I try to be really good about meal planning at the beginning of every week. I think that things just go a bit smoother when I have an organized plan for meals. However, I sometimes fall a bit short on that goal. When that happens, we have a few go-to recipes that do the job on short notice, such as a simple chicken noodle soup that does the job when we are in a time crunch. It's just chicken, stock, carrots, celery, and pepper. Easy!
But, lately, we've been obsessed with this slightly more complicated version. It is so delicious and full of many layers of flavor. Even though you start with boxed stock, you add so much to the complexity of it that, by the end, you'll think you used homemade chicken stock. It's comforting and a little fancy (for chicken noodle soup, anyway) and completely delicious. It's our favorite chicken noodle soup recipe, hands down!
Our Favorite Chicken Noodle Soup
4 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup flour
1/2 yellow onion, diced
3/4 of a small bag of baby carrots (probably two cups worth), diced
5 stalks of celery, diced
Rotisserie chicken, shredded
2 boxes of chicken stock
4 cups water
1 1/2 tablespoons chicken base (or you could use chicken bouillon, but I really would recommend the chicken base)
3/4 teaspoon dried thyme
2 bay leaves
1 bag of Reames noodles (in the freezer section of your grocery store)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Salt and lots of freshly cracked pepper
Melt butter and oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Sauté chopped onions, celery, and carrots with a pinch of salt and lots of pepper in butter and oil for 10 minutes. Sprinkle in the flour, stir, and cook for 2 minutes. Slowly whisk in 2 boxes of stock and bring to a boil. Add the bay leaves and thyme and reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 20 minutes.
Add in 4 cups of water and chicken base. Season again with pepper. Add the noodles and bring to a boil. Boil for 10 minutes, then add the shredded chicken and cook for 5 minutes. Finally, add the parsley and taste for seasonings. I usually add more pepper at this point, but we love lots of pepper! Cook for 5 minutes more, then remove the bay leaves and serve. Enjoy!