Greek Egg-Lemon Chicken Soup with Cauliflower Rice
Greek Egg-Lemon Chicken Soup is traditionally made with rice, but it was equally delicious with cauliflower rice for a low-carb version! Of course you can use rice if you prefer!
This Greek Egg-Lemon Chicken Soup with Cauliflower Rice is a fun twist on Greek Avgolemono Soup, which is one of those dishes I’ve been passionately in love with ever since the first time I tried it! And I think I first had Egg Lemon Chicken Soup in college, so that’s a long time I’ve been loving this chicken and rice soup that’s thickened with eggs and lemon. I’m guessing I first tasted the soup at The Other Place, a Greek-American restaurant in Salt Lake City, and I still like their version of this classic Greek dish.
I first made this soup for the blog more than ten years ago (!) and that version was adapted from The Frugal Gourmet Cooks Three Ancient Cuisines (affiliate link), a very old cookbook with lots of good ideas. I make the soup with leftover rotisserie chicken and chicken stock from the freezer, and I had those things on hand when the idea struck me to try making a low-carb version of this favorite soup by replacing the rice with cauliflower rice!
I have to be honest and say that if I was seriously in need of comfort food, I’d probably make this soup less often and use the low-glycemic Uncle Ben’s Converted Rice (affiliate link) that so many Greek cooks use in the U.S. But for a delicious low-carb soup, the Egg-Lemon Greek Chicken Soup with Cauliflower Rice was really good. And personally I think this is a pretty healthy soup no matter whether you use rice or cauliflower rice, and I’m featuring it for this week’s Friday Favorites post to see if I can entice you to make it; enjoy! (You can check out Low-Carb and Keto Soups with Cauliflower Rice to find more tasty soup recipes like this one.)
What ingredients do you need for this recipe?
- chicken stock (or broth)
- olive oil
- Dried Parsley (affiliate link)
- Dried Thyme (affiliate link)
- frozen cauliflower rice
- diced leftover chicken
- fresh lemon juice
- lemon zest (grated lemon rind)
What is Avgolemono Sauce?
What makes this soup special is the Avgolemono Sauce that you mix into the soup to thicken it, a mixture of beaten eggs, and fresh lemon juice and zest that’s mixed with some of the hot soup and then gently stirred back into the rest of the soup. The egg-lemon sauce that thickens the soup is one of the classic sauces in Greek cuisine! Avgolemono Sauce isn’t really that difficult to make, but you must be careful not to let the soup boil after it’s been added or it will curdle the soup.
How to Make Greek Egg-Lemon Chicken Soup with Cauliflower Rice (or Rice):
(Scroll down for complete recipe including nutritional information.)
- If you don’t have leftover cooked chicken you’ll need to cook 3-4 chicken thighs or 2 chicken breasts in some chicken stock, but I had rotisserie chicken that I just cut up to make 2 cups diced chicken. Use a bit more chicken if you prefer a thicker soup.
- Heat olive oil in a large soup pot and saute the onion the onion until it’s barely starting to brown.
- Then add Dried Parsley (affiliate link), and Dried Thyme (affiliate link) and cook a few minutes more.
- Add homemade chicken stock (or canned chicken brother) and simmer for 10-15 minutes.
- If you’re going to use cauliflower rice, buzz chopped cauliflower in the food processor until you have about 1 1/2 cups chopped cauliflower, or use frozen cauliflower rice if you want to make it easy.
- For rice, measure 1/2 cup rice, preferably Uncle Ben’s Converted Rice (affiliate link).
- Add the raw cauliflower (or rice) to the stock mixture and simmer until until it’s done, about 20-25 minutes for rice or fresh cauliflower rice, and slightly less for frozen cauliflower rice.
- Add the diced chicken to the soup and simmer over very low heat for 5 minutes.
- Zest a lemon and measure out 1 teaspoon of lemon zest. Then squeeze that lemon and enough more to get 1/4 cup fresh-squeezed lemon juice. (You can also use fresh-frozen lemon juice.)
- Beat eggs until they look frothy, then whisk in the lemon zest and lemon juice.
- Remove one cup hot broth from the soup and whisk into the egg mixture a little at a time. Then stir the egg-lemon mixture back into the soup and cook over the lowest possible heat until it thickens, but do not boil.
- Some Greeks make this soup with just chicken stock, rice, and the Avgolemono sauce, but I always like the pieces of chicken in the soup.
Yes, I Really Love Greek Chicken:
Easy Low-Carb Greek Chicken Bake
Marinate All Day Greek Lemon Chicken
Low-Carb Greek Chicken, Green Beans, and Tomatoes Sheet Pan Meal
Low-Carb Grilled Greek Chicken Packets
Instant Pot Low-Carb Greek Chicken Tacos
Instant Pot Low-Carb Cauliflower Rice Greek Chicken Bowls
Very Greek Grilled Chicken
- 6 cups chicken stock (I use my homemade chicken stock)
- 1 cup finely chopped onion
- 2 tsp. olive oil
- 2 tsp. dried parsley (or a little less)
- 1 tsp. dried thyme (or a little less)
- 1 1/2 cups frozen cauliflower rice (see notes)
- 2 cups diced leftover chicken (see notes)
- 3 eggs
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (or more if you like it really lemony)
- 1 tsp. lemon zest (grated lemon rind)
- Heat the olive oil in a large heavy soup pot, add the onion and cook over medium-high heat until the onion is softened and starting to brown.
- Add the dried parsley and dried thyme and cook a minute or two more.
- Add the 6 cups chicken stock to the soup pot and simmer 10-15 minutes.
- Add the rice or raw cauliflower rice and simmer over medium-low heat until rice is tender or cauliflower is fully cooked, about 20-25 minutes.
- Then stir in the diced leftover chicken.
- Turn heat to lowest possible setting, and cook about 5 minutes more.
- Zest a lemon and then squeeze additional lemons to get 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice.
- Beat eggs with whisk until they are starting to get frothy; then whisk in lemon juice and lemon zest.
- Remove one cup of hot broth from the soup, let the broth cool slightly.
- Then whisk 1/2 cup broth and then another 1/2 cup into the egg mixture, beating well between each addition.
- Whisk this mixture into the big pot of soup (be sure the temperature is very low) and let the soup heat gently.
- DO NOT BOIL after the egg-lemon mixture has been added.
You can use fresh cauliflower that's finely chopped in the food processor to make cauliflower rice or frozen cauliflower rice for this recipe, or use Uncle Ben’s Converted Rice (not instant) for the traditional soup if you don't care about carbs. Use a bit more chicken if you prefer a thicker soup.
This soup cannot be frozen and must be reheated carefully or the eggs will curdle the broth. It will keep in the fridge for a few days, but it’s best freshly made.
Nutritional information is for the soup with cauliflower rice.
Recipe adapted from The Frugal Gourmet Cooks Three Ancient Cuisines (affiliate link).
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 181Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 2.7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6.4gCholesterol: 140mgSodium: 1001mgCarbohydrates: 7.3gFiber: 1.2gSugar: 3.7gProtein: 17g
Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.
Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
Uncle Ben’s Converted Rice is the lowest-glycemic type of white rice, and if you use that for this Greek Egg-Lemon Chicken Soup it would be good for phase 2 or 3 of the original South Beach Diet. Using cauliflower rice would make this a very low-carb soup, suitable for any phase of the original South Beach Diet or any other type of low-carb eating plan.
Historical Notes for this Recipe:
I first made this delicious Egg Lemon Chicken Soup for the blog in 2006. Recipe was updated with better instructions March, 2020.