Hearty chicken vegetable soup is a delicious and healthy comfort food. This easy chicken soup recipe is perfect for lunch or dinner on a cold winter day!First Published January 2018; Updated October 2020
Chicken Vegetable Soup Backstory
We've had some cold weather so far this winter and I really don't like it. When it gets below 32 degrees I like to stay inside, read, watch movies and make lots of soup.
I typically make a double batch so my family gets some and a container goes into the freezer. It's always good to have a spare dinner for the nights you come home late wondering what's for dinner. I love that feeling of looking in the freezer and seeing that dinner just needs to be heated up. Within 20 minutes, there is a hot bowl of soup on the stove waiting to be eaten.
Soup is a great food to eat while watching calories. I have been trying to balance out my weekend indulgences with healthy week night meals. This Hearty Chicken Vegetable Soup is filling but also filled with good things such as chick peas, carrots and kale. It's comforting but there is no guilt involved in eating this for dinner. Also if you follow a gluten free diet, this is perfect!
Soup is a great choice if you want to eat light and healthy. There are a ton of healthy soup recipes out there. I love this list of 36 Healthy Soup Recipes by Sweet Peas and Saffron. It's comfort food that you also feel good about.
If your goal is to eat more healthy food, why not start with this Hearty Chicken Vegetable Soup?
Can I make this ahead of time?
- Absolutely! It's so easy to make a double or even triple batch of this (if you've got a big enough pot) then refrigerate or freeze the extra to reheat during a busy night or for a dinner when you don't have the energy to cook!
How long can I store my chicken vegetable soup?
- In the fridge, your soup will last 3 to 4 days. But in the freezer, it will be good for up to 6 months.
How should I reheat my soup?
- From the refrigerator, you could either microwave your soup or pop it back into a pot and heat through.
- If your soup is frozen, there are a few options. First, you could allow it to sit in the fridge for 2 days or so in order to properly thaw, then follow the same instructions listed above.
- If you're in a rush and need the soup to thaw more quickly, you could place it in a warm water bath in its container.
- Finally, you could remove the frozen soup from the container and pop it right into the pot, then heat until it's heated all the way through.
How do I buy the best chicken?
- It’s important to look at the “best by” date, but also pay attention to the color.
- Your chicken should be a nice, healthy pink hue.
- For the amount of chicken, this recipe calls for whole thighs, so it’s best to buy only as much as you’ll need for your chicken vegetable soup. If you have to buy more but don’t plan on using the excess chicken right away, you can store it in the freezer for up to nine months.
- If you’re storing chicken in the fridge, you should try to use it within 1 to 2 days.
How do I buy the best kale?
- Look for kale leaves that are a rich, dark green and have a bit of a crisp texture to them. If they’re in a bag and you can’t feel the leaves, try to ensure that the color is uniform and none of the leaves look slimy or wilted.
- Kale that is packaged typically lasts for 3-4 days, so long as you don’t wash it before you store it.
- Consider rinsing/washing your kale leaves to be certain there’s no excess dirt or other grime left behind.
How do I buy the best carrots?
- The best carrots will be plump and have a vibrant orange color. Their surface should be smooth and free of cracks.
- Try to avoid carrots that have strings dangling from their bottom.
- If you can, look for carrots that are in bunches (that still have the leaves at the top). You can use the leaf color to determine the age of the carrots--a faded green or yellow means they might be too old.
- Carrots will last several weeks in the fridge but will start to lose flavor and nutritional value, so try to use or eat them within a week of buying.
- There are a number of extra vegetables you could add to this soup for even more nutritional goodness.
- Potatoes, bell peppers, spinach, celery, onions, tomatoes, turnips, or cannellini beans would all be delicious in this soup.
- You could also easily turn this in a noddle soup by adding your favorite kind of pasta. Egg noodles are common, but it really is up to your personal preference.
- Top this soup with crushed up saltine or Ritz crackers, tortilla chips, fried shallots, grated cheese, croutons, bacon bits, and anything else you can think of!
More Soup Recipes
- Wonton Soup
- Smoky Sausage Vegetable Soup
- Cabbage and Beef Soup
- Pasta Fagioli Soup
- Loaded Potato Broccoli Soup from Lil' Luna
Serve Your Soup With:
- Cheesy Beer Bread
- Buffalo Chicken Flatbread with Bacon
- Avocado, Tomato, and Arugula Salad
- Slow Cooker Olive Parmesan Bread from Dizzy Busy and Hungry
- Best Homemade Garlic Bread from A Couple Cooks
Hearty Chicken Vegetable Soup
- 1 tablespoon Olive Oil
- ¼ cup Chopped Onion
- 2 cloves garlic crushed
- 2 cups chopped carrots
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 8 cups chicken broth
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 8 ounces chicken thighs about 2 large, cut into bite size pieces
- 6 ounces baby kale
- 1 15 ounce can chick peas Rinsed and drained
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a large Dutch oven, heat olive oil on medium heat and add onions, garlic, and carrots. Cook for about 5 minutes or until vegetables start to soften.
- Add tomato paste, chicken broth, seasoning, and chicken. Bring pot to boil then lower heat to a simmer. Add kale, cover and cook for about 20 minutes while stirring occasionally.
- Add beans and cook for another 10 minutes..
- Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve in bowls.