Boost Your Immune System with Chicken Noodle Soup

This year our winter in the Northeast consists of arctic air from Canada and far too much snow! Somehow it does not seem fair to have wind chills of -20 degree fahrenheit (or -29 Celsius) and it still snows! Heavy sweaters are a must and driving with gloves is also imperative (I dislike driving with gloves). Of course it is still flu and cold season on top of the frigid weather! Comfort food becomes more important than ever and including a lot of healthy foods. Chicken soup is known for its healing properties and if you have a cold or are not feeling well, mothers will say β€œhave a bowl of chicken soup!” Previously I did make a chicken soup that ended up being a chicken stew with so many noodles. It was really good but I wanted a more traditional version but yet with a lot of flavor and of course those healing properties. Click here for Ginger Chicken Noodle Soup (or stew when I make it!).

Chicken Noodle soup close up 3

One does wonder if Chicken Noodle soup really helps you heal and boost your immune system or if its warmth is just comforting when one is sick. I ran across some interesting research from University of Nebraska Medical Center physician/researcher Stephen Rennard, M.D on a study conducted to test this theory. You can draw your own conclusion and below are a few links with more information.

Chicken Noodle soup side shot

The Science of Chicken Soup
Chicken Soup for a Cold
Chicken Soup Inhibits Neutrophil Chemotaxis In Vitro

Chicken noodle soup close up 2
If you enjoy reading research papers – below is the link to the paper:
Chicken Soup Inhibits Neutrophil Chemotaxis In Vitro

Chicken noodle soup close up

Regardless of your conclusion on its health benefits, this recipe for Chicken Noodle soup is excellent! A lot of great flavor and it is the ultimate comfort food on a bitter cold winter day. If you are feeling a bit under the weather it would be comforting. I served it with some nice hot, crusty French bread.

The combination of the different vegetables adds a nice flavor to the broth and there are sweet undertones to this soup. Add some fresh parsley near the end of simmering the soup for a mellow and sweet flavor.

Chicken Noodle Soup with crusty french bread

I adapted this wonderful soup from the original recipe based upon Grandma’s Recipe that was part of the original study. I like how the grandmother placed all the vegetables in a food processor to chop them finely so ensure all her children got their vegetables. A wise woman who even when money / food was short was creative to provide nutrients to her children. Doesn’t this soup look just delicious!! I love all the vegetables and colors.

Chicken Noodle Soup in a ladle spoon

Vegetable Ingredients
1 large sweet onion, diced
1 cup celery, diced
2 cups Parsnips, chopped
1 Β½ cups Turnips, chopped
2 cups Carrots, chopped
2 cups Butternut Squash, chopped

10 cups Chicken Broth
Kosher Salt
Freshly Ground Pepper
2 cups cooked Chicken, chopped (I use a rotisserie chicken)
2 Bay Leaves

Final Step
Soup Noodles such as Filini pasta
About two handful of Flat-Leaf Parsley, chopped

Heat olive oil in a large soup pan and saute the chopped onions for a few minutes. In the meantime start chopping your vegetables and add them to the soup pan as they are chopped. I like to let mine roast a bit in the soup pan before adding any liquids to start releasing their flavor.

Add chicken broth, chicken, salt, pepper, bay leaves, and a lot of basil. Let simmer for about an hour or so. Then add some freshly chopped parsley near the end of cooking and boil the soup noodles. I like to make them separately and add them to the soup as it is being served. Too many times I found that the noodles soaked up the broth when reheating the next day! Boil the amount of noodles you feel will be required including any leftovers. Store the cooked noodles in a small bowl with some chicken broth. When ready to serve, spoon the desired amount of noodles into a soup bowl, ladle in some soup, and top with more fresh parsley if desired. Serve with crusty French bread!


  1. that looks delicious Bernice!! Would be good today with all the cold weather we are all having!! I bet you guys still have a lot of snow on the ground!! We have 3-4 inches of sleet that came in last Tuesday. Stay warm!!! πŸ™‚

    1. Thanks Michael. It turned out really good! Yes, we still have a lot of snow and got about 3 more inches yesterday. Today it is 35 degrees but it suppose to drop back down to bitter cold temps tomorrow. We can’t get a break this year! But this soup helps keep one warm! Sleet is never good! I heard the South is having a lot of black ice and icy roads causing a lot of accidents. Ice can be more scary than snow!

      1. Love the soup!! πŸ™‚ We got 7 inches all sleet Monday evening, Tuesday and most of it is still on the ground and roads. I have 4 trees left to cut out of 7 that fell across our driveway. Yes, there is a lot of black ice where the sleet has melted and runs across the roads. We have not been able to get out because of the trees. Hope to have them all cut so we can get thru by tomorrow! Stay warm!!

      2. Sounds like you are having your own weather challenges! Kind of like the snow we got when we could not get out! Good luck with all of it! Be safe and warm.

  2. When we implanted the first artificial heart into Barney Clark here in the US his diet included chicken noodle soup to boost his immune system…I appreciate the recipe it gives me a chance to adjust the one I am using that just isn’t quite right, it just doesn’t taste as good as my moms.

    1. Now that is an interesting fact! I really liked adding the turnips and parsnips. Just let the vegetables roast a bit in the soup pan before adding the chicken broth. I do not make my chicken broth but I buy a good quality broth from Wegmans – our local supermarket. The fresh parsley at the end is also a nice touch. I also added a lot of dried basil. The house smells heavenly when it is simmering!!

  3. This sounds like a great variation of a more traditional chicken noodle soup. I am sure you will be glad when this weather is ended as it has been a dreadful winter.

  4. That soup does look really good Bernice. I never thought to add turnips and squash. A nice touch. I like chicken noodle soup with those thin noodles too. Great when I am sick.

    1. Thanks! The turnips and squash was good. I am making it again this weekend and this time I am using sweet potatoes. Some people make it with egg noodles but I love the thin noodles!

  5. Bernice,
    I am so glad you stopped by my blog because it gave me the opportunity to go to yours! I am really excited also that you are sharing something I need to get better at for myself. I cooked for decades for my family, but I am all alone now so I need to start cooking again for me. I will not tell you how much I go out to eat….I have no way of controlling the calories that way! thx again Alesia

    1. I know what you mean about eating out. Far too many calories and it becomes fairly expensive over time. That is why I started a cooking blog to try new recipes and it has been a wonderful adventure!

  6. Warm and nourishing soup. I make chicken soup often, will try this. Thanks.

    I am looking to make Chicken Marsala (italian), do you have experience with it?

    Do check out my recipes at for Indian & Parsi Cuisine.

    1. I love this version with the parsnips, turnips and squash or sweet potatoes if you prefer. I have been wanting to make Chicken Marsala but so far have not had a chance to do the research to make a version.

    1. I am so happy you enjoyed the soup! I love it for my lunch at work – such a nice treat and so filling! Thanks for the wonderful feedback. πŸ™‚

  7. I do agree that chicken soup is good for you. The soup looks delicious and soups are one thing I like to cook. I’m not a huge fan of turnips or parsnips, but I am good with substitutions. That is one great thing about soup. It is flexible.

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