Matzo Ball Soup with Chicken Meatballs is an easy and homemade way to celebrate Passover or any matzo ball craving—with a twist.
I’m not Jewish. But I am definitely a matzo ball lover.
It all started with late night jaunts to the classic Canters Deli where I became an obsessive fan of matzo ball soup with all the fixins’ — noodles, matzo ball, kreplach, chicken and carrots. What the crap is a kerplach, you ask? It’s sort of a jewish tortellini and pretty darned good.
But oh, THE BROTH. That delicious broth that brought me back to my senses in those wee late night hours. If only I could replicate it—the broth, not the late hours. But I’m no Jewish mother—although my husband will say I do have the stereotypical tendencies. Sadly, those secret, Old World ways of chicken broth making may never make it to my stove.
But I do have a delicious recipe that hits home and curbs my matzo ball craving every time. And what better time to share with you than in celebration of Passover and Easter weekend? Yum. You’ll soon be a believer.
This ingredient list looks long, but is really easy. If you’re making your own broth, the key is a long, slow simmer for all of those veggie and chicken flavors to marry in holy matzo-mony.
What is Matzo Ball Soup?
If you’ve never tried matzo ball soup before, I’m truly sorry. Matzo balls are a type of dumpling that are made with matzo crackers (a type of unleavened flatbread that’s eaten during Passover) or matzo flour.
Matzo ball soup is essentially homemade chicken noodle soup with the addition of giant matzo balls. It’s hearty and comforting, and oh so good.
What’s in Matzo Ball Soup?
For this homemade matzo ball soup recipe, I prefer making my own chicken broth. I’ve listed the ingredients in the recipe card below, but you’re welcome to use a high-quality stock from the supermarket if that’s easier for you.
The chicken meatballs feature classic ingredients like minced onion, ground chicken, an egg, matzo meal, and fresh herbs.
I’ve yet to perfect my homemade matzo ball recipe, so for now I use the Manischewitz matzo ball mix to make the dumplings. If you have a homemade matzo ball recipe you swear by, please let me know!
Once the individual components are prepped, everything gets thrown together with egg noodles, chopped carrots, and fresh parsley to make a killer chicken matzo ball soup.
How to Make Matzo Ball Soup
If making the homemade chicken broth, you’ll want to prep that first. It needs to simmer for 4 to 5 hours on the stove, and after it’s been strained it’ll need to hang out in the fridge overnight to help the flavors all come together.
The chicken meatballs and matzo balls can be made while the broth is on the stove. Both are as easy to prep as dumping all the ingredients into a bowl and shaping the mixture into balls. The chicken meatballs need to be cooked in a skillet before being added to the soup, whereas the matzo balls are cooked directly in the broth.
The next day, cook the egg noodles and chopped carrots in the hot broth. Then, ladle the mixture over the matzo balls and dig in!
Can I Make This Recipe Vegetarian?
Yes, quite easily! Use a high-quality vegetable broth in place of the chicken broth and omit the chicken meatballs.
Tips for Making Matzo Ball Soup
Note that the matzo balls need to rest in the refrigerator for at least ½ hour prior to cooking.
I also recommend keeping the matzo balls warm until you’re ready to serve them. They can easily be prepped a day in advance and reheated as well.
Matzo ball soup doesn’t freeze well, so I recommend enjoying any leftovers ASAP. The homemade chicken broth is easily frozen, though.
More Soup Recipes You’ll Love
- The Best French Onion Soup
- Vegetarian Crockpot Lasagna Soup
- Slow Cooker Thai Chicken Soup
- Slow Cooker Tuscan White Bean and Sausage Soup
- Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup
If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment below or take a photo and tag me on Instagram with #foodiecrusheats.
Matzo Ball Soup with Chicken Meatballs
for chicken broth:
- 1 4- pound whole organic or kosher chicken giblets and neck removed from cavity
- 1 leek white part only
- 1 head garlic cut in half crosswise (don’t remove skin)
- 5 carrots chopped in 4-5 chunks
- 5 ribs celery chopped in 4-5 chunks
- 1 onion cut in half crosswise (don’t remove skin)
- 20 sprigs Italian parsley
- 20 sprigs fresh thyme on stem
- 1 ½ tablespoons black peppercorns
- 2 tablespoons kosher salt
- 1 pound ground chicken breast
- ½ onion minced
- 1 egg beaten
- ¼ cup chopped parsley
- ½ cup matzo meal
- kosher salt and pepper
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
for matzo balls:
- 1 Manischewitz Matzo ball mix
- 3 cups egg free noodles
- 4 carrots sliced
- ⅛ cup parsley or dill
- 4 quarts chicken broth or stock recipe above, or if you don’t make your own, Kitchen Basics makes a good alternative
- chicken meatballs recipe above
For chicken broth:
- Place chicken and all vegetables and spices in a large stockpot. Cover with 6 quarts of water.
- Over high heat, bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for 4 to 5 hours. Taste for seasoning and add salt if needed.
- Strain pot and discard vegetables. Chicken meat can be refrigerated and saved for another use. Skim broth and chill 8 hours or overnight. Remove fat from surface, skim broth again and reheat and simmer for soup. Can be made 3 days in advance.
- In a large bowl, combine ingredients until just combined.
- Form meatballs in ½” balls. Heat a large skilled on medium, add oil and cook in batches, turning frequently, 3-4 minutes total. Set aside.
For matzo balls:
- Follow package directions and add chopped parsley or dill if desired. Keep warm until served.
- In a large stockpot, bring chicken stock to a boil and cook pasta and carrots for 3 minutes. Reduce heat to simmer, add chicken meatballs and cook for 5 minutes more or until meatballs are warmed through.
- Place matzo balls in bowls and ladle in soup, carrots, noodles and chicken meatballs. Garnish with parsley and serve.
- Matzo balls need to rest in the refrigerator for at least ½ hour prior to cooking.
- I cook the matzo balls directly in the chicken stock rather than water. Don’t let the matzo balls sit in the broth however or they’ll soak all of your broth away.
- The chicken meatballs can be made 2 days in advance.
- Chicken broth recipe adapted from Ina Garten.
More Noodle Soups to Slurp Up
- The Best Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup
- How to Make the Best Minestrone Soup
- Slow Cooker Tortellini Soup with Sausage and Kale
- Pho Ga Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup
- Tortellini Soup with Artichokes
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