Chicken Noodle Soup….there is a reason there is a series of books called Chicken Soup for the Soul because that is what this soup is all about…reaching into your soul and providing comfort. It is known for curing colds and providing warmth and often many have a memory behind their favorite chicken soup. My recipe goes back to a 1995 issue of Southern Living Magazine and the most amazing picture of a tureen of chicken noodle soup that made my mouth water. Since my mother has given me the annual Southern Living Cookbook every year since I was still married, I do still have the picture that caught my eye!
Over the years, I have made this recipe many times and tweaked it along the way, so I thought I would share my updated version with you. It will come out perfect every time and go a long way in warming a lot of winter souls this season!
- 1 3.5 to 4 lb. chicken cut up with bone and skin or 2 very large chicken breasts (if you are in a hurry)
- 2 stalks celery, quartered
- 1 large onion, peeled and quartered
- 2 carrots, peeled and quartered
- 1 turnip, peeled and quartered
- 2 gloves of garlic, minced
- 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
- 3/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon dried tarragon
- 5 cups water
- 5 cups chicken broth
- 6 oz. small egg noodles, parboiled
- 1 large onion, diced
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 1 teaspoon of olive oil
- 3 carrots, peeled and sliced
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon of dried tarragon
- 1/2 teaspoon of dried parsley
- 1/2 teaspoon on onion powder
- Combine first 11 ingredients in a large Dutch oven, and bring mixture to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat; cook 45 minutes or until chicken is tender.
- Remove chicken from broth, reserving broth; set chicken aside to cool slightly. Shred chicken
- Pour broth through a wire-mesh strainer into a large bowl; discard cooked vegetables. Remove and discard fat from broth; return broth to Dutch oven. Simmer for at least an hour to truly bring out the flavors.
- Parboil noodles (don’t fully cook) until they still have a bite to them…this keeps them from absorbing too much of the broth.
- Saute onion and celery in olive oil until vegetables are tender. (I found this step adds so much more flavor than just dumping the raw vegetables in as the recipe states.)
- Add sauted celery and onion along with sliced carrot to chicken broth; bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat; simmer 30 minutes.
- Stir in chopped chicken, noodles, and remaining seasonings.
- Simmer for an additional 15-20 minutes (or until noodles are cooked through)
- This version makes about 12 good size bowls of soup
I don’t exactly have the photograpy staff that Southern Living does but this is one good looking bowl of soup!
Bottom Line: My version does take a little longer but great things take time and you will love the smell of this soup simmering all day in your kitchen. If you like your soup more brothy, feel free to add equal parts of water and chicken broth and it will maintain its superb flavor! I can’t wait for this to become one of your family’s favorite recipes! I am Chef Frankie…always in the kitchen, having fun, and cooking with wild abandonment!