Greek lemon Chicken Soup recipe (Kotosoupa Avgolemono)

Greek lemon Chicken Soup (Kotosoupa Avgolemono)

Greek lemon chicken soup – A traditional wintery recipe

Hearty, simple and extra comforting, this Greek lemon chicken soup is with no doubt the perfect dish for a cold winter’s day! ‘Kotosoupa Avgolemono’ is classic delicacy made basically with chicken, which is boiled until tender, rice and finished of with a delicious egg-lemon sauce, which is added in the chicken broth.

This is the authentic recipe for Greek lemon chicken soup, a trademark dish that has nourished generations.

Make the perfect egg lemon sauce for your Greek lemon chicken soup – Tips

The secret ingredient for this heartwarming Greek lemon chicken soup (Kotosoupa Avgolemono) is the Avgolemono.

An egg-lemon sauce, that is often added in Greek recipes and especially soups and acts as a thickening agent, giving the soup a unique creamy texture and tangy lemony flavour. This Greek lemon chicken soup recipe includes the traditional recipe for preparing an egg lemon sauce.

Greek lemon Chicken Soup (Kotosoupa Avgolemono)

Although the basic Greek recipe is relatively simple, my experience has shown that it can be really tricky. If you have ever tried making ‘Kotosoupa Avgolemono’ or any other Greek recipe which includes Avgolemono before, you must know that lots of things can go wrong leading to a disaster.

The most common mistake is that the Avgolemono curdles and gets lumpy. Here are some tips to help you achieve the desirable creamy texture for you Greek lemon chicken soup:

  1. The eggs should be at room temperature, so that they are not shocked and curdle from the hot broth
  2. The soup should be warm but not boiling hot. When you are done cooking your soup remove the pan from the stove and let it cool for 5-10 minutes or add 1/2 a cup of cold water to halt the boiling process
  3. You need to add enough broth so that the egg mixture is at the same temperature as the broth of dish you are preparing
  4. The egg whites are more likely to curdle, as they tend to thicken up more quickly than the egg yolks when warmed so be sure to whisk vigorously and add the broth slowly. (see also How to make the perfect Avgolemono)

Serve this delicious traditional Greek lemon chicken soup while still warm with freshly ground pepper or paprika and of course some crusty bread to dig in all that delicious sauce! Enjoy!

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Greek lemon Chicken Soup (Kotosoupa Avgolemono)

Greek lemon Chicken Soup recipe (Kotosoupa Avgolemono)

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (471 votes, average: 4.83 out of 5)
  • Author: Eli K. Giannopoulos
  • Prep Time: 10 min
  • Cook Time: 90 min
  • Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
  • Yield: 8 portions 1x
  • Category: Soups
  • Method: Boiled
  • Cuisine: Greek


The perfect dish for a cold winter’s day! ‘Kotosoupa Avgolemono’ is a hearty and delicious classic Greek lemon chicken soup, bursting with Mediterranean flavours.


  • 1 chicken (1-1.2 kg/ 35-40 ounces)
  • 1 red onion, peeled
  • 5 cups (1.2 L) of water
  • 150200g short-grain rice, like Arborio (67 ounces)
  • 2 large eggs
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 carrots (optional)
  • salt and freshly ground pepper


  1. To prepare this traditional Greek lemon chicken soup, wash thoroughly the chicken and place in a deep pot. Push the chicken with your hands down to the bottom of the pan, add the whole onion, the carrot, pour in the water and season. The water should be enough to cover the chicken. Place on high heat, put the lid on and bring to the boil.
  2. When the chicken starts to boil, turn the heat down and boil the chicken for about 1 hour and 15 minutes. The chicken is ready when the meat can be removed easily from the bones. While the chicken boils, some white foam will probably surface on the water. Remove the foam with a slotted spoon.
  3. Remove the chicken from the broth and strain the broth. You should have about 1 litre of broth left. If it has reduced a lot, add some water. Add the hot broth in another pot, add the rice and season with salt and pepper and boil, until done.
  4. While the rice is being cooked, prepare your chicken. Pull the chicken meat from the bones and discard the skin. Shred the meat into bite sized chunks.
  5. To prepare the egg lemon sauce for this Greek lemon chicken soup, crack the eggs into a bowl and whisk, until foamy; add the lemon juice and whisk again. Add into the bowl a ladle of hot soup and whisk quickly. Add one more ladle and whisk again, so that the eggs gradually warm up and cook gently. Pour the egg mixture back into the pot, whilst constantly stirring so your eggs do not curdle. Then put the lid on and set it aside for 3-4 minutes.
  6. Serve this delicious Greek lemon chicken soup while still warm. Ladle the soup into bowls, top with the diced chicken and sprinkle with freshly ground pepper or paprika. Enjoy!


  • Serving Size: 1 bowl
  • Calories: 277kcal
  • Sugar: 2.3g
  • Sodium: 376mg
  • Fat: 4.7g
  • Saturated Fat: 1.1g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 2.2g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 25.2g
  • Fiber: 0.8g
  • Protein: 31.5g
  • Cholesterol: 137mg

Keywords: Kotosoupa Avgolemono, Greek Lemon Chicken Soup, Traditional Avgolemono Soup

Recipe image gallery:

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  1. what’s the yield?

  2. Patti Masouridis

    When I made my avgolemono sauce, I separated eggs and whipped the whites til almost stiff (adding some flour if needed). Whipped yolks with a fork and added to whites on slow speed. Then I alternated adding broth and lemon juice. Then added to the soup. I married a man from Greece and his mother whipped eggs by hand, therefore, the avgolemono was not frothy. I have adjusted but I made the best avgolemono soup then. Patti Masouridis

  3. Maria Kyriacou

    Made this yesterday Eli and it took me back to my childhood days when the weather turned and that dreaded flu virus goes round!! A soup that is delicious and comforting!!! Thankyou so much for this website as I wasn’t taught all the traditional recipes by my Cypriot Dad as he passed away when I was a teenager thanks to you and your recipes I have made a few of my favourite childhood dishes and they bring back many fond memories of my dad and the great dishes he made xx


    I just made my favorite Greek Avloglemono soup and mmmm delicious.
    We are so pleased with the result.

  5. Thanks so much! We used to say that this could cure anything from a broken heart to broken limbs. Thanks so much for sharing these childhood recipes with me.

  6. Did I miss something? When to put the rice into the soup ?

  7. Patricia Likakis

    Some versions seem to be thicker, like the one served at the Greek church here. Are they using cornstarch to thicken perhaps? I like a bit thicker consistency personally.

  8. I had this soup for the first time ever earlier this week and was wondering where it has been all my life. I found your recipe when doing a search as I knew I must have this soup recipe on hand going forward. Just made it this afternoon and it came out great! I did add the a little extra lemon juice from half a lemon to up the lemon flavor a little more. Thanks for sharing this recipe!

  9. For me 5 cups of water was not enough because of this a added only 1 egg. I added 200g of rice and it was more a rice dish than a soup. Needed more lemon flavour as well.

    • Eli K. Giannopoulos

      Hi Lilian, 5 cups is about 1.2 litres of water which should be more than enough for the soup. If while boiling the chicken the water reduces a lot, you can add some more to bring it back up to about 1 litre in total.

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