Sopa De Ajo (Spanish Garlic Soup) is a flavorful garlic-heavy soup that's thickened with day-old bread, seasoned with smoked paprika and served with poached eggs on top. This traditional rustic soup is easy to make with just 5 simple ingredients.
Sopa de Ajo is a popular Spanish garlic soup that's rustic, hearty and easy to make.
It's the perfect meal when you’re craving comfort food that’s simple, hearty, and satisfying!
This traditional soup is also called Castilian Soup (as well as Sopa Castellana or Sopa de Ajo con Huevos) because it comes from the Castilian region of central Spain.
Shepherds used to make the soup for their long journeys because the ingredients were cheap and the soup was flavorful, nourishing and hearty.
It then became popular as a wedding soup, though it's now most popular at Easter.
Easter in Spain is a HUGE occasion and this soup is vegetarian so is perfect for Lent, when many avoid meat.
This is a traditional recipe, so there are variations depending on regions, homes and tastes. But the essence of this soup is always lots of garlic, bread, stock and eggs.
I hope you'll love this taste of Spain. Buen provecho!
The best kinds of soups seem to be the ones that are made with a short and simple ingredient list.
This recipe for Sopa De Ajo is one of them.
The ingredient list may be small, but it still packs lots of flavor coming from LOTS of garlic, plus smoky paprika, bread and eggs.
You’ll start with the aromatic flavor of fresh garlic and cook it up in a pan with smoky paprika where it will really intensify the flavor.
Cubes of slightly stale bread then get toasted right in the flavorful garlic-infused oil where they turn into a soup when vegetable stock is poured over.
Eggs are then poached right into the soup, which has a rustic thick texture and hearty flavor that everyone will enjoy!
Why You'll Love This Recipe
Sopa de Ajo has lots of garlic that’s perfect for building immunity, so it’s a great soup to have especially during cold and flu season. Check out these other cold and flu fighting recipes.
It's a traditional Spanish recipe, so it's perfect as an appetizer for a Spanish dinner or tapas night.
It takes 30 minutes or less to make from start to finish which is great for a weeknight meal when you’re short on time.
Spanish Garlic Soup is a great way to use up any stale bread you may have in the house.
The eggs give it a great texture and also add healthy fats and a good amount of protein to the soup.
This soup recipe can be flavored with your favorite herbs and spices to customize it to your own tastes, though it won't be as authentic.
- Garlic Cloves - Fresh garlic sliced thin is what you’ll need in order to get the best garlic heavy flavor.
- Olive Oil - The garlic gets cooked in olive oil to release its beautiful aromatic flavors.
- Stale French Bread - You’ll need a day-old crusty bread that’s a bit stale in order to soak up the flavors and the vegetable stock.
- Smoked Paprika - Gives the soup a slight red hue and adds a great smoky flavor.
- Ground Black Pepper - Adds a peppery kick to balance out the flavors.
- Eggs - Will be poached right into the soup to create texture and flavor.
- Flat Leaf Parsley - Makes a great garnish by adding a pop of color and fresh flavor.
Step By Step Tutorial
Wondering how to make this recipe? Follow this step by step photo tutorial, then scroll down to the recipe card for the full ingredients list and method.
PREP: Prepare the garlic by slicing it, and the stale bread by cutting it into ½ inch pieces.
COOK: Cook the garlic in a soup pot with the oil, over medium-low heat until it begins to turn golden.
SPICES: Add smoked paprika when the garlic begins to turn golden after about 3 minutes.
BREAD: Add the bread to the pot and lightly toast it in the pot with the garlic paprika mixture.
COOK: Pour the vegetable stock into the pot to soak up the bread and garlic mixture.
POACH: Add poached eggs. Crack individual eggs into a bowl. Make an indent in the soup and slowly pour them in one by one. Place lid on the soup and let the eggs poach for 3-5 minutes. Alternatively, stir in the eggs, like in egg drop soup.
Don’t have stale bread at home? Tear your bread into cubes and toast it up in the oven until bread cubes are dried out like homemade croutons to be ready for soup.
Make sure you’re cooking the garlic over a heat that is low enough to not burn the garlic after a few minutes. Garlic cooks quickly and can become burned and bitter if not watched.
Depending on the type of bread used, the eggs can sink instead of sit on the top of the sopa de ajo and poach. They sink for me sometimes and I fish them out and finish them in a frying pan. You may wish to simply fry or poach the eggs separately and serve them on top of the soup.
Serve as a starter/appetizer to a Spanish meal.
If you don’t like the style of poached eggs, you can whisk in the egg in a similar style to egg drop soup.
Add your favorite dried herbs or Italian seasoning to the soup for an herbed flavor.
Try it with Serrano ham (or other types of ham) cooked into the soup.
Add a drizzle of sherry at the end for a little decadence.
Give it some spice by adding a pinch of red chili flakes or a pinch of cayenne pepper.
To make this recipe gluten-free: To make sopa de ajo gluten-free, you’ll need to use a gluten-free bread that is similar to French baguette. Double check that your stock is gluten-free too.
To make this recipe vegan: This garlic soup is vegan as long as you don't add the eggs. Just leave them out. Ensure you use vegan stock.
Storing: Store this soup in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days before reheating and serving.
Freezing: Soaked bread and poached eggs do not freeze well therefore freezing is not recommended.
What does Sopa De Ajo mean in English?
Sopa De Ajo translates to garlic (ajo) soup (sopa). It is a garlic-heavy rustic Castillan soup that’s served with eggs and is thickened with bread.
Why did sopa de ajo become popular?
Sopa de ajo is said to have been developed by shepherds to take with them while they travelled across Spain. The ingredients in the soup transported well making it an easy way to use leftovers.
What can I replace eggs within this recipe?
If you are omitting eggs, you can just leave them out, or add your favorite roasted vegetables such as cauliflower, broccoli, or roasted potatoes.
More Soup Recipes You’ll Love
Sopa de ajo is a tasty Spanish soup that's full of garlic and day-old bread, topped with eggs. Be sure to also check out these other tasty soup recipes. They're a great way to use up vegetables and get more veggies into your diet!
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Sopa de Ajo (Spanish Garlic Soup)
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 8 cloves garlic thinly sliced
- 1 ½ tablespoons smoked paprika
- 9 oz (3 cups, 250g) stale or day-old French bread
- 4 cups (1 litre) vegetable stock
- 1 cup water or more as needed
- ground black pepper to taste
- 4 eggs
- Chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley to serve
- Tear or cut the bread into ½-inch cubes/pieces. Stale bread works best for sopa de ajo.
- Heat the oil in a large pot over a medium-low heat. Add the sliced garlic and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes or until it begins to turn golden, then stir in the paprika.
- Add the bread and cook, stirring, until lightly toasted, about 4 minutes.
- Stir in the stock and water and bring nearly to the boil. Then reduce the heat to simmer.
- One by one, crack an egg into a small dish, make a small indentation in the soup and pour in the egg. Then repeat with the remaining eggs. Cover the soup with a lid and allow the eggs to poach for 3 minutes or until set.
- Taste and adjust seasoning of the soup. If the soup is too thick, thin it with a little more water.
- Serve the sopa de ajo divided between four bowls with each serving getting an egg. Top with parsley.
- Depending on the type of bread, the eggs can sink instead of sit on the top of the sopa de ajo and poach. They sink for me sometimes and I fish them out and finish them in a frying pan. You may wish to simply fry or poach the eggs separately and serve them on top of the soup. You can also just stir the eggs into the soup, like egg drop soup.
- Don’t have stale bread at home? Tear your bread into cubes and toast it up in the oven until bread cubes are dried out like homemade croutons.
- Make sure you’re cooking the garlic over a heat that is low enough to not burn the garlic after a few minutes. Garlic cooks quickly and can become burned and bitter if not watched.
- Depending on the type of bread used, the eggs can sink instead of sit on the top of the sopa de ajo and poach. They sink for me sometimes and I fish them out and finish them in a frying pan. You may wish to simply fry or poach the eggs separately and serve them on top of the soup.
- Serve with Milk Rolls or Herb and Cheese Skillet Rolls.
- Serve as a starter/appetizer to a Spanish meal.
- Enjoy small bowls of Sopa de Ajo as traditional tapas alongside other Spanish dishes, such as Spanish Beans, patatas bravas and Spanish Omelet.
The nutritional information provided is approximate and can vary depending on several factors, so is not guaranteed to be accurate. Please see a registered dietician for special diet advice.