This Keto Chicken Soup recipe is a healthy take on the classic Greek Avoglemono soup. Light, simple, and full of fresh flavor, and it has only 5.3g net carbs per serving.
We often think of soup as being heavy, hearty comfort food. The sort of thing you might make in the dead of winter when you need to warm up. And I have plenty of those kinds of keto soup recipes, believe me.
But this Greek-style Chicken Lemon Soup is lighter fare and it’s just right for an easy spring meal. I first tasted Avgolemono Soup a long time ago when having lunch with my aunt. We were both instantly taken with the bright, fresh flavor.
And now I’ve made it keto-friendly! And if you love these flavors, you need to try my Sheet Pan Greek Lemon Chicken too.
Why you need to try this
Classic Avgolemono takes orzo or rice along with the chicken, egg, and lemon. You simply replace the orzo with cauliflower rice or another low carb rice option to make it keto appropriate.
If you happen to have a copy of Keto Soups & Stews, this soup will look mighty familiar. But I did change it up a bit, adding a touch more lemon juice for more flavor.
I also added more chicken for a low carb high protein recipe. It’s still as fresh-tasting as it ever was, but now it’s a little more satisfying. It has 6.7g of carbs and 34g of protein. And it has a mere 6.5g of fat, for those of you who need a lighter meal.
Did I mention that it takes only 30 minutes to make? Easy peasy lemon squeezy, as my husband would say.
Ingredients you need
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- Lemons: The bright flavor of this keto chicken soup comes from fresh lemon juice.
- Cooked chicken: You can make avgolemono easily with pre-cooked chicken. Rotisserie chicken or grilled chicken is fine, or you can quickly broil a few thighs or breasts in the oven.
- Chicken broth: Choose a good bone broth for added nutrition. You can use homemade or store-bought. I like Kettle & Fire when using store-bought broth.
- Bay leaf: Simmering a bay leaf in the broth helps make the flavor of this soup even brighter. Remember to remove it before serving!
- Cauliflower rice: Conventional avgolemono soup calls for orzo, but I use cauliflower rice to make it keto-friendly. You can also use konjac rice or hearts of palm rice.
- Egg: Whisking an egg into the lemon juice makes the resulting soup thicker and gives it a silky quality.
- Pantry staples: Olive oil, salt, pepper.
Step by Step Directions
Keto Lemon Chicken Soup is astonishingly easy to make. And the bright lemony flavor can’t be beat!
1. In a large saucepan over medium heat, heat the oil. Add the onions and season lightly with salt and pepper. Sauté until the onions are translucent.
2. Add the broth and bay leaf and bring to a simmer, then add the chicken and cauliflower rice. Simmer for 10 minutes, until the cauliflower rice is just tender.
3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the lemon juice and the egg. Slowly laden about 1 cup of hot broth from the soup into the lemon-egg mixture. Then slowly whisk the lemon egg mixture back into the saucepan.
4. Discard the bay leaf and adjust seasonings to taste. Serve with lemon slices and chopped fresh parsley or green onions.
Adding egg to hot soup takes some care. This isn’t meant to be like egg drop soup, where the egg gets cooked as it hits the hot liquid. Instead, it helps thicken the broth slightly and give it a creamy quality. So make sure you take the time to whisk the egg and broth slowly so that the egg doesn’t curdle.
If you want to cook the chicken in the soup itself, you can follow a similar method that I use for my Keto Thai Chicken Soup. You will want about 1 to 1 ½ pounds of boneless, skinless chicken. You can slice it thinly or cut into bite-sized pieces. Then add it into the broth in Step 2 and let cook 5 minutes or so before adding the cauliflower rice.
Frequently Asked Questions
A direct translation of avgolemono is “egg lemon”. It can refer to sauces made with eggs and lemon, as well as to the classic lemon chicken soup.
The conventional version of this soup contains rice or orzo, so it is not very low carb. But this Keto Lemon Chicken Soup is made with cauliflower rice instead. It has 6.7g of carbs and 1.4g of fiber, so it has only 5.3g net carbs per serving.
I recommend reheating this soup rather gently, so as not to curdle the egg. You can do it over medium low heat in a pan, or in short bursts in the microwave, stirring frequently.
Lemon Chicken Soup Recipe (Avgolemono)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ¼ cup chopped onion
- Salt and pepper
- 3 ½ cups chicken broth
- 1 bay leaf
- 3 cups chopped cooked chicken
- 2 cups frozen cauliflower rice
- ½ cup lemon juice
- 1 large egg
- In a large saucepan over medium heat, heat the oil. Add the onions and season lightly with salt and pepper. Sauté until the onions are translucent.
- Add the broth and bay leaf and bring to a simmer, then add the chicken and cauliflower rice. Simmer for 10 minutes, until the cauliflower rice is just tender.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the lemon juice and the egg. Slowly laden about 1 cup of hot broth from the soup into the lemon-egg mixture. Then slowly whisk the lemon egg mixture back into the saucepan.
- Discard the bay leaf and adjust seasonings to taste. Serve with lemon slices and chopped fresh parsley or green onions.