Soothe your soul and lessen the symptoms of a winter cold with this hearty, healthy chicken and rice soup. Make a double batch and freeze into single serve portions for busy or sick day convenience.
1 cup (dry) white or brown rice (plus water to cook rice)
8 cups additional water
1 lb. boneless skinless
8 chicken bouillon cubes
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large white onion
1 yellow bell pepper
seeded and finely chopped
2 large celery ribs
2 large carrots
2 cloves minced garlic
2 tablespoons Instantly Fresh Italian Herb Blend
4 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Salt and pepper to taste
Prepare rice according to package instructions. Set aside.
In large stock pot, boil chicken breasts in water for 15 to 20 minutes or until no longer pink inside and internal temperature reaches a minimum of 165 F degrees. Remove chicken breasts from pot, but do not discard water. Skim off any residue not desired in soup.
When chicken is cool enough to handle, pull apart with fingers or fork into large shreds. Add back to pot with water. Add bouillon cubes. Turn heat to medium low and simmer, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, add olive oil to large skilled and bring to medium high heat. Add chopped onion, bell pepper, celery, and carrots. Sauté for 5 to 7 minutes or until vegetables are softening. Add garlic and continue to cook for 1 more minute.
Add vegetables to stock pot with chicken. Return skillet to stove top. Add Instantly Fresh Herb Blend to pot with chicken and vegetables, keep simmering and stirring occasionally.
To make thickening roux, melt butter in skillet over medium heat. When butter is beginning to bubble, whisk in flour and stir constantly and quickly for several minutes, or until it has turned a light golden brown. Remove skillet from heat and allow roux to cool a bit.
Once roux is no longer hot (can be warm), scrape into stock pot and stir well to combine. Stir in prepared rice. Season with salt and black pepper to taste. Continue to simmer soup for 15 more minutes, or until everything heated through.