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December 24, 2020 – 1:14 pm | 3,857 views

Soup Name:  Basic Chinese Chicken Soup Stock (Soup Base)

Traditional Chinese Name: 清雞湯 (qīng jī tāng)

Introduction: This is the base Chinese Chicken Soup stock that …

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(Confinement) Deer Antler Healing Soup

Submitted by on October 14, 2010 – 8:52 pm8 Comments | 22,038 views

Soup Name: (Confinement) Deer Antler Healing Soup

Traditional Chinese Name: 鹿茸高麗參雞湯 (Lù róng gāo lì cān Jī tāng)


A pretty traditional (although the ingredients aren’t easy to find) Chinese confinement soup.  High quality Korean ginseng is not a cooling ingredient and is extremely beneficial in aiding the body in healing.  You can really taste the fire or “hotness” in this soup as it literally does warm your body.  While this soup does not contain your more mainstream ingredients, it is a traditional recipe that is passed down from generation to generation.  There are a few variations of this soup, but a majority of the time, the key ingredients are always there.  For more information on what confinement is and the Chinese ingredients associated with confinement, please see our Confinement Soups page.


1 fresh whole chicken, prepared
1 pound of fresh pork shank
5-6 slices of deer antler, washed
5-6 slices of Korean ginseng, washed
5 large red dates
1 L of boiling hot water

How do I prepare it

  1. Blanch the pork and chicken in a pot of boiling water
  2. In a separate pot of boiling water, add all the ingredients together and boil on high heat for 30 minutes
  3. Here you can either turn your soup onto medium and let it continue to simmer for another 2 hours or transfer soup into a ceramic pot and double boil for 2 hours (the objective to intensive the flavor of the soup with the Chinese herbs)
  4. Serve hot

Any benefits?

  • Effective drink in removing “wind” from the body
  • Helps warm the body
  • Assists in helping those in confinement get lots of fluid into the body and to help flush the system
  • Also helps to improve water levels in the body (especially for those mothers who are breastfeeding)

Any precautions?

  • The “heatiness” of this drink may be too much for some people (especially those with naturally “colder” bodies)
  • Be sure to buy high quality ingredients from a reputable source as expensive Chinese herbs often have counterfeits
  • These types of soups are not recommended for children
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  • jerry says:

    can breast feeding drink this soup?

  • LadyTong says:

    Dear Jerry, yes except go mildly on the ginseng. It is meant for confinement so my sisters all drank this once or twice during their confinement. G’luck. Lisa

  • Mitchel says:

    I have A Czechoslovakian shepard dog and he is an older dog. and his hips are sore and does not move around the fastest. can i give him this and will it help alot!?!?! please awnser…thanks so much

  • LadyTong says:

    Dear Mitchel, I’m not sure how I can help. For starters, I don’t advocate using this ingredient because of how the antlers are harvested and secondly, it’s actually a quite expensive and not commonly available ingredient. As well, maybe seeing a vet would be a better option for your dog? Sorry I can’t be of any further help and wish you all the best with your dog! Lisa

  • S says:

    Hi there, Love your site and recipes. I was wondering if this soup or any soup can be made without the red dates or wolfberries? Thanks!

  • LadyTong says:

    Dear S, most recipes can go without red dates or wolfberries. You can consider substitutes like dried figs instead. Hope this helps!

  • Claire Anne Zapico says:

    Hello Again,
    I still have deer antlers in our cupboard can I still have this sop to release the trappped wind in my body after giving birth 4 years after?


  • LadyTong says:

    Dear Claire, oddly enough, I also have deer antlers in my fridge still and it seems well kept! You can definitely still use this ingredient and drink the soup even after many years after confinement. Don’t forget to use ginger – one of the best wind expelling and heat retention ingredients in the Chinese repertoire! Enjoy! Lisa

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