity can be heated in a pot on the stovetop. When reheating, you might need to add more broth or water to thin it out.
AVGOLEMONO SOUP (GREEK LEMON CHICKEN & RICE SOUP)
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 small onion, diced
- 2 celery rib, chopped
- 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 2 large eggs
- ¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (from about 1 to 2 lemons)
- 1 ½ cup cooked white rice
- 2 cup shredded chicken
- chopped fresh dill for garnish
- Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and celery and saute for 3 to 4 minutes, until softened.
- Add the broth, season with salt and pepper, and bring to a simmer.
- In a blender, add the eggs, lemon juice, and ¼ cup of the rice. Blend until smooth, about 20 seconds. Then while blending, slowly stream 2 ladles full of hot broth from the saucepan to temper the eggs.
- Stir the lemon egg puree into the lightly simmering stock along with the rice and chicken, until slightly thickened, about 5 to 10 minutes. Do not boil the soup as it can cause the egg mixture to curdle.
- Garnish with dill before serving.