Avgolemono Soup (Greek Lemon Rice Soup)
This healthy Avgolemono Soup has a silky broth full of flavor! A rich, comforting bowl of this Greek lemon rice soup is easy, healthy, and convenient by using cooked, shredded chicken.
The beauty of this soup is that it brings two perfect dishes together: chicken soup and avgolemono sauce. This sauce is a Greek invention made from lemon juice and eggs; it brings an instant brightness and smooth, velvety texture to any dish! It’s common to pair it with roasted chicken and vegetables. Naturally, it makes sense that it works perfectly in a delicious chicken soup!
What you’ll love about this recipe:
Ingredients for Avgolemono Soup
Here’s a quick overview of what you’ll need for this recipe. For exact measurements, keep scrolling down to the printable recipe card below.
- Olive oil, Onion, Celery, Carrots, Garlic – These give your soup an aromatic base that will ensure every bite is full of flavor. You can use frozen pre-chopped veggies to make your prep easier and faster.
- Shredded chicken, Chicken broth – This recipe uses cooked, shredded chicken, so you can use up a store-bought rotisserie or prep your chicken on the grill, in a slow cooker, with the Instant Pot, or in the air fryer. For a super flavorful, inexpensive option, use Homemade Chicken Stock.
- Basmati rice (rinsed) – I don’t recommend substituting a different type of rice. Even though they may look similar, there are so many differences! Basmati works best in this recipe because of its firm-yet-fluffy texture and a slight nutty flavor. Other types of rice can be too sticky, causing the soup to have a gummy, gloopy texture.
- Eggs, Lemon juice – This forms the avgolemono sauce that gives this soup its amazing flavor and texture! You can use pre-whisked eggs from a carton if that’s more convenient for you. Bottled lemon juice is fine and convenient, but fresh juice will provide more flavor.
- Fresh dill, Salt, Pepper – Add to taste. The fresh flavor of the dill brings out the best in the lemon and veggies!
How to make Greek Lemon Rice Soup
This soup is simple and tastes like MUCH more work than it actually is! The only semi-tricky part is tempering the eggs, and even that is easy when you work slowly enough. Here’s a step-by-step guide for making this delicious Greek chicken soup.
In a large pot or Dutch oven, add olive oil over medium heat. Once hot, add diced onion, celery, carrots, and garlic. Sauté until the onions have softened (about 4-5 minutes), making sure to stir occasionally for even cooking.
Add chicken and broth
Place the cooked, shredded chicken into the pot, then the chicken broth (or stock). Raise the heat to medium-high, bringing the broth to a boil.
Once the broth is boiling, add the rinsed (important!) rice and stir well. Lower the heat to medium and continue cooking uncovered. Stir occasionally to ensure the rice isn’t sticking together and the pieces on the bottom aren’t burning. Cook until rice is tender, about 15 minutes, then reduce the heat to low.
In a separate bowl, whisk your eggs and lemon juice together. Scoop out 1/2 cup of the hot broth from the soup and VERY SLOWLY pour it into the egg and lemon mixture, whisking as you pour. Repeat this two more times until you have poured 1 1/2 cups of broth in with the eggs.
Note: It is VERY IMPORTANT to work slowly! This process tempers the eggs, making sure you don’t end up with little pieces of scrambled eggs in your soup. Working too quickly will add unappetizing egg clumps and ruin the luscious, silky texture we want.
Now that your eggs are tempered, carefully and slowly pour the egg mixture into the soup with the chicken and rice. Stir while you do this to evenly incorporate this beautiful texture into the soup. Serve immediately with fresh dill, salt, and pepper. Provide lemon wedges so guests can add additional citrus flavor if they prefer.
What to serve with Greek Lemon Chicken Soup
We love this delicious soup with a good bread! Consider this Gouda Jalapeno Bread, Keto Rolls, or my favorite Cheesy Cornbread. A simple salad (like this Spring Salad or Arugula Salad with Parmesan) is a nice pairing as well. To stretch the meal further, serve some Air Fryer Broccoli (perfect with those extra lemon wedges) or give your guests this Greek Cucumber Salad as a tasty appetizer beforehand!
STORAGE & REHEATING
- FRIDGE – Allow soup to cool, then store in an airtight container in the fridge up to 4 days. Pouring leftovers into individual-sized containers is great fo grab-and-go lunch packing!
- FREEZER – Allow soup to completely cool, then transfer to a freezer bag or container. Make sure to leave enough room for the soup to expand as it freezes, or your container may burst! This soup is best eaten within 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge before reheating.
- REHEATING – Reheating is very simple either in the microwave (best to operate on 50% power to prevent messy bursts) or on medium low in a pot on the stove. The rice often soaks up moisture during the cooling process, so consider stirring in extra broth or water to the soup while reheating.
Avgolemono Soup FAQs
Eggs can cook super quickly, so we have to temper the eggs before adding them to the soup! The key is working very slowly. First, whisk your eggs with your lime juice. I like to start with room temperature eggs because they are easier to mix and they receive less of a “shock” from the hot broth. SLOWLY pour in a small amount of the hot broth with the eggs and juice, continuously whisking the entire time.
This process slowly raises the temperature of the egg mixture, allowing it to “cook” without turning into scrambled eggs. This becomes a beautiful, velvety sauce that adds an incredible texture to the soup.
The tempered egg sauce creates a super creamy, smooth texture for your soup without requiring any cream or butter. It’s rare to find such a rich, thick soup without dairy or high-calorie substitutes! This keeps the soup feeling decadent while still being healthy.
If you don’t temper the eggs, they will basically turn into scrambled eggs in chicken soup.
It’s Greek for egg-lemon. That is what separates this soup from all the other chicken soups you may see. The tempered egg lemon sauce provides a unique taste and texture you can’t achieve otherwise.
Yes, if you don’t have any pre-cooked chicken, you can easily use raw chicken breasts or thighs in this recipe! To do this, shave a few minutes off the vegetable sauteing time and increase the broth boiling time. Boil until the chicken reads 165 degrees F with a meat thermometer, then continue on with the rest of the recipe.
If you love this Greek Lemon Rice Soup, you’ll love these chicken soups:
- Sicilian Chicken Soup – This recipe is very simple but has a ton of flavor! It’s another dairy-free soup that will leave you feeling full and satisfied.
- Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup – Such a classic, and for a good reason! This comfort food recipe is a traditional crowd pleaser.
- Keto Broccoli Cheddar Soup with Chicken – This nutritious, creamy soup is a bit leaner than the super thick traditional recipe, and you get added protein from the chicken!
- Cheesy Jalapeno Chicken Soup – WOW, the flavor a bowl of this soup is going to surprise you! Enjoy the flavor of a jalapeno popper with the comforting feeling of a soup.
- Creamy Cajun Chicken Soup – This easy soup is a bit spicy and chock full of tomatoes, bell pepper, and chicken. It’ll certainly warm you up on a cool night!
Avgolemono Soup (Greek Lemon Rice Soup)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup onion chopped
- 1 cup celery chopped
- 1 cup carrots chopped
- 1 tablespoon garlic minced
- 4 cups cooked shredded chicken
- 8 cups chicken broth
- 3/4 cup basmati rice rinsed
- 5 large eggs
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 1/4 cup fresh dill for serving
- salt and pepper to taste
- Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large pot or Dutch oven. Add the onion, celery, carrots, and minced garlic and saute for 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally until the onions have softened.
- Add the cooked, shredded chicken and the chicken broth, increase the heat to medium-high, and bring the broth to a boil
- Add the rinsed rice and stir well.
- Reduce the heat to medium and allow the rice to cook uncovered, stirring occasionally for 15 minutes.
- Once the rice is tender reduce the heat to low.
- In a bowl whisk the eggs and lemon juice together. Scoop 1/2 cup of the hot broth out of the soup and very slowly pour it into the egg and lemon mixture as you whisk. This tempers the eggs and ensures you do not have tiny bits of scrambled eggs in your soup.
- Continue this three times until you have incorporated 1 1/2 cups of broth with the eggs.
- Once the eggs have been tempered, slowly pour them into the soup pot with the chicken and rice, stirring as you do this.
- Serve the soup immediately with fresh dill, salt, and pepper to taste and lemon wedges.