Homemade chicken noodle soup is a great comfort food. It takes a fair amount of time, but I enjoy the process. It makes the house smell wonderful as well.
In this recipe we’ll be making our own chicken broth by boiling a whole chicken with a variety of vegetables. It makes a flavorful broth that is delicious and has ancient healing properties. When they say that chicken soup is good for colds and flu, this is what they mean: chicken soup from scratch.
I like to flavor the broth with onions, leek, garlic, carrots, and celery. I season the broth with black peppercorns, salt, bay, and thyme. And I add a small piece of chili pepper for a little boost.
After boiling everything for over an hour, we remove the chicken, discard the vegetables, and are left with a beautiful broth.
We then start over with fresh vegetables, the skimmed broth, some pasta or noodles, and then add the shredded chicken back to the pot. As soon as it’s warmed through, it’s ready to eat.
Chicken Noodle Soup is easy to make but it does take time. Save this recipe for when you want to have a relaxing day of cooking up a pot of healthy goodness.
Be sure to add just enough water to cover the chicken. If you add too much, it can taste watery. You can always add a bouillon cube if necessary, but it should be fine without. The vegetables and chicken meat will add a lot of flavor. The pasta will too. You can adjust the herbs and spices to your liking. Thyme and bay work really well in soups, but so do marjoram, rosemary, tarragon, and parsley. Customize it with your favorites.
I like to serve this soup with crusty Italian bread and butter.
Chicken Noodle Soup from a whole chicken
Chicken Broth Ingredients
- 1 4-5 pound whole chicken
- 2 onions peeled and quartered
- 2 carrots cut into chunks
- 2 ribs celery cut into chunks
- 2 leeks cleaned and cut into chunks
- 1 head garlic cut in half crosswise, skin left on
- 1 tsp black peppercorns
- 2 bay leaves
- 4 thyme sprigs
- 1 inch red chili pepper
- 9-10 cups water
Chicken Noodle Soup Ingredients
- 1 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
- 1 onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 2 carrots chopped
- 2 ribs celery sliced
- 2 cups shredded chicken
- 8 cups prepared chicken broth
- 6 oz egg noodles or pasta
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1 sprig fresh thyme leaves
- 1 tbsp parsley chopped for garnish
- In a large stock pot, add chicken, onions, carrot, celery, leeks, garlic, peppercorns, bay leaves, thyme sprigs, and chili pepper.
- Add water, enough to just cover the chicken.
- Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer for 1 1/2 hours. Remove scum from surface several times during the first half hour.
- Remove chicken and transfer to a pan. Discard skin and bones, flake chicken meat with fork and reserve.
- Strain broth, discard vegetables and herbs. Refrigerate broth for a few hours until the fat sets. Scoop off solidified fat and discard.
- Heat olive oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add onion, carrot, and celery and cook for 5 minutes until they starts to soften. Don’t let them brown. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute until fragrant, careful not to burn.
- Pour in 8 cups of prepared broth. Add salt, pepper, and thyme leaves.
- When liquid starts to simmer, add noodles or pasta (I used fettuccine broken into smaller pieces), and cook until al dente.
- Add shredded chicken and stir. Cook until heated through. Test to see if it needs more salt. It usually does.
- Serve garnished with parsley.