Chinese Chicken Cabbage Soup

Chinese Chicken Cabbage Soup is a full-flavored soup with an Asian flair! It’s low in calories which makes it perfect for a snack or light meal any time of day!

Chinese Chicken Cabbage Soup
Chinese Chicken Cabbage Soup

Chinese Chicken Cabbage Soup


1 tbsp. lemon juice

1 tbsp water

1 tbsp. Cornstarch

1 tsp. kosher or fine sea salt

1 egg white

12 oz skinless, boneless chicken breasts

4 teaspoons toasted sesame oil

3 tablespoon ginger, grated

5 clove garlic minced (5 tsp)

2 dried Thai chili pepper, optional

8 cups chicken broth low sodium

3 carrots, thinly sliced

2 celery stalks, thinly sliced

¼ cup soy sauce

2 tbsp rice vinegar

1½ tbsp dried cilantro

¼ cup tablespoons hoisin sauce*

1 can sliced water chestnuts, drained (8 oz)

4 cups Napa (Chinese) cabbage shredded (1 lb)

Salt and pepper to taste


In a medium bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, water, cornstarch, and salt. Add the egg white and whisk until frothy. Cut the chicken breasts crosswise into thin strips. Stir in the chicken the egg mixture and stir to coat. Cover and set aside to marinate for 30 minutes. The chicken can be refrigerated for up to 1 day before continuing.

Heat sesame oil over medium heat in a stockpot. Add ginger, garlic and chilis.  Saute until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Add chicken broth, carrots, celery, soy sauce, rice vinegar and cilantro.  Bring to boil over high heat.  Lower to medium-low and simmer for 30 minutes.

While the soup is simmering, fill a medium saucepan two-thirds full with water and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and stir to separate the pieces.  Boil for 1 minute. Drain in a colander and rinse under cold water. Transfer the chicken to a bowl and set aside.

When broth is done simmering, add hoisin sauce, water chestnuts, cabbage and chicken.  Cook until chicken is no longer pink, about 3 minutes.

Add rice or noodles if desired.  Serve hot.

*To make hoisin sauce mix together ¼ cup barbecue sauce, 1 tbsp. Molasses, 1 tsp soy sauce, ½ tsp Chinese five-spice powder or garam masala

6 servings, `196 calories per serving excluding rice or noodles

Hack:  Soup can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or frozen in serving-sized portions for up to 3 months.

Hack:  If adding rice or noodles, Cook and store them separately from the soup.  This will keep them from getting soggy.

Hack:  Use leftover cabbage to make Homemade Chinese Dumplings!

Hack:  Dehydrated vegetables will work nicely in this recipe, using 1/3 cup dehydrated carrots,  2 heaping tbsp dehydrated celery and 1¼ cup dehydrated cabbage.

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8 Replies to “Chinese Chicken Cabbage Soup”

  1. This looks yummy!  I love cabbage soup and the ingredients sound like they would blend well together.  I like the idea of the ginger, sesame oil, rice vinegar and soy sauce.  Those are all ingredients I generally use when making a dipping sauce for gyoza.  So to combine it in a soups sounds delicious.

  2. What a wonderful recipe looks pretty simple to prepare too. Great tip on storing the noodles away from the soup. Can’t wait to try it as I love anything with Hosin sauce and napa cabbage. What is the total amount of time it takes to prepare this?

    Do you have any good recipes for kimchi?

  3. That classic blue cheese salad looks good enough to eat, and I hope you did. Congrats on an excellent site. I love the theme, layout, and overall look. The pictures are inviting, and the recipes easy to understand. You might work on a logo at canva or stencil– they’re both free. It would be a crowning touch, although the header background does a nice job by itself. Continued best luck!

    1. Thank you for your kind comments and thank you for the tips on creating a logo.  I’m going to look into that!

  4. Hi Cynthia. Thank you for another of your nice recipes. I happened to prepare this soup about a month ago. And it was very good! I quadrupled the recipe and froze some. It was a great way to use up some of the enormous head of bok choy that I had received in my box! The soup was great as leftovers too.

    1. I love to make a big pot of soup so I can freeze some for later and this is a particularly good soup for that purpose!  I’m happy you enjoyed it.

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