|Nutrition Facts (per serving)|
|Servings: 6 to 8|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 29g||37%|
|Saturated Fat 8g||41%|
|Total Carbohydrate 15g||6%|
|Dietary Fiber 2g||6%|
|Total Sugars 2g|
|Vitamin C 6mg||32%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|
Avgolemono chicken soup is perhaps the most iconic of all Greek soups. It is on the menu at nearly every Greek restaurant or diner, and you’ll find it as the first course at most Greek holiday celebrations. The inclusion of egg might seem unusual, but in this soup, egg acts as a thickener to this chicken soup with orzo. Chicken pairs well with lemon, and the soup's taste is seriously brightened with the addition of lemon zest and juice. The taste is silky and creamy (and lemony), without the use of cream.
This avgolemono soup is also used as a sauce, too. It's often served as an accompaniment for grape leaves stuffed with rice and meat, or alongside roasted chicken.
Click Play to See This Avgolemono (Greek Lemon Chicken Soup) Recipe Come Together
"Avgolemono soup brings back fond memories of my childhood, since my dad made it almost every Sunday. I really looked forward to making this comforting soup, it was easy to prepare and it was as delicious as I remembered it, full of bright lemony flavor." —Diana Andrews
1 (3 1/2-pound) whole chicken, cut into 6 pieces
12 cups water
2 large carrots, quartered
2 stalks celery, quartered
1 large onion, peeled and halved
2 bay leaves
5 whole black peppercorns
2 teaspoons salt, more to taste
1/2 cup dry orzo, or rice
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest
4 to 6 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Fresh dill sprigs, for garnish
Steps to Make It
Gather the ingredients.
Add the chicken, water, carrots, celery, onion, bay leaves, peppercorns, and salt to a large stockpot. Bring to a rapid boil, lower the heat to medium-low and simmer, partially covered, for about 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
Remove the chicken and vegetables to a bowl and carefully strain the broth through a fine sieve into a separate large bowl. Return the strained broth to the stockpot and bring to a boil.
Add the orzo and cook until al dente, according to package directions.
While the pasta is cooking, prepare the egg-lemon mixture. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs until nice and frothy.
Add the lemon zest and the lemon juice in a steady stream while continuing to whisk.
When the pasta has finished cooking, turn off the heat. Ladle about 2 cups of broth into a large measuring cup.
Slowly add the hot broth to the egg-lemon mixture while continuing to whisk. This will temper the eggs and prevent them from curdling once they are added to the hot broth.
Continuously stir the egg-lemon mixture back into the pot over very low heat until the mixture is heated through, 5 to 10 minutes. Be careful not to boil the soup once the eggs have been added. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper.
Traditionally, this soup is served without the chicken meat or vegetables. You can add them back or serve on the side as you prefer. Garnish with dill and serve.
If you like your soup very thick, you can add 2 tablespoons of cornstarch dissolved in a bit of warm water to the broth before adding the egg-lemon mixture.
This recipe can be made vegetarian if you use vegetable broth instead of chicken stock or broth. It won't have quite the same flavor, but it will work. Alternatively, you can use water.
How to Store and Freeze Avgolemono
This avgolemono soup can be kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator for two to three days. Carefully reheat on medium-low, ensuring it doesn't come to a full boil. You can also freeze this soup for up to six months. Thaw in the refrigerator and reheat gently, adding a bit of water if needed until completely hot.