Gluten Free Avgolemono Soup Recipe
We had an unwelcome visitor in our home recently – the flu! And I think that nasty visitor has been busy since so many seem to have been afflicted lately. It’s time for that flu to get a clue and realize it is not wanted nor appreciated!
When people are under the weather, be it a cold, flu, or something else, it is always a good idea to make plenty of chicken soup. I like plain old chicken soup but it gets old after a while (like a week and a half of the flu!) so I like to change things up.
This recipe is a Greek version of chicken soup – Avgolemono. Technically, avgolemono is egg-lemon soup but it usually starts off with chicken broth. If, like me, you can’t pronounce avgolemono then just do as we do and call it Greek Chicken soup.
This is a shortcut recipe because seriously, when one is under the weather or tending to others under the weather, who has time to boil a chicken, make stock from scratch, etc., etc., etc.?
My main shortcuts are gluten free chicken stock in a box and a rotisserie chicken. To give the soup that “simmered all day” flavor I start by sautéing an onion in some olive oil. Trust me, this really amps up the stock in a box with very little effort. After that it is simply a matter of simmering the stock with some Arborio rice and adding the magical ingredient – a mixture of eggs and freshly squeezed lemon juice (thus egg-lemon soup.)
Unlike most chicken soups (unless they are filled with dairy) this soup is rich and “creamy”. The creaminess comes from whisking your eggs into submission with lemon juice then slowly whisking the egg mixture into the stock.
It is very important that you temper your eggs before adding them to the hot broth or you will end up with scrambled lemon egg soup – not what we are looking for here. To temper it simply means adding a little of the hot broth into the egg mixture and whisking it together first before adding the whole lot back into the pot. This will bring the temperature of the egg mixture up enough so it can enrich the broth and give it that silky, sublime texture avgolemono is famous for.
Recipe notes: Make sure both your chicken broth is gluten free – I very much prefer the taste of Pacific organic broth (yes I really can taste the difference!) Same goes with your rotisserie chicken, ask the grocery store to check for you if you aren’t sure. And you can always just use leftover cooked chicken if you like. I prefer Arborio rice but you can use any kind you prefer or have on hand. I always use pastured eggs (I like Nature’s Yoke) and by all means use fresh lemon juice! Please.
Oh, and you really don’t need to be ill to enjoy this soup – it is hearty, tangy, silken, and simply stunning.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 small white onion finely chopped
- 6 cups gluten free chicken stock
- ½ cup uncooked Arborio rice
- 3 large eggs
- 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 2 cups cooked chicken diced
- Kosher salt
- Black pepper
- Parsley for garnish – optional
- Lemon zest for garnish - optional
Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or soup pan set over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 5 minutes.
Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil. Add the rice, reduce the heat, cover the pan, and simmer for 20 minutes or until the rice is tender.
In a mixing bowl whisk the eggs until they are very smooth. Add the lemon juice and whisk. Add 1 cup of the hot broth to the egg mixture and whisk. Set aside.
Add the chicken to the soup, season to taste with salt and pepper and cook for a few minutes to heat up the chicken.
Take the soup off the heat and whisk in the egg-lemon mixture, adding the egg mixture slowly while whisking.
Garnish with fresh parsley and lemon zest if desired.
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