This post shows you how to make gluten-free, healthy, and hearty slow cooker chicken noodle soup in no time. It’s a time saver that’s so delicious, it will become your go-to soup recipe!
Ah, chicken noodle soup. What can I say?
Other than it’s one of the tastiest meals out there. Seriously!
Chicken noodle soup is one of the best comfort foods. The simple flavors of the broth, mixed with the savory chunks of chicken, tender sliced carrots, and celery transforms me back to being a kid. It’s just simple perfection.
Now, when I actually take a second to think about this blissful childhood moment, I realize the chicken noodle soup I used to enjoy was likely canned. That means it was super duper high in sodium and had very little nutrients. And, honestly, wasn’t even that tasty.
Man, being a kid was so easy back then! No calories to worry about. No BPA. No empty carbs from the noodles.
With that realization, I’ve come up with a super yummy way to still enjoy all the deliciousness of a chicken noodle soup recipe with all the goodness a healthy adult appreciates. This easy Slow Cooker Chicken Noodle Soup is made with zucchini noodles for a healthier, gluten-free, and low-carb soup recipe. And making chicken noodle soup in a slow cooker is so darn easy.
Using a slow cooker is a nice way to venture out in your recipe repertoire as well. Slow Cooker Cashew Chicken is one of our family favorites. And when it comes to amazing flavors, well, it’s Slow Cooker Hot and Sour Soup all the way!
HOW TO MAKE SLOW COOKER CHICKEN NOODLE SOUP
Learning how to make crockpot chicken noodle soup is like the easiest thing ever. It’s definitely easier than learning how to make chicken noodle soup without a slow cooker!
You just place the ingredients in the slow cooker, season, and forget about everything for a few hours.
It’s that simple, yes. If you feel the need for more guidance, here are the detailed “how to make chicken noodle soup in a slow cooker” steps:
- Start by seasoning the chicken with sea salt and pepper
- Place the chicken in the slow cooker followed by veggies
- Stir to combine
- Cook on low heat for 6-8 hours or on high heat for 4-5 hours
- Shred the chicken
- Add noodles and spices
- Cook for an additional 8-10 minutes on low heat
- Garnish with parsley and add lemon juice for extra taste and goodness
You are now ready to savor the amazing flavors of your homemade slow cooker chicken noodle soup.
DO YOU COOK THE CHICKEN FIRST FOR SLOW COOKER CHICKEN NOODLE SOUP?
This recipe can be done either way. In the recipe instructions, I’ve used boneless chicken breasts that I season and place in the slow cooker along with all of the ingredients, except for the spiralized zucchini noodles and a few spices that I add later. The chicken cooks in the pot for 6-8 hours on low or 4-5 hours on high. Then I shred it – the perfect chicken!
How to make chicken noodle soup in a slow cooker without a carcass:
This recipe is actually perfect if you don’t have a chicken carcass. Instead, you can use the boneless, skinless chicken breasts, and low sodium chicken broth. Cooking the chicken breasts and veggies in the chicken broth over a long timeframe in the slow cooker will make for a tasty broth and tender chicken.
How to make chicken noodle soup in the slow cooker with a carcass:
If you do have a chicken carcass and want to use it in this recipe, you can easily toss it in along with the rest of the ingredients to cook in the slow cooker. Once it’s time to shred the chicken, you can remove any remaining meat from the carcass and then discard it. Easy peasy.
CAN YOU PUT FROZEN CHICKEN IN THE SLOW COOKER?
No, don’t use frozen chicken. It’s not safe. The chicken will be cooking slowly, which is okay when the chicken is thawed. But it’s not a good idea to use frozen chicken because the slow cooker may not reach the adequate temperature before bacteria begin to grow. So, don’t take a chance because you may get sick. BTW, to get the scoop on refreezing chicken, take a look at my informative post.
CAN I USE LEFTOVER CHICKEN?
You can definitely use leftover chicken. Shred it, and add it along with the veggies, cooking on low for 4 hours or high for 2. Whatever spices you had put on the chicken that is now leftovers will give a unique flavoring.
WHY IS CHICKEN NOODLE SOUP GOOD FOR YOU?
Many people eat chicken noodle soup when they are sick or during winter months when it’s very cold outside. What makes chicken noodle soup so good for you?
- Firstly, the taste and the fact that it’s comforting, warm, and all you want when you have the flu or when it’s cold outside.
- Also, chicken noodle soup contains ingredients that are high in antioxidants such as carrots, onions, and celery. These veggies boost your immune system and help you to stay healthy or to fight the flu if you are sick.
- The broth or stock in the soup helps to keep you hydrated, which is an important part of recovering when you don’t feel well.
- Chicken is a protein that boosts muscle recovery and helps the body repair.
Chicken noodle soup is amazing like that. And if you make it healthy by using zucchini noodles instead of regular noodles you get even more benefits because zucchini has plenty of health benefits too.
WHAT GIVES SLOW COOKER CHICKEN NOODLE SOUP ITS YUMMY FLAVOR?
I really love this homemade chicken noodle soup because I can not only make it healthy but I can also make it taste the way I like it. You can’t do that with canned soup. The veggies in chicken noodle soup and the spices make all the difference in taste, but give a boost with nutritional benefits, too.
What veggies I put in slow cooker chicken noodle soup:
- Garlic (garlic lovers, you can add extra if you like!)
- Yellow onion for vitamin C
- Carrots add sweetness and lots of vitamin A
- Celery has potassium and vitamins
- Zucchini noodles add folate and vitamin C
What about the spices? What spices do you put in chicken noodle soup? I like to add:
- Italian parsley
While you don’t have to use spiralized zucchini noodles in this slow cooker chicken noodle soup, they sure do make a great option. Zucchini noodles are lower in carbs and calories plus pack more protein and fiber than most any pasta noodle. When recipes call for 8 oz. pasta noodles, I replace with 2 cups spiralized zucchini noodles. This tends to be about 2 zucchinis.
Just like with pasta, you don’t want to cook the zucchini noodles the same amount of time as the rest of the soup. Instead, add them in when there are just about 15-20 minutes left of cooking so that they don’t get overcooked. To learn more about how to spiralize zucchini noodles, check out this Spiralizer post.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CHICKEN BROTH AND CHICKEN STOCK?
- Chicken broth is made from the poultry meat. It’s light and low in calories.
- Chicken stock is made with the bones, too. Stock is thicker in consistency and has a richer taste.
WHAT TO SERVE WITH CHICKEN NOODLE SOUP
Chicken noodle soup makes a delicious and light meal on its own. You can enjoy it for lunch or dinner and you’ll get all warm and fuzzy inside. But sometimes that’s not quite enough.
If you want a complete meal, here’s what to serve with chicken noodle soup:
- Fresh veggies turned into a simple side salad or veggie sticks (carrot and celery sticks are so yummy) and hummus
- Homemade Bagel Recipe, topped with Homemade Everything Bagel Seasoning (of course!)
- Strawberry Salad with Chia Seed Vinaigrette
- Baked Pita Chips
- Spinach, Egg White & Zucchini Wraps
- French Dips with Homemade au Jus
- Spinach Salad with Warm Bacon Dressing
- A warm veggie side dish like roasted broccoli
HOW TO STORE, REHEAT, AND FREEZE SLOW COOKER CHICKEN NOODLE SOUP
Store: You can store this super tasting slow cooker chicken noodle soup in the fridge for 3-4 days. Make sure you use an airtight container.
Reheat: Take the soup and place it in a pot on the stove. Warm it up on medium heat, releasing the fabulous aroma of hearty chicken soup throughout the house again!
Freeze: The good news is you can easily freeze leftover slow cooker chicken noodle soup for quick family meals. Here are some tips for how to freeze chicken noodle soup:
- Allow the soup to cool completely. You may want to transfer to a large bowl and place in the refrigerator to cool.
- Freeze in either gallon – or quart-sized freezer bags or freezer-safe containers for easy thawing and storage.
- Leave enough space at the top of the bag to allow for expansion during freezing. Squeeze as much air as possible out of the top of the bag and seal securely.
- Place the soup-filled freezer bags in the freezer, in a single, flat layer (using a rimmed baking sheet is helpful). Allow to freeze completely. Then, stack them on top of each other or standing side by side.
- Thaw bags of frozen soup in the refrigerator overnight when ready to reheat.
I recommend not freezing the zucchini noodles along with the soup and, instead, making them fresh when it’s time to reheat. That way, they maintain the best texture.
MORE HEALTHY SLOW COOKER RECIPES
Now that you’ve tried this yummy slow cooker chicken noodle soup, you are going to want to make something in the slow cooker every week!
- Slow Cooker Shredded Chicken Meal Prep
- Healthy Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup
- Slow Cooker Chicken Burrito Bowl
- Crock Pot Chicken Enchilada Soup
- Slow Cooker Green Chile Pork Tacos
- Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup
Are you looking for the easiest way to make one of the most comforting meals ever? This post shows you how to make gluten-free, healthy, and hearty slow cooker chicken noodle soup in no time. It’s a time saver that’s so delicious, it will become your go-to soup recipe!
- 1 1/2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 1 tsp. sea salt, plus more as needed
- 1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 4 carrots, sliced
- 3 stalks celery, sliced
- 8 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 medium zucchini, spiralized
- 1 tsp. fresh thyme
- 1 tsp. fresh rosemary
- 1 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice (approx. 1 lemon)
- 2 tbsp. Italian parsley, chopped
Season the chicken with the sea salt and pepper.
Place seasoned chicken into the slow cooker.
Add the garlic, onion, carrots, celery, and chicken stock, and stir to combine.
Add the bay leaf, and then cover and cook on low heat for 6-8 hours or on high heat for 4-5 hours, or until the chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are tender..
Remove the cooked chicken from the slow cooker and shred, using two forks.
Add the spiralized zucchini noodles, thyme, and rosemary, and stir to incorporate.
Cover the slow cooker, and cook on low heat for an additional 8-10 minutes, or until the zucchini is mostly tender.
Add the lemon juice and parsley, and stir together.
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