“What? No. Not that soup.” I often recommend that people eat soup when they’re starting to get sick, and it catches me off guard when they tell me the kind of canned soup that they like and ask for confirmation that it will help them get over their cold, flu, or other seasonal illness.
Homemade soup is full of foods that not only provide essential nutrients that the body needs to fight off illness and heal, but they also are easy to digest, so the body can actually access the nutrients provided. Soup made from scratch tastes so much better too, and you can make a huge pot to last a long time, or share with a friend, for the same cost as a small can of soup.
Good news all around!
First, let’s look at the health benefits of a few of the ingredients here:
Bone broth: Made from organic chicken, this homemade bone broth is full of amino acids needed to repair cells and soothe the gut. Because it’s in broth form, it’s easily absorbed by the body. (click here for my easy recipe)
Onions: These inexpensive vegetables are easy to find year around and are associated with antimicrobial properties and increased immunity. Caramelizing and then simmering onions makes them especially easy to digest. (source)
Sea Salt: Salt is a necessary nutrient for our body, and when we eat unrefined sea salt (find the salt I use here) we are getting loads of trace minerals that our body also needs along with it.
Chicken: Rich in protein the body needs to repair, this chicken is simmered so it is very easy to digest.
We use gluten free noodles (these hold up well in soup) in this recipe to balance the desire for comfort food with my desire not to irritate sensitive tummies with gluten, but they can easily be omitted for those following a paleo diet. Further, omit the potatoes as well for those on the GAPS diet. When I make soup to share, I tend to include both potatoes and these gluten-free noodles to make my healthy healing version of the soup as comparable to the comfort food that friends are used to as it can be.
Because everyone knows that no matter how healthy food is, if it’s not eaten it’s not going to do any good.
“Get Well Soon” Gluten-Free Chicken Noodle Soup Recipe
2 tablespoons coconut oil (divided) (click here to see the coconut oil that I use)
2 pounds boneless chicken thighs (click here to find organic chicken)
1 large or 2 small onions
3 large carrots
4 stalks celery
2 white potatoes or 1 sweet potato
2 quarts homemade chicken or beef stock (recipe here)
1 quart filtered water (water filter I use is here)
1 tablespoon sea salt (click here to see the sea salt that I use)
1 package gluten-free noodles (click here to see the noodles I use)
In a large stock pot melt 1 tablespoon coconut oil over medium heat. Pan-fry chicken for 5-7 minutes per side, until starting to brown on the outside. The chicken does not need to be completely cooked through, it will continue cooking in the soup. Remove chicken and set aside.
Melt remaining 1 tablespoon coconut oil in the pot over medium-low heat. As the coconut oil is melting, peel and dice the onion. Add onion to coconut oil and saute until caramelized, about 15 minutes. As you saute the onion, peel and chop the carrots and potatoes, and slice the celery into 1/4 inch slices.
After the onion is caramelized, add the onion, carrots, potatoes, chicken stock, filtered water, and sea salt. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, then cover and turn soup down to simmer at medium-low for an hour.
After the soup has been simmering for an hour, bring back up to medium-high heat and add the noodles. Stir in and allow to boil for 2 full minutes. As the noodles are cooking, cube the chicken that you set aside into 1/2-inch cubes. Add the chicken in.
If sharing the soup, now is the time to put it into jars. This will allow the noodles to not become too mushy as it is re-heated.
To serve, continue cooking while covered over medium-low for an additional 10-20 minutes, until noodles are well-cooked.