Hey there, I’m Celia, a current PA-S2 and busy mother of two. I am excited to share some of the tried-and-true recipes I have developed while trying to balance home-life with school.
When trying out a new recipe, I have some “guidelines” I try to follow:
1) The recipe should call for “every day” ingredients that don’t require a special grocery trip.
2) The recipe should only involve only a few steps and no more than 20 minutes of “hands-on” prep time.
3) It should taste great and fit the budget!
With that said, I am going to share a recipe with you today that fulfills these guidelines perfectly: a customizable chicken-veggie soup that involves “upcycling” ingredients you have on hand. The concept of the recipe is to utilize items that are already in your fridge and pantry, and turn them into a brand-new dish.
This recipe is incredibly flexible. What you will need is a base, some veggies, and add-ins. I made mine in a large stock pot on the stove, but this can easily be made in a crockpot too!
Either boil some boxed chicken stock from the pantryor make your own. In this case, I had left over rotisserie chicken in my fridge with which I made stock. I removed the meat and sat it aside. I then placed the bones in a stock pot, covered with water, and set it to boil. It simmered for a few hours while I studied, did laundry, and played with my kids. Then I removed the bones and strained the liquid.
For this step, you just check your fridge/freezer for any vegetables that are laying around and haven’t been used up yet. In this case, I had half a bag of baby carrots, an onion, some garlic, a jalapeno, tomatoes, a few radishes, and some frozen zucchini. Chop up the vegetables and add them to the stock. Add seasonings to your liking (I used salt, pepper, and oregano). Boil until the vegetables are soft and then blend with an immersion blender.
Now you get to decide what will take your soup to the next level! If you have any leftover chicken or meat, chop it up and stir it in. Have some barley on hand? Boil it in the soup for about 10-15 minutes. Want some crunch? Top the bowls of soup with crispy fried onions, croutons, or bacon crumbles.
And that’s it! I love making this soup every now and then in order to clean out my vegetable drawer and use up ingredients I have on hand. I suggest making a big batch and freezingindividual portions so that you can take it out on a hectic night and enjoy it again!