Quick and Easy Egg Drop Soup

Homemade chicken stock is the best for this. Also, if you can't locate any of the mushroom types indicated in the recipe, crimini (aka: baby bellas) will do just fine. Or, you can just leave them out all together.

  • Prep time: 7 minutes
  • Cook time: 13 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4


  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 4 cups of chicken stock*
  • 1 tablespoon of corn starch
  • Scant 1/2 teaspoon grated ginger**
  • 1 tablespoon of soy sauce*
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon of white pepper
  • 3/4 cup of enoki mushrooms or sliced shitaki mushrooms

*If cooking gluten-free, use gluten-free stock and gluten-free soy sauce.

**Ginger is what makes the soup hot and spicy. Dial it down to 1/4 teaspoon if you want a more mild soup.


1 Make cornstarch slurry: Reserve 1/2 cup of the stock and mix with the cornstarch until dissolved.

2 Put stock, ginger, soy sauce, onions, mushrooms, white pepper in pot and bring to boil: Place the chicken stock, ginger, soy sauce, green onions, mushrooms and white pepper in a pot and bring to a boil. Add the cornstarch and stock mixture and stir. Reduce heat to a simmer.


3 Stir in beaten eggs: Slowly pour in the beaten eggs while stirring the soup. The egg will spread out into ribbons. Turn off the heat and garnish with a few more chopped green onions. Serve immediately.

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  • Agnes

    Oh, I also make this quite often, I love it! I always thought that egg drop soup is actually a faux sharkfin soup … In Indonesia, we eat this with a very hot sauce made from chopped chili pepper (preferably the green ones) and salty soy sauce.

    • Tom ~ RYG

      Sharkfin? That’s crazy! Anyhow, when I was a kid, I used to make egg drop soup with my mom all the time and it was special plopping all the ingredients in. Should make this will my girls and carry on the tradition.

  • Lilly

    Hi – I’ve never made egg drop soup. Does it keep well in the fridge for a few days?

    It has never lasted that long with me since I slurp the whole bowl down in usually a few minutes, but I would say eat it in the next 24 hours otherwise the egg ribbons start to kinda just fall apart and make the soup cloudy and unappealing. ~Garrett

  • Suzanne

    Yum, this looks amazing. I’m not fond of mushrooms though, is there anything you think would be a good substitute? Maybe tomatoes or lotus root?

    Tomaotes might be too acidic, maybe bamboo shoots? ~Garrett

  • Kristi

    Delicious! Egg drop soup Italian-style (stracciatella) is one of my ultimate comfort foods, and though I love it Chinese-style as well, I’ve never tried making it at home. Looking forward to giving it a whirl! (No pun intended.)

  • CJ McD

    I too, am a fan of egg drop soups– all of them. They are fast, flexible and delicious. (Oh yes, as you said- budget friendly!)

    We often add those odd bits of leftover meats, noodles and vegetables to them too. Or some fresh greens- spinach, shredded cabbage, etc.

    Thanks for the recipe. We’re going to make it tonight.

  • sb

    Looks good, but ixnay on the corn starch. That will give it a gluey consistency. Authentic to the stuff found in Chinese American restaurants, perhaps, but not particularly authentic.

    Chopped tomato adds a lovely color contrast and texture. If you find it too acidic, then add a pinch of sugar.

    Some recipes call for a small amount ground pork or beef to be browned in the pot with a chopped onion prior to the addition of the broth. The addition of meat rounds out the flavor nicely.

    For a Southeast Asian flavor, add fish sauce in lieu of soy sauce.

    You can also finish the soup with a drizzle of sesame oil just before serving, garnished with a bit of chopped cilantro, in addition to the scallions.

    It is authentic in relation to a Chinese-American restaurant which is what this recipe tries to do. Cornstarch gives this soup a heavier body and a silkier consistency that pairs nicely with the egg. For the right taste, keep the cornstarch. =) ~Garrett

  • caroline

    What do you think would be a good vegetarian substitute for the chicken stock?

    A good veggie stock would be just fine. ~Garrett

  • Ophelia

    What could I use instead of white pepper? Some black cracked pepper? I’ve never heard of this ingredient and am going to try to find it, but who knows!

    White pepper is the same as black pepper but with the skin removed off of the berry and seed. It’s a little more astringent and has less heat. You can use some finely ground black pepper if needed. ~Garrett

  • Patrick

    Adding cornstarch is “authentic” but if it’s become gluey, that’s too much cornstarch. Just a little is needed to add body and mouthfeel. Since we’re on the subject, adding tomatoes is definitely *not* authentic.

    When I make this, I like to add 1/2″ cubed silken tofu in the last few seconds of cooking.

    Don’t worry, it’s not gluey. We are Simply Recipes have very high standards. The cornstarch is just enough to give it a nice mouthfeel as you so noted. =) ~Garrett

  • Leah

    Does the soup work if you use only egg whites?

    Never tried it that way. If you give it a shot I hope you’ll comment on your results. Would love to hear your input. ~Garrett

  • Annie

    So nice but isn’t this a typical Chinese soup recipe? I think it’s a very common soup recipe in majority of Chinese families for a quick one.

    I actually cook egg drop soup everyday but with different variations such as tomato egg drop, green pea egg drop, mushroom and woodear egg drop….

    It’s such a lovely and hearty thing to eat.

  • Hana

    I love soup, especially in cold weather and I’d really like to try this. Plus, being a student and on a budget? I can totally relate to this. :) But is there a substitute for corn starch (corn flour?)? Would it work as well without it? Or how about with normal self-raising flour?

    You can just leave it out, but try to use corn starch otherwise. ~Garrett

  • Ares Vista

    My fiance loves egg drop soup! Do you know how many points I can score because of your generous sharing of this recipe? Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  • Alecia

    Just want to say thanks for the gluten free nod. I live in a GF household and although I think I’m pretty good at making substitutions, its nice to see a site makes an effort to be conscious of gluten. Thanks and keep ’em coming. :-)

  • Nate

    I don’t add soy sauce in the initial cooking. Let the diner choose if some is needed. Good addition is some scotch mixed in before eating.

  • Irene

    Oooh thank you! I’ve always wanted to know how to make this soup but was afraid to do it because I thought it would be very complicated. I’m glad to know that it’s something I could make at home! This is one of my favorite soups.

  • jeanology

    Thank you Garrett, I made this for lunch. I omitted the cornstarch since I didn’t have any but otherwise followed your recipe exactly. It was so tasty.

  • Stacy

    It turned cold today, so I made this soup… Wow! My husband took one bite and asked if there were seconds. It was super-fast, cheap and delicious. Thanks!

  • fg

    Looks yummy! I cook mine pretty much the same way, but sometimes I add frozen corn kernels or peas and carrots.

  • Kristine

    This is fantastic! Surprisingly I had all the ingredients on hand (I keep dried shittake mushrooms on hand for steak). Growing up, my mom’s version of egg drop soup was a can of cream of chicken, water, and egg. This is like a more grown up version :) Thanks for sharing!

  • wendy

    I’m originally from Taiwan and my mom usually makes egg drop soup with seaweed, I think that’s a pretty common way to make egg drop soup in East Asia. Chicken stock (from the can should be fine) is a must, and we don’t add cornstarch to the soup. White pepper is also a nice addition. Interestingly, this soup is not served in restaurants where I grew up because it’s very simple to make.

  • Helana Brigman

    I just tried this recipe (by using Chicken Broth instead of Stock, I’m not exactly sure what the difference is?) and it was soo YUMMY! I was surprised by how flavorful it was given the few number of ingredients, and definitely impressed with how turned out.

    Thanks for sharing!

  • Steph Bond @ Bondville

    Great recipe Garrett! I was craving this the day before you posted and made a version with a can of corn kernels and a can of creamed corn added. So delicous! I think your recipe is simpler and looks great (amazing photo Elise). Also, I added very thin rice vermicelli noodles for some bulk, and found that the egg drop didn’t work – it seemed to stick to the noodles. Lesson learned. Next time I’ll pop the noodles in the bowl first, make the soup with egg drop, then pour on top of the noodles. Can’t wait to make it again.

  • Jessica from Dallas

    Made this tonight. Soooo good!!!! Fast, easy, for sure going on rotation :)

  • Jacquie

    Brilliant, simply brilliant! This recipe captures the essence of the whole website. Simple, fast and oh, so very tasty!

    I’ve been playing around with soba noodles trying to find interesting (and simple) flavors to blend with this wonderful noodle.

    The egg drop soup is so flexible….soba, udon, leftovers…or even nothing but the eggs.

    This recipe is a life long keeper!

  • Kelly

    I am loving all your recipes! recently, I made the egg drop soup. SO yummy! I didn’t have white pepper, so I used black, I forgot the green onion so I put in some massive shakes of dried onions and I used white mushrooms, because I can’t stand straw, enoki, or sliced shitaki mushrooms. and you know what. It still came out fantastic. I don’t know that I would compare it closely to my favorite Chinese place, but it was really good…I ate the whole pot myself. :) Thanks! Love this blog/site!!

  • Gourmet Mama

    I’m a huge fan of egg drop soup! I make it on days where I’m yearning for something just light to eat. I love the photos you put up of it too.

  • Alexander Kolozvary JR

    This recipe was awesome! First soup meal I made from scratch. I added some Chow Mein Noodles to it (I know, they’re bad for you…but I couldn’t resist!). I loved this meal so much, I ended up having two servings.

  • ~M

    This was fabulous, with leftover chicken feet stock (based on your recipe). I had removed the feet but left the cooked onion, carrot, parsnip, and celery bits in the gelatinous stock and then followed the rest of the recipe pretty much as written. Between all the soup veges, mushrooms, and eggs, it was a true one-pot meal and so easy. I loved the velvety texture! Since I’m gluten-free, and not able to eat Chinese food in restaurants any longer, this was a huge treat that will be repeated often and recommended!

    I hope to try a version of this with arrowroot starch for my corn-allergic friend.

    For the commenter that avoids mushrooms, I think that frozen corn could actually work quite well as a sub. I’ve seen restaurants serve egg drop soup with those baby corns, but regular frozen corn seems much tastier and more nutritious.

  • Tracey

    Egg Drop Soup is such a comfort food. When I’m making a quick ramen soup for lunch, I remove the cooked noodles from the pan when they are done, and then stir a beaten egg into the simmering broth. I then pour it over the cooked ramen. It’s different take on the egg drop soup, but it does add some protein to the meal.
    Also, for those who are reluctant to add corn starch, try to find potato starch (katakuriko) in an Asian store. I lived in Japan for three years and noticed that katakuriko was more commonly used as a thickening agent than corn starch.

  • Chef Mo

    I made this soup tonight for the family, paired with Chinese Chicken Salad. Very yummy and not too heavy. I made a mexican soup last week and my “mexican” husband said he enjoyed this one better… :)

  • Viki

    Loved this soup! I had a craving for egg drop soup and yours looked easy. Didn’t have the onions, used chives and home dried mushrooms. Saved the recipe to make again. Thank you!

  • gracehatter

    Just outstanding…I used what I had on hand, ground ginger, chives and garlic and dried onions and our own farm fresh eggs…just what I needed today on this cool spring day!

  • Dankster

    Probably the fifth time I’ve made this recipe. Always outstanding, though I’ve never added the fungi.

    Thanks, great site and recipes, as usual.

  • andeskins

    Delicious! Thanks for the recipe!

  • Shannon

    I just made this tonight for me and my boyfriend. He went gaga over it. We finished the entire pot. Paired with the fresh spring rolls we made it was a great meal.

    I can’t wait to make it again. I’m going to try adding tofu and bamboo. Yum!

  • Tim

    Easy Egg Drop Soup

    Boil 2 cups of water with soy sauce, ginger, garlic and corn starch mixure added. Stir in eggs first then dump in the Cambell’s chicken soup and vegetables. Done.

    -teaspoon of sesame seed oil
    -2 eggs
    -1 or two garlic cloves minced
    -can of Cambell’s chicken and rice soup
    -.5 teaspoon of grated ginger
    -1 tablspn of soy sauce
    -2 or 3 green onions if you got ’em
    -two big handfulls of fresh spinach leaves sliced up
    -.25 teaspoon of crushed red peppers

    -garnish with cilantro!!
    -Diced bell pepper (specially red)
    -3/4 cup of straw, enoki, or sliced shitaki mushrooms
    -bok choy instead of spinach
    -leftover chicken meat
    -.5 or one whole tablespoon of corn starch (warning!! Mix with cold water first before adding to soup).

    Good to know another quick and easy method. However, the recipe for the egg drop soup is pretty much this but healthier. Canned chicken soup is loaded with sodium and you can’t control the flavor of your soup as well. ~Garrett

  • Brenda

    Question: I am on a low carb diet and everything but the cornstarch works, can I substitute xanthan gum for the cornstarch to be low carb friendly without compromising the taste?


    I have never worked with xanthan gum so I can’t say. If it works with other soups I imagine it should work with this. Or you could just cut the cornstarch out entirely as it is there for texture and not flavor. ~Garrett

  • johanna

    This brings back so many childhood memories… my grandma (in austria) used to make this for us as a quick snack which she always had the ingredients for… it had nothing Chinese, though, just plain stock and some egg dropped into it!
    It used to be the perfect remedy after illness as well.

  • Barbi

    Growing up we used to make egg drop soup by stirring a beaten egg into Lipton Chicken noodle soup, the dry packaged kind that you just add water to. It’s super salty and not authentic, except authentically cheap to make. My mother approved because adding the egg in her opinion made this a healthy lunch along with a grilled cheese sandwich. I always seem to crave salty foods so this satifies my salt cravings on the cheap and healthy (hey remember the addtion of the egg?).

  • Malia @ Small Town Girl

    I love egg drop soup but never thought about making my own. This sounds divine! Pinned :)

  • pam

    i’d also add some frozen veg. tho
    easy & yummy

  • Ellere

    I just have to add, replying to the posters 6 years ago (!!) that I had egg drop soup in rural China in the late 90’s, and it had tomatoes in it. They were delicious. Tasted barely cooked, to I imagine put in right before the egg.

  • Dipti Joshi

    I make it quite often. Only difference is, I am using black pepper and garlic..now will try with ginger and white pepper.

  • Linda Eckhardt

    Elise, I want this soup today. But meanwhile, take a look at the heavenly white bean and bacon soup I made yesterday. Yes, you have to soak the beans but it’s worth it. I love making soups of all kinds.

  • Carol at Wild Goose Mama

    This is probably my all time favorite soup. When I am sick, this is THE soup I want.
    This looks to be a wonderful version of this wonderful soup.

  • Glen & George

    Just made this tonight and it was awesome! Thank you for sharing the recipe.

  • JustHeather

    Thank you for this recipe! I have always loved this soup, but hated the msg and tons of salt in the instant pouch packets that I would bring back from the US. Now I can make it on my own!

  • Reuben K.

    I have discovered that letting the eggs come to room temperature
    before scrambling and adding to the broth results in longer and more substantial ribbons of egg, instead of the shreds and granules that are easiest to produce.


  • Lyn

    This was easy and delicious…I did let the eggs come to room temp…thanks

  • Natalie | Paper & Birch

    Thanks for posting this recipe! Definitely going to try it soon and try Reuben’s tip on letting the eggs come to room temperature. :)

  • Peter

    I had hoped for more specifics on adding the eggs. That aside, this is a very old favorite.
    Living so near San Francisco we have come to expect this as our belly warmer before the main courses. We also have seen it here with seaweed (OMG IT’S SO GOOD) and ground beef and yes the local proper or not, is the local fave, and it is just shy of hot & sour soup thickness via starch I’m sure.

    It bears noting that the many variants on each recipe exist invariably due to the absence of an ingredient in the fridge or a spice which you don’t have or something that you can’ t or won’t use due to consciencious conflicts. Foods are thought by some to be too dangerous for consumption and yet in other parts of the world the fish though extremely poisonous if cut wrong is a delight and worth the danger to others. Some thought Julia Child a genious, and she put butter on her butter, and others thought she should be arrested for feeding people such high cholesterol foods.

    Food and these recipes is one of the few places where free expression still exists. So my friends try a vegan dish, or a meat lovers paradise, and make up for it tomorrow. Today we are revolutioaries, and we are fat and happy ones. Enjoy my friends and thanks for all your input.

    • Mark

      Well, there are people who want to dictate what you are allowed to eat or drink. Don’t assume that fanaticism is not trying to work its way in. My philosophy…inform and let people decide.

      For adding the eggs, I suggest stirring the hot broth in a circular motion. Not too vigorous. Put the whisked eggs into something that will allow a thin steam of liquid egg, not a thick “mudslide”. I was thinking about using a “flavor injector” but those don’t hold enough. I may try a frosting pouch if they have small enough nozzles. The key is a slow drizzle. For most people, just drizzling from a spoon will prove adequate.
      But keep the hot broth moving while adding the egg.

      I have another idea for adding the egg that, as far as I know, no one has ever done before. I’ll let you know if it works out.

  • tj

    I am having major dental surgery on Fri 8/21 and will need to be on liquids for about 4-5 days, if all goes well. I just made a pot of potato leek soup; I have cooked beans, lentils, in the fridge, but want something “lighter” for the first 48 hrs that is nutritious, for healing, etc. I thought of egg drop soup and love this very simple recipe. Also, very easy to put together when I get out of the recliner to forage for something to “eat”. I will have to consume it at tepid temperatures, not hot, not cold. I have canned chicken stock, salt free, and all other ingredients. I can have this without “chewing” anything, and, simply, rinse out my mouth afterwards. Thank you, all of you.

  • tj

    Thank you, Elise, for this personal response. I am NOT looking forward to this procedure, but, it must be done. Tomorrow, I will purchase wings and backs and celery as I have everything else. It will be comforting, as I sip this broth, to know someone “out there” knows my plight. Wishing you good health !

    • Elise

      You too TJ! Good luck with your procedure. BTW, chicken stock homemade needs salt, more than you would expect since we are used to buying already salted stock. So, if it tastes boring, add more salt until it tastes right to you.

      • Tj

        Just returned from store. Will get busy, making my broth. I love to shop, cook, feed, and eat, so will miss doing these things. However, I will take even more comfort in knowing my broth is pure and homemade. Thank you again. I’ll be visiting often.

  • Crystal

    Do need to peel the ginger before you grate it or leave it whole?

  • Stephanie in Davis

    Made this for dinner tonight (dreaming of Fall). My 15 year old son added a small amount of rice vinegar. The rest of us loved it as the recipe is written. So easy and yet so good. Will definitely make it again.

  • Brittany Kraft

    I really don’t like mushrooms. Is there a substitute I can use or can I just leave them out?

    • Elise

      Hi Brittany, mushrooms are pretty important to this recipe, but that said, you can leave them out if you want. The result will be a very light soup.

  • Ann Norman

    I love this soup!! Thank you!! I have prepared it 4 times. The last time I added too much ginger thinking I would use up what I had on hand (1 teaspoon). That was a mistake. From here on I will stick to the half teaspoon of ginger recommended.

  • Susan

    My husband woke up CRAVING egg drop soup! After looking through various recipes, I chose yours~ DELICIOUS and simple! We varied just a tinge, tho’, based on what we had in the house: used chicken broth, (2 cans), with a 1/4 cube of chix bullion, sliced some pickled ginger that we had in the frig into julienne strips and “shaved” the remnants of a yellow onion, along with fresh button mushrooms. The flavor was incredible–thank you for posting this! Can’t wait to make it being true to your recipe. Simply delicious! SO SIMPLE adding anything else would ruin it! Just stick to the recipe!! Thanks so much!

  • Mark

    Italian meatballs, cacio e pepe and egg drop soup are recipes I always seek out to see what others do with them.
    For me, I don’t like corn starch in most anything. I just don’t. A quick search of recipes on the web shows most recipes use cornstarch, but not mushrooms. It may be pedantic but cornstarch is mostly just for thickening…and starching your shirts. Ginger seems to be 50/50. I wouldn’t add mushrooms either but I’m not saying not to. Didn’t see any salt in the recipe but chicken soup, which is really what egg drop is, usually benefits from a touch of saltiness. I like to add sesame oil at the end. To me, that’s a game changer. Everybody makes the dish their own in some way. Sesame oil is my little personalization. Sesame oil does not like heat, so like pepper, for fullest flavor add after the cooking is nearly complete.

    As far technique goes, I would heat the broth first and then add the egg. If done properly the egg will look like angel hair pasta. I think adding the egg with all that other stuff makes it impossible to get nice looking egg droplets. Add the mushrooms and green onion after the egg. I think that’s why your egg drops are all over the place in the photos; not that it impacts flavor at all. I’ve always thought that egg drop soup should be a mostly clear, soup, not cloudy.


    P.S. I look forward to seeing your cacio e pepe recipe.

  • Mark

    It’s hard to know what exactly what authentic egg drop soup is but here’s my recipe for real kinda-sorta Chinese egg drop soup..

    2 cups chicken broth
    1/8 tsp ground white pepper
    1/4 tsp salt
    1 or 2 whisked eggs
    1/4 cup cubed tofu
    1/4 cup chopped scallions (the green parts)
    Optional but highly recommended, sesame oil.

    Bring the broth, salt and pepper to a boil…in a wok if you have one.
    While stirring constantly in a circular motion, slowly drizzle in the egg. The idea is to form “strings” of egg in the boiling broth. A turkey baster works well for this.

    After adding the egg, add the tofu and scallions. Give a quick stir.

    Lastly add the optional sesame oil.

    Serve immediately.

    I sent pix to Elise. Not sure if she can post.

  • Teri

    How do you cut enoki mushrooms for this soup? I’ve never used/had them but would like to try. They are very different looking than the other varieties mentioned…

  • Fork Lift Operator

    I posted my version of this recipe a while back…and have since tidied it up a bit. So I decided to post my updated version.

    Chinese Egg Drop Soup
    Chinese egg drop soup is a light clear broth soup. All of the ingredients contribute equally to the flavor. Go easy on the scallions, tofu and egg. It’s all about the broth. Light and flavorful is key, a prelude to the main dish.
    Likewise, the sesame oil should compliment, not overwhelm.
    It’s hard to know what exactly authentic egg drop soup is but here’s my recipe for kinda-sorta almost authentic Chinese egg drop soup.
    1 cup real homemade chicken broth plus 1 cup water, or 2 cups of dirty-dishwater store-bought broth.
    1/4 tsp ground white pepper
    1/2 tsp salt
    1 whisked egg. One is normally enough. I normally use jumbo eggs just because that’s what I usually buy, but a large egg should work.
    Scant handful of cubed tofu, quarter inch cubes.
    Scant handful of chopped scallions (the green stalks)
    Spritz of toasted sesame oil.
    Some people may wish to add (sliced) mushrooms but they are not part of “authentic” Chinese egg drop soup. Corn starch, not part of my recipe, is commonly found in the recipes of American restaurants but can be left out.
    Bring the broth, salt and pepper to a boil…in a wok if you have one, or other pan with a large bottom. Taste for pepper and saltiness.
    Stir the broth in a circular motion. Simultaneously lift the spoon out and slowly drizzle in the whisked egg. The idea is to form “strings” of egg in the boiling broth. A turkey baster works well for this but the bowl you whisked in will work just fine. Try not to pour the egg on top of other egg as the broth comes around. The egg will set almost immediately.
    After adding the egg, add the tofu and scallions. Give a quick stir.
    Lastly sprinkle in the toasted sesame oil. You don’t need a lot. It’s an accent, not the main course. Make sure it’s toasted, not plain sesame oil.
    Serve immediately.
    Serves 2