Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup

In Iowa, when January hits, winter really sinks in. The wind often howls, and the snow I was dreaming of at Christmas starts to fall. When I say I hibernate during the winter, I mean that I stay in and crave to cook food that warms my soul. These urges to cook are often what inspires comfort food: those foods that bring warmth, but also somehow relax as well.

Often, comfort foods are heavy on starch and literally leave us wanting a nap from the intensity. But comfort comes in a variety of ways: with memories and even nourishment.

Top down view of red colored bowl filled with chicken noodle soup filled with chunks of chicken and carrots and celery with wood board all on white countertop

Chicken noodle is my go-to soup. I say go-to but I often inadvertently overlook it and forget how good it really can be. The ingredients are simple enough that I always have them on hand… and I bet you do too! Growing up, Mom would often make chicken noodle soup for a quick supper and my dad, sister, and I all loved it.

Homemade is the only way to make it as the flavor is full and the soup is hearty. The stand out flavor needs to be chicken, though. Purchased chicken stocks can be good, but most times they have too much salt.

Top down view of white bowl filled with broth filled chicken noodle soup with chunks of carrots and celery on wood surface

So rather than using purchased chicken stock, just as easy is cooking a whole chicken in the soup to create and retain all the necessary flavor. A small fryer is reasonable and is full of flavor with plenty of meat, some that can even be kept as a leftover for another dish.

Chicken soup does not have many ingredients so each one needs to be extraordinary. I find presliced baby carrots are often the easy default, but they lack real carrot flavor. This soup calls for the use of organically-grown carrots and celery. The flavor and nutrients of the vegetables will be at the forefront and will complement the chicken.

Close up view of pieces of chicken with chunks of carrot and celery surrounding in red bowl

To add even more vegetal presence, this recipe uses one bulb of fennel. Raw, fennel can be strong, but when added to the soup, it becomes a quiet undertone that lifts up all the other flavors.

At the end of cooking, I add some egg noodles, just like Mom always did. They soak up some of the stock but also give the hearty comfort that soup needs. All of these components make this soup a comfort that satisfies and nourishes.

Watch how to make this chicken noodle soup recipe:

Top down view of red bowl filled with chicken noodle soup with big chunks of chicken and carrots all on white surface
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5 from 2 votes

Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup

This homemade chicken noodle soup is made from pantry staples and that's the best part! Every ingredient is simple, wholesome, and delicious!
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time50 minutes
Total Time1 hour 5 minutes
Course: Soup
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chicken, soup, winter
Difficulty: Intermediate
Method: Cooking
Servings: 8 servings
Author: Kaleb

Ingredients

  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 2 cups chopped carrot
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 1 ½ cups chopped fennel (one bulb)
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 ½ tsp black pepper
  • 1 cup egg noodles
  • 3-4 lb whole chicken

Instructions

  • Heat a 6- or 8-quart Dutch oven over medium heat with 2 tbsp olive oil. Add the onion and cook until soft and translucent, 3 minutes.
  • Add the carrot, celery, fennel, chicken, and thyme. Cover with 2 quarts of water. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cook until the chicken registers 165°F.
  • Remove the chicken from the soup and add the egg noodles. When the chicken is cool enough to handle, remove and discard the skin. Separate the meat from the bones and shred. Add back to the soup to warm through and serve. Depending on the size of the chicken, add some or all of the meat and store the rest in the refrigerator for up to one week.

Nutrition

Serving: 1 servingCalories: 193 kcal (10%)Carbohydrates: 11.9 g (4%)Protein: 27.3 g (55%)Fat: 3.6 g (6%)Saturated Fat: 0.8 g (5%)Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.7 gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.9 gTrans Fat: 0 gCholesterol: 88.5 mg (30%)Sodium: 965.6 mg (42%)Potassium: 625.2 mg (18%)Fiber: 2.3 g (10%)Sugar: 3.3 g (4%)Vitamin A: 289.8 IU (6%)Vitamin C: 6 mg (7%)Calcium: 39.5 mg (4%)Iron: 0.9 mg (5%)

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  • Kaleb, your soup looks delicious! I love your idea of putting fennel in your chicken soup and using fennel fronds and celery leaves as a garnish. Ironically I bought prepackaged chicken soup at Whole Foods today (before I saw your video). Yours looks much fresher and better, ha! I will be making your recipe in the near future. Thanks for sharing. BTW, I love all your videos and recipes – I am totally hooked!

  • Making this today!!! Sending a lil package down the street to a favorite neighbor who is in quarantine—porch drop!
    You’ve become part of my daily routine! You don’t know it yet- but we’re going to be great friends! Warm regards from NC!

  • Kaleb! I am raised on chicken soup in Holland. Jewish dad so life without chicken soup not possible.
    But your recipe is the BEST ever! Absolutely fabulous.
    Perfect for snowy Minnesota!
    Happy New Year!🎆

  • 5 stars
    I’ve never made homemade chicken noodle soup, but when I saw you make it, I knew this was the time to start! Perfect timing too, since I was able to take it to a family member with COVID. It was absolutely delicious! I probably should have added more salt during the cooking process, but being my first time making this, I was timid. This was so easy to make and will be my forever go to for homemade chicken noodle soup. Thank you, Kaleb, for sharing yourself and your well loved recipes with us! You are an inspiration to me! Xoxo