Fall is here – which means soups are too! Chicken soup particularly ranks up there with the most comforting of comfort foods. This lemon chicken version is a delicious twist on the original, and just as soul-warming. Plus, it’s effortlessly packed with all sorts of veggies.
Wanna know my favorite part? Our lemon chicken soup includes two types of legumes -lentils AND white beans. I’m pretty much obsessed with legumes because they’re like a hybrid veggie-protein all in one! Packed with fiber, protein, folate, and iron. To top it off, they’re delicious and versatile. Favorite.
Let’s make this deliciousness
Before you cook lentils, make sure to wash and sort them. Sometimes they have little earthy treasures mixed in like dirt or rocks. But don’t worry, a quick rinse and look-over does the trick.
For this recipe, we’re using red lentils. Aren’t they just gorgeous?!
Once your lentils are rinsed and veggies chopped, heat a large stock pot or Dutch oven on the stove on medium-high heat. Sauté the onions, carrots, and celery in a few tablespoons of olive oil to make a traditional chicken soup base. When the onions become translucent, add garlic and spices and sauté for a minute. I added only half a teaspoon of salt because the broth we add next brings lots of sodium in with it. And you can always add in more salt later!
Now add your broth and lentils, bring the soup to a boil, and then let it simmer on medium-low for 10-15 minutes. You’ll know you’re ready for the next step when the lentils are cooked (they lose that vibrant orange color… sad, I know).
To finish ‘er off, just add in the remaining ingredients – shredded chicken, kale, drained white beans, and the lemon zest and juice. Turn up the heat and bring the soup to a boil until the added ingredients are heated through, maybe five minutes.
(I’ll let you in on a little secret- having some pre-cooked chicken on hand makes dinners quick and easy! Whether you pick up a rotisserie chicken at the store or simply cook up a few chicken breasts at the beginning of the week, you’re golden! Throw your chicken on a salad or into a pasta dish and you’ve got protein covered.)Serve this delicious chicken soup warm with some crusty bread and some freshly grated parmesan cheese on top. Quick, grab a spoon!