Healthy Chicken Noodle Soup
Chicken noodle soup is a comforting and classic dish that has been enjoyed for generations. It’s a warm and nourishing soup that is perfect for chilly days. However, many traditional recipes for chicken noodle soup can be high in sodium, fat, and calories. That’s why it’s important to make some healthy modifications to this dish to ensure that it’s a nutritious meal. With a few simple changes, you can still enjoy the classic taste of chicken noodle soup while boosting its nutritional content. This healthy chicken noodle soup recipe is a delicious and comforting meal that is packed with protein, veggies, and whole grains. Whether you’re feeling under the weather or just looking for a comforting meal, this healthy chicken noodle soup is the perfect choice!
Healthy Chicken Noodle Soup Recipe:
- 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast, diced
- 2 carrots, chopped
- 2 stalks of celery, chopped
- 1 onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 8 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp dried rosemary
- Salt and black pepper, to taste
- 2 cups whole-grain egg noodles
- 2 cups packed baby spinach
- Fresh parsley, chopped (optional, for garnish)
In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat a little bit of oil over medium heat. Add the diced chicken and cook until browned, about 5 minutes.
Add the chopped carrots, celery, onion, and minced garlic to the pot and cook until the vegetables are soft and fragrant about 5-7 minutes.
Pour in the chicken broth and add the bay leaves, dried thyme, dried rosemary, salt, and black pepper. Stir to combine.
Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce the heat and let it simmer for about 20 minutes.
Add the whole grain egg noodles to the pot and cook until they are al dente, about 8-10 minutes.
Stir in the packed baby spinach and cook until wilted, about 2-3 minutes.
Taste the soup and adjust the seasoning if needed.
Serve hot, garnished with chopped fresh parsley if desired.
This healthy chicken noodle soup is a comforting and nourishing meal that is perfect for a cold day. The whole-grain noodles, plenty of veggies, and low-sodium chicken broth make this soup a healthier option, while still maintaining its classic taste.
Here are some additional tips and variations you can try with this healthy chicken noodle soup recipe:
Make it creamier:
If you like a creamier soup, you can stir in some low-fat milk or plain Greek yogurt before serving. This will add a creamy texture and a boost of protein.
Add some heat:
To add a little kick to the soup, you can sprinkle in some red pepper flakes or diced jalapeno pepper before cooking. This will give the soup a spicy flavor that will warm you up on a cold day.
Use different veggies:
Feel free to switch up the veggies in this recipe and use what you have on hand. Bell peppers, mushrooms, and butternut squash are great options.
Use different herbs:
If you don’t have thyme and rosemary on hand, you can use other herbs such as basil, oregano, or sage. You can also use fresh herbs instead of dried ones for a brighter flavor.
Make it vegetarian:
To make a vegetarian version of this soup, you can use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth and add some tofu or tempeh for a source of plant-based protein.
did you know that you can make it even healthier? Here’s how:
Use Whole Grain Noodles:
Instead of using regular egg noodles, opt for whole-grain noodles, which are higher in fiber and nutrients. They are also a good source of complex carbohydrates, which provide long-lasting energy.
Load up on the veggies! Carrots, celery, and onions are traditional in chicken noodle soup, but you can also add other veggies such as spinach, kale, or zucchini. This not only adds flavor and texture but also increases the nutrient density of the soup.
Use Low-Sodium Broth:
Most store-bought chicken broths contain a high amount of sodium, which can be harmful to your health. Opt for low-sodium or homemade broth to control the amount of salt in the soup.
Use Skinless Chicken Breast:
Chicken breast is a lean protein source, but the skin is high in saturated fat. Removing the skin from the chicken breast before cooking it will reduce the fat content of the soup.
Add Herbs and Spices:
Herbs and spices such as thyme, rosemary, garlic, and black pepper can add depth of flavor to the soup without adding calories. Experiment with different combinations to find your favorite.
With these variations and tips, you can customize this healthy chicken noodle soup to your liking. Enjoy experimenting and finding the perfect combination for you!