Matzah Ball and Chicken Soup

How to make my Bubbe’s Matzah Ball and Chicken Soup- Jewish penicillin at its finest!

Pacific Merchants Giveaway
It’s a cold (read: 50 degrees) and rainy Sunday here in Austin. Brrr!! But could you ask for better soup weather? I think not. My Bubbe makes a killer matzah ball soup. It borders on magical- at the mere mention of sickness, Bubbe swoops in with her soup in hand, and all your sniffles just melt away. This recipe is just perfect- a flavorful broth and a light ball (hehe), as opposed to some heavier, dense matzah ball recipes.  I went all out and made my own stock too- just like Bubbe. Totally worth it! But feel free to use substandard canned stock.

I didn’t think I could top the gross raw chicken photos from last week, but somehow I managed to do it! Yeah for me! Making stock is a dirty business.

chick, matzah ball, soup

You can add whatever goodness you see fit- parsnips and garlic would be two tasty additions. First, put your chicken in a pot and cover with water (I used 4 quarts which, I learned, is 16 cups. Good to know!) Bring to a boil, then turn down to medium heat and simmer chicken for one hour.

While your chicken is cooking, chop carrots and celery into inch long pieces. Chop your onion into quarters.

After an hour, remove chicken from the pot, leaving the water behind. Cool your chicken and remove the skin and bones from the meat. Place the skin and bones back into the pot. Save the chicken for your soup, or use in sandwiches if chicken soup isn’t your thing. Freak.

Add the carrots, celery, onion, bay leaf and salt to the pot and simmer for another 2-3 hours. Then strain the stock and discard the stuff.

matzah ball, chicken, soup

Now that you have your stock, let’s make some balls!

Matzah Ball Chicken Soup

Take 1/2 cup of the stock, and mix it with the eggs. Yummy. Now, the moment we have been waiting for. The matzo meal.

Then add in grated onions, oil (or schmaltz), salt, pepper and matzo meal. Refrigerate the dough for about 30 minutes so it isn’t as sticky. While your mixture is chilling, chop up the veggies of your choice. Bubbe likes carrots, celery and parsnips. And what Bubbe says, goes. Why mess with perfection

When your matzah ball dough is ready to go, bring your stock to a boil, and then reduce to a simmer. Shape the dough into about a dozen balls, and place them in the stock. Cover, and cook for 10 minutes. Then add your veggies and cook until your balls expand (hehe), or about 30 minutes.

matzah ball, chicken. soup

Add in your shredded chicken (chickpeas would be a tasty protein packed addition too), and there you have it! Homemade matzah ball soup.

Just like Bubbe makes. Maybe even better, but don’t tell Bubbe I said that.

Pacific Merchants Giveaway

Pacific Merchants GiveawayChicken Stock


  • 4-5 pound whole chicken with neck and giblets removed (they come that way, so don’t worry you don’t have to go giblet diving unless you’d like to)
  • 4 quarts (16 cups) water
  • 3 large carrots, cut into inch size pieces
  • 1 yellow onion, cut in quarters
  • 3 stocks celery, cut into inch size pieces
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  1. Put the chicken in a big pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil and then reduce to medium-low heat and cover. Simmer for 1 hour.
  2. Remove chicken from the pot and leave the water behind. Shred cooled chicken, and put the skin and bones back into the pot.
  3. Add your veggies, bay leaf and salt and simmer covered for an additional 2-3 hours uncovered.
  4. Strain the stock and throw away the stuff.

Matzah Ball and Chicken Soup
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Bubbe's Famous Matzah Ball Soup!
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: Jewish
Serves: 6
  • 10 cups stock
  • 3 eggs, separated
  • 1½ cups matzo meal
  • ¼ cup grated onion
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil or schmaltz
  • ¼ teaspoons salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • 3 carrots, diced or cut into rounds
  • 3 parsnips, diced or cut into rounds
  • 3 celery stocks, diced or cut into slices
  • 1 pound chicken
  • Salt to taste
  • Parsley for garnish
  1. Whisk ½ cup of stock with egg yolks.
  2. Whisk in matzo meal, onion, oil, salt and pepper. In a separate bowl, whisk egg whites to stiff peaks. Fold into matzo mixture. Do not over mix.
  3. The dough will be sticky, so refrigerate dough for 30 minutes so it is not as sticky.
  4. Bring the stock to a boil, and then reduce to a simmer.
  5. Shape the matzo mixture into 12 1-inch balls, and place in the stock. Cover and cook for 10 minutes.
  6. Then, add carrots, parsnips, celery and any other veggies you choose, and simmer covered for an additional 30 minutes until the balls are cooked and veggies are tender.
  7. Add chicken, salt to taste and garnish with parsley.




    • says

      Thanks, Maura! Those two recipes happen to be very vegetarian friendly- simply substitute the meat for tofu or beans, or omit it all together. Voila!

  1. says

    Holy mackerel, I know what I’m making on my day off tomorrow! Looking at these pictures I can almost smell my grandfather’s kitchen. I loved the smell of matzoh ball soup cooking when I walked into their house. This soup is one of my all time favorite comfort foods.

    Oh, and I love your blog’s name BTW! Glad I found your blog and I will be back again soon.

    • says

      Thanks for the props! I can confirm this soup smells delicious. Enjoy your day off- making matzah ball soup, catching up on Judge Judy (I’m guessing). Sounds like the best day ever!

  2. says

    Love your recipe and pictures…My recipe is almost the same, but my bubbe added white carrot parsnip in the stock part.
    Have you ever tried adding a quartered sweet potato to your stock? I tried it and it is great!!!!

    • says

      Thanks, Gloria! I LOVE your ideas. I am going to try to add parsnips and sweet potatoes to my stock next time. And there will be a next time- this soup is addicting!

  3. adriana says

    es increible sos la primer persona que le dice bube a la abuela igual q yo .que lindooooo

  4. says

    While reading your blog this evening, I looked more closely at this recipe. I started cooking my soup and hour before I read this tonight-but not too late to follow some of your process! I usually put my chicken in first, cook it to boiling, skim off that weird stuff, and then add my onions, carrots, sweet potatoes, parsnip etc. and simmer for about an hour. Then I strain everything out. I’m trying your method of just taking the chicken out, stripping off the meat, and putting the skins and bones back into cook with already cooked vegetables for another hour so that will mean the veggies cooked for two hours. Thank you for the tip! It also means I get to smell cooking soup for another hour so it’s all good!

  5. says

    I’m in the making matzo balls phase now! Are your balls fluffy or firm? My family likes rock hard so when you cut them they want to fly out of the bowl…I want to make something in between so you can cut them and they stay IN the bowl! I don’t like fluffy much though,….what is your preference?

    • says

      I would say my balls are more firm (*wink*) but definitely not rock hard. I like them dense better than fluffy too! Otherwise they get too mushy in the soup.

  6. Teghan says

    Can’t wait to try this recipe! I stumbled upon it when I was trying to find a good delicatesan in Austin/Round Rock/Pflugerville . . . have you found anything?

    • says

      Thanks! I haven’t found a thing. There was Manny Hattans which wasn’t that good and it recently closed anyways. Let me know if you stumble upon something!

  7. Leanne says

    I made this for my Jewish next door neighbor. He gave it two thumbs up! Thanks for making this an easy recipe for me to tackle. I’m going to make the French Toast Callah next!

  8. Lisa says

    I really loved your homemade matzos, I’ve always just used the mix…..but I always have the problem that my stock reduces down too much and I usually add some extra water, when do you think I should add it so that it doesn’t sacrifice flavor


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