I am a HUGE fan of chicken soup, but it seems more appropriate to eat during the cold days of winter than in the heat of summer. This is unfortunate since soup is usually a fast, one-pot meal that doesn’t take too much preparation – perfect for busy summer days.
So although soup tends to be a wintery meal, I recently tried this recipe for chicken and orzo soup found in EveryDay with Rachael Ray Magazine for two reasons: (1) It’s a great way to use up leftover chicken (since I roast whole chickens frequently, I always have leftover shredded chicken), and (2) the addition of lemon juice to the chicken broth seemed fresh and summery, and not quite as heavy as a winter soup would be – which ended up being the case.
The soup was easy, yummy, and perfect for freezing and reheating if you make a large batch. It also doesn’t have too many ingredients, and most of them I already had in the house, which is always helpful. I loved it so much, I had to share. Try it for yourself:
Chicken-and-orzo soup (EveryDay with Rachael Ray Magazine)
Prep: 10 min
Cook: 20 min
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- 1 cup orzo pasta
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 pound chicken cutlets, cut into 1/2” pieces (or leftover shredded/cubed chicken)
- salt and pepper
- 8 ounces sliced white mushrooms
- 2 ribs celery, thinly sliced
- One 15-ounce can cannellini beans, rinsed
- 7 cups chicken broth
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- ¾ cup flat leaf parsley leaves
- In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the orzo until al dente, about 10 min, drain.
- Meanwhile, in a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the chicken (if you are using raw), season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until just cooked through, about 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and celery and cook until the chicken is golden-brown, about 10 minutes. If you are using leftover chicken life I did, then cook the mushrooms and celery first, and add the chicken in the next step.
- Stir in the cooked orzo, the beans, chicken broth, and lemon juice; season with salt and pepper. Lower the heat to medium and simmer until heated through. Stir in the parsley.
Veggie version: For a veggie version, swap the chicken broth for vegetable broth and cubed potatoes for the chicken.