This easy Chicken Noodle Soup recipe is a comfy, cozy classic! Tender white meat chicken, nourishing noodles, celery, onions and carrots float in a warm and fragrant broth that’s good for body and soul.
The Easiest Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup
This soup is just the best because it’s my Baba’s (Grandma’s) recipe! ❤️ It’s very straight forward – zero fancy ingredients – and I love it any time of year, but especially in the winter, when the weather is often at its gray-est.
And, to make things extra easy, my recipe uses just bone-in chicken breasts and prepared broth — no need to simmer and debone a whole chicken. This is where I differ from my grandma; I use shortcuts, she definitely didn’t. 🤷♀️
You know what, though? You’ll get all of the flavor in about half the time (and work!). Of course, if you choose to use skinless bone-in thighs, or go the whole hog and cook a small chicken, that works, too!
What Are the Benefits of Eating Chicken Noodle Soup?
Okay, so I’m no doctor, but research does show that homemade chicken soup is pretty darn good for you. The vitamins and minerals found in the veggies bolster your immune system, and so does the protein from the chicken.
On top of that, brothy soups like this one are hydrating, and they also help relieve inflammation and congestion in the respiratory system!
Chicken Noodle Soup Recipe Ingredients
This soup has all the time-tested goodies a good bowl of chicken noodle soup should have, in my opinion. If you’d like, you can switch things up, maybe by adding rice or potatoes instead of noodles, or by putting in more veggies. But, this classic chicken noodle soup recipe is pretty perfect as is!
- Olive Oil & Butter: For sauteing.
- Onion: I use a chopped yellow onion here, but a white onion or sweet onion would also be fine.
- Celery: You’ll need about three celery stalks, thinly sliced.
- Carrots: I use two medium carrots, sliced thinly. Keep in mind that you can add more vegetables if desired, and/or cut them into bite-sized pieces, a fine dice, or whatever you like best.
- Fresh Garlic: You’ll need about six cloves of garlic, minced or pressed. Garlic is a wonderful immune-boosting ingredient, so, the more the merrier!
- Broth: For this recipe, I recommend using low-sodium chicken broth, about 10 to 12 cups total.
- Thyme: You can use four fresh thyme sprigs or a teaspoon of dried thyme.
- Bay Leaves: This recipe uses two bay leaves. Be sure to check the dates on your bay leaves and make sure they aren’t expired; older herbs and spices tend to lose their flavor.
- Chicken: You’ll need skinless breasts, but make sure that they are bone-in, NOT boneless! Bone-in chicken makes the best soup, and, more importantly, you’re getting all those health benefits of the chicken bones and connective tissue.
- Salt and Pepper: To taste.
- Noodles: You can find lots of different kinds of egg noodles out there. I use these Carba-Nada noodles – no one can tell that they’re low carb, honestly. But, if you like, you can get a package of wide egg noodles. Make sure not to cook them too long or they will get mushy.
- Chopped Fresh Parsley: For garnish.
- Lemon Wedges: For serving.
How to Make Chicken Noodle Soup
This is a great method for making just about any soup! For me, a great soup starts with a flavorful sauté to develop depth of flavor. In this case, we sauté the veggies before adding the broth, the chicken, and finally the noodles.
Make sure you give yourself about one hour to make the soup, from start to finish. A great homemade chicken noodle soup demands a bit of time. 😊
- Sauté Vegetables & Garlic: Heat the olive oil and butter in a 6-quart (or larger) Dutch oven and cook over medium heat. Add the onions, celery, and carrots, and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Then, stir in the garlic and cook for another 30 seconds.
- Add Broth & Chicken: Stir the chicken broth, thyme and bay leaf into the veggie sauté, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pot, and bring the mixture to a simmer. Then, add the chicken breasts, salt and pepper; cover and simmer for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the chicken is done.
- Add Noodles & Shred Chicken: Remove the chicken breasts from the Dutch oven and transfer them to a cutting board. Add the egg noodles to the soup and cook them for about seven minutes, or until al dente. While the noodles are cooking, shred the chicken and discard the bones. NOTE: IF using Carba-Nada noodles, you can add those together with the chicken because they only take 4 to 5 minutes to cook.
- Finish Simmering & Serve: Stir your shredded chicken back into the soup, cover, and simmer for 2 more minutes. Then, take the soup off of the heat, discard the thyme sprigs and bay leaves, and adjust the salt and pepper. Ladle into bowls, garnish with parsley, and serve with lemon wedges.
Tips for the Best Chicken Soup
That’s really all there is to it! If you’d like to explore some variations and tips, though, keep on reading; I’ve rounded up a few great ideas below!
- Add Acid: If you taste the soup and feel that it is slightly bland, try stirring in a teaspoon of lemon juice or vinegar. This should help add depth. The lemon wedges also serve this purpose! Lemon juice brightens up the soup and balances the salty, rich flavors.
- Make Ahead: You can also make this soup in advance, leaving out the noodles. When you are ready to serve it, heat the soup and add the noodles, simmering until al dente.
- Add Cream: You can reduce the amount of broth by one pint during the cooking process, and stir a pint of cream or half and half into the finished soup, for a lovely creamy version!
Need some inspiration for what to whip up in addition to this chicken noodle soup recipe? You could always throw in some oyster crackers or serve it with one of these tasty sides.
- Bread: A skillet full of my Rosemary and Garlic No-Knead Bread would make a lovely addition to this hearty homemade soup. Yum!
- Salad: I’m kind of addicted to soup and salad — it’s just such a healthy, satisfying combo. For this soup, I would lean toward a chunky chopped side salad, something like my Shopska (Macedonian Chopped Salad).
- Gingerbread: I love, love, love old-fashioned gingerbread, and I think it goes perfectly with chicken soup! These Gingerbread Whoopie Pies with Buttercream Filling are a super-tasty spin on the classic.
How to Store and Reheat Leftovers
Leftover chicken noodle soup will last for several days, if stored properly. Here’s how to get the most out of your leftovers.
- To Refrigerate: Store the leftover soup in airtight containers and place in the fridge for up to 4 days.
- To Reheat: Place the leftovers in a saucepan or Dutch Oven over medium heat and cook until heated through.
Can You Freeze Chicken Noodle Soup?
- Yes! You can freeze this soup, but as with making it ahead, it’s best to leave out the noodles, because freezing and defrosting the noodles may cause them to get mushy and overly soft.
- Instead, make the soup without the noodles, and add them once you’ve defrosted the soup and heated it to a simmer. Simmer the hot soup with the dried noodles for about 7 minutes, or until al dente. Easy!
Chicken Noodle Soup
- Dutch Oven
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 3 celery stalks, thinly sliced
- 2 carrots, thinly sliced
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 10 to 12 cups low sodium chicken broth, (I normally use 12 cups because I like a brothier soup)
- 4 thyme sprigs, or 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 pounds skinless, bone-in chicken breasts
- 1 ¼ teaspoon salt, or to taste
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
- 10 ounces Carba-Nada Noodles (low carb noodles), OR use regular wide egg noodles
- Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
- Lemon wedges, for serving
- Heat olive oil and butter in a dutch oven set over medium heat.
- To the heated oil add chopped onions, sliced celery and carrots; cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Stir in garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
- Add chicken broth, and stir all the browned bits from the bottom of the pot. Add thyme, and bay leaf; increase heat to high and bring mixture to a simmer.
- Add chicken breasts, salt, and pepper; stir, then, cover and simmer over medium heat for 25 to 30 minutes, or until chicken is done.
- Remove chicken breasts from the pot and transfer to a cutting board.
- At this point, if using regular egg noodles, add them to the broth and cook for 6 to 7 minutes, or until al dente. If using the Carba-Nada noodles, wait to add those to the pot together with the shredded chicken because they cook in about 4 to 5 minutes.
- In the meantime, shred the chicken and discard the bones.
- Stir shredded chicken into soup; cover and simmer for 2 more minutes.
- Remove from heat.
- Discard thyme sprigs and bay leaves. Taste for salt and adjust accordingly.
- Ladle into bowls, garnish with parsley, and serve with lemon wedges.
- Nutritional Analysis AND WW Points were calculated with low carb noodles.
More Soup Recipes To Try
Looking for more heart-warming soup recipes for winter? These ones are excellent options!