Hulatang is a Chinese breakfast soup dish prepared with meatballs and vegetables in spices like white pepper, Szechuan peppercorns and, chilli oil.

One of the vloggers that I follow is “The Food Ranger“, I like this guy and had followed him since he had started. His adventures on food is really nice to watch and the way he presents it is priceless. Some of the dishes he vlogs are quite unknown to me as he really digs deep into the countries he visits and try those ethic foods that is quite unknown to the outside world, more specifically in China where it is quite diverse. One of the latest one that I noted was this Xian Province specialty called Hulatang or what he calls Hula Tang Peppery Beef Ball Soup 胡辣汤.

According Trevor James, it is one of the most unique breakfast soups you’ll ever try, it does not even look like a breakfast to me but it is. Knowing Trevor this would be a numbing spicy goodness to I made it at home to give it a shot. This hot pepper soup or spicy soup is a kind of Chinese traditional soup created in Henan Province but really became popular in Shaanxi Province and later spread over China and even in the United States.

This soup as the name suggest is heavily seasoned with pepper and its texture is outstandingly thick and sticky like most Chinese soups. In addition to pepper some herbs and spices are used such as ginger, aniseed and fennel which are added to the boiling soup giving it unique spicy and hot flavour. In its most basic form it uses meatballs, potatoes, carrots, celery and other vegetables that is suited to the local flavour where it is served.

This breakfast soup will certainly spice up your day with three different main spices like Szechuan pepper’s numbing powers, white pepper’s hot flavour and Chilli oil’s spiciness this will definitely start you day right.

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Hulatang 1


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  • Author: Raymund
  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 40 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 mins
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Main Course
  • Cuisine: Chinese


Hulatang is a Chinese breakfast soup dish prepared with meatballs and vegetables in spices like white pepper, Szechuan peppercorns and, chilli oil.




  • 400 g minced beef
  • 2 stalks spring onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp minced ginger
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp white pepper powder
  • 1 tsp five spice powder
  • 1 tsp Chinese cooking wine
  • 2 tbsp of corn starch
  • oil


  • 1 litre chicken stock
  • 3 pcs medium potatoes
  • 2 pcs medium carrots
  • 2 pcs zucchini, sliced into chunks
  • 1/2 cabbage, sliced
  • 1 tsp white pepper powder
  • 1 tsp Szechuan pepper powder
  • 1/2 tsp five-spice powder
  • 1/3 cup tapioca starch, dissolved in 1 cup water
  • 2 tsp sesame oil
  • 2 stalks spring onions, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp minced ginger
  • water
  • oil
  • salt
  • chilli oil


  1. In a bowl combine all meatball ingredients apart from the oil, mix well then form into small meatballs.
  2. In a large wok add a small amount of oil, place in stove top in high heat then quickly fry meatballs until it is slightly brown. Remove the meatballs then set it aside.
  3. Using the same wok with the left-over oil, sauté spring onions, garlic and ginger.
  4. Pour the chicken stock with additional one cup of water then bring it to a boil in high heat. Add the meatballs, potatoes and carrots bring back to a boil then simmer for 10 minutes.
  5. Add the zucchini continue to cook for 3 minutes.
  6. Season with salt, white pepper powder, Szechuan pepper powder and five spice powder.
  7. Add the cabbage and boil for a minute.
  8. Pour in the tapioca starch mixture then continue to boil until it gets thick. Add sesame oil, mix then turn heat off.
  9. Serve with chilli oil on top.



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