Chicken and Rice Soup is a hearty and healthy soup that hits all the right notes with rich chicken broth, fresh vegetables, and flavorful herbs. Plus, you can make it in just 30 minutes!
Cozy Chicken and Rice Soup
We can’t be the only ones excited for soup season! We love when the temperatures drop even just a little bit so that we can break out all of the soup recipes. And this Chicken and Rice Soup is one of our top 3 favorite soups, along with our Loaded Potato Soup and our Crockpot Minestrone Soup.
It’s a cozy and soul-warming soup that you can make for a regular weeknight meal or when you’re feeling a little under the weather. It has all the wholesome ingredients that you love in a chicken soup – and then some!
There are lots of fresh vegetables – and we mean LOTS! Every bite is a heaping spoonful of fiber-rich vegetables. Plus, we add some rice to this soup to make it a little heartier. So, you can enjoy it on its own and still feel plenty satisfied.
Why You’ll Love this Recipe
Everyone is going to love this recipe. And here’s why:
- Make it in under 30 minutes. Do you know many soups that can be made in under 30 minutes? We can’t name that many, but this is one of them! So, you can easily make it on the fly!
- It’s really good for you! There are no strange ingredients here. Every single one of them is a whole food that has many health benefits. Chicken soup is known for its healing properties and this soup is no different.
- It’s also low-fat, gluten-free, low-carb, and dairy-free. This is a great soup to make if you’re serving friends and family with dietary restrictions.
What You’ll Need
Here is what you need to make this chicken soup. These ingredients are easy to find and affordable. Don’t forget to check out the recipe card for the exact ingredient amounts.
- Olive Oil: You can use another cooking oil like avocado oil or vegetable oil if you’d like.
- Onion: Yellow, white, or sweet onions work best for this recipe.
- Celery: You can even include the celery leaves in the soup.
- Carrots: The carrots add a little bit of sweetness. You could also use parsnips.
- Garlic: Garlic is one of the healing ingredients in chicken soup. You can never have enough in our opinion!
- Italian Seasoning: This is a great seasoning blend to add to a soup as it covers a lot of bases as far as flavorings go. You could also use a mixture of dried oregano, parsley, and/or basil.
- Zucchini: You can also use yellow squash.
- Chicken Broth: You can substitute vegetable broth if you do not have chicken broth. We recommend using low-sodium broth so that you can control the salt level of the soup.
- Chicken: You want to be sure your chicken is cooked and shredded or cubed. You could also use turkey.
- White Rice: We use long grain white rice, but you can use any rice you like. Keep in mind if using wild rice, it takes a little longer to cook and needs a little extra broth.
- Fresh Thyme and/or Rosemary: Fresh thyme will give you the best flavor, but you can substitute it for 1/2 tablespoons dried thyme. Or if you aren’t a fan of thyme, rosemary is also great!
- Salt and Pepper
How to Make Chicken and Rice Soup
We think you’ll agree with us when we say this soup tastes like it’s been cooking all day. (But it’s only been a half hour!) Here’s how it all comes together.
Prep and saute the vegetables first. You’ll want to cut them all to be about the same size so that they cook evenly. Then, saute all of the vegetables except the zucchini in a large pot. Season with garlic and Italian seasoning.
Add the zucchini and broth. The zucchini doesn’t take as long to cook, so you’ll add that after. Add the broth with the zucchini.
Next, add the rice, cooked chicken, and fresh herbs. Stir it all together and let it boil for a few minutes.
Simmer and wait! The rice will take just about 10 minutes to cook. Add some salt and pepper at the end and check for seasoning.
Tips and Variation Ideas
We think this recipe is pretty straightforward. But here are some tips to make it even better.
- You can use uncooked chicken. If you want to cook the chicken in the soup, you can add chopped chicken (cut into 1-inch squares) before you add the zucchini. Cook soup for an extra 5 minutes before adding the zucchini and continuing on with the recipe.
- Use up leftover turkey. This is a great way to make use of any leftovers.
- Add some lemon. Adding fresh lemon juice at the end not only increases the soup’s immune-boosting properties but adds a delicious layer of flavor!
What Goes with Chicken and Rice Soup?
We love to have soup for dinner. But sometimes soup just isn’t enough. Here are some of our favorite recipes to pair with this chicken soup.
- Soup and Salad Combos: Try our Cucumber Tomato Salad, Creamy Egg Salad on some fresh greens, or Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad.
- Soup and Sandwich Combos: We love serving this soup with really simple sandwiches like Air Fryer Grilled Cheese (our favorite way to make a grilled cheese!) or BLT.
- Other side options: Some of our other favorite recipes to serve as a family meal are our Tuna Patties and Hot Dogs with Chili. You can also keep it really basic and serve it with your favorite homemade rolls, crusty bread, or biscuits.
How to Store and Reheat Leftovers
We think that this soup tastes even better as leftovers! So, here is how to best keep it fresh so that you can enjoy it all week.
Store the soup in an airtight container for up to 5 days in the refrigerator. Then simply reheat in the microwave or on the stove.
Can I Freeze Extras?
We highly recommend making a big batch and freezing it for a “rainy day”…or a sick day…or just a day that you don’t want to make dinner!
You can freeze the soup for up to 3 months. Be sure that you transfer it to the fridge to thaw for 2 days before ready to serve for the best results.
Chicken and Rice Soup
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 cup diced celery
- 2 cups diced carrots
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 2 large zucchini, sliced
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 2 cups cooked and shredded chicken, or turkey
- ½ cup white rice
- 4-5 sprigs fresh thyme or 2 sprigs fresh rosemary, or both
- Salt & pepper, to taste
- In a large heavy bottomed pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, and carrots. Sauté for 5 minutes, until softened. Add garlic and Italian seasoning and cook for one more minute.
- Add zucchini and chicken broth. Bring soup to a low boil and add then add rice and cooked and shredded chicken, stir well, and let boil for 3 minutes.
- Then turn the heat to low and let soup simmer for 10 minutes, until rice is cooked and tender. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve immediately.
- Store the soup in an airtight container for up to 5 days in the refrigerator. Then simply reheat in the microwave or on the stove.
- Freeze soup in airtight container for up to 3 months. Transfer to fridge to thaw 24 hours before wanting to reheat and serve for best results.