Chinese Lion's Head Soup
This is my family's version of lion's head soup and for me it is the best type of comfort food! It is best served with white sticky rice, and wonderful enjoyed on a cold winter day.
This is my family's version of lion's head soup and for me it is the best type of comfort food! It is best served with white sticky rice, and wonderful enjoyed on a cold winter day.
I grew up in an Asian household and we sure do love our soup! This was great once I made a few adjustments. We really like a lot of broth (as we have it with noodles), so I increased the liquid to 5 cups chicken stock and 3 cups of water. Even with that much liquid there was MORE then enough meat! I mixed in 2 green onions into the meat mixture and a dash of black pepper. I skipped sauting the cabbage and added it into the simmering soup the last few minutes of cooking, we don't like it mushy. As for the soup itself, if you add the meatballs in before it comes to a simmer, they will not fall apart. The last couple minutes of simmering I added in 3 thinly sliced green onions, a large handful of sliced cilantro, and a bit more soy sauce to taste. and DON'T SKIP THE SESAME OIL, this is key to the flavor. The meat filling and broth would also be good for wonton soup! Try adding in some sliced carrots or broccoli towards the end with the cabbage, very good!Read More
The taste was wonderful and homey, but the proportions for the broth to other ingredients must be off. I would cut the amount of cabbage to half a head as long as the head of cabbage is small. That will make this a soup rather than a dish of meatballs in boiled cabbage.Read More
I grew up in an Asian household and we sure do love our soup! This was great once I made a few adjustments. We really like a lot of broth (as we have it with noodles), so I increased the liquid to 5 cups chicken stock and 3 cups of water. Even with that much liquid there was MORE then enough meat! I mixed in 2 green onions into the meat mixture and a dash of black pepper. I skipped sauting the cabbage and added it into the simmering soup the last few minutes of cooking, we don't like it mushy. As for the soup itself, if you add the meatballs in before it comes to a simmer, they will not fall apart. The last couple minutes of simmering I added in 3 thinly sliced green onions, a large handful of sliced cilantro, and a bit more soy sauce to taste. and DON'T SKIP THE SESAME OIL, this is key to the flavor. The meat filling and broth would also be good for wonton soup! Try adding in some sliced carrots or broccoli towards the end with the cabbage, very good!
I make this often in the winter..but I do something just a little different..I bake it..I layer some cabbage leaves in the bottom of my ceramic cook pot, then put in the raw meat balls and then I pour over the liquid that I have heated to just boiling. Then I layer the rest of the cabbage with some fresh ginger and garlic slices. I simmer it for about 2-3 hours in a covered pot on 300'...Or you can make it in the morning and put it in the slow cooker all day..Yummy!
I made this tonite for the first time, and it won't be the last! The only change I made was to use 3 cups of broth and 1 cup of water. I was a worried the broth would be a little 'thin' for our taste if made as written. Kids and adults loved this soup equally. This was immediately deemed a 'keeper' here. Thank you so much for the wonderful recipe!!
The base of soup is very simple.. I added more broth.. I did not care for the meatballs.. I love ginger but it was out of balance for me, way too much.. Will make again with adjustments to meatballs.. thanks
This recipe is a keeper. I followed it exactly and it was great. The only thing I did different was use lean ground turkey instead of pork to cut fat. Usually things I make with the lean ground turkey are a bit firm and tough, but these dumplings were soft and pillowy. Really delicious. Thanks Lei Lei! Talk about easy cheap Chinese flavors.
I had to try this out tonight! Lions beat the Packers and just the Name alone was to add insult to injury to the hubby, who's a Packer fan in the family:( We LOVED! I used 8 cups of chicken broth instead of the 2 C. each of broth and water. I also baked my pork balls. Just what we prefer. Added more green onions and soy to our taste and some white ground pepper. I also just chopped the Napa cabbage and put in the broth until done. Added the pork balls and simmered about 10 minutes. Everything was so delicious! Loved all the flavors! We went back for seconds! Thank You So Much Lei Lei for sharing! Will be making again Very Soon! Oh! First time I ever bought Sesame Oil! I was shocked at the price! Wow!
The taste was wonderful and homey, but the proportions for the broth to other ingredients must be off. I would cut the amount of cabbage to half a head as long as the head of cabbage is small. That will make this a soup rather than a dish of meatballs in boiled cabbage.
Wonderful! I just switched the pork for ground turkey, my little ones had second! Thank you for sharing that great recipe!
Summer veggie co-op brings me an assortment of vegetables each week and finding recipes to use them all can be a challange. I looked up Chinese cabbage and found this. I loved it, Next time I will add some minced garlic and chili spice to the meatballs, but it was a nice change!
I have been wanting to try this for a while and I'm so glad that I finally did! It is delicious. I accidentally put the sesame oil in the meat mixture. I went ahead and added some to the broth at the end too. It was perfect so I will do that again next time. After putting it all together, there did not seem to be enough broth. I added 4 more cups and that seemed to be more to our liking. The fresh ginger is a prominent taste and I love that about this soup.
A really simple dish to prepare. The only thing I did differently was boil it a bit longer, being somewhat paranoid about the doneness of my slightly oversized meatballs. The results were outstanding. Everyone who tried it declared it "a keeper" and went back for a second bowl.
So easy and so good! We eat it with jasmine rice.
Great recipe. I used ground turkey and bok choy. Add 1.5 teaspoons of Chinese Five-spice in the last 3 minutes of cooking time.
I really liked this recipe. It was really yummy, liked the hearty turkey meat balls that make the soup very filling. It has great flavor as well.
Love the simple ingredients; so satisfying & filling. I substituted ground turkey for pork which worked out perfectly. Other than that I followed the recipe exactly except I did add a couple cloves of minced garlic when I sauteed the cabbage. Will definitely make again and again ...
Not too bad but a little heavy on the sesame oil. I will play with it a bit next time but there will be a next time so that is a plus for me.
I made this and thought it was the perfect balance of flavor. I added a couple chicken boullions for more flavor. So easy and delicious. It's a keeper!
Made it tonight! It was great!
I thought this was good, but the guys thought this was GREAT! I used more broth/water than called for (about double), b/c I wanted to add rice noodles (I used an 8oz. pkg.). This was super simple to make and I thought the meatballs had good flavor, not too overpowering at all. The broth is a bit bland, but is easily fixed w/ salt, which brought out the flavors more. I'm assuming this is supposed to be a lightly flavored soup, but I'm sure can be easily adjusted to suit you tastes. All in all, this turned out fine, and will be a repeat! Thanks for sharing. :)
This was super easy and so yum! Will definitely be making it again!
Yum! Easy to make and even my kids liked it. I did add a clove of garlic each to the meat mixture and while sauteeing the cabbage. I reduced the ginger and sesame oil by half just because I tend to find those particular flavors a bit overpowering. Served with noodles. Next time I'll brown the meatballs first (my husband felt they were mushy) and add the sauteed cabbage at the end so it ends up a bit more crispy.
4 28 14 ... http://allrecipes.com/recipe/135367/chinese-lions-head-soup/ ... This is a good soup for summer - light, but filling. I subbed 1t ground ginger for fresh & used homemade chicken broth. Oh, no napa cabbage at the store so subbed a 10oz pkg frozen chopped spinach. 'Probably would've been prettier if I'd cooked the spinach separately so the broth wouldn't be green; but, hey, it's broth with chopped spinach in it. Maybe it'd be green anyway. :D I only put 1t sesame oil at the end. The 2t would've been fine, too. 'Just being careful. :) 'Think the meatballs could use more ginger, if using ground.
Awesome! I couldn't find napa cabbage, so I used bok choy. I did brown the meatballs first. It was excellent. Maybe a little too heavy on the salt.
This was excellent! definite rainy day food which we have lot of in Washington. I added chicken to the mix before I put in the meatballs and added the whole thing of chicken broth instead of water I like my soups a little richer in taste it came out wonderful!
My family really enjoys this. I've made it several times. I use all broth, no water, and usually add some sliced carrots to up the vegetable intake (always a challenge with the kids).
Yummy. A little too much ginger though. I used beef broth and put in about 10-12 cups water/broth liquid though because there was so much meat. I also added some asian noodles and used ground turkey.
I loved your light and flavorful soup. Thank You so much for your recipe. I would like to say I did not veer from the original recipe, but, I did not have any green onions, only leeks, so that is what I used. I will have green onions the next time I make it!!!
I have no idea if this is an authentic recipe/ flavor but OMG!! Its is delicious!! A great way to load up on veggies and good stuff! I've made several times, add or remove ingredients according to what I have on hand, always delicious!
Awesome!! Simple yet so very delicious. This will definitely be a soup I will make over and over again. Thank you!!
This is good. Its the same ingredients that my father used except he would make the pork droppings really large. We're not of chinese descent but my father loved to cook chinese food. Everytime I make this it reminds me of Dad since he passed away in 1992
Easy to make, but a bit bland. Pepper helped.
AWESOME!! I made this today SOOO good! I made the meatballs exactly as written. I increased broth to about 8 cups added 1tsp oyster sauce, napa cabbage, carrots, celery, green onion and mei fun noodles. I LOVE the flavors of chinese. food and this had an amazing combo of those flavors. The flavors of ginger and sesame permeated the broth from the meatballs. Heavenly! I NEVER thought I could make something that tasted like it came from a fine chinese restaurant, but today I did! THANKS FOR SHARING!!!!!!!!!!! (=
Will definitely make again. I added green ramen noodles. Yummy!!
This recipe made my husband love cabbage... NOT an easy task! We searched for a way to use Napa Cabbage from our CSA because it is not something we normally eat. We made this soup 2 weekends in a row and we hope there is more Napa Cabbage in the next CSA box. We made minor adjustments like omitted MSG and red pepper (food sensitivities), doubled ginger, add shiitake mushrooms, add rice noodles, add snap peas. This soup is one of our all time favorites. Not enough stars to properly rate this!
Great for Keto Diet. Sub coconut oil.
Love the soup! I’ve made it 1 million times and it never gets old, everyone loves it. A few small changes: I always make a double batch using 1 pound of chopped fresh shrimp and 1 pound of minced pork
We all love it. The flavor was a bit on the mild side. The dish can be made with beef, hence the heavier flavor.
I love it! Few changes I made: I use Tapioca instead of cornstarch so the ground pork isn't too dense / softer bite. I made the balls a little bit bigger to retain the meat flavor; about the size of 2 tablespoon / 2 golf balls. Also, I couldn't find good looking fresh Chinese cabbage during that time & I really want to have this soup so I substitute it with green beans. I fried the green beans in medium heat with garlic, soy sauce & tofu until tofu is lightly brown roughly on all sides. One last change I made is to not mix the ginger with the pork but rather slice them thinly & throw them in the pot with water & tomato wedges; I added tomatoes because I want the soup to have a subtle hint of natural sour flavor on top of it's original flavor. When I had my first bite, this turns out better than what I have anticipated! Love this recipe and I'm adding this into my regular menu. :)
This was delicious. I had some extra produce to use up so I added it. I julienned some pea pods and baby carrots and added them to the cabbage. I also added some chopped cilantro to the meatballs. Garnished it with thinly sliced radish and more cilantro. Don't forget the sriracha if you like it spicy! Not sure if my additions took away from the recipe's authenticity, but it was still really good and a quick fix meal. A nice soup to clean out the fridge.
YUMMY! Because I wanted to cut out fat I used ground turkey breast instead of the pork even though I know it is a different flavor. I also used 6 cups chicken broth and no water. I also thought a whole head of cabbage would be alot but not so. I did not use MSG. Next time I'm thinking of adding a little extra ginger and doubling the green onions. I did serve with rice. Thanks for sharing your recipe.
Made this tonight with only a couple basic changes (of course eh?) Added some lime zest to the pork mixture which seemed to add a little zest. Broth we added way more than called for and it was definitely more than enough meat (4 cups chicken broth, 3 cups water). Added a tablespoon of chili garlic sauce as well to up the heat and cut up orange and red peppers with chopped carrot. Put 2/3 cup rice in a bowl and garnish with a dash of sesame oil and sriracha and its a big meal. The base for the pork is perfect! Thanks for sharing - it's a new fav.
Great recipe. We added some Korean red pepper into both the meatballs and the broth to add some spice. Also nearly doubled the ginger. Ended up adding a lot more stock and water. It was delicious
A quick soup to go with the stir-fry lunch. I did add a tad more broth and less water as I found it 'watery' at first. I love just throwing the meatballs in the broth to cook! so simple. #allrecipesallstarscanada #internationalfavourites
SO easy, SO quick. Right now (with the coronavirus), the pork producers in my area are not grinding pork, so I used ground chicken. I also used baby bok choy, slicing it lengthwise into strips (bok choy is both more nutritious and also sweeter). OMG GOOD. Finished my last bowl yesterday and am going to the store tomorrow for more ground chicken. Note that the chicken balls have more flavor the second day, as the ginger root and green onion have more time to flavor the meat. I did not use MSG.
This is wonderful! It was necessary for me to use ground turkey this time - but I am planning to make it, again, this week, using ground pork. I also added a little more scallion to the meatballs. It is wonderful! Healthy and delicious. Thank you, so very much, for sharing this wonderful recipe. So easy.
I made the recipe as written except for the MSG. I didn't have any. I mistakenly grated my ginger vice mincing it but no mind. After reading the other reviews, I only used 1/2 of a Napa cabbage. So, only 1 pound. Anyway, simply loved the flavors. The pork balls add a decadent richness that you probably can't get if you use another meat. It came together easily and the flavors were great. I served it with sticky rice.
My family loves lion's head soup and we really enjoyed this recipe. I'm on a heart healthy diet, so my version isn't exactly "traditional". I usually use ground turkey instead of pork, add more veggies such as carrots and daikon, and reduce the sodium and no MSG. As others have suggested, I also add 6-8 cups of water to make it more of a soup. Sesame oil is essential to give it the right flavor. Goes great with rice or as a broth for noodle soup.
the family loves it, healthy and quick and easy to make
Delicious as written.
This soup is so good! I made the meatballs with ground turkey, and while they were tasty, I think next time I'll go with pork for the added savory flavors. Baking them beforehand also cut down on simmer time/released extra fat. I forgot to add the ginger to the meatballs but putting it in the broth was equally tasty!
This was a hit! Did not add the MSG, just added a handful of soba noodles once the soup started boiling, just before adding the meat balls. It was a complete meal.
Husband asked for this a second night in a row. Its a keeper! Great, simple recipe. Just as good as restaurant soup
I really enjoyed this soup, it's simple, fast (I didn't saute the cabbage as one reviewer suggested) and very delish! I plan to try it with turkey ground rather than pork next time.
I am a Taiwanese, and this is so good and taste like hometown, I put some clear bean noodle in there to have a meal instead of just a soup, but it's so good, I follow everything in the direction only add the noodle.
I just made this soup today and it wasnt quite what I expected.....I found that there wasn't alot of flavor in the broth howecer the meat contained more so. I also found that my meat balls didnt want to stay together that well making the appearance not so appealing. My suggestions if I made again I would add more stock, and probably use bread crumbs or oats to make a heartier filler for the meat balls.
When I made this last night, forgot to put salt in the meat balls. It definitely needs it. I used only chicken broth and doubled the amount of liquid. We did not like the texture of the meat balls thinking if I make again I will try to bake them and hope it doesn't change the flavor f the soup.
This was pretty good. I might next time add some carrots or another veggie with the cabbage. Overall not bad!
My family, friends and myself love this dish! So good. YUMMM
Great soup! Meatballs are wonderful! True, there is not enough liquid in the recipe, depending on how big your head of cabbage is. The fats in this soup makes the cabbage almost buttery, so comforting. Make sure to use fresh ginger.
Simple instructions. Great flavor. Easy to make! I love it!
I liked the soup and will make it again. The reason I didn't give 5 stars was because I thought there was too much ginger in the meatballs. I also added more broth once I saw the meatball to soup ratio I felt like it needed it.
My family loved this! I added some shitake mushrooms to the cabbage while the broth was cooking, and some snow peas a little bit before serving. Also, I baked the meatballs before adding them to the broth. Thank you for this recipe!
This soup was amazing! My family just loved it. I made a couple changes, but think they made it better. I browned the meatballs before putting them in the broth. I simmered it longer than reccomended. Also I added more broth and didnt use any water.I also cut up raw won ton wrappers and threw them in. It tasted like won ton soup. I will be making this alot these upcoming fall and winter months!!
I adore this recipe. My friend made it for me once and I LOVED it so I had to make it myself. This is fantastic! The meatballs are pretty gingery, but I love that. This is a regular recipe for me now, and I love it best with some rice that I just throw into my bowl with it. Yum!
Easy and excellent, but as others suggested I 1) baked the meatballs for about 25 minutes as I made them too big (will do better next time), and 2)added more chicken broth and water. 10/19/2109.
Really good, i bought the Nappa cabbage and it was 9 dollars a head next time I'll go with regular old cabbage. I added garlic and red pepper flake to the broth. Will definitely make again
Thanks for the inspiration! My modifications based on other reviewers suggestions: -Increased liquids to 5 cups broth and 3 cups water -Prepped pork mix. With cookie spoon, dropped balls into boiled liquids. Simmer for 5 minutes -Added 2 sliced carrots and thicker stalk of cabbage to liquid. Simmer for 5 minutes -Finally, added 1 cup sliced mushrooms and rest of cabbage to liquid. Chock full of vegetables and delicious!
I made this twice first time to the letter. I found it pretty bland. (the meatballs were perfect). after some research, the second time I made these additions/changes.
- Baked the meatballs, 13m per side.
- Used all chicken stock, not water. Veg stock ok too. Added some homemade chick stock with fat.
- Added some leftover pork with fat.
- 2 ounce white wine
- tbls white pepper
- 1 ounce rice wine vingar
- sliced mushrooms / can
- tsp sugar
-served over glass noodles
family liked the changes
first time with napa cabbage. use a large one it cooks down
Didn't have napa cabbage so used regular head of cabbage. Simple recipe with wonderful flavor. Would definitely recommend.
This is the second time that I've made this recipe. I stick to the instructions pretty close and everything tastes fantastic. I love this recipe (so do my roommates) and I'll definitely keep making this as time goes on. Thanks for sharing such an amazing recipe!
This was delicious! I am Taiwanese, and I've never been able to make soups like my mom... my Asian soups generally taste bland and like salty water. I followed this recipe almost exactly, except I didn't have napa so I used sliced cucumber. It turned out SO well, and like something my mom would make! Will definitely make again (many times).
very good, but this is not for a childs palate, but we adults loved it
Love this soup!!! I have made it twice now, my hubby isn't into soups all that much but he has countless helpings of this soup! and my kids love it to so bonus!
I love the flavor of this soup. I used the ingredients as stated. I combined some of the tips...like sauteing the chunkier pieces of cabbage. I made this on the stove top. I love the flavor of the broth and the flavor of the meatballs. What I didn't really like was the texture of the meatballw. They were not tender and they weren't over cooked. I might try making them smaller like I would for albondigas soup. I may in fact add a little cornmeal and a little milk and use just the egg yolk to bind them next time. And I will definitely make again. Great recipe just need to tweak those meatballs and I agree w/ other comments there is more than enough meat. You could reduce it by a 1/3 to 1/2 and it would still be delicious.
I make ALOT of soups and chowders during the winter, and this is one of my favorites! I leave out the msg and it's still just as yummy. I have also used the pork to fill wonton wrappers and dropped them into the hot soup, which is delicious! I look forward to making this in the fall...yum!
An absolutely FABULOUS recipe esp. for hesitant soup makers! You can't go wrong with this one. Definitely hits the spot on a cold winters day! I substituted ground turkey and added more onions to the meatballs. I also added (as one reviewer did) a handful of cilantro at the end and more broth and that made it amazing. This is a keeper. I would give it a 5 but I almost think the meatballs need a little more umph!...maybe garlic or cilantro.
This is a simple and delicious recipe. After reading some of the reviews, I adjusted the chicken broth to 4 cups and the water to 1-2 cups. I used half of a large head of napa cabbage and added the meatballs right after adding the liquid ingredients to the cabbage to avoid having them fall apart. It worked perfectly and my family loves it! It’s delicious by itself, but will also try adding noodles or rice when serving.
This was very good. It makes a ton! The pork meatballs are very tasty. I fried them first, removed them, continued with the rest of the recipe and added them back in with the other ingredients. I also added 2 more cups of chicken broth as I like a little more liquid. I made some rice on the side and added it at the table for those who wanted it and that was another reason I wanted a little more chicken broth.
Delicious! I made mine with 3 cups chicken stock and 1 cup water and I added about a teaspoon of garlic to the pork mix. Next time I think I'll add a bit more cornstarch to the mix so I can get the fluffy ball look.
I love this recipe. I’ve made It for a couple of years now. But I double everything. Double the meat, double the eggs, etc. But with double of everything, i have to put at least 4.5 cups of chicken broth and 1.5 cups of water.
Excellent meatball recipe. I’ve used ground turkey. I make one ounce meatballs and cook in simmering broth for 7 minuets. Meatballs freeze great!
I made this soup for my finicky family. It was a hit. I used 6 cups liquid and had a huge head of savoy so I only used 2/3 of it. I also used ground turkey breast instead of pork. The soup was delicious, we will definately have it again.
I love this soup. Even my young kids love it. But I do change it a bit. First of all, I fry up the meatballs instead of the cabbage. Sometimes I also add carrots at this stage. I do add almost twice the amount of liquid. And I use all chicken stock. No water. And I add a bit of Chinese 5 spice also. I use whatever cabbage I have. Chinese, Bok Choy, whatever. I fry up the ends with the meatballs and the leaves go in at the end. We really do enjoy this recipe.
My husband said “HOME RUN!!!”
I followed the recipe as this was my first time making this. Excellent flavor. Sent some to a sick friend who absolutely loved it.
My husband loved this, but I didn't care for it. I thought it was a little bland. Chili-garlic paste helped...
really really good! for those who aren't used to sesame oil, drizzle on sparingly after pouring in the bowl to serve. Taste, and then add as desired. my husband liked the taste but thought it was a little strong.
We didn't have Chicken Broth. We made it anyway with 2 and 1/2 cups of water. We didn't have Green Onions. We minced 1/2 of a very large onion and mixed that into the pork meat. We used 1/2 of a large NAPA Cabbage. We did not add MSG. We used the recommended sesame oil but mixed it all into the raw pork with the single egg , 2 tablespoons of corn starch, along with minced fresh ginger. We cut the salt by 1/2. We added 2 sliced carrots. We added some old cooked rice - about 1 cup- for the last 5 minutes. We added two minced cloves of garlics to the soup. We kept it on low slow boil for about 30 minutes. It tastes nice, clean--can taste the pork, the NAPA and can now salt and pepper to taste. I'd say you could throw in some mushrooms, some Yam noodles and even a tomato and it would taste great. So if you don't have chicken broth and you're anti MSG this will work. I'm curious for anyone else that did water only (if anyone did) what the taste would be adding MSG.
Fun and easy to make.
I used turkey and added some garlic for the meatballs! Great loved it!! I will make this again!!
This is delicious and unique. I find myself craving it every so often.
OMG. Perfect as it is. I think my boyfriend loves me more because of this recipe :)
Loved it! My daughter said this tasted like one from our favorite noodle restaurants. We used a little bit of cabbage but to compromise, we added 8oz of rice noodles. Since we were using noodles, we had to add more broth (around 8 cup total). I used a mixture of wonton soup base and regular chicken broth due to availability. Also, I'm not a fan of sesame oil, so I adjusted by using 3/4 teaspoon in the meat mixture and I think 1/2 teaspoon into the broth.
I probably used too much soy sauce to make up for the boxed stock and I used big boy bok Choy because that’s what I had, but the result was absolutely transporting. Best trip all weekend!
I have been making this an jarring so my husband and I can have for lunches. So great and soothing for the cold winters here! We love this recipe, have made about 6 times already!
Delicious! Followed exactly and loved it
Easy, delicious & quick. I added an additional two cups each of water & broth, as it seemed to be a little dry, but followed the recipe otherwise. Thank you for sharing, Lei Lei!
Easy to make and delicious.
I didn’t use cornstarch because I didn’t have anyway so used about 1/8 cup of plain bread crumbs. It worked fine. I also used sesame oil in the meatballs as well as the soup at the end and it turned out amazing! I will make this over and over again!