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Avgolemono Chicken Soup with Rice

If you aren’t yet familiar with Avgolemono soup, don’t miss your chance to try this delicious Greek specialty.

Avgolemono

The first time I tried Avgolemono, I was exploring my local Greektown with my husband,  and we stopped in a tiny hole-in-the-wall. No one was there except for us, the owners, and their three dogs. When I asked for the daily special, this light yet creamy veggie and chicken soup came out. I knew I’d have to make a version for myself as soon as we came home.

So what is Avgolemono soup? The soup gets its name from the broth imbued with eggs and lemon, which thickens the soup and gives it a nice tangy personality. The trick is to mix the egg and lemon mixture with a small amount of broth at a time so you don’t cook your eggs. Be sure to whisk or stir the entire time you’re tempering the eggs, and continue to whisk as you pour the egg and lemon mixture into the full pot of soup. That’s really the only hard part of the recipe. 

Of course, chicken soup is classic comfort food, so you know you’re off to a good start. The difference here is that instead of noodles, we’re using orzo pasta for a more traditionally styled Greek dish. You’ll find a number of Avgolemono soup recipes with rice, too. I just like the way orzo textures the soup. Still, feel free to use rice if you prefer. 

Whichever you choose, this simple soup is just the thing to nourish you on a cold winter night. Garnish it with a lemon wedge and some chopped fresh parsley from your indoor herb garden. Fresh dill is also a wonderful accompaniment to the lemony broth and makes a pretty garnish if you have it handy. You also don’t need to choose. Add all three for a delicious bowl of your new favorite soup.

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Avgolemono

Avgolemono Chicken Soup with Rice

If you aren’t yet familiar with Avgolemono soup, don’t miss your chance to try this delicious Greek specialty.

  • Author: Addie Gundry
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4
  • Category: Soups

Ingredients

Scale
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 7 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 carrots, finely chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 1/2 cups orzo pasta
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (from 3 or 4 lemons)
  • 4 large eggs
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Lemon wedges, for garnish

Instructions

  1. In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the chicken, broth, carrots, celery, and bay leaf to the pot. Bring to a gentle boil and cook until the chicken is cooked through, about 1 hour. Remove the chicken from the pot, shred the meat with two forks, and return it to the pot.
  3. Return the broth to a boil and add the orzo. Boil until the orzo is cooked according to the package directions.
  4. Measure 2 cups of the broth out of the pan and set aside.
  5. In a small bowl, beat the lemon juice and eggs together. Slowly stir in the reserved broth, whisking Pour the egg mixture into the pot, stirring well.
  6. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Remove the bay leaf.
  7. Ladle into bowls, garnish with lemon wedges, and serve.

Keywords: avgolemono, soup

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