Polish Dried Mushroom Soup - Zupa Grzybowa

Mushroom soup
Polish mushroom soup (zupa grzybowa)

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Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 2 hrs
Total: 2 hrs 15 mins
Servings: 6 to 8 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
210 Calories
12g Fat
19g Carbs
10g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6 to 8
Amount per serving
Calories 210
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 12g 15%
Saturated Fat 6g 30%
Cholesterol 34mg 11%
Sodium 810mg 35%
Total Carbohydrate 19g 7%
Dietary Fiber 2g 6%
Total Sugars 4g
Protein 10g
Vitamin C 2mg 8%
Calcium 93mg 7%
Iron 1mg 8%
Potassium 963mg 20%
*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.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This traditional hearty meatless soup, known as zupa grzybowa in Polish is a national culinary treasure. Mushroom hunters, who seek out borowiki mushrooms in fall, dry them for use year-round. The soup combines dried, reconstituted mushrooms, stock, and either cooked with barley or served with kluski (Polish noodles), finished with sour cream before serving.

This soup is representative of the sour soups popular with Eastern Europeans—the Slovaks, Rusyns, and Ukrainians have their machanka, the Romanians have their ciorba, the Poles and Russians have their barszcz, żurek, chłodnik, and so on.


  • 4 ounces dried mushrooms, such as Polish borowiki or Italian porcini

  • 3 1/2 cups hot water

  • 3 quarts beef, chicken, or vegetable stock

  • 1 cup rinsed and drained pearl barley, optional

  • 2 cups sour cream, more for garnish

  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • Salt, to taste

  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

  • 1 cup cooked kluski noodles, optional

  • 1 tablespoon coarsely chopped parsley, for garnish

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Combine mushrooms and hot water in a large, heatproof bowl. Let stand for 1 hour.

  3. With your fingers, work mushrooms to release any grit. Let stand until very pliable, about 1 hour longer.

  4. Lift mushrooms from the liquid. Cut mushrooms into large pieces and set aside. Reserve bowl of soaking liquid.

  5. In a 5- to 6-quart pot, combine stock, chopped mushrooms, and pearl barley, if using. Pour the reserved soaking liquid into the pot, taking care not to disturb the grit in the bowl.

  6. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer, stirring occasionally until the mushrooms and pearl barley are tender, 30 to 45 minutes. If making the soup ahead, at this point cool, cover and chill up to overnight. Reheat to simmering and proceed with the next step.

  7. In a medium bowl, mix the sour cream with flour and temper by whisking in a little hot soup.

  8. Pour contents of the bowl into hot soup, whisking constantly on medium-high heat until it comes to a boil. Adjust seasonings with salt and pepper.

  9. Remove from heat and ladle into warm bowls. Serve with kluski noodles, if using. Garnish with sour cream and parsley, if desired.

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