Chicken noodle soup is a classic comfort food in the United States. It is typically made with chicken broth, egg noodles, and chunks of cooked chicken. Vegetables such as carrots, celery, and onions are also often added. The soup can be made from scratch, using a homemade chicken broth, or from canned or boxed chicken broth. It is often served as a starter or a main course, and is particularly popular during cold weather or when someone is feeling under the weather.
In addition to being a popular comfort food, chicken noodle soup also has a reputation for being a remedy for the common cold. The warm liquid and steam from the soup can help to clear nasal congestion and soothe sore throats. The broth is also easy to digest and hydrating, making it a good option for those who are feeling ill.
Chicken noodle soup can also be made in different variations. Some people add herbs such as thyme, rosemary, or parsley to give it more flavor. Others may add different types of noodles such as dumplings, rice, or even spaghetti. Some people also add additional vegetables like corn, peas, or potatoes.
Chicken noodle soup is also a popular dish in Jewish cuisine. Matzo ball soup, also known as Jewish penicillin, is a variation of chicken noodle soup made with matzo balls (dumplings made from matzo meal) instead of egg noodles.
Overall, Chicken noodle soup is a beloved dish in the United States, enjoyed for its comforting and soothing properties, as well as its versatility and adaptability to different palates.
How to make the perfect chicken noodle soup?
Ingredients for chicken noodle soup:
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 8 cups chicken broth
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 8 oz egg noodles
Instructions for chicken noodle soup:
- In a large pot, bring the chicken broth to a simmer over medium-high heat.
- Add the chicken breasts to the pot and bring the broth back to a simmer.
- Reduce the heat to medium-low and cover the pot. Simmer the chicken until cooked through, about 10-15 minutes.
- Remove the chicken breasts from the pot and set them aside to cool.
- Add the onion, carrots, celery, garlic, thyme, parsley, salt, and pepper to the pot.
- Increase the heat to medium-high and bring the broth to a simmer.
- Reduce the heat to medium-low and cover the pot. Simmer the vegetables for about 10-15 minutes, or until they are tender.
- While the vegetables are simmering, shred the cooled chicken breasts with two forks.
- Add the egg noodles to the pot and cook for an additional 5-7 minutes, or until the noodles are tender.
- Stir in the shredded chicken and cook for another 2-3 minutes.
- Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed.
- Serve hot, with additional parsley or thyme for garnish, if desired.
This recipe can be easily modified to your taste and dietary preference. You can use different type of vegetables, you can also add dumplings or rice instead of egg noodles, you can also add different herbs to boost the flavor.
Few more tips and variations for making chicken noodle soup:
- To make a richer broth, you can add a tablespoon of butter or olive oil to the pot when sautéing the vegetables.
- For added flavor, you can use chicken thighs instead of chicken breasts.
- You can also add a bay leaf or a few peppercorns to the pot while simmering the broth for added depth of flavor.
- To make a creamier soup, you can add a cup of heavy cream or a tablespoon of flour mixed with a little cold water to the pot before adding the noodles.
- If you prefer a lower-carb option, you can use zucchini noodles, spaghetti squash, or cauliflower rice instead of egg noodles.
- To make a gluten-free version, use gluten-free noodles and make sure the chicken broth is gluten-free.
- To make a spicy version, you can add a diced jalapeño pepper or a pinch of red pepper flakes to the pot when sautéing the vegetables.
- To make a richer, more filling soup, you can add a can of drained and rinsed chickpeas or white beans to the pot before adding the noodles.
As you can see, the recipe for chicken noodle soup is quite adaptable and you can add or remove ingredients as per your preference. Feel free to experiment and find the perfect version for you and your family.
How long does it take to cook chicken noodle soup?
The total cooking time for chicken noodle soup will depend on a few factors such as the size of your pot, the heat of your stove and the size of the chicken pieces used.
Typically, the process of cooking the chicken noodle soup can be broken down into a few steps:
- Simmering the chicken: Depending on the size of your chicken breasts, it usually takes around 10-15 minutes to cook them through.
- Simmering the vegetables: Once you have removed the chicken breasts from the pot, you add the vegetables to the broth, it usually takes around 10-15 minutes for the vegetables to become tender.
- Cooking the noodles: Once you have added the noodles, it usually takes around 5-7 minutes for them to cook and become tender.
- Adding the shredded chicken and letting it cook for another 2-3 minutes.
All in all, the total cooking time for chicken noodle soup can be around 30-45 minutes, give or take a few minutes, depending on the factors mentioned above.
Keep in mind that, if you use a pressure cooker, the cooking time will be significantly reduced and can be done in under 30 minutes.
What is the best seasoning for chicken noodle soup?
When it comes to seasoning chicken noodle soup, there are a variety of herbs and spices that can be used to add flavor. Some of the most commonly used seasonings for chicken noodle soup include:
- Thyme: This herb has a subtle, woodsy flavor that complements the chicken and vegetables nicely.
- Parsley: Fresh parsley adds a bright, fresh flavor to the soup.
- Bay leaves: A bay leaf can add a subtle, earthy flavor to the broth.
- Garlic: Garlic adds a nice depth of flavor and aroma to the soup.
- Black pepper: A few grinds of black pepper can add a nice, spicy kick to the soup.
- Salt: Use salt to taste, it is important to season the soup properly for a well-balanced flavor.
- Nutmeg: A pinch of nutmeg added to the soup can give it a warm, slightly sweet flavor.
- Rosemary: A sprig of rosemary can add a nice, piney flavor to the soup.
These are just a few examples of seasonings that can be used in chicken noodle soup. You can experiment with different herbs and spices to find the combination that you like best.
Remember that, you can always adjust the seasoning to your taste, so don’t hesitate to add more or less of any of the herbs and spices mentioned above.
What other vegetables can you add to chicken noodle soup?
There are many different types of vegetables that can be added to chicken noodle soup to make it more flavorful and nutritious. Some popular options include:
- Potatoes: diced potatoes add a nice, creamy texture and a subtle sweetness to the soup.
- Peas: Fresh or frozen peas can be added to the soup for a pop of color and a sweet, fresh flavor.
- Corn: Fresh or frozen corn can be added to the soup for a nice sweetness and a bit of crunch.
- Spinach: Spinach is a great option for adding some greens to the soup. It wilts quickly and adds a nice, earthy flavor.
- Zucchini or Squash: These vegetables add a nice, fresh flavor and a bit of crunch to the soup.
- Leeks: Leeks add a nice sweetness and a subtle onion flavor to the soup.
- Bell peppers: Bell peppers can be added to the soup for a nice sweetness and a bit of crunch.
- Bok choy: Bok choy adds a nice, fresh crunch to the soup.
- Mushroom: mushrooms add a nice, earthy flavor and meaty texture.
These are just a few examples of vegetables that can be added to chicken noodle soup. You can experiment with different vegetables to find the combination that you like best. Keep in mind that the cooking time of some vegetables can vary, so add them accordingly.
What is the nutritional value of chicken noodle soup?
The nutritional value of chicken noodle soup will vary depending on the recipe and the ingredients used. However, here is a general idea of the nutritional value of a typical chicken noodle soup recipe:
- Protein: Chicken noodle soup is a good source of protein, with an average of 20 grams of protein per cup.
- Carbohydrates: It contains around 20-25 grams of carbohydrates per cup, mostly from the egg noodles.
- Fat: Chicken noodle soup is relatively low in fat, with around 2-3 grams of fat per cup.
- Fiber: Chicken noodle soup is not a significant source of fiber, with about 1-2 grams per cup.
- Vitamins and minerals: Chicken noodle soup contains a variety of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin A and C from the vegetables, and iron, calcium, and potassium from the chicken broth.
- Sodium: Chicken noodle soup can be high in sodium, especially if made with store-bought broth, so it’s important to check the sodium content if you are trying to limit your sodium intake.
Keep in mind that the nutritional value of chicken noodle soup can be affected by the ingredients used, like the type of broth, the type of noodles, and the quantity of vegetables used. For example, using a low-sodium broth and adding more vegetables can significantly reduce the sodium content of the soup.
Is Chicken Soup a healthy diet?
Chicken soup can be a healthy part of a diet, as it is a good source of protein, vitamins, and minerals. It is relatively low in calories and fat, and can be a good option for those who are looking to maintain a healthy weight.
The vegetables in chicken soup are a good source of vitamins and minerals, especially vitamin A, vitamin C, and potassium. The broth is also hydrating and can help to clear nasal congestion and soothe sore throats.
However, it is important to note that the nutritional value of chicken soup can vary depending on the recipe and ingredients used. For example, using a store-bought broth or cream-based soups can add a lot of sodium and saturated fat to the soup, making it less healthy.
It’s also important to note that chicken soup alone is not a complete meal, it should be paired with other nutritious foods for a balanced diet.
In general, chicken soup can be a healthy and satisfying addition to a diet when consumed in moderation and prepared in a healthy way. It’s always a good idea to read the label and adjust the recipe to your dietary preferences and needs.
Can you eat chicken noodle soup on a liquid diet?
Chicken noodle soup can be a good option for those following a liquid diet, as it is a clear liquid that is easy to digest and can provide some essential nutrients. A liquid diet typically includes clear liquids such as water, tea, clear broths, frozen popsicles, and plain gelatin.
A typical chicken noodle soup is made of clear broth, chicken, and vegetables, which makes it a clear liquid, it may also include egg noodles which are also considered a clear liquid by many healthcare providers. However, it’s always best to check with your healthcare provider or dietitian to confirm if chicken noodle soup is suitable for your specific liquid diet plan.