#Crockpot Chicken Vegetable Soup w. Dill

Is it totally ridiculous that I'm posting a chicken soup recipe on the first day of spring? I hope not. Although today is supposed to be mild (finally!), after the winter we've had I don't doubt that we'll still see some cool weather. And, at any rate, I like chicken soup all year-round. 

Truth be told, though, I've been meaning to post this for a while and have just been lazy about it. But yesterday my son's buddy was sick and I offered her some of the soup I'd just made; her mom asked me for the recipe. It was the perfect impetus for me to finally write up a post!

This soup is easy. It's super hearty, thick with vegetables. And this soup is incredibly flexible—I never make it exactly the same way twice. I simply use what I've got on hand. I might use vegetable stock instead of chicken broth. If I don't have parsnips, I'll use extra carrots. Or sliced leeks instead of chopped onion. If I've got a zucchini handy, you'd better believe it's getting diced and tossed in the slow cooker with the rest of the ingredients. And if my chicken breasts are frozen, it's no biggie: you don't even need to thaw them before throwing them in the Crockpot with everything else. See, I told you this was easy!

Zucchini made it into this batch.

serves 8

  • 1 large onion, peeled and diced
  • 2-3 large carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 large stalks celery, diced
  • 2-3 small parsnips, peeled and diced
  • 8 cups chicken broth (if using prepared, opt for a low-sodium version)
  • 2 skinless chicken breasts 
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4-6 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons dried dill
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • grated parmesan (optional)

Place all the ingredients in the slow cooker with some salt and pepper. Cover and cook on low for about six hours; the vegetables and chicken should all be tender. 

Remove the bay leaf and discard. Take out the chicken and, with two forks, shred into bite-sized pieces; if you used bone-in breasts, discard the bones and return the meat to the Crockpot. Taste the soup and add salt and pepper, if necessary. Cook for about another hour.

Just before serving the soup, add dill.

I do add noodles to this soup. I cook fine egg noodles in a separate pot of boiling salted water—I don't like noodles cooked in the soup because they tend to get overdone and mushy. Once the noodles are cooked, I spoon a portion in each bowl and just ladle the hot soup over them. Top with grated parmesan—trust me, it's delicious! Oh, and if my family is lucky, I'll make a batch of popovers to round out the meal. Because I'm awesome like that. (Sometimes.)

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