Leftover Roast Chicken Soup
Half the reason I ever decide to go through the effort of roasting a chicken or turkey is to be able to make soup afterwards. I always thought my mom was crazy to be more excited about the second-hand soup than the OG roast dinner, but the older I get, the more I realize, I am her. And proud of it!
Because honestly, the soup is really the best part. It’s super easy, crazy delicious, entirely soul-warming and really makes you feel like you got something great out of all that work.
All you need to do is save the carcass of the roast bird, cover it with water and bring it to a boil with some aromatics–garlic, peppercorn, a bay leaf, any other fresh herbs you have around–and a mirepoix–a Fancy French word that simply means carrots, celery and onion.
Let that cook for a couple hours and you have Chicken Stock– how magical is that!
Strain that off, saute some more onions, carrots, celery and garlic, then add the chicken stock and let cook down. Add back in any leftover chicken meat and some grains (rice or cooked pasta), if you like and voila!
And you’re welcome to take it in any other direction.
Feeling a little spicy? Add some red pepper flakes.
Feeling under the weather? Saute some fresh ginger with the onion and garlic and you have a cold fighting powerhouse!
No matter what, you’re going to feel like a total culinary rockstar whipping up soup outta nothing at all!
- 1 chicken carcass
- 1 onion cut into quarters
- 2 carrots cut into quarters
- 2 celery stalks cut into quarters
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon peppercorns
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 8-10 cups water
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 yellow onion diced
- 2 carrots diced
- 2 stalks of celery diced
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
- 1/4 teaspoon rosemary
- 1/3 lb ditalini cooked
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
In a large stockpot, add the chicken carcass, chopped onion, carrot and celery, bay leaves, peppercorns and salt. Cover with water and bring to a boil. Stir, then lower to a simmer and let cook for 2 hours, at least.
Using a strainer to catch the bones and vegetables, pour the stock into a big bowl. Set aside. Remove the carcass to a plate to let cool. Rinse the stockpot and return to the stove.
Over medium heat, add the olive oil to the pot. Once warm, add in the minced garlic and red pepper flakes. Stir for 1 minute, then add in the diced onion, carrot and celery. Stir and let cook for 10 minutes, stirring often until vegetables are softened.
Pour in the strained chicken stock from bowl and add the bay leaf, black pepper, salt, thyme, parsley and rosemary. Bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer. Cook for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
While the soup is cooking, cook your ditalini according to the package directions and pick any chicken meat from the carcass. Toss the bones and other vegetables and set the meat aside.
Once the soup is simmered, remove the bay leaf. Use an immersion blender or high-speed blender to puree the soup to your desired consistency.
Add soup back to the pot and add the chicken and cooked ditalini. Stir well and let cook for another 10 minutes. Taste and season as needed. Finish the soup with the lemon juice, cook another 2 minutes, then serve!