Chinese Hot and Sour Soup is a classic dish beloved for its complex balance of spiciness and tanginess. This soup is hearty, filled with a variety of textures from mushrooms, tofu, and bamboo shoots, and seasoned with white pepper and vinegar to achieve its signature flavor. It’s a comforting dish that can be enjoyed as a starter or as a meal on its own.


  • 4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 cup shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup bamboo shoots, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup firm tofu, cut into strips
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon ground white pepper (adjust to taste for heat)
  • 3 tablespoons rice vinegar (adjust to taste for sourness)
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch dissolved in 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 2 green onions, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ginger, minced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • Optional for serving: chili oil or red pepper flakes for extra heat


  1. Prepare the Broth: In a large pot, bring the chicken or vegetable broth to a simmer over medium heat. Add the ginger and garlic and simmer for about 2 minutes to infuse the flavors.
  2. Add Ingredients: Add the shiitake mushrooms, bamboo shoots, tofu, and soy sauce to the pot. Simmer for about 5 minutes until the mushrooms are soft.
  3. Season the Soup: Stir in the ground white pepper and rice vinegar. Adjust the quantities according to your preference for spiciness and sourness.
  4. Thicken the Soup: Stir the cornstarch mixture again to ensure it’s well combined, then slowly pour it into the soup, stirring continuously. Simmer for another 2-3 minutes until the soup starts to thicken.
  5. Add the Egg: Slowly drizzle the beaten egg into the soup while gently stirring in one direction. The egg will cook immediately and form silky threads.
  6. Final Touches: Stir in the sesame oil and half of the chopped green onions. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.
  7. Serve: Ladle the hot and sour soup into bowls. Garnish with the remaining green onions and optional chili oil or red pepper flakes for extra heat.


  • For a vegetarian version, ensure to use vegetable broth and check that the soy sauce is vegetarian.
  • You can add other ingredients like wood ear mushrooms or lily buds for more traditional additions.
  • The soup’s flavor intensifies over time, making it even better the next day.

Nutrition Facts (approximation per serving):

  • Calories: 90
  • Fat: 3g
  • Carbohydrates: 8g
  • Protein: 6g

Prep and Cooking Time:

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cooking Time: 20 minutes


  • Serves: 4

Chinese Hot and Sour Soup is a wonderfully aromatic and flavorful dish that’s sure to warm you up. Its rich broth, combined with the variety of textures and flavors, makes this soup a satisfying and comforting meal, perfect for any time of the year.

Rate this recipe

Score: 0 Votes: 0

Your page rank: