Rasolnik is one of my favorite light and comforting Russian soups, a dill pickle soup. It is made with potatoes, pickles and barley, with onion and carrot adding a simple but delicious flavor.
A dill pickle soup may seem like a bizarre concept, but if you’ve never heard of it before, I would encourage you to try it. This recipe is for Slavic folks or pregnant ladies:). If you’re Russian, you probably grew up eating this soup, and don’t see anything unusual about it. Rassolnik brings back warm, nostalgic memories for me, and since I like my pickles, it’s one of my favorites.
Rassolnik is very comforting, since it has potatoes and creamy barley in it, but it also doesn’t taste heavy at all. I feel light and happy after I eat a bowl (or two), which is awesome.
- chicken broth – vegetable or beef broth can also be used
- cooked chicken
- In most cases, I make the chicken broth in advance and save the chicken from the homemade broth to use in soups. However, you can use store bought broth and any cooked chicken or even other meat, such as turkey, pork, beef, etc. RECIPE for Homemade Chicken Broth
- potatoes – my favorite potatoes to use are gold potatoes, but any potatoes can be used
- pearled barley – it’s important to use pearled barley for this recipe. Of course, you can use other barley, but the cooking time will need to be adjusted.
- butter or oil, for sauteing the vegetables
- pickles – dill pickles are the best. Use small/baby pickles, since they have less seeds.
- dill, to garnish the soup
- sour cream, for serving, optional
How to Make Dill Pickle Soup
You can start this soup by cooking the broth from scratch. Strain the broth, take the meat off the bone and cut it into bite sized pieces. RECIPE for Homemade Chicken Broth. (You can also make Beef Broth instead, using the broth and the cooked beef for the soup. Pork is often used in Russian recipes for this soup too.)
- Prep all the ingredients. Chop the potatoes and onions, grate the carrots and pickles.
- Bring the chicken broth to a boil. Add the potatoes and barley to the soup. Reduce the heat to a simmer.
- Meanwhile, saute the onion and carrot in the butter, seasoning with salt and pepper. Cook until tender, about 5 min. Add to the soup.
- Add the pickles to the soup as well. You can also add a bit of the pickle brine. It will add a lovely briny flavor to the soup.
- Cook the soup at a simmer, covered but slightly opened with the lid, until the barley and potatoes are cooked through. It usually takes about 40 minutes total for the pearled barley to cook.
- Add the cooked chicken to the soup at the very end and garnish with dill. You can also use green onions and parsley.
- Serve with a dollop of sour cream in each bowl.
- Store the soup in the refrigerator for 3-5 days.
Helpful Tips and Frequently Asked Questions For the Best Dill Pickle Soup
Dill pickles are the best, especially if they are crunchy. I think that baby dill pickles are the most crunchy, plus they have much less seeds. The skin is also very thin, which is perfect for this soup.
If you use large pickles, scoop out the majority of the large seeds with a spoon before grating or chopping the pickles. You may also want to use a vegetable peeler to peel the skin, if it’s really thick.
Instead of the barley, you can use rice. Add the rice at the very end, when the potatoes are cooked through and cook until the rice is tender. Use 1/3 cup of rice.
Soup is one of those things that has a wide range of thick vs thin preferences. Some people like soup that is brothy and thinner, others like it really thick and chunky.
Add more or less potatoes, barley and broth depending on how you like it.
Store the soup in the refrigerator, for 3-5 days.
Reheat the soup in the microwave or in a small saucepan on the stove.
I don’t recommend freezing it, because the potatoes will become very mushy and blown out during the freezing/thawing process.
I often make Rasolnik in the Instant Pot.
– Saute the onion and carrot on the using the “Saute” function until the vegetables are tender. Pour in the broth, add the barley. Cook on high pressure for 13 minutes. Release the pressure, then add the potatoes and pickles. Cook for another 5-8 minutes on High Pressure. Let stand for 5 minutes, then release the pressure. Add the chicken and garnish with fresh herbs.
More Delicious Russian Soups
- Chicken Barley Soup
- Russian Chicken Meatball Soup
- Shchi (Cabbage Sauerkraut Soup)
- Vegetarian Borsch
Russian Dill Pickle Soup – Rasolnik
Dill Pickle Soup, Rasolnik in Russian, is a light, comforting soup with pickles, potatoes and barley. Serve it with a dollop of sour cream.
- Prep Time: 10 mins
- Cook Time: 40 mins
- Total Time: 50 mins
- Yield: 6-8 1x
- Category: Soups
- Cuisine: Russian
- 10 cups chicken broth (you can also use beef, pork or vegetable broth)
- 1/2 – 1 cup cooked meat, chicken, beef, pork (optional, save from making broth or cook in the broth)
- 3 potatoes, peeled and cut into small pieces
- 1/4 – 1/3 cup pearled barley
- 1 Tablespoon butter or oil
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 1 carrot, grated
- 1 cup grated pickles, or finely chopped
- salt, pepper
- dill, to garnish
- sour cream, for serving, optional
- Bring the chicken broth to a boil.
- Add the potatoes and barley to the soup. Reduce the heat to a simmer and keep the soup covered as it cooks.
- Meanwhile, heat 1/2 Tablespoon of butter in a skillet. Add the onion and carrot. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for about 5 minutes, until they are softened. Add to the soup.
- Shred the pickles on a box grater and add to the soup. You can also add a bit of the pickling brine to the soup. It gives the soup a nice zip.
- Cook for 30-40 minutes, until the potatoes and barley are cooked through. Season with salt and pepper, if needed.
- Garnish the soup with some finely minced herbs, parsley, dill, scallions, etc. Serve with a dollop of sour cream.
Keywords: dill pickle soup, pickle soup, Russian dill pickle soup, Rasolnik
This recipe was originally published on October 17, 2012. I have updated the photos and clarified the instructions to make it even more easy to follow.