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Chicken Noodle Soup Benefits & Recipes You Can Make Today

Chicken noodle soup is hands down the soup of choice for those that aren't feeling their best.

But where did it come from?

Is chicken noodle soup beneficial for your health?

Are all of the soups at the grocery store good for you?

Get answers to these questions and more in this detailed guide about America's favorite feel-good soup.

The Chicken Before The Soup

sketch of a chicken

Until recently, the origin of the modern-day chicken was not confirmed.

But thanks to researchers from the University of California, we can now say the chickens we know today originated in southwestern China, northern Thailand and Myanmar, through the combination of four different species of chicken-like birds 1.

It probably wasn't long after that when people enjoyed the first batch of chicken soup. The addition of noodles and other fillings came to a while later.

Origins Of Our Chicken Noodle Soup Recipe

raw vegetables carrots

Chicken noodle soup, as we know it today, has its origins traced back to recipes created in Jewish, Amish, and Mennonite communities in Scotland and Poland that immigrated to the USA 2.

These recipes included different combinations of fillings such as carrots, onions, leeks, celery, potatoes, parsnips, matzo balls, and other ingredients.

But why eat chicken noodle soup or chicken soup, to begin with?
The answer lies in the healing properties of chicken soup that moms around the world believe in.

Benefits & Uses Of Chicken Noodle Soup

Cold Symptoms

sore throat hand on throat

The common cold can cause symptoms such as a runny nose, sore throat, and coughing. High-quality chicken noodle soup may help relieve some of these symptoms.

Thanks to a 2000 study published in the CHEST journal, researchers found proof that chicken soup ingredients may aid the common cold.

That's more than enough for grandmas everywhere to say, "I told you so."

The medicinal-like properties of chicken noodle soup are attributed to the presence of an amino called Acid Cysteine that is very similar to Acetylcysteine. Acetylcysteine is in medication used to loosen thick mucus.

Open Your Airways

nose throat mouth

Ever notice how you breathe easier after a bowl of chicken noodle soup?

In a study where test patients drank chicken soup were found to have more increased airflow than test patients who drank warm water 3.

The test showed that it wasn't just the temperature of the fluid.

It’s believed that the aroma, flavor, and nutrient combinations inside the soup and broth help boost your body's ability to open your airways and increase mucus flow from your nose.

Upset Stomach

hands on stomach

If you've ever suffered from an upset stomach, you know it can be hard to keep your food down.

That's because some foods can be too hard to digest. Thankfully, chicken noodle soup goes down smoothly.

Make things lighter on your stomach by removing some of the ingredients and serving more of the broth. Slowly introduce more vegetables and noodles as you feel better and digest your food with greater ease.

Post-Workout Comfort Food

woman stretching leg after workout

What do fitness experts recommend after an intense workout?

Hydrate and eat a balanced meal of protein, fats, and clean carbohydrates 4.

Well, chicken noodle soup has a pretty solid balance in all of those areas.

Therefore, after your next workout, consider adding a bowl of chicken noodle soup to your diet to help your body get the nutrients it needs to recover faster, so you can get back out there and crush it again.

Boost the Nutritional Profile of Your Chicken Noodle Soup

When you think of chicken noodle soup, you probably don't think of getting more calcium, boosting your immunity, or getting more collagen in your diet.

But these are just some of the benefits of a well-made pot of chicken noodle soup.

Here are a few tips on how to boost the nutritional profile of your chicken noodle soup today:

Add Organic And Immunity-boosting Foods

garlic and ginger

The quickest way to boost the immunity-enhancing nutrients of your chicken noodle soup is to use organic ingredients.

Organic vegetables have the same vitamins, nutrients, and fiber as non-organic vegetables, but they lack pesticides.

Numerous studies show that pesticides can interfere and suppress aspects of your immune system 5, so you'll want to avoid them as much as you can.

You can also add immunity-enhancing foods that go well with your recipe.

Garlic appears in many chicken noodle recipes, so it makes sense to highlight it here.

Dark leafy greens like spinach and collard greens also go well with chicken noodle soup and add immune-boosting vitamin C to your meal.

Other ingredients and spices are ginger, turmeric, and red bell peppers.

Lastly, if you don't want to mess with your recipe, you can pair your chicken noodle soup with a big green salad to get more folate and beta-carotene 6.

Increase Calcium Content

strong bones foot on treadmill

Getting more calcium is known to help build healthy, strong bones. But it's also beneficial for your muscles, heart, and nerves 7.

Increase your chicken noodle soup's calcium content by simmering your soup with chicken bones or other bones (ex: turkey, duck, beef bones) for more extended periods (3 hours or more).

Simmering the bones for longer will naturally break down the bones and release calcium into the broth. Be sure to do this before adding in your veggies and noodles, so they don't overcook.

Increase Collagen Content

hands holding knee

Collagen is a protein used for almost everything in our bodies, especially our skin, bones, and joints.

Unfortunately, our bodies don’t always get enough collagen as we age, to keep us looking and feeling great.

The good part is that today we can get more by adding it to our diet by sipping on bone broth, for example.

Boost the collagen content in your chicken noodle soup by cooking the chicken carcass (skin, bones, and all), and then remove the bones when your soup is ready.

A quick and fast way to add more collagen is to add chicken bone broth to your soup. Quicker yet, buy chicken noodle soup with bone broth.

Popular chicken noodle soup alternatives

Many recipes are similar to chicken noodle soup and vary by adding or subtracting a few ingredients. Here's a list of the most popular alternatives you can cook today.

Chicken Bone Broth

chicken bone broth

Don't have onions, celery, carrots, noodles, or other ingredients?

No problem, high-quality chicken bone broth can also help your cold symptoms and provide you with many of the nutritional benefits of chicken noodle soup.

Chicken Soup or Chicken Stew

chicken stew

Chicken soup or stew is a great idea when you have leftover vegetables or meat and want to cook them all, or you suddenly have a few more mouths to feed than you expected.

Another bonus is you get to choose how hearty you want your soup or stew to be.

Leftover parsnips, cabbage, onions, brisket, all go well in the right amounts with chicken soup.

Keto-Friendly Creamy Chicken Soup

creamy keto soup

So you've got your chicken noodle soup halfway ready, but you want it creamier, and without the noodles?

Then what you're looking for is keto-friendly creamy chicken soup.

Add celery root, cream cheese, and heavy cream to replace any potatoes or noodles, to gain a creamy consistency.

Boost the collagen content in your chicken noodle soup by cooking the chicken carcass (skin, bones, and all), and then remove the bones when your soup is ready.

A quick and fast way to add more collagen is to add chicken bone broth to your soup. Quicker yet, buy chicken noodle soup with bone broth.

How To Shop For The Best Chicken Noodle Soup

Not every store-bought chicken noodle soup is made the same.

Let's look at what you need to keep in mind when shopping online or the grocery store for chicken noodle soup that is better for you and your family.

Great Taste & MSG Free

Okay, you won't know if you enjoy the flavor until you've tried it. But, you can scan product reviews when shopping online on third party websites like Whole Foods, Sprouts, or Amazon. Look for user reviews about the flavor to see if it matches your expectations. Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) is an amino acid found naturally in some foods like tomatoes. However, studies have shown MSG can have adverse effects on your health 8.

The question is, why do some brands infuse their soups with MSG?

Because it works, and it's cheap.

Adding MSG is a quick and fast way for big brands to make their products taste better, and improve their profits, without the effort and ingredients needed to make a soup that tastes great and is better for you.

Steer clear of any soups with MSG by scanning food labels for monosodium salt, monohydrate, monosodium glutamate, monosodium glutamate monohydrate, monosodium L-glutamate monohydrate, MSG monohydrate, sodium glutamate monohydrate, L-Glutamic acid, monosodium salt, and monohydrate 9.

Free of Artificial Ingredients

artificial food coloring in water

As a general rule of thumb, the fewer the ingredients on a label, the better.

The best-packaged foods you can eat are those with ingredients you can read and understand what they are.

Artificial ingredients are usually easy to spot because they have the word "artificial" before them: artificial flavors, artificial colors, artificial sweeteners, and artificial aromas.

But other substances can fly under the radar with names like additives, colorants, and emulsifiers.

Dairy and Soy Free

creamy keto soup

Different brands of chicken noodle soup may add dairy or soy based products to change the thickness, appearance, or flavor of their product. This can be bad news if you are allergic to dairy or soy.

Although soy-based allergies are less common, there is a growing sentiment that processed soy products aren’t great for you.

Studies have shown some evidence that processed soy can be harmful, but it’s believed that more research is needed to provide us with definitive answers. Luckily, it's quite easy to spot the “dairy free” and “soy free” labels on USDA approved products.

3 Chicken Noodle Soup Recipes You Can Make Today

By now, your mouth is watering after reading through this guide. Here are three quick chicken noodle soup recipes you can make today.

Hearty Bone Broth Chicken Noodle Soup

Ingredients

  • 2 bone-in skin-on chicken thighs
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon grass-fed butter
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • ½ onion finely chopped
  • 2 cups Kettle & Fire Chicken Bone Broth
  • ½ cup frozen peas thawed
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley

Instructions

  1. Heat the oven to 425°F.
  2. Using a paper towel, pat both sides of the chicken thighs dry and rub salt and pepper onto the chicken.
  3. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. Place the chicken thighs skin-side down on the skillet. Cook for 5 minutes. Flip and cook for 2 more minutes.
  4. Divide garlic, onion, chicken bone broth and peas evenly between two small cast iron skillets.
  5. Add one chicken thigh to each skillet and place in the oven for 30 minutes, or until chicken is fully cooked.
  6. Serve chicken soup in the cast iron skillet and garnish with parsley.

Get the full Cast Iron Skillet Chicken Soup recipe

One-Pot Chicken Noodle Soup

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 cups carrots, diced
  • Kosher salt
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 stalks celery, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
  • 4 cups Kettle & Fire Chicken Bone Broth (2 cartons)
  • 2 cups red salsa
  • 2 cups green salsa
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 8 ounces egg noodles (optional)
  • 4 cups of rotisserie chicken shredded or cut into bite-size pieces
  • Fresh cilantro and lime wedges for serving

Instructions

  1. In a large soup pot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onions and carrots, followed by a pinch of salt. Sauté until the onions are translucent and the carrots start getting soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  2. Add celery, bell pepper, and mushrooms in the pot. Pour chicken bone broth over the vegetables and stir in red salsa and green salsa. (If you’ve made the Mexican Rice recipe in this book, you may substitute the preserved tomato and onion mixture for the red salsa.) Add dried basil and mix.
  3. Without noodles: Bring to a simmer, cover, and cook on medium heat for 15 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. With noodles: Bring to a boil, add noodles and cook on high heat for 8-10 minutes until the noodles are tender. The vegetables should be soft by then.
  4. Uncover, reduce heat to medium-low. Add chicken and allow the chicken to heat through, stirring occasionally. Taste, add more salt if desired.
  5. Remove from heat—dish and garnish with fresh cilantro leaves. Serve with lime wedges. Enjoy!

Get the full One-pot Chicken Noodle Soup recipe

The Best Cast Iron Skillet Chicken Soup

Ingredients

  • 2 bone-in skin-on chicken thighs
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon grass-fed butter
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • ½ onion finely chopped
  • 2 cups Kettle & Fire Chicken Bone Broth
  • ½ cup frozen peas thawed
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley

Instructions

  1. Heat the oven to 425°F.
  2. Using a paper towel, pat both sides of the chicken thighs dry and rub salt and pepper onto the chicken.
  3. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. Place the chicken thighs skin-side down on the skillet. Cook for 5 minutes. Flip and cook for 2 more minutes.
  4. Divide garlic, onion, chicken bone broth and peas evenly between two small cast iron skillets.
  5. Add one chicken thigh to each skillet and place in the oven for 30 minutes, or until chicken is fully cooked.
  6. Serve chicken soup in the cast iron skillet and garnish with parsley.

Get the full Cast Iron Skillet Chicken Soup recipe

A Bowl-Full of Chicken Noodle Soup

A lot has changed globally, but chicken noodle soup is still known as the go-to meal for when you aren't feeling your best.

We looked at the origin, benefits, uses, alternatives, quick recipes, and more details about chicken noodle soup in this guide.

If you’d like to get your spoon into a chicken noodle soup that's better for you, order online today and have it shipped to your door. You’ll be sipping on the closest thing to homemade chicken noodle soup in no time. 

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