When you have a hankering for egg drop soup, but just don’t feel like going out to eat or waiting who knows how long for a delivery driver to drop off a quart of that soup, you can easily make your own in just 30 minutes. It takes only six ingredients and happens to be quite healthy to boot. The recipe from dietitian and chef Tara Rylie yields four appetizer servings or two dinner servings. She and her husband love sipping this soup that they make even heartier and healthier by tweaking it to their preferences.
"At home we add tons of veggies to our egg drop soup," she said. "This creates an extremely full vegetable soup and we consider the eggs as our protein. Veggies we’ve used before include mushrooms, baby bell peppers, bok choy, tomatoes, jalapenos, cilantro, parsley, red onion, broccoli, and radishes. Vegetables can be sautéed ahead of time and added very last to the soup or my favorite, simply pour piping hot soup over a bed of fresh veggies. This way the veggies add a nice crunch to a traditionally hot, silky soup."
Round up the ingredients for egg drop soup
The ingredients for this hearty soup are healthy and tasty, too. It takes just four cups, or 32 ounces, of chicken broth, half an inch of peeled and sliced fresh ginger, one tablespoon of soy sauce or tamari, four large eggs, two teaspoons of cornstarch and six thinly sliced scallions.
"Technically, any type of chicken broth could be used, low-sodium, etc. However, as a chef, I love flavor so I always go for the fully loaded chicken broth, salt and all," Rylie said.
Start by making the egg drop soup broth
Grab a medium-sized saucepan and pour in four cups of chicken broth. Bring it to a boil over medium-high heat. While the broth is reaching a boil, slice and peel half an inch of fresh ginger. Once the broth hits a boiling point, add in the ginger and one tablespoon of soy sauce or tamari. Turn the heat as low as possible and simmer for 15 minutes.
But what is tamari and where can it be found?
"Tamari is typically in the Asian foods aisle right next to soy sauce. Tamari is soy sauce without wheat and though this is a necessity for some, I’d actually recommend it for all," Rylie explained. "Tamari has a much richer, deep flavor than soy sauce, which tends to be more thin and watery."
Prep the star of the egg drop soup show: the eggs
While the ginger-infused egg drop soup broth simmers, whisk together the four eggs with one teaspoon of cornstarch until the mixture is thoroughly combined. Rylie explained that whisking cornstarch into the eggs prevents the proteins from bonding, which allows for silky and tender egg curls to dominate the soup. Without the cornstarch, the eggs will become more rubbery.
"For those with corn allergies, arrowroot powder can be substituted for cornstarch," Rylie said.
Thicken the egg drop soup broth
After simmering the mixture for 15 minutes, remove one-fourth of a cup of hot broth from the pan. Put it in a small bowl and whisk with the remaining teaspoon of cornstarch. Pour the thicker mixture back into the broth and stir with a wooden spoon until combined.
"This is intended to thicken the broth. If someone prefers a thicker broth, they could combine the one fourth of cup of hot broth with up to one tablespoon of cornstarch," she said.
Carefully add in the soup’s eggs
Turn the heat up to medium but be careful, because the broth should be hot but not boiling. Slowly — with an emphasis on slowly — drizzle the egg mixture into the soup with one hand while gently stirring the broth with a wooden spoon in a circular motion with the other hand.
"You want to slowly drizzle in the egg mixture while stirring simultaneously so that you can create egg ‘noodles.’ If you just dump in it, you’re going to have one big, sort of curd-like blob," Rylie said.
As soon as all of the egg mixture has been infused into the soup, add a handful of scallions and give the soup one last stir. Serve immediately topped with remaining scallions.
Give the egg drop soup a hearty kick
If the fresh ginger isn’t enough to spice up this egg drop soup recipe, Rylie suggested adding other spices and flavorful ingredients that can pack a punch, such as lemongrass, halved garlic cloves, star anise, peppercorns, cloves or cinnamon sticks.
The protein content in this recipe also can be upped from just the eggs by simply adding silken tofu, shredded chicken and ground pork, she said. The soup can be made heartier by adding an assortment of veggies, too. "Cook the meat ahead of time and add very last, right before serving," she said.
This hearty soup recipe only has six ingredients and delivers a tasty egg drop soup that’s sure to rival your regular Chinese restaurant takeout order.
- 4 cups (32 oz.) chicken broth
- half an inch of fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce or tamari
- 4 large eggs
- 2 teaspoon cornstarch, divided
- 6 scallions, thinly sliced
- bok choy
- shredded chicken or pork
- In a medium-sized saucepan, bring the broth to a boil over medium-high heat. Add sliced ginger and soy sauce, then turn heat as low as possible and simmer for 15 minutes.
- While the broth simmers, whisk together the eggs with 1 teaspoon cornstarch until thoroughly combined.
- After simmering for 15 minutes, remove a quarter of a cup of hot broth from the pan and in a small bowl, whisk together with remaining teaspoon of cornstarch. Pour slurry back into broth and stir with wooden spoon until combined.
- Turn the heat to medium — the broth should be hot but not boiling — and slowly drizzle in the egg mixture with one hand while gently stirring the broth with a wooden spoon with your other hand. As soon as the eggs are all in, add a handful of scallions and give soup one last stir. Serve immediately, topped with remaining scallions.