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Matzo Ball Soup

Photo: Jennifer Causey Styling: Claire Spollen

Hands-on time 55 mins
Total time 15 hrs

Serves 8 (serving size: 3/4 cup soup and 2 matzo balls)

Enjoy the soup as is, or garnish with parsley leaves.  


  • Chicken soup:
  • 5 pounds dark meat chicken parts (such as drumsticks and backs), trimmed
  • 3 quarts water
  • 3 carrots, peeled
  • 3 celery stalks with leaves
  • 2 (8-ounce) onions, halved
  • 1 leek, split lengthwise and cut into large pieces
  • 1 parsley root, peeled
  • 1 parsnip, peeled
  • 1 (8-ounce) piece peeled winter or summer squash
  • 1 bunch flat-leaf parsley
  • 3 dill sprigs (optional)
  • Matzo balls:
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup matzo meal
  • 1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt, divided

Nutrition Information

  • calories 164
  • fat 8.1 g
  • satfat 2.4 g
  • monofat 3.3 g
  • polyfat 1.7 g
  • protein 8 g
  • carbohydrate 16 g
  • fiber 1 g
  • cholesterol 106 mg
  • iron 1 mg
  • sodium 292 mg
  • calcium 22 mg
  • sugars 1 g
  • Est. Added Sugars 0 g

How to Make It

  1. To prepare chicken soup, place chicken in an 8-quart stockpot; add 3 quarts water. Bring to a simmer, skimming foam from surface. Adjust heat to maintain simmer (boiling will turn soup cloudy).

  2. When no more foam appears, add carrots and next 6 ingredients (through squash). Simmer, uncovered, 3 hours; add herbs during the last 15 minutes.

  3. Cool slightly, and strain through a fine sieve. Discard solids. Cool soup to room temperature; cover and refrigerate overnight. Scoop off congealed fat, reserving 3 tablespoons.

  4. Place eggs in a medium bowl; whisk to blend. Stir in matzo meal, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 3 tablespoons reserved fat, and 1/4 cup soup. Cover; chill 2 hours or until firm.

  5. Bring a wide pot of water to a boil. Gently but thoroughly roll 1 rounded tablespoon dough between moistened palms into a ball; place on a plate. Repeat to form 16 balls total.

  6. Maintain water at a gentle boil. Gently add matzo balls; cover and simmer 35 minutes or until tender and slightly al dente, stirring after 10 minutes.

  7. Bring 6 cups soup and remaining 3/4 teaspoon salt to a simmer (reserve any remaining soup for another use). Add matzo balls to soup using a slotted spoon. Simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes.

Adapted with permission from The Seasonal Jewish Kitchen, copyright 2015 by Amelia Saltsman, Sterling Epicure, an imprint of Sterling Publishing Co., Inc.