Chicken Vegetable Soup

This hearty Chicken and Vegetable soup is full of goodness and open to your creative ideas. You can combine any mix of vegetables that you have on hand, and you can use chicken breasts, thighs or a mixture of both.

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Looking straight down into a stockpot of chicken vegetable soup.

Chicken Vegetable Soup from Scratch

There’s something very cathartic about making a soup from scratch. I find this especially true when it’s a chunky soup like this Chicken Vegetable Soup. Maybe it’s something about seeing every little vegetable that you chopped up, every piece of chicken that you shredded and then tasting the glorious flavor of everything cooked together with tomatoes, herbs and spices. This soup is a hearty meal that lends itself very well to using whatever you have in your refrigerator, so get ready to improvise.

Vegetables and other ingredients on a cutting board.

What Vegetables go in Chicken Soup?

Honestly? Any vegetable can go into this Chicken Vegetable Soup. The recipe does add the vegetables in two stages, depending on how quickly they cook, but that’s easy to figure out if you’re using vegetables other than the ones listed. If the vegetable you are adding is dense like a carrot, add it with the first group of veggies. If, on the other hand, it is more tender and cooks more like a green bean, add it with the second group of veggies. In reality, you can’t really go wrong since all the vegetables in this soup will be cooked through – we’re not looking for precision cooking here.

A knife cutting zucchini into cubes with small white bowls of other ingredients nearby.

How to Cut Vegetables for Soup

Whenever you’re cutting anything for a recipe, you should visualize how you want the food to look at the end AND how the food is to be eaten. Soup is eaten with a spoon, so you want to make sure all the vegetables are easy to eat with a spoon. There are no knives when eating soup, and long dangling vegetables can be messy when eating with a spoon, so cut the vegetables into small chunks. The smaller the chunks the faster they cook and the more uniform the chunks, the more evenly the vegetables will cook. All in all, you want about 8 cups of chopped vegetables for this Chicken Vegetable Soup. 

Herbs de Provence in a small terracotta pot and some herbs in a white dish.

Seasoning Vegetable Soup?

There’s also a lot of flexibility when it comes to seasoning this soup. The recipe calls for herbes de Provence, which is a blend of herbs found commonly in Southern France. Generally, this includes parsley, thyme, oregano, rosemary, marjoram and sometimes fennel, lavender and tarragon. So, what to do if you don’t have any herbes de Provence? Just add a combination of any of these dried herbs, leaning more on the first in the list and less on the last in the list. Easy.

A wooden spoon pushing shredded chicken off a plate and into a hammered stainless steel stockpot with vegetable soup.

Can you put raw chicken in soup?

This recipe cooks the chicken in large pieces right in the soup and then the chicken is shredded and returned to the pot. If you prefer, you could cube the raw chicken and add it to the soup, but reduce the cooking time a little so you don’t dry the chicken out (especially if you’re using chicken breast). You could also add leftover cooked chicken to this soup, adding it along with the pasta closer to the end. 

Looking straight down into a stockpot with chicken vegetable soup in it and a wooden spoon on a spoon rest beside it.

Chicken stock for chicken vegetable soup?

When it comes to using stock for soups, I always think about what I want the dominant flavor of the soup to be. As a result, when making vegetable soups, I often opt for water over chicken or vegetable stock because I want the flavor of the vegetable in the title to be the dominant flavor. (Vegetable stocks are so varied and can have a very strong flavor of their own.) With this Chicken Vegetable Soup, I want chicken to really be the star, so I use chicken stock. If you’d prefer this soup to have vegetables as the flavor star over chicken, use vegetable stock or a combination of both. Feel free to use part water if you don’t have quite enough stock.

A ladle of chicken vegetable soup being held up above a stockpot of the soup.

What to serve with chicken soup?

This soup is so hearty that you really need very little else to go alongside. I like it with a piece of sourdough or no knead bread and a simple green salad. You could serve this for lunch or for dinner, depending on your appetite, and you’ll get at least 8 if not 10 servings out of the recipe. 

Hands ladling chicken vegetable soup from a hammered stainless steel stockpot to a white bowl.

Can you freeze Chicken Soup?

Should you have leftovers, you can freeze chicken vegetable soup and keep it for several months in your freezer. Just make sure to leave a little room in the container for the soup to expand in the freezer and know that you might want to dilute the soup when you re-heat it because the pasta does continue to absorb liquid. With some of this soup in the freezer, a hearty and nutritious meal is only 10 minutes away!

A dark gray bowl of chicken vegetable soup with a stockpot and another bowl of soup in the background.

Chicken Vegetable Soup

  • Prep Time: 30 m
  • Cook Time: 45 m
  • Total Time: 1 h 15 m
  • Servings:
    8
    people

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion, small diced
  • 3 carrots, small diced
  • 2 ribs celery, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon herbs de Provence
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 8 cups chicken stock
  • 1 (28-ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes, diced
  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts and/or thighs
  • 1 cup corn kernels
  • cups green beans, cut into ½-inch pieces
  • 1 medium zucchini, small diced
  • 1 turnip, peeled and small diced
  • cups dried ditalini pasta (7 ounces)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Instructions

  1. Heat a 6-quart Dutch oven or stock pot over medium heat. Add the oil and sweat the onions, carrots and celery for 5 minutes, until the vegetables start to soften. Add the herbs de Provence, salt, pepper and tomato paste and sauté for another few minutes to toast the tomato paste.
  2. Add the chicken stock and tomatoes and bring the mixture to a boil. Settle the chicken pieces into the soup, lower the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
  3. Remove the chicken pieces from the pot and transfer them to a cutting board. Let them cool for a few minutes and then, using two forks, shred the chicken into bite-sized pieces. Return the shredded chicken to the pot along with the corn, green beans, zucchini, turnip and dried pasta. Simmer over low heat for another 20 to 25 minutes, depending on how tender you want your vegetables.
  4. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper and add the fresh parsley just before serving.
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Comments (5)Post a Reply

  1. 5 stars
    The chicken vegetable soup was easy to cook and more important it was delicious! I will definitely be making this soup again. Excellent recipe. Thank you Meredith. (As a side note, I enjoy seeing the pictures of your dogs too.)

    1. Sure, Catherine. You can use any shaped pasta that you like. Just remember that people will be eating this with a spoon, so it should be relatively small and bite-sized.

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