Creamy Wild Rice Soup

Wild Rice

I was a super picky eater as a kid.  I didn’t like anything that had multiple types of ingredients.  I was rather happy about having eating patterns that resembled my great-grandfather’s, and we happily avoided things like vegetable soup. 

Then I went to college.  While it was still very possible to eat well with my former eating plan, I decided it was time to add some new things to my foodie repertoire.  Since it was rather limited, that wasn’t hard to do.

My very favorite new food quickly became something the cafeteria called “Minnesota Wild Rice Soup.”  I carefully picked out all the mushrooms, but the soup itself was amazing:  thick and creamy, full of flavor, and the rice varieties were amazing.  I loved it, and I ate it for every meal it was offered.

Since then, I’ve searched high and low for a recipe that might mimic that taste, but it’s surprisingly hard to find good wild rice soup recipes without chicken.  Nothing I’ve made has even come close – until now.

Honestly, it’s been so long since I tasted that yummy Minnesota Wild Rice Soup that this might be nothing like it; however, it has all the notes I remember, and I love it!  Best of all, it’s super easy to make, so we’ll be eating it often.

Why now?  When it’s warming up?  Because pollen.  It’s pollen season here in the south, and my sore throat and stuffy nose is enjoying this creamy, hot soup.  Give it a try – it might cure what ails you, too.

Creamy Wild Rice Soup

Ingredients

  • 2 medium onions, diced
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 3 cans green chilis
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 2 boxes Zatarain's Wild Rice Pilaf
  • 3 cups shredded Pepper Jack Cheese

Instructions

  1. Heat oil in a stock pot.
  2. Saute the onions in the oil. Stir in the garlic and the chilis.
  3. Add the chicken stock.
  4. Add the rice pilaf with seasonings and the called-for amount of water.
  5. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer fro 25-30 minutes.
  6. Stir in shredded cheese.
  7. Serve hot.
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Easy Chicken Chili

Chicken Chili

I love finding easy recipes, and ones that we all like are even better.  My kids like this Easy Chicken Chili so much that they fight over who makes it – and I love any recipe that makes that happen! 

If you’re really in a hurry, you can use prepackaged ingredients that, while still whole, make throwing this together super easy. You know – a rotisserie chicken, boxed broth, and canned beans.  If you have a bit more time, you can cook your own chicken, broth, and beans, and still have a fast, easy, healthy meal on the table in a short amount of time.

One of my favorite things about this chili is its versatility.  The broth is really rich and thick, and it tastes great on it’s own.  I happen to love putting crunchy things into meals like this, though, and both crackers and tortilla chips work here. I like to top mine with a bit of extra cheese, too, but sour cream could also work if that’s your thing.

Even though the weather is getting warmer, with springtime allergies and runny noses plaguing us, we’ve been enjoying the fragrant steam from our bowls.  Give it a try – and let us know what you think.

Easy Chicken Chili

Ingredients

  • 4 cups cooked, chopped chicken
  • 4 cups chicken or veggie broth
  • 2 onions, diced
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 3 small cans of diced green chilis
  • 3 cans white beans
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 t cumin
  • 1.5 t oregano
  • 3 c. shredded Monterey Jack r cheddar cheese

Instructions

  1. Heat oil in pan.
  2. Add onions and garlic.
  3. Sautee until clear.
  4. Add chilis and spices. Stir.
  5. Add broth and undrained beans.
  6. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.
  7. Add chicken and cheese.
  8. Stir until hot and thickened.
  9. Serve with crackers, tortilla chips, and your favorite chili toppings.
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Quick & Easy Taco Soup

Today I’m sharing a new favorite recipe – for a Quick & Easy Taco Soup that’s both healthy and yummy – over at Marriage, Motherhood, and Missions.  I hope you’ll hop over and check it out!

Parmesan Potato Soup

Parmesan Potato SoupA few months ago my family had one of those really awful, horrible, no-good very bad days.  We had to put our puppy to sleep, and with my husband working out of town that day, the task of taking her to the vet and the subsequent burial was all mine (although my very sweet MIL helped tremendously with the digging).

For the next few days I had an awful time finding the energy to plan and prepare dinner.  Finally deciding I wanted the comfort of a hot bowl of potato soup but lacking the incentive to just make it – from scratch, no recipe involved – the way I usually did held no appeal.  I sent out a FB appeal for a simple recipe, and a friend sent a recipe that sounded great, with one problem:  it had absolutely no veggies in it, and I couldn’t imagine having to make two things for dinner that night.

That recipe turned into this one, and my whole family really likes it – even my soup-disliking three-year-old.  It has that traditional potato comfort feel but is chock full of veggies.  The delicate parmesan flavor comes through, eliminating the need for the heavy cheddar-laden versions often gracing my hips before.  It’s good just as a meatless main dish, but adding ham or bacon gives it a yummy richness.  I hope you like it as much as we do!

So, to make Parmesan Potato Veggie Soup …

First, wash your potatoes.  I use 4-6 medium sized potatoes.  Red or russet work well.  Bake them until done, usually about 45-60 minutes at 350 degrees.  Cool.  Peel if desired (the peel does add lots of fiber and nutrients, though, so if the skin is thin it’s great to leave it on).  You can bake these the day before if you’ll be short on time when it’s time to cook – the rest of this soup comes together in a hurry.

 
Steam or otherwise prepare about 5 cups of veggies.  For this batch, I used 3 cups of broccoli and two cups of a California blend that included cauliflower, baby carrots, and yellow carrot slices.  I cooked mine in the bottom of my large dutch oven in just a bit of water.  This takes 3-5 minutes over boiling water.  Drain and set aside.
 
 

While the veggies are working, finely chop one onion and two stalks of celery.  I don’t mean the whole plant, just two pieces.  You get the idea.

Add this to the now-empty dutch oven with 1/2 c. of butter and cook over medium heat until the onions are transparent.  Stir occasionally.

While the onions are taking their butter bath, rough chop your potatoes.  Peel them first if you want to, of course.  We like our soup pretty chunky so I let some of the pieces be larger.  Because this soup comes together so fast, the potatoes will not break down much in the soup, so make your pieces the size that you want to eat them.

Go back to your onions, all buttery and clear and ready to go.  Add 1/2 cup of flour and stir it well.  It will completely absorb all the moisture left in the pot, but that’s okay – this is what will thicken your soup when the time comes.  Add the seasoning now, too.  Mix in 1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon of dried basil,  and 1/2 teaspoon of seasoning salt.  A bit of freshly ground pepper is good, too, but I couldn’t measure that – I just ground away straight into the pot.  Add the chopped potatoes and veggies back in, too.  I like to give the veggies a rough chop before tossing them in, as well.

Now, with the heat on low and stirring slowly, add 4 1/2 c. of chicken stock.  Let it come to a bubble – not a hard rolling boil, but a happy bubble – and let it go for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.  It will look super thick at this point and should smell amazing.  Just hang on.  It gets better!

Now add 6 cups of milk and stir until combined and heated through.  Do this on low heat so that the milk doesn’t scorch.  If you like your soup REALLY thick, you may just want to add 5 cups.  Also, if you want to add ham to your soup, this is the time.  Add 1 cup of finely chopped, baked ham.

Chicken Pot Pie Soup

Chicken Pot Pie Soup
I used to make chicken pot pie on Fridays during the winter.  The kids would watch a movie if they’d had a good week, and since my husband worked late, I could spend a bit more time on dinner.  After a while, though, although we all liked the dish, I wanted to make it faster.  I wanted it to be thicker, and I wanted to watch the movie with my kids instead of missing the cuddle time with them.

I’m also a big fan of soup.  That probably had something to do with it.

So my chicken pot pie morphed into this soup.  It has all the same elements, is still full of veggies, and has a great creamy, cheesy flavor.  Instead of a topping, we eat it over Grandma’s Biscuits.  I don’t make them often, so it makes this soup an extra special treat!

Chicken Pot Pie Soup
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4104 calories
147 g
1022 g
259 g
305 g
160 g
2907 g
6372 g
49 g
1 g
84 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
2907g
Amount Per Serving
Calories 4104
Calories from Fat 2280
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 259g
398%
Saturated Fat 160g
798%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 11g
Monounsaturated Fat 73g
Cholesterol 1022mg
341%
Sodium 6372mg
265%
Total Carbohydrates 147g
49%
Dietary Fiber 30g
118%
Sugars 49g
Protein 305g
Vitamin A
1332%
Vitamin C
131%
Calcium
595%
Iron
84%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 2 c. shredded, cooked chicken
  2. 3 carrots, chopped
  3. 2 c. chicken broth
  4. 2-3 c. milk
  5. 1 onion, diced
  6. 3 c. veggies - I use frozen corn, peas, and green beans (red peppers are fun, too)
  7. 3 handfuls of Sharp Cheddar, shredded
  8. 2 T. butter
  9. 2 T. flour
  10. salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Cook your carrots in water. If you are using other dense veggies, throw them in now, too.
  2. Drain and set aside.
  3. In a Dutch oven, saute the onions in butter until transparent.
  4. Stir in the flour to make a paste.
  5. Pour in the chicken stock, stirring constantly.
  6. Add in the quick-cooking veggies and stir.
  7. Add the milk and cook over medium-low heat for 10 minutes. Do not let it boil!
  8. When the sauce begins to thicken, add the cheese, stirring constantly. This will thicken the soup considerably!
  9. Simmer over low heat until ready to serve.
  10. Split open one of Grandma's Biscuits in a wide bowl and spoon soup over the top. Yum!
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calories
4104
fat
259g
protein
305g
carbs
147g
more
A Nest in the Rocks http://anestintherocks.com/
What’s your favorite comfort soup?

Chicken Corn Soup

Chicken Corn Soup

At home in Pennsylvania this soup is really popular, and whenever I’m hungry for home I make Chicken Corn Soup.  There isn’t anything simpler, but it’s sweet and comforting and hearty without being heavy.

As My Little Man moved from being a toddler into the preschool years, I began to make soup again (I unconsciously avoided them before that – maybe because it was just too difficult to feed to young children).   To my dismay, he abhorred soup and complained about each and every variety – except this one.  As a corn addict, he thought this soup was awesome.  I crushed crackers in it to make it easier for him to eat, and he cleaned his bowl each and every time.

Chicken Corn Soup
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619 calories
116 g
73 g
7 g
40 g
2 g
953 g
1624 g
25 g
0 g
4 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
953g
Amount Per Serving
Calories 619
Calories from Fat 62
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 7g
11%
Saturated Fat 2g
8%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 2g
Cholesterol 73mg
24%
Sodium 1624mg
68%
Total Carbohydrates 116g
39%
Dietary Fiber 9g
37%
Sugars 25g
Protein 40g
Vitamin A
13%
Vitamin C
53%
Calcium
5%
Iron
21%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. chicken - I like to use split chicken breasts
  2. several cups of corn - I use the corn that we bagged and froze last summer
  3. water
  4. salt and pepper to taste
  5. 1 can of creamed corn (optional)
Instructions
  1. Boil your chicken. I put it in a Dutch oven and bring it to a boil, then turn it down and let it simmer for an hour. This will both cook your chicken and create yummy broth for your soup, all at the same time.
  2. Remove the chieken from the broth.
  3. Cool the chicken, then shred with forks.
  4. Chill the broth. I just put the whole pot in the fridge until the next day.
  5. Skim the fat off the top of the broth. This can be done easily with a slotted spoon or a spider.
  6. Return the pot to the stovetop. Add the chicken back into the broth, adding a cup or two of water if necessary.
  7. Add the corn to the pot. If you'd like it to be a bit thicker and sweeter, add canned creamed corn. (My husband prefers it this way.)
  8. Let your soup simmer for about ten minutes and serve with crackers.
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calories
619
fat
7g
protein
40g
carbs
116g
more
A Nest in the Rocks http://anestintherocks.com/
I love to make this soup as we head into spring.  The sweet corn flavor just promises summer and warm days ahead!
 
What’s your favorite meal for these back-and-forth spring days??