5 Ingredient Chicken Soup (2024)

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5 ingredient chicken soup is one of those quick and simple recipes that taste like it’s been cooking all day long. It’s made with boneless chicken breast, chicken broth, and fresh vegetables. It’s a healthy meal that takes very little effort to put together which makes it perfect for a busy night, and the entire family will love it.

5 Ingredient Chicken Soup (1)

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Don’t let the words quick and 5 ingredients keep you from making this comforting soup! Even though it’s one of those quick and easy recipes, it’s not short on flavor. Cooking the chicken and vegetables in a combination of water and chicken broth makes a deliciously rich broth.

This recipe was inspired by my Instant Pot spicy chicken tortilla soup recipe. The chicken is cooked in water in an Instant pot which locks in the flavor to achieve a rich-tasting broth. Since this recipe is made on top of the stove, I found that using a mix of chicken broth and water gives this soup just enough flavor.

Why you will love this recipe

  • It’s quick and easy to make with only 5 simple ingredients.
  • It’s versatile – serve it as is or add more ingredients. See the variation ideas below.
  • It’s healthy, it’s made with less salt and healthy ingredients and the perfect comfort food.
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Here is what you will need

This is an overview of the ingredients and steps to make this 5-ingredient recipe; scroll down for a printable recipe card with exact measurements and detailed instructions.

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  • Boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • Onion
  • Celery
  • Carrot
  • Chicken broth or chicken stock


How to make chicken soup from scratch

Prepare: Cut the vegetables into bite-sized pieces and set them aside.

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Step 1. Cook the chicken

Place the chicken breast into a 2-quart saucepan with water. Cover and cook on medium heat for 15 minutes.

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Step 2. Add the vegetables and broth

Add the chopped vegetables to the pan along with the broth. Reduce the heat to medium-low heat. Cover and cook for 30 minutes longer.

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Step 4. Add the shredded chicken back

Place the shredded chicken back into the pan with the vegetables. Cover and simmer until the vegetables are soft.

NOTE: You can use all broth to cook the chicken or all water and adjust the flavors with sea salt and black pepper.

Ingredient Notes and Substitutions

Boneless chicken breasts – I like to use boneless, skinless chicken breasts when I make this soup. They cook fast and are easy to shred. You can also use boneless skinless chicken thighs.

Broth – I like to use low-sodium chicken broth and adjust the flavor at the end. If you don’t have chicken broth or chicken stock, it can be replaced one-for-one with vegetable stock.

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Recipe variations

This chicken soup recipe is a blank slate and versatile! Here are some suggestions to make this soup your own from a hearty soup perfect for a cold night or a lighter soup for when you are under the weather.

Add carbs – Just before serving the soup, add egg noodles, ramen noodles, pasta, orzo, rice, wild rice, barley or your favorite whole grain.

Add more vegetables – During the last 15 to 20 minutes of cooking the soup, add any combination of chopped zucchini, mushrooms, tomatoes, spinach or kale.

Add herbs – Add up to a teaspoon of dried herbs such as oregano, garlic, herbs de Provence, or Italian seasoning.

Add pesto – Stir in a tablespoon or two of pesto sauce at the end of the cooking process.

Squash noodles – just before serving add uncooked zucchini or butternut squash noodles to the hot soup.

Add beans – Stir in a cup of white beans just before serving the soup.

How to store and use leftovers

Store leftover chicken soup in the refrigerator for up to 4 days in an airtight container.

Freeze leftover soup in a freezer-safe container for up to three months. Thaw frozen soup in the refrigerator overnight.

Reheat leftover soup on top of the stove or in the microwave.

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Serving suggestions

Serve leftover 5 ingredient chicken soup garnished with chopped fresh parsley and a few sheds of parmesan cheese for a quick meal.

Add a salad and a loaf of crusty bread or crackers for a complete meal.


  • Depending on the size of your saucepan, the chicken may not be completely covered in water, which is okay.
  • Make sure the vegetables are cut in evenly sized pieces for even cooking.

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Can I make chicken soup with rotisserie chicken?

You can easily make quick homemade chicken soup using cooked rotisserie chicken. Instead of cooking the chicken in water, cook the vegetables in 3 cups of chicken broth until they are tender. Add 1 to 1 1/2 cups of shredded rotisserie chicken and simmer for 10 minutes longer.

Can I use bone-in chicken breasts to make 5 ingredient chicken soup?

You can use bone-in chicken breasts to make this chicken soup too. You may need to increase the cooking time to ensure that the internal temperature of the chicken is 165 degrees before shredding it.

What can I add to chicken soup to give it more flavor?

Once the soup is cooked and ready to eat, taste the soup. Adjust the flavors to your taste with a little bit of sea salt or kosher salt, pepper, garlic powder or dried herbs and even a splash of lemon juice.

You might also like these easy soup recipes

  • Instant Pot White Bean Soup
  • Savory Mushroom Barley Soup
  • Vegetable Minestrone Soup

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Please comment and give it a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ rating below!

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5 Ingredient Chicken Soup

5 ingredient chicken soup is a rich and satisfying chicken soup recipe that takes minutes to make!

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Prep Time: 10 minutes minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes minutes

Total Time: 55 minutes minutes

Click on serving size to scale this recipe

Course: Soup Recipes

Cuisine: American

Keyword: 5 Ingredient chicken soup

Servings: 4 People

Calories: 180kcal

Author: Anne Lawton

Scale this Recipe 4 People


  • 1 pound boneless chicken breast
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 3/4 cup celery chopped about 2-3 stalks
  • 1 cup carrots chopped about 3 to 4 carrots
  • 1 cup onion chopped 1 small or 1/2 large
  • 2 cups low sodium chicken broth


  • Prepare: cut the vegetables into bite-sized pieces and set them aside.

  • Place the chicken into a medium saucepan and add 3/4 cup of water. Cover the pan and cook on medium-low heat for 15 minutes.

  • Add the chopped vegtables to the pan with the chicken along with the broth. Cover and cook over for 30 minutes longer.

  • Remove the chicken from the pan of water, broth and vegetables

  • Place the shredded chicken back into the pan with the vegetables.. Cover and simmer until the vegetables are soft.


Store leftover soup in the refrigerator for up to 4 days in an airtight container.

Freeze leftover soup in a freezer-safe container for up to three months. Thaw frozen soup in the refrigerator overnight.

Reheat leftover soup on top of the stove or in the microwave.

See the article above for recipe variations, tips and more.

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Serving: 1.5Cup | Calories: 180kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 27g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 73mg | Sodium: 206mg | Potassium: 731mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 5466IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 38mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and can vary based on cooking methods and ingredients used

Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Check out more of our less than 10-ingredient recipes here!

5 Ingredient Chicken Soup (2024)


What is the secret ingredient in soup? ›

It may sound a bit strange and unusual for some, but vinegar is a common ingredient in some soup recipes, and there is a good reason for it. If you think about it, vinegar is really a flavor-enhancer (umami). That's why it is so often used in cooking, sauces, and salad dressings. The same is true with soups.

How to make chicken broth taste better? ›

How to Make Broth More Flavorful
  1. Add herbs and spices. Herbs and spices add aroma, flavor, and intensity to soup broth. ...
  2. Pack in umami flavor. "If your broth is lacking in savory richness, try adding roasted onion, tomato paste, mushrooms, seaweed, soy sauce, or miso. ...
  3. Let it evaporate and cook longer.
Jun 28, 2023

What are the 4 components of soup? ›

At its most basic, soup is four components: a base, a thickener, a liquid, and a main ingredient. The liquid and main ingredient can be thought of as the essence: add 3 parts liquid to 2 parts main ingredient, and it's soup.

Why do you put vinegar in chicken soup? ›

Whether it's white wine or vinegar, a touch of acid added to the simmering pot will create a richer finished product. That's because acid helps break down the cartilage and other connective tissues in the bones of the chicken, which helps speed up the formation of gelatin in the stock.

What is the most important ingredient in soup? ›

For clear, brothy soups, stock is your most important ingredient. If you want to make a good soup, you need to use an excellently flavored stock — otherwise, the entire pot could be tasteless.

What not to do when making soup? ›

The 7 Biggest Mistakes You Make Cooking Soup
  1. Boiling instead of simmering. You want a small bubble or two to rise to the surface of the liquid every few seconds. ...
  2. Not using enough salt. ...
  3. Ignoring water. ...
  4. Overcooking the vegetables. ...
  5. Adding tomatoes at the beginning. ...
  6. Neglecting to garnish. ...
  7. Not trying a pressure cooker.
Nov 19, 2014

What gives soup the best flavor? ›

Vinegar – A spoonful of vinegar is a quick fix when you find yourself with a bowl of dull, flat-tasting soup. Just a small amount of acid will brighten up the flavors. 2. Soy Sauce – Soy sauce is another item that's ideal for brightening up and adding depth of flavor to an otherwise dull soup.

What are three qualities of a good soup? ›

A soup's quality is determined by its flavor, appearance and texture. A good soup should be full-flavored, with no off or sour tastes. Flavors from each of the soup's ingre- dients should blend and complement, with no one flavor overpowering another.

How to add extra flavor to chicken soup? ›

A splash of vinegar or wine can add depth and complexity to the flavors of your chicken noodle soup. Try adding a small amount of apple cider vinegar or a dry white wine for a delightful tangy note. Just remember to add it gradually, tasting as you go, to avoid overpowering the soup.

How to fix bland chicken soup? ›

Ok, several things you can do.
  1. Salt and pepper are your friend.
  2. If you can find it, use chicken bone broth. It has some of the best flavor, I find.
  3. You can roast your chicken first and add to the soup to finish. ...
  4. Stir in spinach or kale at the very end for added texture and flavor.
Jan 30, 2020

Why does my chicken broth taste bland? ›

If your broth tastes thin and bland, you may want to cook and let it evaporate for longer. That helps concentrate its flavors and gives you a better-tasting soup broth. Be sure to remove the lid to let the steam escape.

What is the most important part of a soup? ›

The Foundation: Broths and Stocks

The rich tapestry of flavors in homemade soup begins with its base – the broth or stock. These liquid foundations absorb the essences of anything they touch, hence the insistence on simmering them gently to achieve a depth that sets the tone for your dish.

What does adding flour to soup do? ›

You can thicken soup by adding flour, cornstarch, or another starchy substitute. For the best results, never add flour or cornstarch directly to your soup. If you do, it will clump up on top. Instead, ladle a small amount of broth into a separate bowl and let it cool.

What are the 5 basic principles to be followed in making delicious soup? ›

The document provides 5 basic principles of preparing soup: 1) Starting with cold water. 2) Cutting vegetables to an appropriate size. 3) Selecting a protein such as beef, chicken, pork, or fish. 4) Simmering the soup for 4 hours.

What brings out the Flavour in soup? ›

How to Add Lots of Flavor to Vegetable Soup
  • Salt: enhances flavor.
  • Fat: amplifies flavor.
  • Acid: brightens and balances.
  • Heat: determines the texture of the food.

What makes soup more flavorful? ›

Go Bold. A punch of flavor at the end of cooking can make your soup a standout. Mix herbs like parsley, thyme, and oregano, or spices such as cumin, coriander, and cardamom, into some olive oil, and let it infuse for at least an hour or two. Pour it over soup just before serving.

Why put apple cider vinegar in soup? ›

Add a splash or two of ACV when the soup is done cooking. The vinegar helps lift and highlight flavors.

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