A Deliciously Tasty Chinese Watercress Soup Recipe

Watercress is a type of aquatic flowering plant that is a member of the Brassicaceae cabbage family, which also includes mustard, wasabi, and radish – vegetables or herbs that are known to pack a punch flavor-wise. It is recognized to be among the oldest types of leaf vegetables that humans consume.

Watercress is a cruciferous vegetable that is grown in many global locales. The leaves, stems, and fruit of watercress can be eaten raw or cooked. Native Americans ate watercress and even used its believed medicinal powers to treat a variety of medical conditions.

As a nutritionally dense food, watercress is 95% water and is low in fat, calories, fiber, protein, and carbohydrates. It is rich in beta-carotene and antioxidants, which support heart health while reducing free radicals that lead to chronic illness.

Watercress is served in a variety of ways, including a warm and healthy soup.

Chinese Watercress soup offers a light and fresh soup that has peppery undertones. This soup is also a great way to add healthy greens to your diet in a new and unique way. There is even an entire dietary plan based on watercress’s legendary reputation as a slimming aid.

How to Make this Deliciously Tasty Chinese Watercress Soup Recipe

This simple and delicious soup highlights the flavor of watercress, which offers a clean and slightly bitter but not overwhelming taste. Adding the potatoes to this recipe adds texture and extra body to the finished product, making this a satisfying lunch or light dinner.

  • Preparation Time – 5 minutes.
  • Cooking Time – 30 minutes.
  • Total Prep & Cook Time – 35 minutes.
  • Serves – 3 – 6 – depending on appetites.

The List of Ingredients to Make Chinese Watercress Soup

To make this deliciously fresh watercress soup, gather the following ingredients and a large soup pot or Dutch oven. In under an hour, this healthy soup is ready to serve.

  • 6 Cups of Chicken Broth.
  • 10 Ounces of Fresh Chinese Watercress – Washed.
    Pro-tip – Make sure the watercress is fresh, which means the leaves should be crisp and remain fairly intact. Watercress with thicker stems should be avoided as this tends to create a more bitter soup.
  • 1/2 Teaspoon of Black Pepper.
  • 4 Cloves Garlic – Peeled and Smashed with the Side of the Knife.
  • 2 Slices Of 3-Inch Fresh Ginger – Peeled and Lightly Bruised to Release Flavor.
  • 7 to 8 Ounces of Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs – Cut into Small Bite-Size Pieces That Cook at the Same Time.
  • 8 Red Dates.
  • 1 Large Tomato – Quartered.
  • ¼ Cup of Goji Berries – Washed.
    Pro-tip- The goji berry is native to China. It is believed to have various medicinal properties and is often considered a top superfood. Some believe that goji berries unlock the secret to the prevention of aging.

Chinese Watercress Soup Seasoning Options

  • 1 Tablespoon of Better than Bouillon or 1 Cube of Chicken Bouillon.
  • ½ Teaspoon of Sugar – More to Taste.
  • Salt to Taste.

Cooking Directions To Make Chinese Watercress Soup Recipe

There are several methods to creating this deliciously healthy Chinese Watercress soup. Each cooking method works well, so the one you select should be based on personal choice or preference.

To cook the Chinese watercress soup on the stovetop:

  • Place the chicken broth in the soup pot and bring it to a boil.
  • Add the garlic, ginger, and chicken pieces.
  • Stir and add either the Better than Bouillon or traditional bouillon cube and red dates.
  • Lower the heat under the soup and let it simmer for about 15 minutes.
  • Add the watercress and the quartered tomato.
  • Cook the Chinese watercress soup for another 10 minutes on medium heat until the watercress and its stems soften.
  • Add the quarter-cup of goji berries.
  • Stir and cook the soup for another 5 minutes.
  • Adjust the seasonings with salt to taste.
  • Remove from the heat and serve the Chinese Watercress Soup while hot.

To cook the Chinese watercress soup using a slow cooker

  • Put all the ingredients for the watercress soup – except for the goji berries, sugar, and salt – into the slow cooker.
  • Adjust the slow cooker’s setting, so it cooks for four hours.
  • Then, stir in the goji berries.
  • Let the berries meld with the soup mixture for a few minutes because the residual heat will soften the goji berries.
  • Season with salt and sugar to taste.


Where Can You Find Watercress?

For those who may have trouble finding watercress in their local market, you can check out nearby East Asian or Indian specialty stores because watercress is a regular supermarket item in those cultures. In addition, when in season (April-September for the Northern Hemisphere), visit the local farmer’s market for some fresh off-the-farm watercress.

What Side Dishes Go Well with a Bowl of Chinese Watercress Soup?

This delicious soup pairs well with these sides.

In the bread family:

  • Miniature Garlic/Butter Pretzels.
  • Garlic/Parmesan Pull Apart Knots.
  • Cheesy Jalapeno Pull Bread.
  • Sourdough.
  • French Baguettes.

Looking for a Protein:

  • Feta or Goat Cheese.
  • Salmon.
  • Eggs.
  • Fish.
  • Beef.
  • Chicken.
  • Sunflower or Sesame Seeds.

Vegetables & Fruit:

  • Avocado
  • Butternut Squash.
  • Cucumber.
  • Sweet Potato.
  • Fennel.
  • Leek.
  • Persimmon.
  • Pear.

How does Chinese Watercress Soup Stack Up Nutritionally?

A serving of this delicious and peppery watercress soup has only 144 calories. There is a small amount of fiber and protein, plus more than 100% of the daily recommended intake of Vitamin C, among other vitamins. Watercress soup also provides significant amounts of potassium, calcium, and other minerals and is considered among nature’s superfoods.

How to Store Watercress Soup?

Watercress soup can be kept in the refrigerator for up to five days. Just make sure you do not add the sour cream to the soup before storing it in an airtight container.

If you would like to freeze this watercress soup recipe, do so in an airtight container without the sour cream added as a garnish. The watercress soup can be frozen for up to three months. It is best to defrost the soup overnight in the refrigerator before reheating it gently on low to medium heat on the stovetop.

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