Classic Matzo Ball Soup (Jewish Penicillin)

The only matzo ball soup recipe you’ll ever need, each bowl is packed with deep chicken flavor and light, fluffy matzo balls.

Garnish of matzo ball soup.

I’m so excited to share my Aunt Patsy’s famous Matzo Ball Soup recipe! While my family gathers for a pleasant Seder each Passover, I can’t say we don’t get distracted by thoughts of dinner. What can I say, we are a family that loves food! Matzo ball soup… the highlight! Light, fluffy balls of matzo that float in rich, velvety, almost silky chicken broth. There’s a reason they call it Jewish penicillin—this soup heals everything and isn’t just for eating at Passover.


  • Chicken broth: I love making homemade, it’s super easy and you can make in bulk and save for later. But store-bought chicken broth works well too!
  • Matzo ball mix: My destination is Manischewitz, but your local grocery store may stock a different brand.
  • eggs: Used as a binder for the matzo balls.
  • chicken fat: Also known as lard, it is a common ingredient in Jewish cuisine, lending it a rich, delicious flavor.

How to make Ball Matzo Soup

Cut carrots and celery

Begin your matzo ball soup by preparing your chicken broth. You can use store-bought ones too, but making it from scratch adds an extra punch of flavor.

Put carrots in the pot

In a large stock pot, add your sliced ​​carrots and celery.

Prepare chicken broth.

Then add a whole chicken and cover with water.

Put the onion in the pot

And add the sliced ​​onion and garlic.

Put thyme in the pot

Then add fresh parsley and sprigs of thyme to the pot.

Add chicken base

Pour in the chicken base.

Salt the chicken broth

And finish with some salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and then simmer for about an hour or until the chicken is fully cooked.

Strain chicken broth

Store in the fridge so the fat collects at the top and you can skim it off easily. Then reheat and strain into another large saucepan, leaving only the broth. You can keep the chicken to add back to the soup or shred it to use in other dishes.

Beat egg in bowl

To make the matzo balls, crack your eggs into a medium bowl and whisk them together.

Put oil in the bowl 1

Then add the oil or lard.

Pour matzo mixture into bowl

Then add the matzo ball mixture.

Mix matzo ball dough

Mix until the ingredients combine into a dough.

Form matzo balls from dough

Once the dough is formed, use a tablespoon and your hands to form small balls of dough.

Put the matzah balls in the pot

Place the balls in the hot pot one at a time, leaving enough room for the balls to expand.

cooked matzo balls

Let cook until the matzo balls have doubled in size.

Classic matzo ball soup.

Pour some hot chicken broth into your bowls and add a few matzo balls to each. Serve garnished with chives or parsley, maybe add some shredded chicken and enjoy your Matzo Ball Soup!

Frequently asked Questions:

Where can I find chicken fat (lard)?

You can find it at most butcher shops or at the butcher counter at your grocery store. Alternatively, you can make your own by oven roasting the chicken skin until crispy and skimming the retained fat (lard.)

What is the importance of matzo ball soup?

At the Passover meal, matzah represents the unleavened bread eaten by the Jews fleeing Egypt.

How do you store leftover matzo ball soup?

Keep the matzo balls and chicken broth separate and refrigerate in airtight containers for 4 days. Just reheat in the microwave when you’re ready to eat it again.

More family recipes

Classic matzo ball soup.

Passover Recipes

Eat it, like it, share it!

Have you tried this soup? Next time you make it, take a picture and share it with your social networks! Tag @thelemonbowl and #thelemonbowl so we can admire and share your meal.

Liz enjoys the classic matzo ball soup.

Whether you’re celebrating Passover or just can’t resist a comforting bowl of matzo ball soup, I urge you to try my family recipe. Let me know how it goes in a comment below!

Your spoon is waiting.

matzo ball soup

Classic Matzo Ball Soup (Jewish Penicillin)

The only matzo ball soup recipe you’ll ever need, each bowl is packed with deep chicken flavor and light, fluffy matzo balls.


COOK: 2 Hours

IN TOTAL: 3 Hours

Save to Favorite RecipesSaved!

Servings: 8th

Preparation of the chicken broth:

  • Place all of the chicken broth ingredients (whole chicken through thyme) in a large stockpot and cover with water. Bring to a boil and bring the heat to a boil.

  • Remove the lid and simmer the broth on low until the chicken falls off the bones – about an hour.

  • Check the seasonings and adjust accordingly with more salt, pepper, or herbs to taste.

  • Take it from the stove and let it cool off. Refrigerate the broth overnight so you can easily skim the fat from the chilled soup in the morning. In the morning, scrape off the layer of fat from the top while the soup is still cold.

  • Heat the broth over medium-high heat until warmed through. Taste for seasoning and adjust accordingly.

  • To strain, place a large colander over another large stockpot and strain the broth.

Prepare matzo balls:

  • Prepare according to package directions, usually mixing the matzo ball mixture, eggs, and oil into a batter.

  • Take about a tablespoon of dough and roll it into a ball. The key to fluffy, perfect balls is to cook them in a wide, deep soup pan to give the balls room to expand. It doesn’t have to be as deep as it needs to be wide.

To save time, you can use a good quality canned chicken broth instead of making your own.
My aunt discards the chicken from the broth because she feels it’s pretty flavorless and overcooked at this point, but feel free to reserve the meat and add it to the soup later.
For gluten free look for the Gluten Free Matzo Ball Mix.

Calories: 325kcalCarbohydrates: 29.3GProtein: 16.4GFat: 14.8GSaturated Fatty Acids: 2.5GPolyunsaturated fat: 12.3GTrans fats: 0GCholesterol: 104mgSodium: 1504mgFiber: 1.1GSugar: 7.6G

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