Is there anything better when there is a chill in the air than a steaming hot bowl of chicken soup? All over the world chicken soup is renowned for banishing the winter blues and and cheering us up when it is grey outside.
My favourite winter warmer is Chicken Wonton Soup, spiced with fresh ginger and chilli and packed with delicious bok choy.
Not only is this delicious Chinese soup super frugal (a little meat can go a very long way), it’s simple to make and so tasty!
To make my easy Chicken Wonton Soup, you’ll need the following main ingredients:
- BROTH / STOCK: A good soup needs a great quality stock or broth. While you can use chicken bouillon powder in a pinch, I’d recommend buying a liquid chicken or vegetable stock (or for real bonus points, make your own!)
- CHICKEN: Ground chicken is reasonably difficult to come by in Germany, so I prefer to make my own using chicken thighs. In this recipe, you can either use prepared ground chicken (chicken mince), chicken thighs or chicken breast. Either run it through the meat grinder or cube the meat, freeze it for half an hour and pulse it in the food processor. I prefer thighs as the dark meat has a lot more flavour. You can also use ground pork in the wonton filling.
- HERBS AND SPICES: I love to fill this soup with spicy and aromatic flavours. I use star anise, ginger and chilli, but you could mix it up and add your favourites. Lemongrass, lime leaves or even cinnamon are all wonderful in this broth. I also use garlic, and chives in this recipe.
- WONTON WRAPPERS: You should be able to find dumpling wrappers in the freezer in Asian grocery stores. I always buy a few packets as they keep in the freezer for ages and are great to have in an emergency. For the shape shown in the photos you need square wonton wrappers, but you can fold them however takes your fancy!
- BOK CHOY: My favourite leafy green! Packed with calcium, copper and zinc, bok choy is as healthy for you as it is delicious! If you can’t get it you could add other steamed greens like broccoli, snow peas or green beans.
The complete ingredient list and detailed instructions are in the recipe card at the bottom of the page.
This is a quick and easy soup to make! The first time you might find making the wontons a little fiddly, but I promise, practice makes perfect.
- First infuse your chicken broth or stock by adding the star anise, ginger and chilli. Bring it to a simmer in a large saucepan, then set aside, covered, while you prepare the wontons.
- Mix the ground chicken together with all the other filling ingredients, season well with salt and pepper, then roll into 24-30 small meatballs. The mixture is fairly soft, but if it is really falling apart, add a spoonful more breadcrumbs.
- Next, make the wontons! Lay several wrappers on a workbench with one point facing up. Place a meatball in the centre of each, then run a wet finger along the top two edges of the wonton wrapper. Fold up the bottom to make a triangle, pressing to seal the sides. Run a wet finger along the base of the triangle, then wrap first the right, then the left point of the triangle around the filling, pressing gently to seal. Repeat with all remaining filling and wrappers.
- Note: This recipe makes more wontons than you will need (approximately 4-5 per serving). If serving a crowd you can steam the extras separately or divide the soup and wontons between two pots. Extra wontons can be frozen for another day.
- Use a slotted spoon to remove the aromatics from the soup, then bring it back to a simmer. Gently drop the prepared wontons into the simmering broth, place a steaming basket over the top with the bok choy inside, cover and simmer for 10 minutes until the bok choy is tender and the wonts are cooked through.
- Divide the bok choy and some sliced spring onion between serving bowls, put 4-5 wontons in each bowl and ladle over the hot broth. Add a dash of sesame oil and some chilli flakes and dig in. Heaven in a bowl!
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I prepare Chicken Wonton Soup in advance?
Yes! You can prepare the chicken wontons up to a day in advance (or freeze for 3 months in an airtight container) and infuse the stock in advance also. To cook the wontons from frozen, they’ll need an extra 5 minutes of cooking time and 5 minutes resting in the hot soup before you serve.
I don’t like spicy food! Can I leave the chilli out?
Of course! Simply omit the chilli from the recipe. You may like to add some other aromatics such as lemon grass to bump up the flavour.
Can I make vegetarian wonton soup?
Yes! I’d make a mushroom base with oyster or shiitake mushrooms for the best texture.
Chicken Wonton Soup Recipe
Chicken Wonton Soup
for the soup:
- 1.5 litres liquid chicken stock or broth
- 3 star anise
- 1 small red chilli, sliced
- 2.5 cm (1 in.) fresh ginger, sliced
- 1 Tbsp soy sauce
- pinch of sugar
for the chicken filling:
- 400 g ground chicken / chicken mince
- 1 Tbsp soy sauce
- 1 Tbsp finely grated fresh ginger
- 1 Tbsp bread crumbs
- 1-2 garlic cloves, crushed
- small bunch of fresh chives, diced
- sea salt and white pepper
- 24-30 wonton wrappers, defrosted if frozen
- 1 bok choy, leaves separated
- 2 spring onions, green onions, finely sliced
- sesame oil
- chilli flakes
- INFUSE THE LIQUID: Pour the stock or broth into a large saucepan, and add the star anise, chilli, ginger, soy sauce and sugar. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, then cover and remove from the heat. Seat aside while you prepare the wontons.
- MAKE FILLING: In a large bowl, stir together the chicken, soy sauce, ginger, bread crumbs, garlic and chives and season well with salt and pepper. Knead to combine using your hands, then roll into. 24-30 small meatballs.
- MAKE WONTONS: Lay four or five wonton wrappers with a point facing upwards on a surface lightly dusted with cornstarch and prepare a small bowl of water. Place a meatball in the centre of each wonton wrapper, then dip your finger in the water, brush along the top two sides and fold up the bottom of the wrapper to make a triangle. Wet your finger again and run it along the base of the triangle, then wrap first the right, then the left point around the filling. Repeat with all remaining wontons and meatballs.
- COOK SOUP: Use a slotted spoon to remove the aromatics from the broth. Taste and adjust seasoning as necessary (you may need to thin it out or add a little salt). Bring the broth back to a simmer and add 4-5 wontons per serving to the simmering broth (see notes). Place a steaming basket over the top, add the bok chop, cover and simmer for 10 minutes until the bok choy is tender and the wontons are cooked through.
- SERVE: Divide the bok choy and spring onion between serving bowls, and spoon over the soup and wontons. Add a splash of sesame oil and a pinch of chilli flakes. Serve immediately.
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