‘Homemade Chicken Soup (From Scratch!)’ Source: Food Network (Modified)

~Stock Ingredients~

* 1 whole chicken (about 3 1/2 pounds), rinsed, giblets discarded (I have been recently making mine with just the bones, and loved it so far)

* 2 carrots, cut in large chunks

* 3 celery stalks, cut in large chunks

* 2 large white onions, quartered

* 1 head of garlic, halved

* 1/4 bunch fresh thyme (plus 1 drop thyme essential oil)

* 1 tbs fresh parsley (plus some essential oil!)

* 2 bay leaves

* 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns

~Stock Directions~

1. Place the chicken and vegetables in a large stockpot or dutch oven, over medium heat. Pour in only enough cold water to cover (about 3 quarts); too much will make the broth taste weak.

2. Toss in the thyme, parsley, bay leaves, and peppercorns, and allow it to slowly come to a boil. Lower the heat to medium-low and gently simmer for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, partially covered, until the chicken is done. As it cooks, skim any impurities that rise to the surface; add a little more water if necessary to keep the chicken covered while simmering.

3. Remove the chicken to a cutting board, careful! It will be HOT. When it is cool enough to handle, discard the skin and bones; hand-shred the meat into a storage container. Carefully strain the stock through a fine sieve into another pot to remove the vegetable solids. Discard the vegetables.

4. Use the stock immediately OR if you plan on storing it, place

the pot in a sink full of ice water and stir to cool down the stock. Cover and refrigerate for up to one week or freeze.

~Soup Ingredients~

* 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

* 1 medium onion, chopped

* 3 garlic cloves, minced

* 2 medium carrots, sliced

* 2 celery ribs, chopped

* 4 fresh thyme sprigs

* 1 bay leaf

* 2 quarts of above chicken stock

* 1 1/2 cups shredded cooked chicken

* Salt and ground black pepper

~Soup Directions~

1. Place a soup pot or dutch oven over medium heat and coat with the oil. Add the onion, garlic, carrots, celery, thyme and bay leaf. Cook and stir for about 6 minutes, until the vegetables are softened but not browned.

2. Pour in the chicken stock and bring the liquid to a boil. Add the noodles and simmer for 5 minutes until tender. Fold in the chicken, and continue to simmer for another couple of minutes to heat through; season with salt and pepper.

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