A few months ago, on a cold rainy day, James and I were debating about what to have for dinner. When out of nowhere I said a nice, hot chicken soup sounded good. James agreed. The next thing you know, we were throwing together different ingredients and BAM! (to steal a line from Chef Emeril) our chicken and spinach soup was born.
We both loved the soup and surprisingly so did the girls. I love how versatile it can be. Shortly after our inaugural batch we discovered Trim Healthy Mama. With a few tweaks this soup can go from S to E (my personal favorite) to FP. I have included all three versions.
- 1 lb chicken (chicken breast if E or FP, any kind if S)
- 64 oz homemade chicken stock
- 1 onion
- 4-6 cloves of garlic
- 4-6 carrots (if making E)
- 2 cups frozen spinach
- 1 TBSP olive oil (I use 1/2 if my chicken is pre cooked, I use 1 tsp if making FP)
- 2 tsp onion powder
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 2 tsp dried parsley
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp crushed red pepper (more or less depending on the level of heat you want)
- Salt and pepper to taste (I use at least 1 tsp each when cooking)
- 1/2 tsp celery seed
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/4 tsp orange or lemon peel (just a little to add some brightness)
- Wash, peel, slice carrots and put off to the side (for E only).
- Peel and chop onions and put off to the side.
- Peel and grate garlic using a micro-plane and put off to the side.
- Chop chicken into 1 inch bite sized pieces.
- In a large pot, heat olive oil over medium heat (use 1 TBSP for S, 1/2 TBSP or less for E, 1 tsp if needed for FP).
- If using raw chicken, cook chicken in pot until no longer pink inside. If using pre cooked chicken skip this step.
- Saute onions and garlic until fragrant about 1 minute.
- Pour in chicken stock and add carrots and all seasonings. Add in pre cooked chicken now.
- Simmer on low heat for at least 3.5 hours.
- Stir in frozen spinach and cook for 30 minutes more.
For an S:
- Sprinkle a little parmesan cheese on top.
For an E:
- Stir 1 cup of soup into 3/4 cup precooked brown rice or quinoa.
- Soup straight up.
I usually make a double batch of this soup and freeze individual portions in Ball Plastic Freezer Jar. I also make a batch of brown rice and a batch of quinoa that I pre portion out and freeze in ziploc bags. Doing this makes for quick and easy lunches.
Another thing I like about this soup is how cost effective it is. I can take leftover baked or rotisserie chicken, chop it up and use it in the soup. I use frozen spinach because it is much cheaper to buy a huge bag of organic frozen spinach than to buy fresh.
Personally, I love the E version of this soup because I love the flavor the carrots and quinoa add. However, the S version is great with a half a plan approved wrap. The FP version is good too, especially since that is all you are eating so you can have 1.5-2 cups as long as you keep the chicken in check.
Do you have a favorite freezer friendly soup?
Have a blessed day!
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