Hot and Sour Soup

This restaurant-style Hot and Sour Soup recipe is the best!!  It’s quick and simple to make, easy to adapt to your personal taste preferences, and so delicious!

Can’t stop, won’t stop with the soup recipes this winter.

And today’s recipe is one that I’ve been meaning to share with you on the blog for years, after literally dozens and dozens of you have requested it.  (This usually comes up when I’m chatting about my favorite egg drop soup recipe — apparently many of you usually opt for the hot and sour soup at your favorite Chinese restaurants and have wanted to learn how to make it!)

Well, good news, friends!  Traditional hot and sour soup is actually incredibly easy to make as well.  And the bonus of making it at home is that it’s also incredibly easy to customize to your taste.  Like it extra hot?  Add in more chili garlic sauce.  Like it extra sour?  Add in more rice wine vinegar.  Like it vegetarian?  Make it with tofu.  Like the meat version?  Just add in some pork.

Trust me, this is one of those restaurant recipes that will taste just as good at home.  And on chilly winter weeks like this one that we’re having here in Kansas City, it’s guaranteed to warm you up in the most delicious of ways.

Hot And Sour Soup Recipe | 1-Minute Video

Hot and Sour Soup Ingredients:

To make this hot and sour soup recipe, you will need:

  • Stock: Either chicken or veggie stock will do.
  • Mushrooms: I highly recommend using shiitake mushrooms, but baby bella or even button mushrooms would also do.
  • Rice vinegar, soy sauce, chili garlic sauce, ground ginger: To flavor the broth.
  • Cornstarch: To thicken the broth.
  • Eggs: Which we will whisk, and the drizzle into the soup to make those lovely egg ribbons.
  • Firm tofu: Which we will cube and add to the soup.
  • Green onions: To stir into the soup and also sprinkle on top as a garnish.
  • Toasted sesame oil: An essential flavor in the soup, which we will drizzle at the very end.
  • Salt and pepper: Hot and sour soup is traditionally made with white pepper, which (heads up) has a different and much stronger flavor than black pepper.  I recommend adding in a pinch, and then you can always add in more later.  Or if you don’t have white pepper, black pepper will also do.
  • Optional: The one traditional ingredient I don’t typically use is bamboo shoots (not a fan).  But feel free to add some to your soup if you would like!

How To Make Hot and Sour Soup:

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Possible Variations:

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What To Serve With Hot & Sour Soup:

Here are a few of my favorite dishes that pair well with hot and sour soup:

More Favorite Soup Recipes:

If you love egg drop soup, feel free to check out these other favorite soup recipes:

5
5 / 5 (122 Reviews)
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Hot and Sour Soup

This classic Chinese hot and sour soup recipe is quick and easy to make, full of delicious flavor, easy to make vegetarian (with tofu!) or with pork, and it totally rivals any soup I’ve tried at a Chinese restaurant!

Ingredients:

  • 8 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 8 ounces shiitake mushrooms (or baby bella mushrooms), thinly-sliced with stems discarded
  • optional: 1 (8-ounce) can bamboo shoots, drained
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar, or more to taste
  • 1/4 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon chili garlic sauce
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 2 large eggs, whisked
  • 8 ounces firm tofu*, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 4 green onions (scallions), thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • Kosher salt and black pepper (or white pepper**)

Directions:

  1. Set aside ¼ cup of the chicken or vegetable stock for later use.
  2. Add the remaining 7 ¾ cups chicken or vegetable stock, mushrooms, bamboo shoots (if using), rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, ginger and chili garlic sauce to a large stock pot, and stir to combine.  Heat over medium-high heat until the soup reaches a simmer.
  3. While the soup is heating, whisk together the ¼ cup of stock (that you had set aside) and cornstarch in a small bowl until completely smooth.  Once the soup has reached a simmer, stir in the cornstarch mixture and stir for 1 minute or so until the soup has thickened.
  4. Continue stirring the soup in a circular motion, then drizzle in the eggs in a thin stream (while still stirring the soup) to create egg ribbons.  Stir in the tofu, half of the green onions, and sesame oil.  Then season the soup with salt and black pepper (or white pepper) to taste.  If you’d like a more “sour” soup, feel free to add in another tablespoon or two of rice wine vinegar as well.  Or if you’d like a spicier soup, add in more chili garlic sauce.
  5. Serve immediately, garnished with the extra green onions.

*Or, you’re welcome to make this with pork instead of tofu.  Just add in a half pound of cooked pork — ground pork, or you can thinly-slice pork chops or pork loin — in place of the tofu.

**I actually prefer using a pinch of white pepper in this soup instead of black pepper.  But in case you’ve never used it, be careful — it has a much stronger and different flavor than black pepper!  So start with less, and then you can always add more.  :)

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313 comments on “Hot and Sour Soup”

1 3 4 5
  1. This soup is amazing and simple, thank you so much!!!

    Rating: 5
  2. Loved the flavors! Some notes for next time (not enough to deduct a star). Didn’t have near enough heat for my taste…added 2 Tbsp instead of 1 tsp of the garlic chili sauce. Holy mother of god, that 1:1 mix of cornstarch may work for everyone but me, i couldn’t get it to mix together. A 3:1 broth:starch ratio was ok, but majorly thick paste. All in all, a keeper going into the rotation. Thanks! Note to self: a bix of tofu does not last 3 years past it’s “sell by” date. Delish anyway.

    Rating: 5
  3. I have made this recipe twice now and both times it has turned out great! Very happy with the results. Added a little extra soy sauce and chili garlic sauce. Will make it again.
    Thanks!

    Rating: 5
  4. sooooo good! used zoup! veggie broth as my base,
    added reconstituted shitake and oyster mushrooms to the broth with softened onions and garlic. added fresh shiitakes and oyster shrooms, shichimi togarashi as well.
    ran out of rice vinegar and still needed more sour, so squeezed in a half lime. white pepper makes all the dif
    and so glad to have more for work lunches!
    bin appétit!

    Rating: 4
  5. I never thought about making this soup but I had a craving and needed it! This was perfect and simple yet so tasty!

    Rating: 4
  6. Made this tonight, with just a few adjustments to the vinegar and chili paste (I like it hotter and sourer). This was amazing! My wife said it was the best hot and sour soup she’s ever had, and she ate an enormous bowl of it, as did I! I will be making this many times, I’m sure! THANK YOU.

    Rating: 5
  7. I was skeptical… but it’s true. This is, hands DOWN, the best Hot n Sour soup I’ve ever had. I used both pork and tofu and even threw in the shoots. I used a third of a cup of vinegar because I love the sour part of Hot n Sour and it wasn’t overbearing. Exactly the right amount.

    Thank you so much for this recipe!

    Rating: 5
  8. Made this tonight… Really lovely… needed to up the chilli and the vinegar, but overall,great and so easy to follow my 7 year old helped me all the way! She even liked the taste too!

    Just a quick question… is this ok to freeze including the tofu and the eggs? I don’t want to have to always waste the soup… Hate wasting anything, but especially somethings so tasty!

    Rating: 5
  9. Made this tonight and it was delicious, and I was so surprised that it was so quick from start to finish. Often in restaurants it is made with beef stock, or has bits of pork, so as a vegetarian I can’t eat it. Thank you, Ali!

    Rating: 5
  10. This soup was excellent we really enjoyed it. I used canned mushrooms & water chestnuts because that’s what I had on hand. I follwed the instructions exactly . I find that the soup didn’t thickened much , however the flavor was great. Will be serving it to company this weekend . Thanks for a great recipe !!

    Rating: 5
  11. Wonderful taste however I could not get the cornstarch to clarify. My soup came out cloudy and I am not sure what I did incorrect. Ideas?

    Rating: 5
  12. Yummy

    Rating: 5
  13. So excited to try this at home and make it for my family. Any alternative options to cornstarch though? I’m not a fan of it. Or if I don’t use it, would it be best to just leave it out entirely without a substitute? Thank you!

  14. This recipe was fantastic! I’ll be making it again for my in-laws.

  15. Great easy recipe. Authentic restaurant taste. I added matchstick carrots as well and did not add any additional salt or pepper. I do need to work on my technique for adding the egg.

    Rating: 5
  16. Yes it was fantastic. I do not like mushrooms but all other ingredients were added and wonderful.

    Rating: 5
  17. Omg I didn’t think it could be done, but this recipe is legit! Best hot and sour soup ever!!

    Rating: 5
  18. Meant to leave 5 stars…

    Rating: 5
  19. Quivk and delicious! It has become a weekly favorite! This soup is packed with fresh ingredients and flavor. It is a great meal to prepare when you need something quick and filling. Whether you stick with tofu or substitute with chicken, it’s a winner!

    Rating: 5
  20. This is awesome 5 stars it is

    Rating: 5
  21. OMG! Amazing!!! Thank you for this simple and delicious recipe. It was so good! And so easy!

    Rating: 5
  22. I’ve made this recipe several times. It’s now my go-to when I get a craving for hot & sour soup! Highly recommend.

    Rating: 5
  23. Made this recipe last night to satisfy my craving on a rainy night for a bowl of hot and sour soup. This was such an easy recipe and delicious!!! Thank you !

    Rating: 5
  24. So I guess we are never ordering hot and sour soup out again. My husband says its better than any restaurant. Super easy. Had most of ingredients on hand. Like that I can make it as hot or sour as we prefer. Yummy! Will definitely make again.

    Rating: 5
  25. AMAZING!! I am really picky when it comes to Hot and Sour soup! This is excellent. I did add the extra vinegar as you suggested as well as some red pepper flakes. All I can say is that this is a definite keeper and I will be making this over and over and over!!

    Rating: 5
  26. I will never buy another bowl this soup is so much better

    Rating: 5
  27. I’ve made this at least five times and it never disappoints. The BEST hot and sour soup ever. Thank you!

    Rating: 5
  28. It was tasty, due to using dry mushrooms and dry tofu sticks, may have had too much water. Took a long time to thicken.

    Rating: 4
  29. Delicious and easy!! Happened to have most ingredients on hand except I only had one green onion, but it turned out great. I used firm silken tofu, which I thought tasted great in this soup. Thank you very much for this recipe! I will definitely be making it again. May try freezing a jar of it – has anyone had any luck with that?

    Rating: 5