Meatball soup with asian flavors and bok choy is an easy, customizable winter meal that is filling, healthy and flavorful. If you’ve followed me for long you know I love soups. Chicken soup, soups with Italian flavors, pumpkin soup and several varieties of vegetable soups have populated my Instagram feed.
This one is a family favorite because you can switch it up to include noodles or rice, or even wontons if you want. If you’re in a hurry — no problem, store bought meatballs will work just as well. You can substitute the grass-fed beef for ground chicken or pork. A cook can omit bok choy and swap it for leeks or kale. Not a fan of soy sauce? Switch to a tomato base flavor instead and omit the ginger, and you’ve got something to build an Italian soup on.
This really is a chameleon, so take the “recipe” below with as many grains of salt as you like and make it yours.
How to make this meatball soup
Grab your favorite pot to make soup in. Mine is a dutch oven similar to this one. If you have any homemade broth on hand, use it. If not, boxed broth is fine. First, I make sure the pot is ready to go with oil in it, ready to turn on since my hands will shortly be covered in meat. Sauté one of the onions and the ginger until you can smell them, and then turn the heat down to a simmer.
Then, mix up your meatballs, start forming them and dropping them into the hot pot. After you get them all in the pot, start adding the rest of the broth little by little, keeping the whole thing simmering. Then you add everything else, and let it simmer until you are ready to eat (at least 30 minutes). Taste the broth to make sure it’s to your liking.
Cook the noodles last, drain them, and add a portion to each individual bowl, so they don’t get soggy being stored in the broth. Squeeze the lime on top, add the cilantro and more sriracha if desired. Enjoy!
1dashsalt, to taste (not a lot because the soy sauce covers it)
For the soup
32ozbox of chicken or beef broth
32ozwater (same box you used for the broth)if you like the flavor stronger, use another box of broth instead. Homemade broth can also be used here.
2 tbspavocado oil
2inchesginger, finely chopped
1/4cupcoconut aminos or soy sauce
2tbspsriracha or sambal olektailor this to your family's desire for spice
1largehead of bok choy, chopped
14ozbox of rice noodlesCan be any variety, or can sub with two-three cups cooked rice instead
handfulcilantrochopped, for garnish
1limecut into sixthsto squeeze on top
For the meatballs
Combine the miso, one of the small diced onions, the half cup of diced cilantro and one of the portions of diced ginger along with the three tablespoons of coconut aminos or soy sauce in a bowl. Add the ground beef and mix thoroughly. Heat the avocado oil in a large heavy pot. Sauté one of the small onions and the second diced ginger portion until you can smell them nicely. Add about a cup of broth, and let it start to simmer. Fashion the meat mixture into inch to inch and a half-sized balls, and drop them into the pot. Slowly add the rest of the broth and water, keeping the mixture at a boil.
For the rest of the soup
Add the rest of the ingredients once the meatballs are cooked through, adding the chopped bok choy last. Taste for flavor and add more sauces or salt as needed. Simmer for at least 30 minutes on low to let the flavors meld. In a separate pot, cook the noodles. While serving, add the desired amount of noodles to each diner's bowl (placing them in the soup can make them soggy if you are keeping leftovers). Top with whatever spicy sauces you like (Sriracha, gochujang,or a sweet Thai chili sauce all work well. Squeeze a lime on top and enjoy!
I am a mom of two and wife to a martial arts school owner, full-time social media professional and avid cook and gardener. I love creating recipes and involving my kids in the process. The food we cook is usually dairy-free and gluten-free, and sometimes paleo, but we make exceptions (ahem, sourdough bread). The “hippie” part of this blog comes into play in the ingredients we use—I’m pretty vigilant about the health of my family and you could even call me “crunchy.” The “modern” part is that I am busy! You won’t catch me making my own nut milk or churning butter (not that there’s anything wrong with that). I’m more than happy to take the shortcuts provided by our lovely grocery stores and online shopping —especially in the midst of this global pandemic.