Shchi – Russian Cabbage Soup

5 from 5 reviews



8 cups chicken broth

2 cups water, more or less depending on how thick you want the soup

1 Tablespoon butter or oil

1 large onion, chopped

1 carrot, grated

1/2 cup dry mushrooms, porcini

3 medium potatoes, peeled and chopped

2 cups sauerkraut

1 cup fresh cabbage, finely chopped or shredded

1 cup cooked chicken, cut or shredded into bite sized pieces

salt, ground black pepper, to taste

1 Tablespoon each, fresh dill and green onions, finely chopped, for garnishing

sour cream, for garnishing


  1. If you have Chicken Broth, use it. If not, place a few chicken drumsticks (or any other chicken pieces – chicken wings, chicken breast, chicken thighs) in a large pot with some whole black peppercorns, a few dry bay leaves, fill with water and cook for 35-45 minutes. Season to taste with salt. Strain the broth through a fine mesh sieve lined with a paper towel or a paper towel. Take the chicken meat off the bone, cut or shred into bite sized pieces, set aside to be add to the soup at the end. 
  2. Heat the butter or oil in a large pot or dutch oven and add the chopped onion and grated carrots. Season with salt and ground black pepper to taste. Sauté the vegetables on medium heat for about 5 minutes until they are tender. 
  3. Meanwhile, rehydrate the dry mushrooms by pouring boiling water over them and setting aside until they get soft. Wash them really well, add the mushrooms to the soup pot. Strain the mushroom liquid through a fine mesh sieve lined with a coffee filter or paper towel and add it to the soup along with the chicken broth. Bring the soup to a boil, season with salt, if it needs it. Reduce the heat to simmer, cover and cook for about 30 minutes. 
  4. Meanwhile, prep the rest of the vegetables – peel and chop the potatoes, shred the cabbage and chop the fresh herbs. 
  5. Add the potatoes, cabbage and sauerkraut to the broth. Add them to the soup and add water to the soup to make it the consistently that you like. Cook the soup at a simmer, covered, until the potatoes and cabbage are tender, another 30 – 45 minutes.
  6. Add the cooked chicken to the soup at the very end, giving it just enough time to heat through.
  7. When the soup is cooked, garnish with fresh herbs and serve with a dollop of sour cream in each bowl.

Keywords: Shchi, cabbage soup, sauerkraut soup, Russian cabbage soup, cabbage and potato soup, cabbage and mushroom soup, dry mushroom soup