Avgolemono Recipe - Greek Chicken Soup for the Soul

23/02/2015 11:51 GMT | Updated 23/04/2015 10:59 BST


This soup is the most iconic Greek soup, known for its two main ingredients: eggs (avgo) and lemon juice (lemono). If you like a thick soup, dissolve two tablespoons of cornstarch in warm water and add it to the broth before you add the egg mixture.

Ingredients (choose organic when available):

  • 1 (2 to 3 pound) organic chicken, skin removed (yields about 3 cups cooked chicken)
  • 12 cups cold water
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 3 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3/4 cup orzo (rice-shaped pasta)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

In a 6 to 8-quart or liter stockpot, cover the chicken with water and add the salt. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat then reduce to a low simmer, and skim any foam from the surface. Add the onion, carrots, celery and bay leaf and continue to simmer until the chicken is cooked, 45 minutes to one hour.

Remove chicken from the broth and set aside to cool. Optional: strain the broth but do remove the bay leaf. When the chicken is at room temperature, pull the meat from the bones and discard the bones. Dice the chicken meat into bite-size pieces and refrigerate until ready to use.

Add the orzo to the broth and bring to a boil. Then reduce the heat and simmer until the orzo is almost cooked, eight minutes.

In a medium sized bowl, beat the eggs with the lemon juice and pepper.  While whisking, slowly pour about two cups of the hot broth into the egg mixture. Pour the egg mixture back into the stockpot. Add in the chicken and reheat as needed. Serves eight.

Nutrition Facts per serving (490 grams): 174 calories, 3.3 grams fat, 15.4 grams carbohydrates, 19.2 grams protein, high in vitamins A and C. 

Bon Appétit!

For more healthy recipes and a diet geared towards optimal health and weight loss without deprivation, pick up a copy of Layne's book: Beyond The Mediterranean Diet: European Secrets Of The Super-Healthy.