The BEST Homemade Chicken Soup Recipe

by Sami

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 If cold and flu season has you searching for the best homemade chicken soup recipe to feel better, look no further…

Best Homemade Chicken Soup Recipe Chicken Stock

The BEST Homemade Chicken Soup Recipe

I know you may think I’m over-selling this simple chicken soup, but trust me, I’m not.

I’ve made a lot of chicken soup and chicken stock recipes at home over the years, but ever since discovering this one, it’s become my go-to recipe.

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Homemade Chicken Stock

Yes, I billed this as chicken soup – and it is – but I also use this recipe for homemade chicken stock as well. I will end up with 3-4 mason jars full of broth when all is said and done. From that, I will always make sure I have one in the fridge and I typically flat freeze the rest in Ziploc bags.

Because this is a bone broth, it’s very healthy to heat up and drink on its own for a mid-day pick me up (in fact, I just drank a cup as I was writing this!). The chicken broth is also great to use in recipes or to cook rice or vegetables in. Once you replace water with this stock in your cooking, you won’t go back!

Now, let’s get on with the best homemade chicken soup recipe you’ll ever taste:

Best Homemade Chicken Soup Recipe Chicken Stock

Best Homemade Chicken Soup Recipe

Serves: 6 Prep Time: Cooking Time:
Nutrition facts: 200 calories 20 grams fat
Rating: 5.0/5
( 1 voted )


  • 1 Whole Chicken Carcass (ideally 3-4 lbs)
  • 2 large yellow onions (unpeeled & roughly chopped)
  • 4 celery stalks, cleaned & roughly chopped
  • 4 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 head garlic (halved horizontally so cloves are exposed)
  • 1 handful of fresh herb stems (I typically use parsley or cilantro)
  • 1 Tbsp black peppercorns
  • Kosher salt to taste
  • 3 qt water


Fill the largest stock pot you have three-quarters of the way full with filtered water and set to boil.

To the pot, add your chicken carcass, onions, celery, carrots, garlic, herb stems, peppercorns and about 1 Tbsp of the kosher salt. If you find you have more room after adding all that, you can add more water. (Just be careful; make sure there is enough room to let the chicken stock boil without boiling over).

Once the soup comes to a boil, simmer over medium-high heat for about 3 hours.  You'll want to skim any foam that rises to the top as well. The stock will reduce a couple inches in the pot and develop a beautiful golden color.

After the chicken soup reaches the desired level, I put it through a double-straining process. First, pour it through a colander into a clean pot or large bowl. At this point, you'll want to discard all the bones, vegetables and solids (they've given all they can give at this point!). Next, give the original stock pot a quick wipe and clean before putting it back on the stove. Then, using a fine-mesh sieve, strain the soup back into the original pot.

You can stop here and enjoy the best homemade chicken soup you've ever tasked. However, if you'd like, you can also add root vegetables like parsnips or carrots, or even noodles, and continue to boil until just cooked.


If you want to use a whole chicken instead, feel free; I'd just suggest breaking the chicken up into sections so you can pull the breasts out after 30 minutes and reserve them to add back into your soup once cooked.

Here is my stock pot of chicken soup at the very beginning  of the boiling process:

best homemade chicken soup recipe stock pot boil

And here is what the chicken stock looks like after it reduces, but before I strain it:

best homemade chicken stock reduced

Chicken Soup Variations

The very first time I made this recipe, I used the carcass from a Costco rotisserie chicken. I cleaned all the meat off the bones and saved some to add back into the soup later. While the original recipe calls for you to use a whole chicken (see below), it worked so well this way and cost less, it’s the only way I’ve cooked it ever since.

As mentioned in the recipe, this homemade chicken soup stands great on its own, but welcomes friends to the pool. I suggest root vegetables such as carrots and parsnips that won’t turn to mush and, of couse, chunks of the reserved rotisserie chicken.

Original Chicken Soup Recipe from Julia Turshen

As I alluded to earlier, this recipe has been adapted from another: Julia Turshen’s “Aunt Renee’s Chicken Soup” found in her cookbook, Small Victories. I first discovered Julia as she co-authored one of my favorite Gwyneth Paltrow cookbooks, It’s All Good. So when I heard Julia authored her own cookbook, I scooped it up.

Well, that isn’t entirely true; you know my cookbook routine. I always check out a cookbook from the library before buying it. If I love multiple recipes and find myself checking it out three or four times, I feel I’ve earned the right to buy it 🙂

{You can use my experience as proof this is good enough for you to buy now.}

Besides having great recipes that embrace the beauty and taste of simple food, Julia imparts simple yet helpful tips throughout each recipe (hence the title). At the end of most recipes, she also provides variations that end up equally delicious. I can’t say enough good things about this book!

So there you have it. This chicken soup isn’t hard to make, but it does take a while to reap its benefits. As such, I suggest making a batch every couple weeks and freezing the leftovers to make sure you have it on hand when you need it.

After all, when the sniffles arrive in your home, you don’t want to wait to smell the goodness of this broth!

The Best Homemade Chicken Soup Recipe Pinterest

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