Summer is the season of hot weather, going to the beach, cool drinks, grilling, and long lazy days. Conversely, autumn is the season of cooler temps, leaves changing, sweaters, hot apple cider, comfort food, Halloween, Veteran’s Day, and Thanksgiving. For so many of us, it’s time to put the oven on and head back into the kitchen.
Comfort meals are just the thing to help us hit the reset button in the midst of the stresses of work, school, and other obligations that can make us feel a bit off balance. During the week, we often don’t have the time or energy to deal with a long complicated meal. Even a slow cooker can be hard when you don’t have time to put the ingredients together, or some of us have even forgotten to put it on. However, we came across a recipe in Southern Living that is easy, healthy and comes together in less than thirty minutes.
Chicken soup is one of the ultimate comfort foods and cure for all that ails you. The best thing about this soup is you can buy many of the ingredients pre-cooked and pre-chopped. We’ve adapted the recipe for vegans and vegetarians ( no chicken, vegan noodles, and non-dairy milk) as a way to be sure that everyone can find comfort in a hot, creamy soup perfect for the cooler evenings ahead.
Enjoy and Happy Fall!
Creamy Chicken Soup recipe by Southern Living Magazine adapted by Still A Chick Lit
Total Time 25 minutes
¼ cup unsalted butter (unsalted vegan butter)
1 medium-sized yellow onion, finely chopped
3 medium carrots, sliced into 1/2 -inch rounds (about ¾ cup)
2 medium celery stalks, chopped
4 medium garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 cups fresh spinach or 1 cup frozen peas
1 ½ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1 bay leaf
¼ cup all-purpose flour (gluten-free all-purpose flour, sorghum, white rice, or brown rice flour)
¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
6 cups unsalted chicken stock (unsalted vegetable stock) (I like Kitchen Basics)
8 ounces Old-fashioned wide egg noodles (you can use pasta, such as orzo or even angel hair spaghetti to keep it vegan/vegetarian)
1 cooked or rotisserie chicken, torn into bite-size pieces (omit for vegan/vegetarian soup)
½ cup heavy cream (dairy: light cream or half and half) (non-dairy: rice, soy, or almond milk)
1 tablespoon Sherry Vinegar
2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
Melt butter in a large pot. Add onions, carrots, celery, bay leaf, and ½ teaspoon kosher salt. Cook, stirring occasionally until softened. Add flour, garlic, and smoked paprika. Cook, stirring constantly until the mixture is fragrant and the flour begins to turn brown.
Add stock to the mixture and increase the heat to bring to a boil. Stirring occasionally. Add the noodles, spinach, or peas and cook, stirring occasionally until the noodles are tender. Reduce the heat to low, add the chicken. Cook until the chicken is heated through, about one minute. Stir in the cream, sherry vinegar, and remaining salt. Before serving top with thyme leaves. Serves Four.
- For a vegan or vegetarian version of this soup, double the vegetables for an extra-yummy creamy vegetable soup.
There isn’t a lot of knife work for this recipe, however, if you’re not comfortable, most grocery stores and supermarkets have pre-chopped vegetables in their produce section. It’s also a time saver.