During the colder months, I am always looking for ways to find shortcuts for putting dinner on the table fast. Today’s recipe, Healthy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup, is my current favorite meal-worthy soup to make when I am short on time.
Made with store-bought rotisserie chicken and leftover cooked wild rice (from all the testing I did for the post I wrote on How To Cook Wild Rice), it comes together in less than 45 minutes. To cut down on the calories and make it a tidbit healthier, I used milk instead of cream.
Ingredients For Chicken Wild Rice Soup
- Mirepoix & garlic: As in most soup recipes, you will need chopped onion, carrots, celery and garlic.
- Seasoning and herbs: Salt & Pepper and fresh thyme
- Chicken Stock & water: You can use homemade chicken stock or store-bought. I used a combination of chicken stock and water to make it on the lighter side but you can use all chicken stock if you prefer.
- Flour & Milk: Whole milk and all purpose flour to make it creamy without using cream.
- Cooked Wild Rice: I usually cook wild rice on the stove top or put my Instant pot to use. Wild rice in pressure cooker is just as good when/if you want to include cooked wild rice in your meal prep.
- Rotisserie Chicken or leftover chicken: You can get store bought rotisserie chicken or use leftover chicken.
- Last minute additions & garnish: Squeeze of lemon juice and fresh Italian parsley.
How To Make Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup Recipe:
The process of making this lightened up and healthy wild rice soup recipe has 5 folds:
- Sautee the aromatics: Heat oil in a large Dutch oven. Add in the onion, carrots, and celery. Cook until softened, 8-10 minutes. Add in the garlic and cook for 30 more seconds.
- Pour in the liquid: Add in the chicken stock and water and bring it to a boil.
- Make the roux: Ladle a cup of hot liquid from the pot into the bowl. Add the milk into the bowl. Give it a whisk until smooth and no lumps left. Pour the mixture into the pot.
- Add the chicken and rice: Add the cubed (or shredded chicken) and cooked wild rice into the pot. Bring it to a boil and let it simmer for 15 minutes (stirring it every few minutes) or until it starts to thicken.
- Garnish & Serve: Squeeze in two tablespoons of fresh lemon juice and garnish with chopped fresh parsley.
- Serve: Ladle into bowls and serve with crusty No Knead Bread.
What If I want to make it from scratch?
If you have no time restrictions and want to make this low calorie chicken wild rice soup from raw chicken and uncooked wild rice, you can add cubed raw thighs (and/or breasts) to the stock right after you poured it into the pot.
You can cook the wild rice in the same pot, but I recommend cooking it in another one as it takes longer to cook. Once your wild rice is ready, just add it to the soup at the last minute.
Can you freeze Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup?
Yes, you can. I usually make a big batch, let it come to room temperature, place small portions in airtight containers (or even freezer bags), and freeze up to 6 months.
A day before I am ready to serve it, I let it thaw in the fridge overnight and warm it up right before serving.
If You Liked this Chicken Wild Rice Soup You Might Also Like:
If you love this Panera bread style healthy wild rice soup recipe, here are a few other chicken soup recipes you might also like:
- Healthy White Chicken Chili
- Easy Chicken Chili recipe
- Crockpot Chicken Tomatillo Soup
- Chicken Veggie Soup
And if you have turkey meat instead, you can also want to try a Peruvian Aguadito de Pavo- Peruvian Turkey Soup
Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup Recipe
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 3 carrots peeled and cut into small pieces
- 3 stalks of celery cut into small pieces
- 2 cloves of garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 5 cups of store-bought low sodium or homemade chicken stock
- 1 cup water
- ½ cup all purpose flour
- 1 cup whole milk
- 2 cups cooked chicken cut into small chunks (I used 1 small rotisserie chicken)
- 2 cups cooked wild rice
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice freshly squeezed
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley more as garnish
- Heat olive oil in a heavy bottom pot over medium high heat. Add in the onion, carrots, and celery. Cook, stirring regularly, until softened, 8-10 minutes.
- Stir in the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add in the thyme, salt and pepper.
- Pour in the chicken stock and water. Put the lid on and bring it to a boil.
- Place the flour into a medium bowl. Ladle a cup of hot liquid from the pot into the bowl. Add the milk into the bowl. Give it a whisk until no lumps left. Pour the mixture into the pot.
- Add in the chicken and wild rice. Bring the soup to a boil, turn down the heat and let it simmer for 15 minutes. Give it a stir every 5 minutes or so. It should thicken as it cooks. If you want it to be thicker let it simmer until it is as thick as you want.
- Stir in the lemon juice and fresh parsley.
- Ladle into bowls, garnish with more parsley, and serve immediately.