This lemon chicken rice soup recipe is perfect for when you want a cozy bowl of warm and hearty soup.
While this soup is on the thicker side, from the rice and tender chicken, it's brightened up with lots of lemon, leeks, carrots, and celery.
This delicious recipe will be your new favorite soup!
Why You'll Love this Tasty Soup
This lemon chicken soup recipe is the coziest! It's perfect for a chilly day and full of flavors that meld together well.
This recipe goes hard on the veggies - adding several aromatics and fresh ingredients helps to keep the flavor of this soup bright and sharp.
But we love a good carb in a soup too - it makes it that much more satisfying. Whether it's adding potato, crusty bread, or rice; adding some heft to your soup is the way to go!
Because this recipe makes 6 servings, it's a perfect soup to make on the weekend and eat for several meals during the week.
Here's what you'll need to make this easy recipe.
- Fat - I like using butter in this recipe because it provides a lovely flavor for the chicken, but you can also use olive oil or canola oil if you'd prefer.
- Chicken - you'll need boneless skinless chicken breasts for this recipe, or chicken thighs work too if that's what you have on hand.
- Vegetables - you'll need a yellow onion, garlic, carrots, celery stalks, and a leek to dice into small pieces. This soup is heavy on veggies - they provide an excellent base, add lots of flavor, and make this a hearty soup.
- Seasoning - you'll need kosher salt, ground black pepper, fresh thyme, a bay leaves, and a lemon.
- Liquid - you'll need chicken stock and at least a cup of water.
- Rice - I've made this recipe using both Jasmine and Basmati white rice, and have a slight preference for how the Basmati holds up in this recipe. You can also use brown rice if you'd prefer, but give it 5 more minutes of simmering time.
Optional toppings - lemon zest, fresh dill, sliced chives, chopped parsley, shredded parmesan, or microgreens.
Heat 1 tablespoon of butter over medium-high heat in a large pot or dutch oven.
Add chicken to the pot and cook until browned, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove chicken and set aside.
Add the remaining tablespoon of butter to the pot and when melted, add the onion and cook for 3 minutes. Add the minced garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
Add the carrots, celery, leek to the soup pot, and cook for 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add the salt, thyme, pepper, bay leaf, chicken stock, and chicken to the pot and stir to combine.
Cover and bring to a low boil then reduce to medium heat and let simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add the rice to the pot along with the cup of water and increase heat to bring to a low boil, then reduce the heat and allow to simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes.
Remove the soup from the heat and add the lemon juice. Stir and serve.
More Soup Recipes to Try
What's not to love about a good cup of soup? Here are some of our other favorite soups for you to enjoy.
- Dumpling Soup Recipe - one of our favorite ways to enjoy potstickers - in a quick dashi broth.
- Roasted Tomato Soup - a creamy soup with delicious roasted tomatoes and veggies.
- Tuscan White Bean Soup - a creamy and comforting soup that's a family favorite.
- Ribollita Soup Recipe - an Italian classic, this bean and crusty bread soup is as hearty as it is flavorful.
- Awesome Mexican Veggie Soup - a lightly spicy soup with corn, bell pepper, and beans that will warm you up.
You can save the cooked soup for up to 4 days in the refrigerator when stored in an airtight container.
It can also be frozen for up to 6 months in the freezer.
Tips for Making this Recipe
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Cooking Tips - If your soup is getting too thick after you've added the rice, add an additional cup of water or stock.
Alternate Cooking Methods - You can make this recipe in a slow cooker as well. Brown the chicken and cook the onions and carrots as directed on the stovetop and then add all the ingredients to a slow cooker. Cook on low for 6 hours.
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- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1.5 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, diced into 1-inch pieces
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 leek, halved and sliced
- 3 medium carrots, sliced
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 3 to 5 sprigs of fresh thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup basmati rice
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- Heat 1 tablespoon of butter over medium-high heat in a large pot or dutch oven.
- Add chicken to the pot and cook until browned, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove chicken and set aside.
- Add the remaining tablespoon of butter to the pot and when melted, add the onion and cook for 3 minutes. Add the minced garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
- Add the carrots, celery, and leek to the pot, and cook for 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the salt, thyme, pepper, bay leaf, chicken stock, and chicken to the pot and stir to combine. Cover and bring to a low boil then reduce heat and let simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the rice to the pot along with the cup of water and increase heat to bring it to a low boil, then reduce the heat and allow to simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes.
- Remove the soup from the heat and add the lemon juice. Stir and serve.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 340Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 111mgSodium: 1077mgCarbohydrates: 19gFiber: 2gSugar: 5gProtein: 41g