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Bakso: Indonesian Meatball Soup with Noodles

Bakso, or Indonesian meatball soup, is a beloved staple that can be found in street carts and restaurants throughout Indonesia. This hearty dish features tender, juicy meatballs floating in a savory broth, accompanied by noodles, tofu, and vegetables. Each bowl of Bakso is a comforting, wholesome meal in itself, brimming with diverse flavors and textures. The meatballs, typically made from beef, are the stars of the dish, providing a satisfying bite amidst the slurp-worthy noodles and broth. Let’s dive into the culinary journey of making Bakso, which is as exciting as savoring the final dish.

Bakso: Indonesian Meatball Soup with Noodles


  • For the Meatballs:
  • 500 grams of ground beef
  • 100 grams of tapioca starch
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of white pepper
  • 1 egg
  • For the Soup:
  • 2 liters of beef broth
  • 200 grams of rice noodles, cooked according to package instructions
  • 100 grams of bok choy, blanched
  • 4 pieces of fried tofu, cut into half
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 stalks of celery, thinly sliced
  • Fried shallots, for garnish
  • Sweet soy sauce, for serving
  • Chilli sauce, for serving

Cooking Steps

  • Start by making the meatballs. Combine the ground beef, tapioca starch, minced garlic, salt, white pepper, and egg in a bowl. Mix until well combined.
  • Shape the mixture into small balls using your hands. Set aside.
  • Bring the beef broth to a boil in a large pot. Carefully drop the meatballs into the boiling broth. Cook until they float to the surface, indicating they are done.
  • Prepare the serving bowls by placing cooked rice noodles at the bottom. Add the blanched bok choy and fried tofu.
  • Ladle the hot broth along with the meatballs into the bowls. Garnish with sliced green onions, celery, and fried shallots.
  • Serve the Bakso with sweet soy sauce and chilli sauce on the side, allowing each person to adjust the flavor to their liking.

In conclusion, Bakso is a fulfilling, flavorful dish that is a testament to the rich and diverse Indonesian culinary landscape. When making Bakso, ensure you use fresh, high-quality beef for the meatballs for the best flavor and texture. The broth’s flavor can be enhanced by using homemade beef broth if possible. Bakso is a flexible dish, and you can add or omit ingredients as per your preference. So, dive into the delightful world of Indonesian cuisine with a comforting bowl of Bakso, a dish that truly warms the heart and soul.

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