New York Times best-selling author, slow cooking expert, mom of three
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A Year of Slow Cooking

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Slow Cooker Hot and Sour Soup Recipe

Day 13.

I am sick. I've been sick on and off since Christmas, and it's getting old. No, I haven't been to a doctor. I prefer the Internet. I've tried steam, I've tried drinking more water, I've tried exercising, I've tried sleeping more, hot water and honey, and whining. Lots of whining.

Please don't tell me to get a neti pot.

You're going to tell me to get a neti pot, aren't you?
But I'm scared!

In-between nose blows, I made some hot and sour soup to help with the sinus-draining. I adore hot and sour soup. Is there a stronger word than adore? I am infatuated with hot and sour soup. That doesn't sound right.

Hot and Sour Soup. It's the bomb.

It is very tasty, and I think you should make it and bring me some more. Because I ate it all. While you're at it, you can bring me those really nice Puffs tissues imbedded with aloe lotion.

The Ingredients:
serves 2-3

--1 cup cubed firm tofu (I used one-half of that Trader Joe's two-pack.)
--2 cups chicken broth
--2 cups water
--1 package of sliced mushrooms
--1 can bamboo shoots
--1 can sliced water chestnuts
--2 tablespoon soy sauce (La Choy is gluten-free)
--1 teaspoon sesame oil
--2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar (and some more later)

--1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (and some more later)
--green onion for garnish

The Directions:

Wash your hands. Stop blowing nose.

Combine everything in your slow cooker. I used a 5 quart, and I think it was filled about 2/3 of the way full. Here's a picture since I am horrible at judging fraction-y type things:

If I did it again, I'd use a 3 or 4 quart. Cook on low for 7-9 hours or high 4-5. I was impatient (have I mentioned that I'm sick?) and cooked it on high for 3 1/2. The mushrooms would have been better if I had waited.

Taste. If you need more of the sour flavor, add more rice wine vinegar. If you need more of the hot flavor, add more red pepper flakes. I like my soup very hot and sour, so I added another 1 tablespoob of the vinegar and another 1/4 teaspoon of the pepper flakes. Garnish with sliced green onion.

The Verdict:

I could probably eat this all day long. So I did. My kids really like it--they eat the broth and the tofu and leave the rest. You could easily slip in lots more veggies that you have on hand---carrots, celery, those cute little canned corncobs, etc. Many recipes call for cooked chicken or pork, which would be a great addition if you have some on hand or wanted to meat it up.

other soup recipes you might like:

Thai Coconut
Moroccan Lentil
Jamaican Pumpkin
Restaurant Tomato
Potato Leek
French Onion Soup
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Marci Knecht said...

The soup looks delicious. I'm putting that on my list for this week.

The Neti pot, not so much - yikes. Hope you're feeling better soon.

Amy said...

sorry your sick! and no I think the whole nettie pott thing is a little hokey..but the recipe looks delish!

Meglet said...

Hot AND Sour! Divine. Soup looks delish. You are inspiring me to drag out the crock pot and try it myself!

Feel better soon.

Meg. xo.

Kalyn said...

Very fun idea for a blog. I added you to my feed reader.

GeorgiaPeachez said...

I LOVE hot & sour soup! I am on my way to the store right now to get the ingredients!

Betsy said...

Funny, after I read your post...I read this one. :)

Jennifer P. said...

I have heard that hot and sour soup is suppose to do wonders for the sinuses! (also buy a neti pot, or at least some of that simply saline nose spray which will kind of ease you into using a neti pot! It really works--i promise!) Chinese New Year is Feb. 7--I think I'll make this soup and the fortune cookies my friend Emily just posted about making, and my family will think I'm wonderful :)!

Hope you're feeling better soon!

Anonymous said...

Great site...I saw the write up on Creative Blogs and I tagging you as I love your site!!!

Marsha said...

Holy crap, where are you finding these recipes? 'Cause my crockpot skills make almost everything I try taste like old socks (with gravy). But this? It's what's for dinner!

The thing that gets me is that I'm a pretty decent cook, but I just can't translate any of my existing skills to crockpotland.

Kim - ScrapToMyLu said...

I LOVE hot and sour soup too! Especially with a cold. And yes, I recommend the Neti pot. Really. It's not as bad as you imagine. Just keep your mouth open.

infarrantly creative said...

Go Netti Pot. IT only freaks you out the first three times you do it. Then you get used to it. It really works.

Crockpot Lady said...

hahahaha on the dinner tasting like socks.

I tried to make a breakfast today. It did not. go. well.

geesh, you Internet people and your neti pots... ;-)

Anonymous said...

the soup almost got me to dust off my crockpot..maybe next time. the brie and pears, yum!

Crockpot Deficient said...

Shouldn't you stop blowing your nose BEFORE you wash your hands...just sayin'

Thanks for these ideas! I have a grossly under-used crockpot, and coming on here to see your posts every day encourage me! My vegetarian kiddo will like this recipe!

Hope you feel better soon!

dabrah said...

What's a Neti pot? I hope you feel better soon. I'm going to use my crockpot tomorrow morning. I'm going out for the day, and I'm planning to make my signature Beef in Beer stew. It should be just about done when I get home at the end of the day. I will make that hot and sour soup sometime, though, it looks delicious.

Anu said...

I bought a crockpot!!!

Still wondering what to try first on it.. Can't go wrong with Minestrone, can I?

I love that you post so many vegetarian recipes!

(Thanks for stopping by at my blog!)

Crockpot Lady said...

congratulations, anu! I would think minestrone would taste wonderful. If you are going to add in noodles, wait until the last 60 min or so or cook them separately and stir them in at the very end.

dabrah, a neti pot is this little pot you use to clean your sinuses. I linked to a wikipedia explanation up in the post. They were made "popular" in the last year thanks to the Internet and Dr. Oz on Oprah.

My Ice Cream Diary said...

This is the first recipe for Hot and Sour soup that I actually have all the ingredients for. I love hot and sour soup and can't wait to try this. I'm glad I found this site because I am trying to use my crock pot more.

jilly said...

I was sick for two weeks over the holidays and the only thing I could eat was Hot and Sour soup and Won Ton Soup, but I ordered delivery. . .this would have been better! NUM! Thanks, I am LOVING your recipes!

*I still have not used my crockpot yet, but I bought a roast this weekend to do this week!

The Dukes Family said...

Yum - I made this recipe and it was really good. Like you, I added more of the vinegar ... it gave it a much better tangy taste. Definitely a keeper.

GeorgiaPeachez said...

I made this one yesterday, it is THE BOMB! I can see many, many versions of this too! FAB!

Tea said...

My first visit to your it...and I'm snagging this recipe!! Thank you very much. I've been wanting to use my crockpot more often.

geekypoet said...

I tried the hot and sour soup yesterday and it was a hit. I made some modifications, so I'm going to post the details of what I did on my blog today. But mainly I added fresh garlic and ginger, chili paste, peas, and dried shitakes in addition to the button mushrooms.

Now you can see why I need to post it as a whole new recipe! It is a variation on yours and, of course I will link to your post as the main inspiration. I would have been a little nervous to try this one in a crock pot without you going first!

Crockpot Lady said...

I'm so glad that you liked it, and am happy that changed it up to make it "your own"----cooking is fun when you feel comfortable enough to experiment. And all you need to do is change one ingredient and it's a whole 'nother recipe!

thank you for sharing!

Crockpot Lady said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Yoga with Gaileee, E-RYT said...

I did a search with "tofu recipe listserv" and found your blog. Yes, I'm a yoga teacher. Yes, I love my neti pot, when I'm sick and such (helps with my singing voice too!) It is a bit weird getting used to though.....just keep your mouth open tilt the head to the side, breath through your mouth, and use salty water that it not to hot, not to cold....just right! Love your blog! Anymore tofu/soy crock pots recipes???

~M said...

Yum! And GF! Do you think this would work if I used a full 4-cup container of chicken broth instead of 2 cups broth and 2 cups water? I hate having leftover containers in my fridge...

Anonymous said...

I freaking love this blog! Hot & Sour is one of my absolute favorite foods, I can't wait to try this! Bless you crockpot lady!

Anonymous said...

Do you think the temperature in the crockpot would be high enough to add egg at the end? When I make Hot and Sour Soup on the stove, I scramble a couple of eggs and slowly pour them in, making stringy trails of egg. Do you think that would work? Or not so much? Thanks!


Crockpot Lady said...

ooh what a great question. I don't honestly know. I have had soup bubble in a crockpot before, and if that happens I'm sure it will work, but if your crockpot is all the way or almost-all-the-way full, this might not happen, and then I'd worry about raw egg.

I wish I knew a concrete answer, I'm sorry.

Jeanette said...

I received my Crockpot as a wedding shower gift 8 years ago and your blog has inspired me to finally make something with it! I too have a cold and am waiting patiently for this Hot and Sour Soup to cook. As a working mom of two boys, your recipes will save me so much time and I can actually relax in the evening instead of rushing to put together something healthy for dinner...bye bye chicken fingers, hello Crockpot dinners! Thanks so much!

Kris said...

I searched online for hot and sour soup, and it brought me to your blog. I'm glad I came across your blog, I like using my crock pot, but I don't have a lot of recipes that I use it for. I made the hot and sour soup today, and it's great! Thanks for sharing!!!

Anonymous said...

Regarding egg, yes you can put it into the soup, do it right before serving. Your crockpot should cook the liquid to 140 degrees, that is the safe temperature. Beat the egg a little, and swirl it into the soup.

Lori S. said...

I made this last night and it was good and very easy. Threw in whatever veg I had on hand (grated carrots, water chestnuts, and baby corn, I think). I agree, with the crockpotlady that it needs the extra vinegar and red pepper. My kids were happy with it as written, but I wanted more hot and sour. I swirled an egg in at the end, and it got stringy/swirly just like it should. Thanks for the recipes (especially the vegetarian ones); you've been inspiring me to pull out my crockpot more often!

carrie said...

hmmmm... only 4 cups of liquid? i'm using a 5.5 or 6 qt crock pot and it's only like 1/4 of the way full when everything is in there. is that really the right amount of water and broth?

elf magic said...

It does look delicious. I've never seen a hot and sour soup with water chestnuts, though. There are canned forms of julliene cut bamboo shoots, though. Also, a common ingredient is what's called Black fungus, or wood ears. A great addition, i'm sure. Thank you for proving that good hot and sour soup can be made in a crockpot.

Jen said...

Do not be afraid... of the neti pot. It's strange, but that doesn't make it bad. For allergies it's a big help.

Anonymous said...

This soup was totally FANTASTIC! My dh said it was better than any hot and sour soup he'd ever eaten. Believe it or not, I was starting to get a cold when I go the email with this recipe. And, yes. Get a neti pot. And, no. Don't be afraid. Thanks for keepin' me sane!

Elisabeth said...

Instead of the chili pepper flakes try some Vietnamese hot sauce or Mexican habanero hot sauce. A teaspoonful will do ya (or as you like) and it will clear your sinuses for 2 hours!

Also, I learned to make H & S soup from a Chinese cooking teacher. Use black rice vinegar instead of plain rice vinegar for a softer, less harsh flavor. (Available in Asian food stores).

KMDuff said...

I have a 6 qt slow cooker and it was barely 1/4 full and there was not enough liquid, I had to add more. I was kinda disappointed in the recipe. I liked the add ins (and added an egg at the end too) but the broth needs work IMHO.

CarolSparkPeople said...

Delicious. The white pepper seems to be missing; I added it. Thanks for the recipe, I'm a hot & sour addict.

Anonymous said...

that looks good. i will try it. and you shouldn't be scared of the neti pot. i use a small cleaned out dish liquid bottle as a neti pot when i am ill. it feels really good.

foldingknifepro said...

I love hot and sour but its hard to find good in my area.

Staci said...

I have to say that I found this blog and fell in love with this soup. I made it last night and kinda winged the rice vin and the chile flakes...but I gotta say that the hubby loved it. He even had some this morning and declared it better then the soup at Maxum(a local Chinese restaurant)

The kids are not big fans but at least they tried it and I can offer them something else next time.

Great Recipie!!!

Victoria said...

I also just put this together and wonder why there is so little liquid. Now I am wondering if I was supposed to drain the waterchestnuts or bamboo shoots. I did and I think I wasn't supposed to. Help!!

Crockpot Lady said...

Hi Victoria,

I don't think it matters at all if the cans are drained. I'm pretty sure I drained them.
Since I've written that post, I've realized that what I thought was a 6 quart is really a 5 quart, and I am sure I was off with the fraction, because there is only 4 cups of liquid. I really didn't know what I was doing way back then... :-)

Your mushrooms will shrink, but the liquid will stay the same. This is enough food for 2-3 people. You can certainly double the broth and spices to make more volume, if it seems more chunky than brothy.


Mary said...

Hopefully you are better by now. If you get sick again... at the first sign of a cold start using Cold-Eeze. They are lozenges (like a cough drop). You just suck on it until it dissolves (use 1 every 3-4 hours) I usually only use 2-3 a day. There are various flavors--find the one you like. Within a few days the cold seems to go away or never seems to get as bad. If the cold gets into your chest also use Mucinex D. It will help you clear out the gunk from your lungs and sinuses. Hope you stay healthy. Thanks for the great recipes.

Claudia Ruelas said...

I became a homemaker about 1 year ago and I have never been much of a cook but a friend of mine turned me to your blog and I absolutly love it. I haven't made anything yet because she just showed me how to get to it yesterday.

I will be trying this hot and sour soup later on this week.I don't have everything I need yet.

I was wondering if you have any suggestions for the following.
I have been looking for a webiste that has recipes that you can search by ingredient. I have come across new recipes that I will try and then I don't know what to make with the leftover ingredients. For example I rarely use rice vinegar but I end up having to buy the whole bottle and then I don't know what other recipes to use it in. It would be helpful to search by ingredient on your blog. Is this possible?
A new fan

Cameron said...

I made this soup today and it was delicious! Smelled and tasted just like restaurant hot and sour soup. I doubled the broth and threw in extra tofu and vegetables to make more. Delicious! Thank you for the wonderful recipe :)

Roxanne KR said...

Love Hot Sour Soup! The only thing I would change in this recipe is that I would add the tofu at the end. It turned an unattractive color.

Meditator said...

I've been looking for a hot and sour soup recipe and this looks really good. I'm going to try it. Hope you're feeling better by now!

Mama Kalila said...

Oh you have just made me happy... I love Hot and Sour Soup... and its really hard to find good here.. Most of the restraunts put pork (which I don't eat) and if not they have other meat, which while I'm normally a carnivore... not so much w/ this. Plus some leave out the tofu and this is the one thing I really like it in! I'm so gonna have to try this soon...

Jamie said...

Oh no.. everyone loved it but me!!! I made it exact to the recipe. I even cooked it on low for the 7 to 8 hours. It was horrible. Hubby shoved it down, but threw away the left overs. I had a sandwich!
Were my hopes too high?
Have I had PF Changs too much?

Melanie said...

Unfortunately I added cornstarch to the soup to try to get the same thickness as a favorite restaurant's hot and sour. Well it just ruined the flavor of the soup and it strangely didn't get thick. Oh well. Next time I may just make the broth part of the soup and add in some shrimp to recreate a shrimp hot and sour soup I had on a cruise ship.

I do want to tell you that I am loving your blog. I just found this website last night and look forward to trying more of your recipes since I really want to use my crock pot more often! Next time I'll not screw it up though! ha ha.

Minda said...

I made this on Sunday. LOVED IT. I'm not a big fan of tofu, so I used maybe half of the suggested amount and cut it into really tiny pieces. I ate it all. Only 1 pt a bowl if you are on WW.

scifileslie said...

Made it today and it is wonderful.. I used a can of chop suey vegetables instead of chestnuts and bamboo since I had it on hand. Do not skimp on the time. I did it slow and checked it at @ 7 hours and felt the mushrooms needed a bit more time.

Thanks for the awesome recipe!

Coppertop said...

Is it possible to make this w/ out the Tofu, bamboo shoots & water chestnuts? I don't like any of those. Maybe it won't really BE Hot and Sour soup then, but I will not eat those 3 items. Won't do it.

Anonymous said...

I made it tonight without those things (because I didn't have them on hand). Instead, I used cabbage, half an onion, and mushrooms, keeping the broth the same. It was delicious (and exactly what my almost-cold needed).

Crockpot Lady, you're awesome! I had a couple of crockpots that I never used because I don't like cream of something soup and my kid is allergic to milk. Now, I cook in them at least 4x per week, and at least once per week, I cook a meal using 3 crockpots at once. And, my family is getting healthy, delicious, and frugal meals! Thanks so much for teaching me to cook!

Anonymous said...

I bought a neti pot today. Could not stand to be sick any longer. Hope I sleep better tonight. Going to try the soup too.

Anonymous said...

Just got around to trying this, and it was delicious! I was frying egg rolls tonight, and I decided to fry some egg roll wrappers because I wanted the little crunchies that the chinese restaurants give you. It worked perfectly. No need to order take out now!

Gary said...

This soup is sooo gooood! We live out in the sticks, and don't get to eat Asian very often.I cooked it on the stove top, and it took me about 8 minutes and it was ready to eat. I used a bit more sesame oil, canned mushrooms, and a little more red pepper, and we both thoroughly enjoyed it. Thank you!

ConnieandSally said...

Tried this tonight and it was delicious! I had to adjust some of the amounts to taste, but it was great. I will be making it again soon.

shoni said...

We have the exact same crock pot and I love cooking in it. I'm going to try each of your recipes, starting with this one. And...though I'm a few years late, if you haven't already...TRY THE NETI POT. Don't be afraid, it works wonders.
Best to you, and many thanks for posting your recipes. :)

FineFineTitans said...

I took your recipe, added chopped lemongrass, added a half teaspoon of red curry paste, another cup of chicken broth (I use Better Than Bouillon) and replaced the green onion with cilantro. So good!

Tammy said...

I am definitely going to make this. Love my crock, love hot and sour soup. And you know what, every time I get a cold, I have always immediately craved hot and sour soup for the past 10 years.
And don't use a netipot, use those nasal rinse bottles. Less freaky.

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