Cold season is upon us…again. Everywhere you turn someone is sneezing and sniffing and hacking. There’s ice on my windshield and my toes are perpetually cold. You all know by now what this means. Soup, soup and more soup!
Normally I play fast and loose with my soup recipes, getting creative, adding pesto or orzo or this and that. But when I have a cold, sometimes what I really want is just simple, no frills, nothing fancy chicken soup. I can practically make this in my sleep (or cold-medicine induced brain fog). It’s warm, tasty and oh so satisfying. It also freezes well if you want to make a double batch so you’re prepared for the next go ’round.
I normally use leftover chicken (or turkey) or rotisserie chicken from the store, or you can cook up a couple of chicken breasts or thighs. Whatever you have on hand will work fine.
Nothing Fancy Chicken Soup
1 cup onion, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
4-5 carrots, sliced thinly
8 cups chicken broth
1 tsp. dry Italian seasoning
2 cups cooked chicken, shredded or chopped
1 cup green beans (fresh or frozen)
1 cup dry noodles (I used rotini but any smallish shape will work)
1/2 cup heavy cream (optional)
Salt & pepper
Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Saute onion and celery for 2-3 minutes. Add carrot and cook another couple of minutes. Add chicken broth and Italian seasoning. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Add chicken and green beans. Bring to a boil again. Add pasta and stir. Turn down to medium and simmer another 15 minutes or so, until pasta is tender. Add salt & pepper to taste. For added richness, I like to add about 1/2 cup of heavy cream at the end but if you’re watching the calories (or you don’t do dairy), feel free to leave it out. It’s delicious either way!
If you want to get a tiny bit fancy with it, or you just want an excuse to eat a whole loaf of bread by yourself, serve it in a bread bowl!