A Chinese soup best enjoyed as a naturally sweet, hearty and comforting stew of tender pork ribs with water chestnuts, carrots, dried figs and red dates in a rich broth.

An easy, simple Chinese water chestnut soup stewed with sweet carrots and tender pork ribs makes for an extremely easy, healthy and highly nutritious meal.

If you’ve followed my posts, you’ll know that I recently used a couple of water chestnuts in making a classic Chinese savoury dish of steamed minced pork patties with water chestnut.

I had a whole bunch water chestnuts, so what to do with the rest? Soups are the best way to finish them up! In fact the more you throw into your soup, the sweeter it’ll be!

Water_Chestnut_and_Pork Ribs_Soup_1D

This is one of those Chinese soups that is best enjoyed as a naturally sweet, hearty and comforting stew. The water chestnut perfectly retains its crunch, sweetness and texture, even after hours of stewing. 

This soup is very flavourful, with the added sweetness of carrots, dried figs and red dates. And if you’ve got home-made meat stock or broth that needs to be used up, it’s perfect for this soup’s base. You’ll be rewarded with deliciousness that’s off the charts!

If you follow traditional Chinese medicinal theory, you’ll know that the water chestnut is considered to have cooling properties. Drinking its juice can bring down body temperature. 

It is particularly valued as a medicinal ingredient for its ability to alleviate nausea, improve appetite, and relieve cough. It also possesses detoxifying properties. Water chestnut is extremely nutrient-rich with a high concentration of the essential mineral, potassium.

With all that goodness and nutritiousness, I sincerely hope you’ll make this a regular soup for yourself and your family!

Water Chestnut and Pork Ribs Soup

Here are more Chinese soup recipes you might enjoy:

Tried this recipe? I’d love to see! Remember to share your pics on Instagram and tag @foodelicacy or #foodelicacy.


Water Chestnut & Pork Ribs Soup

4.9 from 15 reviews
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 15 minutes
Total Time: 6 hours 30 minutes
Yield: 4 servings
A Chinese soup best enjoyed as a naturally sweet, hearty and comforting stew of tender pork ribs with water chestnuts, carrots, dried figs and red dates in a rich broth.


  • 300 g lean pork ribs
  • 2 carrots peeled, cut into wedges
  • 8 – 10 water chestnuts peeled, washed
  • 3 dried figs washed
  • 12 small red dates pitted, washed
  • 2 – 3 dried scallops washed, soaked in hot water
  • chicken stock or water


  • Fill a saucepan or small pot with water and bring to a boil. Put in pork ribs or meat and blanch for a minute or so to remove impurities. Discard the water and wash the meat clear of all grit.
  • Put all the ingredients into a slow cooker. Pour in chicken stock or water until just enough to immerse all the ingredients. Cook on Auto or High setting for at least 3 hours. If cooking in a deep pot, bring all the ingredients in stock or water to a boil, then lower heat and let simmer for at least 2 hours, or until meat is fall-off-the-bone tender.
  • When serving, scoop a little of each ingredient – meat, carrot and water chestnuts – into individual serving bowls and fill with soup. Alternatively, you may scoop all the ingredients into a large soup dish and fill with soup. Serve hot.

Nutrition Information:

Serving: 1serving, Calories: 222kcal, Carbohydrates: 30g, Protein: 13g, Fat: 6g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Trans Fat: 0.04g, Cholesterol: 41mg, Sodium: 131mg, Potassium: 540mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 19g, Vitamin A: 5102IU, Vitamin C: 3mg, Calcium: 42mg, Iron: 1mg
Cuisine: Asian
Course: Soups
Author: Celia Lim
Did you make this recipe? Be sure to leave a rating and a review in the section below, and tag @foodelicacy on Instagram and hashtag it #foodelicacy so I can see!