Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup is such a timeless classic, that always manages to make us feel better on dreary days or when we simply aren’t feeling well. Chicken soup is so good, and good for you, that it is a standard remedy for the common cold. This is a must-have comfort food recipe as far as I am concerned, and I know that you will love it too!
For anyone who hasn’t tried their hand at making chicken noodle soup from scratch, know that it’s what I would call a beginner level recipe. There’s lots of ways you can modify the recipe, but the basics are sometimes the best. IMHO.
You can, of course, jump forward to pulling your cooked meat apart if you happen to bring home one of the grocery store rotisserie chickens or have leftover chicken on hand…but I love the added nutritional benefits of cooking the chicken carcass down and the enhanced flavor of the broth. It’s not a word, but the first step makes the soup more chicken-y.
If you prefer just to use the dark meat, you can use chicken thighs rather than a whole chicken and (bonus) that cuts down the cooking time! The dark meat of the thighs will be more tender in your soup, while the white meat of the chicken breasts will hold its texture better. Having cooked this soup many times, we still stick with the whole chicken method.
While the cooking time may be daunting, remember that the actual time spent chopping up some vegetables and pulling apart the cooked chicken are only a small fraction of the overall time given in the recipe. I usually spend about 5 minutes on each task, so for the most part, my simple comfort food just cooks on its own…most likely while I nurse a cold. This steaming bowl of goodness is the one thing (and quite possibly the only thing) I want when I’m not feeling well!
A quick note on seasoning…I prefer to season lightly until my ingredients have come together. Broth has salt in it. Celery has salt in it. Once the whole soup is combined, I taste and adjust seasoning with the salt and pepper before adding the noodles. At this point, you will have a better idea of the final resulting flavor. Enjoy!
Last Updated: November 21, 2019
Chicken Noodle Soup
- 3-4 lb whole chicken (rinsed)
- 6 cups chicken bone broth (most containers are 32 oz = 4 cups)
- water (enough to finish covering your whole chicken in your stock pot, if needed)
- 1 tsp each, salt & pepper (add more to taste when adding noodles)
- 4 bay leaves
- 1 medium onion (yellow or white, finely chopped)
- 2-3 cloves garlic (minced, about 1 Tbsp)
- 5-6 medium carrots (rough cut)
- 6 stalks celery (rough cut)
- 5-6 stalks thyme (pulled from stem, or use 1/2 Tbsp dried thyme)
- 2 c egg noodles
- 1 Tbsp parsley (optional - fresh, chopped)
- Place your whole chicken in a large stock pot, add broth, and water if needed to cover the chicken. Add salt, pepper, and bay leaves.
- Cover and bring the water to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for about 90 minutes or until the meat begins to fall off the bone. (this step will take approximately 30-40 minutes if you are using chicken thighs only)
- Remove chicken to a plate or large dish, use a slotted spoon to remove any pieces that may still be in the soup broth as well as the bay leaves.
- Add chopped vegetables (onion, garlic, carrots, celery) and thyme to the broth in stock pot, cover and continue to simmer while removing the bones from chicken meat (allow your chicken meat to cool for a few minutes first). Discard bones and skin.
- Broth will simmer for a total of approximately 30 minutes, at the half way point (15 minutes) return the chicken meat to soup, taste and adjust seasoning, then add pasta. Cover and simmer for the final 15 minutes.
- Remove from heat, stir in the chopped parsley (if desired) and serve.