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Chicken Matzo Ball Soup

The keys to this amazing chicken matzo ball soup are slow-cooking it and using boxed matzo ball mix. Some people swear by seltzer, but I find it’s not necessary—the mix makes perfect, fluffy matzo balls every time due to its baking powder. Add chicken fat (schmaltz) for extra-authentic flavor. The matzo balls will taste as if they came straight from Grandma's kitchen. —Shannon Sarna, South Orange, New Jersey
  • Total Time
    Prep: 30 min. + chilling Cook: 1-1/2 hours
  • Makes
    26 servings (6-1/2 quarts)


  • 1 broiler/fryer chicken (3 to 4 pounds)
  • 1 pound chicken wings
  • 6 quarts water
  • 3 large carrots, chopped
  • 2 medium parsnips, peeled and chopped
  • 1 medium turnip, peeled and chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 bunch fresh dill sprigs
  • 1 bunch fresh parsley sprigs
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons whole peppercorns
  • 3 teaspoons salt
  • 1 package (5 ounces) matzo ball mix
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup safflower oil
  • 1/4 cup rendered chicken fat
  • 2 tablespoons snipped fresh dill
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
  • 10 cups water


  • Place chicken and wings in a stockpot; add water, vegetables, herbs and seasonings. Slowly bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, 1-2 hours.
  • Remove chicken and wings and cool. Strain broth through a cheesecloth-lined colander; reserve vegetables. Skim fat. Remove meat from bones and cut into bite-sized pieces; discard bones. Return broth, vegetables and meat to pot. If using immediately, skim fat. Or cool broth, then refrigerate 8 hours or overnight; remove fat from surface before using. (Broth may be refrigerated up to 3 days or frozen 4-6 months.)
  • Meanwhile, in a large bowl, beat matzo ball mix, eggs, oil, chicken fat, dill and parsley until combined. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
  • In another stockpot, bring water to a boil. Drop rounded tablespoonfuls of matzo ball dough into boiling water. Reduce heat; cover and simmer until a toothpick inserted into a matzo ball comes out clean (do not lift cover while simmering), 20-25 minutes.
  • Carefully remove matzo balls from water with a slotted spoon; place 1 matzo ball in each soup bowl. Add soup.
Nutrition Facts
1 cup: 167 calories, 10g fat (2g saturated fat), 60mg cholesterol, 523mg sodium, 8g carbohydrate (1g sugars, 1g fiber), 11g protein.

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