1 fully-cooked rotisserie chicken carcass with some skin/meat left on the bones (any excess fat removed and discarded)*
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth (optional)
1 medium-sized onion, chopped
2 to 3 cloves of garlic, sliced
3 large carrots, peeled and sliced
2 to 3 ribs celery, sliced
1/2 red or orange bell pepper, cored, seeded and diced (optional)
1 cup thick-sliced (or quartered) white mushrooms (optional)
2 teaspoons chicken bouillon granules
Salt and freshly-ground black pepper to taste
1 (8-ounce) packaged dried egg noodle pasta**
3 tablespoons coarsely-chopped fresh cilantro leaves (optional)
Chicken meat, coarsely chopped or shredded
* I like to use the the Costco rotisserie chickens. They are much cheaper to buy and very delicious and moist. Cut or pull most of the meat off the bones and skin; reserve approximately 50% of the chicken meat for the soup (as much or as little as you desire).
** You could use any type of pasta that you desire.
Making Homemade Chicken Stock:
Check out Chicken Stock - Basic Chicken Stock to learn how easy it is to make your own homemade chicken stock. This quick and easy Homemade Chicken Stock recipe uses a cooked rotisserie chicken to save time and effort. Using a purchased supermarket rotisserie chicken is a much simpler and easier way to make homemade stock. The taste is so much better than those boxed or canned chicken stocks that you can purchase in your local grocery store. You will love this shortcut method of making homemade chicken stock.
In a large soup pot (or cast-iron Dutch oven) over medium-high heat, place the prepared chicken carcass (I usually break the carcass into smaller pieces to fit into the pot easier). Add chicken stock and enough water to completely cover the chicken carcass. Bring the water just to a boil and then reduce heat to a slow simmer. Let simmer approximately 60 to 90 minutes. The key to a good stock is to bring water to a boil just once at the beginning and then cook at just barely a simmer for the remainder of the cooking time, as long slow cooking is best to extract all the subtle flavors.
After cooking, remove the pot from the heat. Remove and discard the chicken bones and any meat pieces (since you have cooked the mixture for a long time, there is no nutritional value left). Strain the remaining liquid to remove smaller particles in the stock (pour the liquid through a fine mesh sieve place over a large pot). Be careful as the stock will be hot!
The chicken stock is now ready to use in your Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup.
Storing Chicken Stock: The chicken stock can be refrigerated up to 3 day in advance of using. If not planning to use the chicken stock within 3 days, place in the freezer until ready to use. Whether the stock has been refrigerated until cold or stored in the freezer, there will be a thin layer of chicken fat that has congealed on the top. Remove that by scraping it off with a spoon before you cook with the stock.
Making Chicken Chicken Noodle Soup
Stove Top Method:
In a large soup pot (or cast-iron Dutch oven) over medium-high heat, place the prepared chicken stock. Bring just to a boil and then reduce heat to medium.
Add onion, garlic, carrots, celery, bell pepper, mushrooms, and chicken bouillon. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook the vegetables until slightly soft.
Increase heat to high and bring to a boil. Add dried egg noodles and cook approximately 20 minutes or until noodles are tender (any type of pasta can be used).
After noodles are cooked, reduce heat to low, taste and season soup with additional salt and pepper (if needed). Add the chopped cooked chicken and the cilantro leaves. Let soup simmer until chicken meat is warm.
Makes 6 to 8 servings.
Slow Cooker (Crock Pot) Method:
Preheat slow cooker.
In a large skillet over medium-high heat, add 1 tablespoon of butter. When butter has melted add onions, carrots and celery and saute for 2 minutes until onions are translucent. Remove sauteed vegetables and add to slow cooker. Add in raw garlic, bell pepper, mushrooms, cooked chicken meat, chicken stock and chicken bouillon. Salt and Pepper to taste. Cover with lid and cook on low heat for 8 hours or high heat for 4 hours.
When soup is done cooking, add dried noodles and cover with lid again. Continue cooking 20 minutes longer or until noodles are tender.
After noodles are cooked, season soup with additional salt and pepper (if needed). Add the cilantro leaves and serve in bowls.
Makes 6 to 8 servings.
Comments from readers:
I noticed that you used a Costco cooked chicken for you chicken noodle soup. We are very lucky here in Aberdeen and have a Costco where I buy the same chicken. When I am in the States, I use the one in Willowbrook, Houston. It is a great cheap way to get many meals from one buy - well done Costco!! - Irene Furneaux, Bieldside, Aberdeen, Scotland (10/6/14)