Avgolemono – Greek Lemon and Egg Soup with Orzo is a timeless classic Greek comfort food at it’s finest. Its hearty flavors make it the perfect winter meal combining homemade chicken broth, shredded chicken, orzo, carrots, onions, garlic, and fresh asparagus with a thick creamy lemony soup base made from adding eggs and lemon juice to thicken the Avgolemono Soup.
Greek Lemon and Egg Soup with Orzo, is another one of my childhood favorites. When I hear the word “Avgolemono” I instantly smile being a lemon lover like I am. I also smile and think of my childhood friends mothers in the kitchen cooking some of the finest Greek recipes I would ever taste. One word Amazing!
I still enjoy using the old-fashioned method for my chicken broth when it comes to Avgolemono Soup, I know I know it’s 2-3 hours time, but so well worth the extra effort and you can not match the flavor using the containers from the store. Besides nothing good ever happens in 30 minutes does it? Okay, maybe a few things, but humor me and make the homemade broth you will notice a huge difference in the taste and your house will have a fantastic aroma.
I make my Avgolemono Soup with Orzo, but you can substitute rice for it if you prefer. Rice is such a sore subject in my home- yep I got a rice hater in the household. Ther rice hater would prefer I feed him to the wolves than eat one small grain of rice. I know it sounds crazy but this same guy hates black beans, watermelons, and cucumbers too. Pfft, picky little thing. So yeah this recipe uses orzo instead of rice.
I use a lot of lemon in my soup, however, if you are not a huge fan of lemon just cut back a pinch of the lemon to about 1/4 of a cup. I completely understand everyone has a different lemon level. Mine is about an 8, while my son is a 10 and one of my best friends is a big fat lemon level of 20. Which I might add is ridiculous—RIDICLOUS! I still love her lemon loving little heart though.So feel free to adjust your lemon if need be Y’all.
You will also find I don’t use cornstarch to thicken mine, some restaurants like to skip using the egg whites and use only the yolks with a bit of cornstarch. Sorry, not sorry I don’t I still use the method my childhood friend Effi’s mother taught me which does not include the use of cornstarch I am afraid.
Avgolemono – Greek Lemon and Egg Soup with Orzo
- 10 cups of water
- 5 uncooked chicken thighs
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup uncooked orzo
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil +1 teaspoon
- 1 medium onion finely diced
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1 large carrot shredded
- 5 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
- 2 cups of cut fresh asparagus spear tips
- 3 tablespoons of chopped dill
- Sliced lemons, for serving
Instructions for Greek Lemon and Egg Soup with Orzo
- Place 9 cups of water in a dutch oven over medium-high heat, add 5 uncooked chicken thighs, kosher salt, and fresh ground black pepper, cook about 2 hours and 30 minutes. Then remove chicken and place on a platter to cool. Skim the top of the broth to remove excess oil. An easy method to remove the fat from the broth is to place the broth in the refrigerator for 1 hour before skimming the top to remove the fat.
- Meanwhile, remove the chicken meat from the thighs and shred it. Reserve till needed
- Cook the orzo according to the package directions. Drain, coat with 1 teaspoon of olive oil and reserve till needed.
- Cook the onions, shredded carrot, minced garlic in 1 tablespoon of olive oil, season with kosher salt, and freshly ground black pepper over medium heat, stirring occasionally until the onions have softened, about 5-7 minutes.
- Next, add the skimmed homemade chicken broth and shredded chicken back to the Dutch Oven with the onions, carrots, and garlic. Simmer in broth about 20 minutes then add the asparagus tips and lightly simmer 5 minutes.
- Remove about 1 cup of the hot chicken broth in glass or metal measuring cup.
- Beat the eggs and the lemon juice in a glass bowl. Very slowly add the hot reserved chicken broth, whisking constantly. Stir back into the very slowly soup.
- Stir in the cooked orzo and dill, cook on very low heat about 5-7 minutes careful not to let it bubble, stirring frequently.
- Serve immediately, garnished with sliced lemon.
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