Recipe By Chef John
Published Apr 28th
Prep 15m Cook 30m Additional - Ready In 45m
Servings 4 servings Calories 447

Sopa de Ajo is a wonderfully rustic bread soup spiked with sliced garlic, paprika, and ham. If that wasn’t enough to get your attention, it’s also topped with eggs poached in a fragrant, brick-red broth. It’s like a steaming bowl of breakfast-for-dinner.

Recipe Ingredients

  • 6 cups cubed French bread
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 cloves garlic, very thinly sliced, or more to taste
  • 2 ounces ham, diced
  • 1 ½ teaspoons smoked paprika, or to taste
  • 6 cups chicken broth, or more as needed
  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper, or to taste
  • salt and ground black pepper to taste
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 4 large eggs

Cooking Directions

  1. 1 Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
  2. 2 Spread French bread onto the prepared baking sheet and drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil over the top; gently stir to coat bread.
  3. 3 Bake in the preheated oven until crispy and lightly browned, 15 to 20 minutes.
  4. 4 Heat 1/4 cup olive oil in a heavy pot over medium heat. Cook and stir garlic in hot oil until just golden, 1 to 2 minutes. Add ham; cook and stir until heated through, about 1 minute. Add 1 to 2 teaspoons of paprika and cook for 1 minute more. Pour bread into pot and toss to coat with hot oil mixture.
  5. 5 Pour chicken broth into bread mixture; add cayenne pepper, salt, and black pepper and stir. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium, and stir in parsley.
  6. 6 Crack each egg into a small bowl or cup. Make 4 depressions in the bread on top of the soup with a spoon. Slowly pour an egg into each depression. Cover the pot with a lid and cook until egg whites are firm and yolks are thick but not hard, 2 to 3 minutes. Ladle soup into bowls and spoon an egg on top.

Nutrition Facts

  • Calories 447
  • Carbohydrate 33.7 g
  • Cholesterol 201.3 mg
  • Fat 26.8 g
  • Fiber 1.7 g
  • Protein 17.1 g
  • Saturated Fat 5.2 g
  • Sodium 2072.9 mg
  • Sugar 3.3 g


  1. This was a rare Chef John miss for me. Made this per the recipe with one exception left the ham out and added some smoked sausage instead. ( I am not a big fan of ham and the wife has stomach problems after eating it). First off though the flavor is amazing. the garlic paprika - Read more ...
  2. This tasted excellent, but I had some problems with the preparation. I did make a few alterations: used a loaf of Italian bread and didn't measure the amount. Didn't have EVOO so just used regular olive oil. I also just used up my remaining ham and thus didn't measure. The biggest changes resulted from my - Read more ...
  3. If your eggs are sinking your not putting enough bread in, very good
  4. Ingredients are simple and cheap, didn't take too long at all to make! Incredibly flavorful and hearty, I definitely will be making this one again. You can't go wrong with Chef John :)
  5. Excellent! I cannot comment as to the authenticity of this recipe, but it is VERY good. Delicious recipe as is
  6. I am a chef here in Montreal, working for a private yacht club,, we had a dinner just the other night, I took this opportunity to show case this recipe for this soup.. They all loved it !! the smoky paprika, I used a spicy choriso sausage because it was on sale, but followed all - Read more ...
  7. I don't usually care for soup but we LOVE this one. We've modified it a bit for our tastes like using about 1 lb of cubed ham steak to 4 cartons of stock and using a combo of sweet, smoked and spicy paprikas. If you toast your paprika in the oil a bit before adding - Read more ...
  8. Fantastic soup easy quick and cheap! I tried it also with just regular slices of bread: it is not the same of course but still very tasty!! We also substituted paprika with smoked paprika and it was great!
  9. As a native Spaniard, (from Madrid), I give this recipe a 4 because is a pretty close one to be authentic. We do NOT use ham or cayenne. There is a misconception about Spanish food, we do not have that many spicy dishes at all, far from Mexican food, where they like it hot. A - Read more ...
  10. What a great recipe! I liked to use a little less paprika not to overpower the garlic flavour. The garlic flavour is subtle, kind of like onions in a French onion soup. This brought me right back to this Spanish restaurant I went with my family a long time ago. I'm happy to have found - Read more ...

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