Ahh, chicken soup. It is one of the easiest and most comforting dishes to serve. This version incorporates fresh lemon and orzo for a refreshing twist on chicken soup. The orzo pasta adds a delicate touch while the lemon brightens the flavor. I love using a variety of fresh herbs in the soup, but feel free to substitute dried herbs if you don’t have fresh on hand.
splash of olive oil, about 1 tablespoon
4 green onions, sliced
3 celery stalks, sliced
1 cup carrots
1 teaspoon garlic, minced
2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1 inch chunks
32 ounces low-sodium chicken broth
4 cups of water
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1/2 teaspoon fresh basil
1/2 teaspoon fresh sage
1 teaspoon fresh parsley
1 cup orzo
fresh parsley for serving
lemon halves for serving
Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat for about 2 minutes. Add in the green onions, celery and carrots and cook for 5 minutes, stirring often until the vegetables are tender. Mix in diced chicken, broth and 4 cups of water.
Stir and season the mixture with salt, freshly ground pepper, basil, sage and fresh parsley. Cover the pot and bring the soup to a low boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for about 10 minutes until the chicken is cooked through. Stir in the orzo and cook for 8-10 more minutes until the orzo is just cooked and still a bit firm.
Squeeze in juice from half a lemon (make sure to avoid the seeds). Sprinkle soup with fresh parsley and serve with lemon wedges to season to taste. Enjoy!