Hot and Sour Soup

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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.

Hot and Sour Soup Recipe

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

Shiitake Mushrooms for Hot and Sour Soup

Hot and Sour Soup Ingredients:

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

  • Broth: Either chicken or veggie stock (or broth) 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 gingerTo 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: Many restaurant versions of hot and sour soup are also made with bamboo shoots.  I’m personally not a fan of them, but you are welcome to add some in if you would like.

Chinese Hot and Sour Soup

How To Make Hot and Sour Soup:

To make this hot and sour soup recipe, simply…

  1. Make your cornstarch slurry.  Whisk together 1/4 cup of the stock and cornstarch until combined.  Set aside.
  2. Bring the soup to a simmer.  Add the remaining stock, mushrooms, bamboo shoots (if using), rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, ginger and chili garlic sauce to a large stock pot, and cook until the soup reaches a simmer.  Stir in the cornstarch slurry and continue cooking for a minute or so, until the soup has thickened.
  3. Drizzle in those beautiful egg ribbons! While stirring the soup in a circular motion with one hand, use your other hand to slowly drizzle the whisked eggs into the soup.
  4. Season the soup.  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.
  5. Serve.  Ladle up your servings while the soup is nice and hot, garnished with extra green onions.

How To Make Hot and Sour Soup

What To Serve With Hot & Sour Soup:

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

Hot and Sour Soup Recipe with Mushrooms and Tofu

More Favorite Soup Recipes:

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

Hot and Sour Soup Recipe

Hot and Sour Soup

  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 6 -8 servings 1x


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!




  1. Set aside ¼ cup of the chicken or vegetable broth for later use.
  2. Add the remaining 7 ¾ cups chicken or vegetable broth, 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 broth (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 a pinch* of white pepper (or black 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.


Pork option: 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.

White pepper: I prefer using a pinch of white pepper in this soup instead of black pepper.  But if you are new to cooking with white pepper, heads up that it has a much stronger (and slightly) different flavor than black pepper!  I recommend starting with a small pinch, then you can always add more to taste.

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418 comments on “Hot and Sour Soup”

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  1. Just made this literally 10 minutes ago. Soo good, thank you so much. I am a hot and sour soup junkie, and have never before seen a recipe I felt comfortable making. Just a tad more vinegar and a touch more heat for my tastes. This will be my go-to from now on!

  2. Can you freeze this soup? It is my favorite soup but I am the only one that loves it

    • Recommend!

    • I am new to Hot and Sour Soup. I always decline it at the restaurant and request extra eggrolls. But recently the waiter brought a bowl anyway and it was so good and smelled wonderful – I decided to cook a lot. This recipe was very easy! It took no time at all to prepare.

    • Sooooo delicious 😋

  3. I thought this had WAY too much tofu. I also cut the mushrooms back a little. We like ours spicy so I added more chili garlic sauce and white pepper. I also like Mongolian Fire Oil in it.

  4. My first time attempting to make and by nature I am not a stellar cook, but this recipe turned out great! Added a little more chili sauce because we like it on the hotter side. Thank you for sharing this!

  5. This is a great place to start for Hot and Sour soup recipe. I made 1.5 recipe for 4 people. Although I added chicken, this did have too much tofu for 1.5 recipes, so def need to half the tofu if not more. Additionally, this needed much more vinegar, and a touch more soy, and a lot more heat to be a true HOT and SOUR soup. Finally, hot and sour soup is not right without bamboo shoots, do not leave this out, and if anything use 1.5 to 2 cans instead of just 1. Was delicious, of course, but I felt there was too much to be tweaked at the same time.

  6. My 12 year old son made this first-we LOVED it-only had to add some more vinegar and chili sauce to our taste. SO, now we double it for our family of 5, add chopped baby bok choy for some greenery and make homemade wonton strips to put on top. So glad we found this recipe!!

  7. Loved this recipe! Super simple and easy to follow. If you’re only cooking for 1-2 people, you may want to cut the recipe in half. I also listened to some of the other reviews and added more rice vinegar, soysauce, and garlic chili sauce. Otherwise, it’s perfect ☺️

  8. I’ve been trying to recreate my favorite Chinese restaurant soup recipes for years now and had mixed success until recently. The flavors were always close but the consistency was never quite right with corn starch.

    My wife recently suggested I try kudzu starch instead and it was exactly what was missing. It’s not something your local grocery store will likely carry but if you have an Asian market nearby they definitely will (or Amazon though it’s very overpriced).

    Hopefully that helps someone! :D

  9. I made a large batch of this soup using five types of foraged wild mushrooms. My extended family, neighbors, and I all loved it. It was easy to make, too.

  10. Thank you. Prepared as written (always do fir first preparation). Very good.

  11. this is the second time using this recipe. it’s the BEST. substituted rice vinegar with acv and it does just the trick! me and my family love it. especially my grandmother (:

  12. Can I make this in the crock pot?

  13. Nice! I’ve been hunting for a decent hot and sour recipe and this did the job. I made some substitutions to ingredients but it seemed to work out well.

    I used apple cider vinegar instead of rice wine vinegar and also used sweet chilli and garlic stir fry sauce pouches in place of chilli garlic sauce and added in some extra chillis and extra garlic. Added tofu and pork, next time I will probably omit the tofu as it didn’t do anything for me or the soup IMO. Also cornstarch failed to thicken adequately and I used more than stated, I’m thinking I’ll use xantham gum next time I make it.

    Overall the soup was tasty and went down well with everyone who tried it.

  14. How many calories are in the Hot and Sour Soup?

  15. I can never eat hot and sour sauce bc I can’t have meat. This vegetarian hot and sour soup was amazing! I’ll do a few alterations next time but it was so good!

  16. I love hot and sour soup; this is my first time making it. Great base recipe that can be tweaked in many ways. I too am not a fan of bamboo shoots and did try some thinly slice pork. Awesome. I will try mixing vinegars in the future and am sold on the toasted sesame seed oil. Who knew? I used dried mushrooms – will do fresh next time. Thanks for sharing!