In under 30 minutes, you can make this restaurant classic chicken and corn egg drop soup at home! It's thick, creamy, and filled with tender bites of chicken, corn, and swirls of beautiful egg ribbons. And the best part -- there's no cream or dairy added!
How do I make this soup thick and creamy without dairy?
The secret to getting this chicken and corn egg drop soup creamy is using a cornstarch slurry. A cornstarch slurry is just a mixture of (cold or room temperature) water and cornstarch.
Cornstarch is often used in Chinese cuisine to thicken sauces and soups, as well as to marinade or batter for frying.
If you don't want to use cornstarch, you can go for a different starch slurry, like potato starch or arrowroot starch.
Another step we're doing to add thickness and substance to the soup is blending or pureeing one can of corn. The blended bits of corn add more delicious texture to the soup!
What kind of corn should I use for chicken and corn egg drop soup?
My favorite kind of corn to use for this soup is canned whole kernel corn (not cream style):
I prefer canned corn over fresh or frozen corn for this soup for a few reasons:
- Fresh corn is only in season for a few months during the year. Canned corn is canned at peak freshness and stays juicy and crisp, and is easily accessible and available year round!
- Frozen corn is also available year round, but I've found that I like the texture of canned corn kernels much more: they're juicier and crisper in comparison.
- The canned corn liquid adds extra corn flavor to the soup!
Sweet cream style canned corn is also a popular option for making chicken and corn egg drop soup. It contains sweetened canned whole kernels in a starch-thickened sauce:
If this is what you have in your pantry, it's great to use! The only thing I don't love about this sweet cream style canned corn is that there's added sugar that makes the soup taste noticeably sweeter than the non-cream style version. If that's what you prefer, this is a great option.
Additionally, because this sweet cream style canned corn is already sitting in a starch-thickened sauce, you wouldn't need to add as much cornstarch slurry to the soup.
What kind of chicken should I use for chicken and corn egg drop soup?
I've only ever had this soup with pieces of chicken breast. While chicken thighs are usually the tastier, more flavorful choice for cooking, the leanness of chicken breast makes this soup easy and light to eat.
To make this soup easy to eat and digest, we like to dice the chicken breast into small cubes about the size of a corn kernel. You can also choose to slice the chicken into thin strips instead if that's what you prefer!
You can also use diced or shredded pre-cooked chicken for this soup (like rotisserie chicken). Just add it at the end of the cooking process to warm it up!
How do I reheat this soup?
It's important to note that soups or sauces thickened with cornstarch slurries don't stay thickened for long. You'll notice that the soup may become more watery after it has completely cooled down.
To reheat any leftovers, I recommend doing so on the stovetop. Bring it up to a simmer and add a bit more cornstarch slurry to thicken it again! Hopefully you won't have too many leftovers with this delicious soup 🙂
You may also like these other soups:
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Chicken and Corn Egg Drop Soup
- 4 oz chicken breast cut into cubes or strips
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Few dashes of white pepper
- 2 teaspoon shaoxing wine or water
- 2 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon neutral oil
For the soup
- 4 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 2 cans whole kernel corn
- 2 eggs
- 1 small shallot minced
- 1 clove of garlic minced
- ½ teaspoon grated ginger
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Few dashes of white pepper
- ¼ teaspoon sesame oil
- 2 tablespoon cornstarch
- 2 tablespoon water
- Scallions for garnish
- 1 tablespoon neutral oil for cooking
Prepare the ingredients
- (If using pre-cooked chicken, skip this step) Slice the chicken breast into small cubes, about the size of a corn kernel. Add into a bowl with Shaoxing wine (or water), salt, white pepper, and cornstarch. Give it a mix. Add neutral oil, give it a final mix, then set aside to let marinate briefly.4 oz chicken breast, ¼ teaspoon salt, Few dashes of white pepper, 2 teaspoon shaoxing wine, 2 teaspoon cornstarch, 1 teaspoon neutral oil
- Mince the shallot and garlic. Grate the ginger.1 small shallot, ½ teaspoon grated ginger, 1 clove of garlic
- Purée or blend ONE can of the whole kernel corn, including the liquid (leave the other can as whole kernels). You should still be able to see small chunks of corn. This will add thickness to the soup!2 cans whole kernel corn
- In a bowl or measuring cup (preferably with a spout), beat 2 eggs. Set aside.2 eggs
- Prepare the cornstarch slurry by mixing cold water with cornstarch in a bowl.2 tablespoon water, 2 tablespoon cornstarch
Make the soup
- In a preheated pot on medium-low heat, add neutral oil. Once the oil is warm, add the aromatics: minced shallots, garlic, and ginger. Cook until they soften and release their fragrance.1 tablespoon neutral oil
- Add the puréed corn and the second can of whole kernel corn (including its liquid).2 cans whole kernel corn
- Add the low sodium chicken broth and marinated (or pre-cooked) chicken. Bring up to a boil.4 cups low sodium chicken broth
- Lower the heat back to a simmer, then season to taste with salt and white pepper.½ teaspoon salt, Few dashes of white pepper
- Give the cornstarch slurry a mix to dissolve any settled starch, then add to the soup. Give it a stir, and make sure the soup is simmering. It should thicken within 10-20 seconds. You can add more cornstarch slurry if you prefer it thicker.
- Turn the heat off, and add the sesame oil.¼ teaspoon sesame oil
- Slowly drizzle in the eggs in a circular motion, let it set for about 10-15 seconds, then give the soup a stir to create the beautiful egg ribbons. The more you stir, the smaller the egg strands will be, so do it to your preference!
- Garnish with scallions, and enjoy!Scallions for garnish
- Soups thickened with cornstarch slurry will lose its thick texture as it cools. I recommend reheating any leftovers over the stove, bringing it to a simmer, and adding additional cornstarch slurry.