Armenian Lemon Rice Soup

lemon rice soup

This is a special Armenian recipe from my grandmother, who immigrated from Turkey in the early 1900’s.  Her lemon rice soup was something our family always ate and one of my favorite soups.  This is so close to the original made with chicken broth that you may not tell the difference. I am thrilled to share it with everyone.  I hope you enjoy it!  

Growing up in an Armenian household you have an appreciation for cooking from the old country. Our family lived together with my grandparents as was the custom back then. My grandmother Blanche was truly the best cook! I remember her getting up early in the morning every day to start preparing for the days meals. This Armenian Lemon Rice soup recipe is one of the best comfort foods I always enjoyed.

Nobody could match my grandmothers lemon rice soup. Sometimes she would make it with chicken, and other times without. After she passed, I found myself going to a Greek or Middle Eastern restaurant just to have this soup – and it just did not compare to how she made it.

Armenian Lemon Rice Soup
Armenian Lemon Rice Soup

I was lucky to sit with her a few times to write down all her great recipes before she passed away. In the original, she used Uncle Ben’s Long Grain Converted Rice along with College Inn Chicken Broth.

I converted it by using Jasmine or brown Basmati rice. You’ll notice the texture is just slightly different but it was worth it. In addition I used “No Chicken Broth” by Ocean’s Halo. This is a vegan broth with great ingredients and the only recipe in my book that is vegan as the broth has a tiny bit of organic olive oil, the only ingredient not plant-based.

As I tried various vegetable broth’s, none came close to the taste of hers. Of course I would be ecstatic if it did not have oil and hope one day they will make it without. It has only 10 calories and no saturated or trans fat.

You start first by washing the rice. This is a very important step when using any rice. In a bowl, add the rice and cover with water. Let stand for 10 minutes, then drain and rinse until the water runs clear.

Squeeze the juice out of 3-4 large lemons and set aside. I use more lemon with mine so I often use 5 large lemons. If you use smaller lemons you will need to almost double 6 medium size lemons. Start with 3, and squeeze more as you are cooking the soup until you get the right amount of lemon.

There are many health benefits of lemons. 1) It promotes hydration. 2) A good source of vitamin C. 3) It supports weight loss. 4) Improves your skin quality. 5) It aids in digestion. 6) It freshens your breath, and 7) It helps prevent kidney stones.

In a medium size soup pot, add the 2 1/2 Cups of water, broth and salt (optional) and bring to boil. After it is boiling for a couple minutes, add the washed rice, all the lemon juice and continue to boil for about 1-2 minutes.

Reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes. When it is close to being done, taste for flavor and adjust with either lemon or salt. Serve in individual bowls with a lemon wedge.

This stores well in the refrigerator for up to 5 days and can also be frozen. If freezing, you may need to add a little more water upon thawing and reheating as the water is soaked up in the rice.

armenian lemon rice soup

Armenian Lemon Rice Soup

Yield: 4
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes

This is a special Armenian recipe from my grandmother,who immigrated from Turkey in the early 1900’s. It was something our family always ate and one of my favorite soups. 

Ingredients

  • 3 Cups Vegan No Chicken Broth
  • 2 1/2 Cups water
  • 1/2 Tsp. salt (optional)
  • 3-4 large lemons, freshly squeezed
  • 1 Cup white or brown Jasmine rice (or brown basmati)

Instructions

  1. Prepare the rice - In a bowl, add the rice and cover with water. Let stand for 10 minutes then drain and rinse until it runs clear.
  2. Squeeze the juice out of the lemons and set aside.
  3. In a medium soup pot, add water, broth and salt (optional), bring it to a boil.
  4. Add the washed rice and all the lemon juice, continuing to boil for another 1-2 minutes, then reduce heat to simmer and cook for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Taste for flavor and adjust the lemon juice.
  6. Serve in individual bowls with a lemon wedge.

Notes

This recipe stores well in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. You can freeze this as well for up to 3 months. You may need to add a little more water upon thawing and reheating as the rice absorbs the liquid.

*The "No Chicken Broth" is by Ocean's Halo and can be purchased online or at your local Kroger store.

Did you make this recipe? We'd love to hear from you!

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram

You can store this soup in the refrigerator for up to 5 days and can also be frozen. If freezing, you may need to add a little more water upon thawing and reheating as the water is soaked up in the rice.

Michele Wallace

Entrepreneur and author of A Plant-Based Revolution.com. Michele has also earned her Plant-Based Nutrition Certification from eCornell University. The book is an easy and complete guide for those wanting to get healthy and offers step-by-step instructions, including over 85 delicious and healthy recipes.
A Plant-Based Revolution is dedicated to whole food plant-based nutrition.

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2 Comments

  1. Cathy says:

    Hello! As a vegan, it’s great to see this recipe which was one of my childhood favorites. Although I’m sure your grandmother was the best cook ever- I feel my Armenian Grandmother was also the best cook ever💕. She could make the most delicious food from simple ingredients. May their legacies live on in our hearts and in our kitchens.

    1. Hi Cathy
      My grandmother was an incredible cook as was yours I’m sure. I think all Armenians learned that great skill. I was happy to find a way to make it, though not WFPB, its still a great option. So glad you like it! I’ll be posting her stuffed cabbage and peppers soon! Her pickles are posted as well.

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