30 Minute Chicken Noodle Soup

You’ll never want to go through another cold and flu season without this 30 Minute Chicken Noodle Soup! Warm, soothing broth filled with chicken, vegetables, egg noodles, and tomatoes is exactly what the doctor ordered.

Quick Chicken Noodle Soup

Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup in a dutch oven

Well, we’ve been in preschool for approximately .2 seconds, and the cub has already had two colds. On the plus side, it’s given me the opportunity to make, remake, and absolutely perfect this 30 Chicken Noodle Soup recipe. This is now our family’s gold standard chicken noodle soup, and I’m sure it will be a staple all winter long.

I normally don’t follow recipes when I make chicken noodle soup. I’m more of a throw-in-whatever-veggies-are-lying-around-and-wing-it-with-the-seasonings kind of girl. But on one occasion last winter, I pulled together a version of chicken noodle soup with canned tomatoes, egg noodles, wilted spinach, and a mix of dried basil and bay leaf that made me reconsider my anti-recipe stance.

The hubby loved this particular creation and immediately declared it “THE soup.” Bolstered by his enthusiasm, I quickly jotted down the ingredients I used for this particular soup so I could file it away for the future.

When another round of school germs hit our house, I pulled it back out and was reminded why we loved this soup so much.

Why We Think You’ll Love 30 Minute Chicken Noodle Soup Too:

  • It’s fast. Listen, making your own chicken broth from bone-in chicken sounds amazing, but no one wants to be standing over the stove that long when you’re sick. This quick chicken noodle soup can be assembled during nap time.
  • It will make your house smell amazing. I love the smell of pumpkin bread in the oven, but the smell of garlic, onions, and carrots simmering on the stove might have it beat.
  • It’s loaded with good-for-you-stuff. This soup is my favorite veggie and greens delivery system. The seasoned broth makes everything taste wonderful!
  • Kids love it. Adding noodles to a soup makes it an instant win in our house. In fact, I wasn’t even done photographing before my little on started grabbing noodles right out of the bowl.
Bowl of Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup

Ingredients Needed + Substitutions

  • Rotisserie chicken (or other cooked chicken)– Quick soup requires taking a shortcut, and this is the easiest one. Pick up a rotisserie chicken from the store, and you’ll be well on your way to a delicious soup. You can also use other leftover cooked chicken, like Italian Dressing Chicken.
  • Carrots, Onions, Celery– The holy trinity, and my favorite flavor base for soups. (See also: Easy Vegan Lentil Soup and Pasta e Fagioli).
  • Garlic– As much as you need to break through those clogged sinuses.
  • Canned tomatoes– Are they really necessary, you might ask? Well, no, but they are what initially set this recipe apart from others I’ve made in the past. They don’t make the broth tomato-y at all. They just add a nice hit of sweetness and acidity.
  • Chicken broth– I’m a HUGE fan of Better Than Bouillon. It has such great flavor and is easy to keep on hand. I prefer to use low sodium, so I can control the amount of salt.
  • Egg noodles– You can absolutely use rotini or ditalini if you prefer, but I love the slippery softness of egg noodles, particularly when I’m not feeling well. If you want to be fancy, you can use homemade egg noodles.
  • Greens– You don’t have to add them, but a little spinach or kale ups the nutrition, and it blends in so well, you’ll barely notice it.
  • Seasonings– Salt, pepper, a couple bay leaves, and dried basil bring it all together.

How to make Chicken Noodle Soup in 30 Minutes

  1. Start with the triple whammy of carrots, onions, and celery sautéed in olive oil in a heavy duty pot. I love my Dutch oven for soups!
  2. Add a nice mound of minced garlic, sautéed until fragrant, followed by chopped chicken.
  3. Add the tomatoes and their juices, followed by the chicken broth.
  4. Pop a bay leaf and a sprinkling of dried basil into the soup mixture, then bring the whole thing to a boil before adding your egg noodles.
  5. When the egg noodles are cooked, lower the heat and stir in the greens until wilted. Taste and season as needed.
Spoonful of homemade chicken noodle soup

Common FAQs + Make Ahead Tips

Can I make chicken noodle soup ahead of time?

This is a good news/bad news situation. The bad news is, chicken noodle soup doesn’t hold up the best. After a few days in the fridge, the noodles soak up most of the broth and become soggy.

However, there is good news too! I work around this by preparing the soup completely in advance, but leaving out the noodles. The broth and veggies can all be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge or freezer. Then, simply bring the mixture to a boil in a large sauce pan, and cook your noodles in the broth when you’re ready to eat. It still saves a bundle of time, but also gives you the taste and texture of a fresh batch of homemade chicken noodle soup. It’s the best of both worlds!

Can I freeze 30 minute chicken noodle soup?

As above- yes and no. This soup does OK frozen, but the noodles won’t have the best texture. I prefer to freeze just the broth and chicken and veggies and add the noodles fresh whenever we’re ready. It’s wonderful to have a few jars of broth ready-to-go in the freezer for when we aren’t feeling well. Frozen soup should be thawed in the fridge overnight and reheated on the stove.

How do I make this less (or more) soupy?

You’ll notice I don’t include an exact measurement for the broth in this recipe. If you like a soup that’s heavy on the “stuff” and light on the liquid, go with the lower measurement. If you like a soupier soup, add more broth. I also add more broth if I’m planning to eat the soup leftover, since the noodles will soak a lot of it up.

The whole process takes about 30 minutes from the first sizzle of olive oil to the first ladle of hot, steamy chicken noodle soup.

Can I make chicken noodle soup gluten free?

We’ve used gluten free egg noodles or gluten free rotini in this recipe with good success. Just make sure you buy a gluten free chicken broth.

What about a creamy chicken noodle soup?

If you’re looking for a creamier soup, try our Creamy Turkey Soup. (You can use chicken!)

Ladle of Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup being taken out of dutch oven

More Quick and Easy Soup Recipes

Gosh, we sure do love soup season. It’s the original one pot meal! Here are a few more of our favorites:

Ladle of Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup being taken out of dutch oven

30 Minute Chicken Noodle Soup

Yield: 5
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes

This comforting and easy homemade chicken noodle soup comes together in about 30 minutes and makes for a warm, filling dinner.

Ingredients

  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 3 carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 3 celery sticks, sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups chopped cooked chicken
  • 1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 6-8 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 6 ounces egg noodles, store bought or homemade
  • Handful of greens (spinach or kale both work well)
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Instructions

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy bottomed pot over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots, and celery and saute until starting to soften, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  2. Add the chicken, tomatoes, broth, bay leaves, and basil. Bring the mixture to a boil.
  3. Stir in the egg noodles, return to a boil, and cook according to package directions, or until the pasta is tender. Stir in the greens and continue to cook for 1-2 minutes or until the greens are wilted. Remove the bay leaf, taste, and season with salt and pepper as needed.

Notes

I prefer straight, medium cut egg noodles for this recipe, but feel free to substitute with curly egg noodles if you prefer.

To freeze, stop cooking the soup after step 2. Remove the bay leaf. Allow to cool completely then freeze. When ready to eat, place the soup (still frozen or thawed) in a large heavy bottomed pot and heat, bringing back to a boil. Add your egg noodles and follow the remaining directions.

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Nutrition Information:

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 230

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8 Comments

  1. I made this the other day and it was wonderful! My family loved it! Since then, my husband has learned he is allergic to tomatoes. I wondered if you might have any suggestions for a good substitute? I’m thinking of maybe adding some beef or veggie broth for the liquid, and maybe some black beans for substance? Just wondering if I should add some extra seasonings too, and/or if there are some other things you might recommend. Thank you!?

    1. So glad you love the soup! Honestly, you don’t have to add anything to replace the tomatoes. I like the flavor they add, but they aren’t necessary. You could definitely add beans for some additional texture. I would probably go with a cannelini bean. You may also enjoy some sauteed bell pepper in the soup. Hope that helps!

  2. Hello,
    I’ve never made soup before…..do I cook the pasta right in the soup or do I boil it according to the package in water? Thank you.

  3. Made a pot of this yesterday. Wonderful for a warm-up on a cool Fall day! I used rotisserie chicken and subbed in 1 TBS fresh basil from my garden instead of the dried. Also subbed in about 3 TBS of fresh chopped parsley because I didn’t have any spinach or kale on hand. I agree with you that the tomatoes were a surprisingly nice addition. One recommendation is to remove the bay leaves BEFORE you add the greens. It makes it a whole lot easier to find the bay leaves. 🙂 The soup didn’t require any salt or pepper at all despite using low sodium broth as you said. I thought it was perfect as is. I used all 8 cups of the broth and the noodles soaked up most of the broth by this morning but that’s OK. It’s like a chicken noodle stew for lunch today. (Yum!) Thanks so much for the wonderful recipe. It’s definitely a “keeper”.

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