No-Fuss Chicken Soup

No-Fuss Chicken Soup

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This no-fuss chicken soup recipe is one that belongs in your rotation because you simply can’t have too many chicken soup recipes, right?

When I first developed this recipe earlier this year, I asked the question, “Can there be too many chicken soup recipes?”. I suppose I should be asking myself instead, “Can I eat too much chicken soup?”. I’ve come to accept that chicken soup is just part of my personality now, and there’s nothing to be done about it. I love it. I can eat it at least once a week. And perhaps most importantly, I enjoy the process of making it.

This version is wonderfully simple. You don’t need too many ingredients, and you can’t really mess it up. Add to it what you like, take away what you don’t like, and you’ll still end up with a nice bowl of soup at the end.

Chicken Soup Recipe

How to make my no-fuss chicken soup:

This recipe is pretty low-maintenance, and most of the magic happens during the inactive time, while the chicken bubbles away on the stove. This isn’t a dinner that requires much babysitting.

What you need

  • Aromatics: I use a basic trio of onion, celery, and garlic. Add carrots, if you like.
  • Chicken: I use bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs for maximum flavor, but you can make this with a small whole bird, or you can shred up a rotisserie chicken if you want to keep this even shorter and simpler.
  • The filling stuff: Potatoes and pearl couscous make this meal extra filling and stick to your ribs. One reader told me they used bulgur wheat and loved it. I think that would be exceptional. Other grains like barley, farro, or brown rice would be delicious too.
  • Finishing: I add a little lemon juice and fresh parsley for brightness. Skip it, if you don’t have it. I add a sprinkle of Aleppo pepper flakes for a little heat, but you can use a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes if that’s what you have in your pantry.

How to make it

  • Step 1: Fry up the onion and celery first. Add in the garlic and cook until it’s just fragrant.
  • Step 2: Chuck in your chicken and then cover with water or chicken broth. Bring to a boil, and then add in your potatoes. Reduce heat and simmer for about 40 minutes.
  • Step 3: Take out your chicken and let it cool. Shred it with a fork or your fingers.
  • Step 4: Bring your broth back to a boil and add the chicken back in with your pearl couscous. Boil for about 15 minutes.
  • Step 5: Finish it up! Add the parsley, lemon juice, and Aleppo pepper flakes if you like. You’re ready to eat!

That’s all there is to it. I think you’ll love how warm and comforting this chicken soup is on a chilly night; I know I did!

Chicken Soup Recipe

No-Fuss Chicken Soup

There are never too many chicken soup recipes, and this simple take is one you'll want to have on regular rotation.
4.50 from 10 votes
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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Inactive time: 55 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 5
Calories: 443kcal



  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, peeled and diced
  • 3 ribs celery, trimmed and diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
  • 6 cups chicken broth or water, plus more if needed
  • 1 pound gold potatoes, scrubbed and large-diced
  • 1 cup pearl couscous
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • ¼ cup parsley, minced
  • Aleppo pepper or use crushed red pepper to taste
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Sauté the aromatics:

  • Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-high. Once hot, add the onion and celery. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5–7 minutes until they soften.
  • Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute.

Simmer the chicken:

  • Season the chicken all over with salt and pepper. Transfer the thighs to the pot and pour in the water or broth. Bring to a boil and add the potatoes. Boil for 1–2 minutes. Reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, for 40–50 minutes.
  • Taste the broth and adjust the seasonings to your preference.

Shred the chicken:

  • Remove the chicken from the pot and transfer it to a bowl. Once it’s cool enough to handle, shred the meat. Discard the skin and bones or reserve the bones to make stock later.

Finish the soup:

  • Return the broth to a boil. Add the pearl couscous. Stir in the shredded chicken. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes or until the pearl couscous is tender.
  • Stir in the lemon juice, parsley, and red pepper flakes. Simmer for 5 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasonings once more. Turn off the heat.

To serve:

  • Ladle the soup into bowls. Serve with more red pepper flakes on top. Enjoy!


Calories: 443kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 20g | Sodium: 98mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin C: 18mg
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  1. 5 stars
    I made this recipe with organic ground chicken breast and did add carrots and turmeric. I used organic chicken bone broth from Trader Joe’s. The only pasta I had was rotini. It was good. I doubled the recipe.

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