Chicken Soup and Rice

Serves 4
This is a really quick version of chicken soup made to mimic a traditional long-simmered soup. Time permitting, the latter is better. But, with a few basic pantry items, you can prepare this version in about 10 minutes. Served with salad and toast it also makes a great lunch. For times like this it’s useful to keep small packets of cooked chicken breast and rice upfront in the freezer.


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 3 scallions (both white and green parts), thinly sliced
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • 1 quart (4 cups) homemade chicken broth or best-quality store-bought chicken broth
  • 1 cup cooked, shredded chicken meat (leftover or 1 chicken breast half, sauteed or steamed)
  • 1/2 cup cooked rice
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Heat a medium-sized soup pot over medium heat and swirl in the olive oil and butter. Saute the scallions, carrot, and parsley for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the chicken broth and simmer until the carrot is cooked through, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the chicken and rice. Heat through completely, about 3 minutes. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.
cook's note
Another Quick Method for Cooking Chicken: Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil or baking parchment. Place 4 to 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts on the sheet. Sprinkle with olive oil, salt, and pepper and top loosely with a sheet of parchment. Bake until just cooked through, about 15 to 20 minutes, turning once. Cool and use as needed; freeze leftovers. A breast half makes 1 to 1½ cups of shredded chicken.

Homemade Chicken Broth: Don’t be intimidated by homemade chicken broth. It can be as simple or as complicated as you have time for. Cover chicken bones or parts with water, bring to a boil, simmer for 30 minutes, add salt (or not), skim, and you have an enriched liquid to cook with that is better than any commercial canned broth. Time permitting, you can slowly simmer a chicken with water, vegetables, herbs, and spices, strain, and simmer some more to concentrate the flavor. Easily stored in the freezer for soups, stews, or sauces, it’s well worth the time spent making it. Best-quality boxed or canned chicken broth, available everywhere, can also be used, but so far no commercial manufacturer has made a product for mass consumption that comes close to homemade in flavor.
Need help with the ingredients? Check our pantry list: