Busy moms are always on the lookout for a “go-to” recipe.
You know the ones I’m talking about – quick and simple (and easy to throw together on a weeknight), contains healthy real food ingredients, and most importantly everyone in the family will eat it!
Sometimes it’s hard to suggest “go-to” recipes, because everyone’s family is different – with different schedules, different taste preferences, kids with varying degrees of pickiness.
But this recipe? I think it will go on everyone’s “go-to” list. Because who doesn’t like a big warm bowl of chicken noodle soup? And when it’s this easy, I think you’ll be eating chicken noodle soup a little more frequently.
The idea for this gem of a recipe came from a slow cooker roast chicken recipe that I found online. We use our slow cooker a lot in the winter, and discovering that I could easily roast a whole chicken in there (and that it was pretty darn delicious) was life changing.
Previously when making chicken noodle soup, I used pre-cooked chicken or had to cook the chicken ahead of time before adding to the soup. This is one step too many, in my opinion. When it comes to slow cooking, my favourite recipes are the ones where I just throw everything in there in the morning and turn it on.
Which is what you can do with this soup! Hooray! And get this – this soup doesn’t require chicken stock. You actually create your own homemade stock as the soup cooks. How great is that?
- 1 whole chicken (4-6 lbs)
- 8-10 cups of water (depending on size of chicken)
- 3 large carrots, peeled and chopped
- 3 celery stalks, chopped
- 1 cup chopped mushrooms
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 5 fresh thyme or rosemary stems (or 1 tsp dried)
- 1 bay leaf
- 1-2 tbsp olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 cups of noodles (egg noodles work well)
- Add vegetables, water and herbs to the slow cooker (you can throw in the whole stems!) Mix to combine.
- Prepare chicken, rub with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place the chicken on top of the vegetables in the slow cooker.
- Cover and cook on low for 8 hours. The chicken should be cooked through and falling off the bones.
- Pull chicken out carefully, trying to keep it from falling apart. (You may have to use a slotted spoon to make sure there aren't any bones left in the broth).
- Let it cool slightly, and then pull all the meat off of the bones (this should be very easy). Add meat back into soup and stir.
- If you will be eating all the soup immediately, add noodles and cook until noodles are tender.
- If you plan on having leftovers or freezing the soup, cook the noodles separately on the stove and then pour soup over noodles in individual bowls.
- Do not freeze this soup with noodles - they get very soggy and absorb all the liquid. Instead, freeze the broth and noodles separately.
p.s. Looking for more “go-to” recipes? The moms in my Raising Healthy Eaters Facebook Group are always swapping their fave meals.