Basic Chicken Soup

Basic Chicken Soup
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Basic Chicken Soup
Print Recipe
  1. Pick a nice rotisserie chicken: one that hasn't been sitting on the hot table too long, okay? (Big Y's are the best in Western Mass.)
  2. Pull all the good meat off the chicken and set aside. Take all the skin, fat, bones and meat scraps, including overcooked or too-crispy-to-be-tender bits and throw them in a stock pot. Pour in the juice from the bottom of the container and rinse the bits in there out with hot water and add that, too.
  3. Add more water to cover and bring it to a boil. Lower the heat to a simmer and cook for as long as you have; preferably at least three or four hours. Keep adding water to cover the bones as the stock cooks down.
  4. Put a colander over a bowl large enough to hold the soup liquid, and drain the stock pot. Once it's drained well, leave the bones in the sink in the colander to cool and throw away (put them in a plastic bag before you put them in the trash so it doesn't leak).
  5. If you have time, refrigerate the drained stock until you can pull the solid fat off the top. If you don't have time, skim the fat off as well as possible with a large spoon.
  6. Return the drained and skimmed stock to a pot and add the sliced carrots, as much peas and corn as desired (plus any other vegetables you like and deem appropriate), and alphabet pasta.
  7. Cook until the carrots and pasta are tender, probably about 10 minutes.
  8. Add in some of the pieces of cooked chicken that you previously picked off the bird. Warm thoroughly. Add dill to taste.
Recipe Notes

Yeah, you could use a different pasta or rice, but is that as much fun?


The seasoning on the store-cooked chicken is usually enough to eliminate the need for added salt. If you don't have time to cook the bones after using up a store chicken, you can freeze them and save them for the next time you have one and do two at once. The stock, before the veggies, meat and pasta are added, also freezes nicely in doubled gallon-sized zip lock bags.

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