Using leftover or rotisserie chicken makes this chicken noodle soup super easy and perfect for days when you need home-made comfort in a bowl.
There are days when you just need that homey comfort you grew up with. And what is more comforting than a bowl of chicken noodle soup? This easy soup recipe comes from years of having to make something warm and nourishing in a matter of minutes for sick children, family members and friends. It’s never let me down.
I love using leftover roast chicken or a shop-bought rotisserie chicken because let’s face it, very few of us have the time or patience to wait for a whole chicken to cook. Having said that, if you do, go right ahead because the depth of flavour you get from a whole chicken is obviously superior. However, we’re doing things the speedy way and if you have good chicken stock, you’re half way there.
To add to the goodness of this recipe, I decided to use low carb, gluten free Cauliflower noodles. (Which happens to make this a Keto chicken noodle soup recipe, for those of you so inclined). If you don’t have access to fresh low carb noodles, feel free to use Shirataki noodles instead. Otherwise, normal egg noodles/pasta work perfectly in this. To speed things along, I like using fresh noodles/pasta but you can definitely use dried. I would just cook them first or increase the volume of chicken stock used as the noodles will need it to cook thoroughly.
Because we’re taking a few shortcuts, there’s a chance we’ll lose out on that glorious, rich flavour a whole chicken provides. To counteract that, I used a seriously rich chicken stock. Homemade is great but liquid concentrate is also perfect. I also allowed the vegetables to saute for quite a while to allow them to caramelize and provide lots of fond (the sticky caramelized bits at the bottom of the pot).
Mixed herbs and a generous squeeze of lemon for brightness results in a wonderfully aromatic and warming bowl of soup. And make sure to keep out some because this chicken noodle soup is even better the next day.
How do you make chicken noodle soup?
Preheat a large pot over medium heat. Sauté onions, carrots, celery, leeks and garlic in olive oil and butter (optional) until soft and fragrant. To create more flavor, allow the vegetable to caramelize slightly. Pour in homemade or good quality chicken stock/broth. Add the herbs, reduce heat and allow to simmer for 10 minutes, uncovered. Add shredded rotisserie chicken and cooked or fresh noodles and simmer until the noodles are cooked through. Season to taste with lemon juice, salt and pepper and serve.
How to thicken chicken noodle soup
If you want a thicker soup, there are two options. You can thicken it with a slurry of cornstarch and water. Stir the cornstarch into the hot stock and allow to cook until thickened. Alternatively, blend half of the soup before adding the chicken and noodles. This will add a bit more body to the soup without needing a starch.
What spices are good in chicken noodle soup?
Herbs and spices add so much flavor to soup. Classic flavors like bay leaves, parsley, thyme, rosemary and sage work well with chicken but you can add dried mixed herbs, oregano or cilantro too. Spices like paprika, chili flakes and nutmeg add warmth.
Can you freeze chicken noodle soup?
Yes. Noodles and pasta don’t always freeze very well so if you can, freeze the soup without the noodles. Simply thaw and reheat the soup in a pot then add cooked noodles.
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Easy chicken noodle soup
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp butter (optional)
- 1 onion finely chopped
- 2 large carrots peeled and finely chopped
- 2 celery stalks finely chopped
- 2 small leeks finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic crushed
- 1 tbsp mixed herbs
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 1/2 lemon juiced
- 2 cups cooked/rotisserie chicken shredded
- 500g/1lb noodles fresh/cooked
- fresh parsley to serve
- Melt the oil and butter together in a pot.
- Saute the onion, carrot, celery, leeks and herbs together until soft and starting to caramelize.
- Add the garlic and saute for another minute then pour in the chicken stock and add the lemon juice.
- Bring to a simmer and allow to simmer for 10 minutes before adding the shredded chicken. Simmer for 5 minutes.
- Add the noodles and cook for 5 minutes (or according to package instructions, if using fresh).
- Season to taste and add the parsley before serving.