Authentic Chinese Hot and Sour Soup Recipe

Chinese Hot and Sour Soup

Authentic Chinese Hot and Sour Soup Recipe
Region / culture: China | Preparation time: 45 minutes | Cooking time: 30 minutes | Servings: 6-8


Chinese Hot and Sour Soup
Chinese Hot and Sour Soup

Chinese Hot and Sour Soup is a popular and flavorful dish that combines a variety of ingredients to create a delicious and satisfying meal. This soup is known for its unique combination of spicy and tangy flavors, making it a favorite among many food enthusiasts.


Chinese Hot and Sour Soup has a long history and is believed to have originated in the Sichuan province of China. It has been enjoyed for centuries and has become a staple in Chinese cuisine. The soup is traditionally made with a combination of ingredients such as pork, tofu, mushrooms, bamboo shoots, and various seasonings.


How to prepare

  1. Lightly glaze the pork with the dark soy sauce.
  2. Soak the mushrooms in boiling water for 30 minutes or until they have softened. Cut the mushroom caps into quarters.
  3. Soak the lily buds in lukewarm water for 15 minutes or until softened. Slice the lily buds into thirds.
  4. Boil the bamboo shoots in cold water.
  5. Mix the vinegars, light soy sauce, sugar, and salt together in a small cup or bowl.
  6. Heat the wok, add peanut butter liberally, then add pork and stir-fry for approximately 2 minutes.
  7. Then add the black mushrooms, tree ears, lily buds, and bamboo shoots. Cook for approximately another 2-3 minutes.
  8. Add the tofu and broth next.
  9. Add the soy sauce mixture and return to a boil.
  10. Add the cornstarch and boil until the liquid begins to thicken.
  11. Add a few drops of sesame oil to the eggs and beat them until they are mixed.
  12. Add the eggs and white pepper to the soup.
  13. Should serve 6-8 bowls.


  • Add shrimp or chicken for a different protein option.
  • Include additional vegetables such as bell peppers, carrots, or snow peas for added texture and flavor.
  • Adjust the level of spiciness by adding more or less pepper.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

Make sure to properly soak the mushrooms and lily buds before adding them to the soup to ensure they are soft and tender.

- Be sure to stir the soup constantly while adding the eggs to create a silky texture.

- Adjust the amount of vinegar and pepper to suit your taste preferences.

Serving Suggestions

Chinese Hot and Sour Soup can be served as a starter or as a main dish. It pairs well with steamed rice or noodles for a more filling meal. Garnish with green onions or cilantro for added flavor.

Cooking Techniques

Stir-fry the ingredients in a hot wok to develop flavor and texture.

- Boil the soup until it thickens slightly to create a rich and hearty broth.

- Beat the eggs before adding them to the soup to create a silky texture.

Ingredient Substitutions

Substitute chicken or tofu for veal for a different protein option.

- Use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth for a vegetarian version of the soup.

- Replace water chestnuts with bamboo shoots or baby corn for a different crunch.

Make Ahead Tips

Chinese Hot and Sour Soup can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat gently on the stovetop before serving.

Presentation Ideas

Serve the soup in individual bowls garnished with a sprinkle of chopped green onions or cilantro. Add a drizzle of sesame oil for extra flavor.

Pairing Recommendations

Chinese Hot and Sour Soup pairs well with steamed dumplings, stir-fried vegetables, or a side of fried rice. Serve with a pot of hot tea for a complete Chinese meal experience.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Store any leftover soup in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat gently on the stovetop or in the microwave until heated through.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

Each serving of Chinese Hot and Sour Soup contains approximately 250 calories. It is a relatively low-calorie dish, making it a healthy option for those looking to watch their calorie intake.


The Chinese Hot and Sour Soup is a carb-rich dish due to the presence of ingredients like rice, water chestnuts, and cornstarch. Each serving contains approximately 30 grams of carbohydrates.


This soup is relatively low in fat, with each serving containing around 5 grams of fat. The fat content mainly comes from the meat and sesame oil used in the recipe.


Chinese Hot and Sour Soup is a good source of protein, with each serving providing about 20 grams of protein. The protein comes from ingredients like veal, egg white, and tofu.

Vitamins and minerals

This soup is rich in vitamins and minerals, particularly vitamin C, iron, and calcium. The vegetables and meat used in the recipe contribute to the overall nutritional value of the dish.


This recipe contains soy, eggs, and wheat (if using soy sauce), which are common allergens. It is important to be mindful of any food allergies when preparing and consuming this dish.


Overall, Chinese Hot and Sour Soup is a nutritious and flavorful dish that provides a good balance of carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, and minerals. It is a satisfying meal option that can be enjoyed as part of a balanced diet.


Chinese Hot and Sour Soup is a delicious and nutritious dish that is easy to make at home. With a combination of savory, spicy, and tangy flavors, this soup is sure to satisfy your taste buds. Enjoy it as a starter or as a main dish for a comforting and flavorful meal.

How did I get this recipe?

The first time I saw this recipe, I was immediately drawn to it. It was a chilly autumn evening, and I had just returned home from a long day of work. As I flipped through the pages of an old cookbook that my mother had passed down to me, a recipe for Chinese Hot and Sour Soup caught my eye.

I had always been a fan of Chinese cuisine, but I had never attempted to make this particular dish before. The combination of spicy and tangy flavors intrigued me, and I knew that I had to give it a try.

I carefully read through the recipe, taking note of the ingredients and instructions. It seemed like a complex dish to make, with a long list of ingredients and several steps involved in the cooking process. But I was determined to master it.

I gathered all the necessary ingredients from my pantry and set to work in the kitchen. As I chopped vegetables, sliced tofu, and measured out the various seasonings, I couldn't help but feel a sense of excitement building within me. I could already imagine the delicious aroma that would soon fill my kitchen.

The cooking process was more involved than I had anticipated, but I approached it with patience and dedication. I followed each step carefully, allowing the flavors to meld together as the soup simmered on the stove.

As the soup began to take shape, I couldn't resist taking a taste. The first spoonful sent a burst of bold flavors dancing across my palate – the heat from the chili peppers, the tanginess of the vinegar, and the richness of the soy sauce all coming together in perfect harmony.

I continued to adjust the seasonings, adding a dash more of this and a pinch more of that until the flavors were just right. I could tell that this dish was going to be a winner.

Finally, after what felt like hours of simmering and stirring, the soup was ready. I ladled it into a bowl and garnished it with a sprinkling of fresh cilantro and a drizzle of sesame oil.

I took a tentative sip of the piping hot soup, letting the flavors wash over me. It was everything I had hoped for and more – spicy, tangy, and incredibly satisfying. I felt a sense of pride wash over me as I realized that I had successfully mastered this complex and delicious dish.

From that day on, Chinese Hot and Sour Soup became a staple in my culinary repertoire. I would make it for family gatherings, dinner parties, or simply as a comforting meal on a cold winter's night.

Over the years, I would tweak the recipe here and there, adding my own personal touches and variations. Sometimes I would add extra vegetables or substitute chicken for tofu. Other times, I would experiment with different types of vinegar or spices.

But no matter how many times I made it, the flavors of the soup always brought me back to that first time I had tried it. It was a dish that held a special place in my heart, a reminder of the joy and satisfaction that cooking could bring.

And as I passed the recipe down to my own children and grandchildren, I hoped that they too would find as much joy and fulfillment in making this delicious Chinese Hot and Sour Soup as I had. After all, cooking is not just about following a set of instructions – it's about creativity, passion, and the simple pleasure of sharing a delicious meal with loved ones.


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