Chicken Meatball Soup

In every culture you’ll find a variation on the cooking of meatballs. Serving them in soup is a great option. This is a an easy preparation soup with simple, understated but rich flavours. Made with ingredients out of the pantry, this is definitely a quick dinner option, as there is very little prep work and cooking time is quite short.

This was the first dish I tried at the restaurant Borsch, Vodka and Tears in Melbourne, and it probably kick-started my love of dill, which I hadn’t appreciated enough until then.

Makes: 4


  • 200g minced chicken
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon breadcrumbs, fresh or dried
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil or butter
  • 100g carrot, peeled and cut into 5mm dice
  • 200g potato, peeled and cut into 5mm dice
  • 1 litre chicken stock
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh dill


In a bowl, mix together the chicken and two-thirds of the onion. Add the salt, egg and breadcrumbs, using your hands to make sure the mixture is well combined. Refrigerate until needed.

Heat the oil in a large saucepan or stockpot over medium heat. Add the remaining onion and the carrot and cook, stirring often, until the vegetables have softened, about 10 minutes. Add the potato and stock, and increase the heat to high. As the soup warms, form the meatballs and add them. Lena, who makes this soup, puts the mixture into a piping bag with a 1cm round nozzle and squeezes it straight into the soup, slicing it off every 1.5cm to form little tubes. Alternatively, you can take small teaspoons of the mixture, roll them into little balls and drop them into the soup one by one.

When the soup starts to simmer, reduce the heat to medium. You should have added all the chicken by this stage. Cook for a further 10–15 minutes, or until the carrot and potato have softened. Add the dill and season with salt, to taste.

This soup can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to five days and frozen for up to three months.

Recipe taken from Borsch, Vodka and Tears by Benny Roff

Borsch, Vodka & Tears – a tucked-away Polish-style vodka bar and restaurant in Melbourne’s south – has earned a dedicated following since it opened in 2000. This book is a celebration of the food and passion behind this Melbourne institution. Edgy photography by Bonnie Savage, a comprehensive guide to vodka and delicious, popular recipes make Borsch, Vodka & Tears an instant classic for fans beyond the restaurant itself.

You can purchase Borsch, Vodka and Tears at

Published by Hardie Grant Books.

Written by Amelia Theodorakis

A writer and communications specialist with eight years’ in startups, SMEs, not-for-profits and corporates. Interests and expertise in gender studies, history, finance, banking, human interest, literature and poetry.

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