51: Hot & Sour Soup

This is an authentic, Chinese restaurant-worthy recipe for one of my favorite soups. Its thickness comes from the added cornstarch, and a nice smokiness is obtained by using re-hydrated shiitake mushrooms. The chicken bouillon base could be swapped out for vegetable broth to make it a completely vegetarian recipe, with little change in overall flavor.

51: Hot and Sour Soup

Chili Garlic Sauce adds a nice kick...

Yield: 4-6 Servings (A little over 2 quarts)

Total Time: 30 minutes


  • 4 Shiitake Mushrooms (soaked in warm water if purchased dry)
  • 2 tbsp Sesame Oil
  • 2″ piece of Ginger, grate half and cut the rest into large pieces.
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Chili Garlic Sauce
  • 1, 14oz can of Sliced Bamboo Shoots, sliced in half lengthwise
  • 1/4 cup Soy Sauce
  • 1/4 cup + 3 tbsp Rice Vinegar
  • 1 tsp Ground Black Pepper
  • pinch of sugar
  • 2 qts (8 cups) Chicken stock or water with corresponding bouillon cubes (I think for 8 cups it takes 4 cubes of Knorr brand…)
  • 1 Extra Firm Tofu, Sliced into 1/4″ strips
  • 3 tbsp Corn Starch mixed with 1/4 cup water (set aside)
  • 2 Large Eggs, beaten
  • Chopped Green Onions (optional; as garnish)


  1. This is pretty simple. Prepare all of your ingredients, and combine the mushrooms, bamboo shoots, chili garlic sauce, sesame oil, pepper, and ginger into a large pot (I used my soup kettle). Cook on med-high heat until fragrant (about a minute).
  2. Add your broth, pinch of sugar, vinegar, and soy sauce and give it a nice stir. While it bubbles at medium heat, add your tofu and your corn starch/water mixture to the pot.
  3. Beat your eggs into the soup by stirring the soup it in one direction rapidly and letting the current distribute the egg as you pour it into the hot liquid.
  4. Allow to cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes on medium heat. It will thicken up nicely.
  5. Garnish with sliced green onions and enjoy!


While I don’t usually put together all the values for how “healthy” a recipe is, I’ve put together a rough estimate of the nutritional facts based on 2 things:

I only listed the values that were reported on the label of the ingredients (and calculated the amount that was in the recipe therein), and the serving size is 1 and 1/4 cups of soup. Based on that, here’s the following:



Feel like helping out?

2 thoughts on “51: Hot & Sour Soup

  1. Rebecca Harrison says:

    My daughter, also a UCSD grad (BS in math, MS in education), connected me to this link. I haven’t made anything yet, but I’m so looking forward to making the hot and sour soup. Will probably add some shrimp, maybe some other meat, as we like it that way. Any chance you could post nutrition info too? That would be a huge help for me, as I’m on the journey to a healthy weight. Thanks!

    • Holli Mayer says:

      Hi Rebecca!
      That’s awesome, I have a lot of respect for mathematics since I struggled with it for so long, and yayy for UCSD!

      As for this recipe, adding shrimp sounds really really tasty. I can’t use shrimp in our kitchen since my guy is allergic to shellfish. :(

      I’ll do my best to put together a rough calorie count for this recipe based on the ingredients and post it soon. (Check back in a day or 2…)

      Thanks so much for your support and best of luck!

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