Our Grandma’s Recipe Book: Jewish Matzah Ball Soup

How do busy students stay connected with their culture? Often, it’s through their food.

Story by Julia O’Hanlon

Illustration by Emily Ward

Copy of EmilyWard_Grandma.jpg

A self-described “mom,” Jacob Whitty is a third-year pre-med public health major who loves to take care of those around him. That is why this recipe of matzah ball soup, which is a dish traditionally served for Passover and other Jewish holidays, is a perfect representation of who Whitty is as an individual.

Whitty’s mother is Jewish and his father is Christian, and he grew up celebrating both holidays. Though there was a stronger emphasis on the Christian faith in his home, Whitty and his mother never lost touch with their Jewish heritage. “Growing up, my mom would always make matzah ball soup when it was cold outside or we were sick,” Whitty said. “Other families may eat chicken noodle soup, but we had our matzah balls to make us feel better.”

Matzah Ball Soup

This hearty soup is considered a Jewish comfort food for a reason. Rich chicken broth is combined with moist chicken, fresh vegetables, and fluffy matzah balls to make a perfect family (or college student) dinner.

Prep time: 45 minutes

Cook time: 45 minutes

Makes 4 servings



  • 1 white onion

  • 1 celery stalk

  • 5 large carrots

  • 5 fresh parsley leaves

  • 1 box of 32 ounces chicken broth

  • 4 cups of water

  • 2 Tbsp. of garlic salt

  • 2 Tbsp. of seasoned pepper seasoning

  • 2 Tbsp. dry dill weed

  • 2 Tbsp. sea salt

Matzah Balls

  • 1 box of matzah mix

  • 2 eggs


  1. Chop onion, celery, carrots, and parsley into big pieces and place in a large pot.

  2. Pour chicken broth and water into the pot.

  3. Add garlic salt, seasoned pepper, dill weed, and sea salt. Let mixture simmer for about 10 minutes.

  4. Combine matzah ball mix with 2 eggs and let mixture sit for about 15 minutes.

  5. Wet hands with water and form walnut sized balls with the matzah ball dough.

  6. Place the matzah ball dough in the boiling soup and let cook for about 30 minutes.

  7. Serve your soup! (and save your leftovers for the next day - it is even better with time.)