Old-Fashion Chicken and Rice Soup

posted by Andrea | 04/20/2011

I know it’s nearly May, and really not the time for a soup recipe, but here in West MI, we actually saw snow yesterday! Plus, I had a nasty case of the 24-hour flu last week and chicken soup just sounded SO good.

So I made a big batch of my most favorite chicken and rice soup, and have plenty more in the freezer!

Do you have a favorite soup recipe?

one that’s been passed down from your mom and your grandma…

one that you’ve made so many time you don’t even need the recipe…

one that you gravitate towards any time you need some good comfort food?

That’s what this recipe is for me.

This recipe for old-fashion chicken and rice soup is from my Grandma, and it’s the same recipe my mom made every winter and every time we got sick. I grew up with this recipe so it’s no surprise that it’s my favorite chicken soup recipe…ever!

I’ve never liked traditional {and very “brothy”} chicken noodle soup — I much prefer the thickness that rice adds to the recipe. Again, that’s probably because I grew up with rice instead of noodles, but if you’ve never tried your chicken soup with rice, you’re totally missing out!!

Another thing that helps my chicken soup to thicken up is that I use LOTS of shredded chicken {at least 4 or 5 cups}.

Through the years, I’ve definitely managed to simplify the recipe instructions a bit — plus I doubled the recipe — but the ingredients {and the delicious end results} are still the same!


{print recipe}

  • 4-5 c. shredded chicken or turkey
  • 1 c. rice — I actually use a little less than a full cup
  • 1 medium onion — chopped
  • 1 c. celery — chopped
  • 1.5 c. carrots — chopped
  • 2 10.5 oz. cans cream of chicken soup
  • 2 envelopes Lipton Chicken OR Lipton Onion soup mix (I used onion this time for a darker broth}

I always thought it was weird to add the Lipton soup mixes, but now I realize how easy it make everything — because the soup mix contains all the seasonings so you don’t have to measure any of it!


1. Add all ingredients into a large stock pot and bring to a boil.

2. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 1 hour — stirring occasionally.

3. You can add more water or broth as necessary, if you prefer “thinner” soup.

4. Enjoy!

From my kitchen, my mom’s kitchen, and my grandma’s kitchen to yours… I just know you’re going to love this soup!

What is your favorite soup recipe?

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Filed under: Food

Leave a comment


  1. jane


    Your soup looks really yummy. though I had to change a few ingredients. The canned soup and the dry onion soup mix contain MSG and I can’t have that. Causes really nasty migraines. So I had to find recipes to make my own, works well so will give your soup a try. Thanks for the post.


  2. Jenny C.


    Hi Andrea 🙂 This looks super yummy! One question, does the onion soup give it a pronounced “onion flavor”? I’m anxious to give it a try with an arctic blast on the way for the east coast. Thanks & blessings.


    Andrea Reply:

    no, it’s definitely not a “pronounced onion flavor” in my opinion. But if you’re worried about it, just use chicken noodle soup flavor instead. Enjoy!


  3. Lynn


    Oh my gosh, I LOVE your recipes! Making this tonight!


    Andrea Reply:

    thanks Lynn… we just finished the soup and it was delicious!


  4. Mary Lou


    I was wondering if you saute anything before you dump it all into the pot? I’m making this right now and am a little nervous because I didn’t saute any veggies.

    Thanks for your site and help for us moms.
    I posted this question under the orange chicken. I’m not sure how I did that, but maybe you’ll want to remove that.
    Mary Lou


    Andrea Reply:

    nope — no need to sauté anything. I make this all the time and have never sautéed anything first 🙂


  5. Aa.


    I have a similar recipe, but in Europe we call it “soup a la greek”. Also, in my country we eat soup all year long, because in the summer you also need a lot of liquids and soup is an easy meal, you don’t want to eat something hard to digest in the middle of the day an in the evening too. Actually, in my parents family, lunch consists in a soup, without exceptions!

    Also it is easier for me, because i cook one for 2-3 days and i don’t worry very much!

    Also, this soup freezes well,but since most of my soup recipes require potatoes (i use european ones), most of them do not freeze well.


  6. Yolanda


    Look and sounds delicious, and can’t wait to try it. Do you use the onion soup mix just for the darkness or does it give it a better taste than the chicken soup mix. Can you use 1 of each? Thank you,


  7. yesenia


    I am hopin to try this out next week I have five kids and a husband and my self. I have to cook every day I want to start freezein food to save me time. I just wanted to know went I do freeze the soup when ready to reheat do u put right into a pot to reheat or defrost. Frist how would this work


    Andrea Reply:

    I’d defrost the soup first — I usually pull it out of the freezer a day ahead of time and let it defrost in the fridge.


  8. Jill


    Your recipe was so delicious!!!! So glad I found it through Pinterest! Thanks!


  9. Jill


    What type of rice? Instant or long cooking?


    Andrea Reply:

    Jill, I just the “long cooking” rice for this recipe because it’s in the water for a while. The instant rice would be way too mushy I think.


    Jill Reply:

    That’s what I thought too. Thanks for the quick response. I had the chicken cooking when I asked you so now I can put it all together. Cant wait! Thanks!


  10. Amy


    Andrea, what’s the purpose of the cream of chicken soup? Could I swap it out for more broth or something else? I like this recipe, but I am allergic to milk, so any cream type soup base is not good for me. Thanks!


    Andrea Reply:

    I don’t know Amy — it’s just how my grandma and mom have always made it. I’m always up for trying new versions of recipes so give it a try — however, it might be more “liquidy” and not as thick if you use broth instead of cream of chicken soup.


  11. Mandi


    Thank you SOOO much for sharing all your wonderful recipes, tips and suggestions. I truly feel like you have made me a better Mom and wife by providing these great, healthy recipes that I feel confident in making for my family (I am not a great cook lol).

    Do you think whole wheat rice would work just as well in this as white?

    Thanks again for all your time and hard work!!


    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Mandi!
    And yes, I do think whole wheat rice would work — or you could always try 1/2 and 1/2 first to make sure.


  12. Stephanie


    I just made this recipe yesterday – even though it was 90 some degrees here in Iowa! It was delish! Went perfectly with these breadsticks: http://moneysavingmom.com/2012/08/homemade-breadsticks-in-the-bread-machine.html

    And the best part? I have leftovers to freeze for another meal!


  13. Coco


    Has anyone tried freezing this soup? I’m so excited to make it, it sounds delicious!


    Andrea Reply:

    yes, I freeze this soup all the time. Like almost every recipe on my site, it freezes very well. Hope you love it!


    Coco Reply:

    Great! Oh I forgot to ask, do I mix all the ingredients and then freeze before cooking? Or do I go ahead and cook it for an hour, then freeze?


  14. jennibell


    I’m always on the hunt for a good chicken soup recipe — even though it’s May I think I’ll try it anyway 🙂 I’ve never added a soup mix to my soups — *great* idea! And, since my husband can’t have gluten, this is perfect for our family.


    Andrea Reply:

    it’s never too warm for homemade Chicken Soup…is it??? Hope you love it as much as we do!!


  15. Lana @ Never Enough Thyme


    I really love this simple recipe for chicken and rice soup! I’m definitely putting it on my to-try list. My favorite soup, though, is this old-fashioned hambone soup from my blog: http://www.lanascooking.com/2009/09/21/hambone-soup/


    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks for your recipe link Lana — I’ll have to try that one out too!