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Chicken Wild Rice Soup

This soup is hearty, nourishing and perfect for the cold winter weather! You will realize when you are eating it that it truly warms you from the inside out.

What is wild rice?

Interestingly enough, wild rice is not a grain. Wild rice is the perfect substitute for those observing a grain free diet! Technically, it is an aquatic grass and grows differently than other rice. Despite not being a grain, wild rice has its name due to how similar it is in shape to rice. It also cooks similarly to rice.

Compared to white and brown rice, wild rice is much healthier for you! It is packed full of antioxidants and contains more potassium and zinc than regular rice. Wild rice also has a high protein content and makes for a great supplement to those practicing a plant based diet.

Wild rice can be three distinctly different colors: white, brown and black. However, regardless of the color they all cook and taste the same. Most commonly, you will find wild rice packaged as a combination of all three colors or simply black.

Why do you need to remove the bay leaves from the soup before serving?

Bay leaves are a fragrant herb used in many soup and broth recipes. It has an earthy taste, and helps to round out the flavors of other ingredients. Bay leaves are native to the Mediterranean region, and grow from the bay laurel tree. Because of this, they are commonly used in Mediterranean recipes and Middle Eastern cuisines.

In the US bay leaves are stored dry, but some specialty stores may carry fresh bay leaves. Ideally you want to buy bay leaves dry, unless a recipe specifically suggests otherwise. Fresh bay leaves are much more overpowering and can carry a strong minty flavor that may throw off the flavors of your dish.

Dried bay leaves, while more subtle in flavor, still aren’t typically consumed. If you use a bay leaf, you should remove it from soups and broth before serving. Bay leaves emit a mild flavor when cooking in liquid, but are extremely bitter when you bite into it.

You can make this soup dairy free!

That’s correct, this recipe can easily be adjusted to accommodate a dairy-free diet. Whether you have a dairy allergy, or are trying to cut back on your carbon footprint, there are plenty of reasons to practice a dairy free lifestyle.

To make this a dairy free recipe, simply replace the milk and heavy cream with your favorite dairy free alternative. Oat milk has a mild flavor and thick texture that can match that of milk and heavy cream.

Another option would be to use coconut milk and coconut cream, but keep in mind that this will change the flavor of the dish overall. It will still be delicious, but different!

How to make our chicken wild rice soup

  1. Drizzle olive oil in a deep dish pot or dutch oven. You will want to use a pot that has a top you can cover it with.
  2. Place the pot on medium high heat. Add the celery, carrots, onions and garlic. Sauté the ingredients until everything starts to soften and brown a little bit. This should take about 10 minutes.
  3. Add the chicken breast to the pan on top of the cooked veggies. Season the chicken with salt, pepper oregano and two bay leaves. Pour the broth 1 cup milk and 1/2 cup heavy cream into the pot, followed by the wild rice. Lastly, add the contents of the seasoning packet.
  4. Give everything a quick mix. Bring the pot up to a boil over high heat, then lower it to a simmer. Cover and cook for about 20 minutes.
  5. While the rice and chicken are cooking, make a thickening mixture. Combine  flour, remaining milk and heavy cream using a whisk. Set aside.
  6. Remove the bay leaves from the soup and discard.
  7. Next, remove the chicken from the soup and shred with a fork. Add the shredded chicken back into the soup, followed by the thickener, let simmer for an additional 5 minutes until thickened. Mix everything together.
  8. Serve hot and enjoy!

How to store our chicken and wild rice soup

You can store this quick and easy recipe in the fridge or the freezer. Pack it into an airtight container and it will last for 3-5 days in the fridge or up to 3 months in the freezer. To make reheating from the freezer even easier, freeze in portion sizes so that you don’t have to defrost more than you need!

If you are meal prepping for the week, make sure to allow some time for your soup to cool down before storing. Ideally your soup will go into the fridge when it is warm, not hot. You want to avoid placing piping hot soup directly in the fridge as it can bring down the temperature of your fridge.

Other soup recipes to try:

Slow Cooker White Chicken Chili

Roasted Tomato Soup with Parmesan Croutons

Egyptian Lentil Soup

 

Chicken Wild Rice Soup

Ultra comforting wild rice soup that is full of flavor, rich and creamy!
5 from 6 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: dinner, lunch, meal prep, Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chicken wild rice soup, copy cat panera bread soup, copy cat panera bread wild rice soup, easy wild rice soup, easy wild rice soup recipe, wild rice soup, wild rice soup recipe
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 8 people
Calories:
Author: Alia and Radwa

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 stalks chopped celery
  • 1 cup chopped carrots
  • 1 medium chopped yellow onion
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 lb chicken breast
  • 1 tsp salt more or less to taste
  • 3/4 tsp black pepper more or less to taste
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 5 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cups whole milk divided
  • 1 cup heavy cream divided
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 6 oz long grain & wild rice with seasoning packet

Instructions

  • Drizzle olive oil in a deep dish pot or dutch oven. Place the pot on medium high heat. Add the celery, carrots, onions and garlic. Sauté the ingredients until everything starts to soften and brown a little bit. This should take about 10 minutes.
  • Add the chicken breast to the pan on top of the cooked veggies. Season the chicken with salt, pepper oregano and two bay leaves. Pour the broth 1 cup milk and 1/2 cup heavy cream into the pot, followed by the wild rice. Lastly, add the contents of the seasoning packet.
  • Give everything a quick mix. Bring the pot up to a boil over high heat, then lower it to a simmer. Cover and cook for about 20 minutes.
  • While the rice and chicken are cooking, make a thickening mixture. Combine flour, remaining milk and heavy cream using a whisk. Set aside.
  • Remove the bay leaves from the soup and discard. Next, remove the chicken from the soup and shred with a fork. Add the shredded chicken back into the soup, followed by the thickener, let simmer for 5 minutes until it thickens. Mix everything together. Serve hot and enjoy!

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10 Comments

  1. My husband bought the wrong rice! He didn’t buy the one with the seasoning. Any suggestions on what type of seasoning to add?

    1. You can use these measurements!
      2 tsp dried onion flakes
      1 tsp dried parsley
      1/2 tsp garlic powder
      1 tsp turmeric
      1/2 ground cumin
      1/4 ginger
      1/2 black pepper, more or less to taste
      1/2 tsp salt, more or less to taste