Making chicken noodle soup from scratch is easy and satisfying! This is a traditional German recipe, except for the fresh ginger. The ginger adds a very subtle, refreshing spice note. My homemade chicken stock made with a whole chicken and soup vegetables including celery root and leek is full of deep flavors that make this recipe stand out. I used storebought German egg soup noodles for this recipe, which are fun and different. My kids say this the best chicken noodle soup they've ever had!
How to make homemade chicken noodle soup
Making homemade chicken noodle soup is super easy and so satisfying! You can make it from scratch using a whole chicken, whether it's frozen or refrigerated. I simply combine my chicken with water, salt, pepper, and bay leaf. Then I add fresh vegetables like a whole onion cut in half with the peel on, roughly chopped carrots, leeks, fresh ginger, and celery root (I love the slightly sweeter notes of celery root compared with the commonly used celery stalks).
This is an authentic, German chicken noodle soup recipe (modernized only by the addition of ginger) that I love so much for its unique flavors! After cooking the chicken and vegetables, you will strain the soup, toss the sad-looking veggies and shred the chicken. I used store-bought German egg noodles for this soup that my grandma used for soups all the time. This saves you some time and dirty dishes and makes this soup feel even more like home to me.
The noodles are cooked separately, so they don't get mushy when sitting in your fridge as leftovers. When warming up the soup, I add more veggies such as peas, sliced carrots, little cauliflower or broccoli florets, and fresh parsley (or chives). I then serve it with cooked noodles and shredded chicken. This is the best chicken noodle soup you'll have, perfect for those cooler months with anti-inflammatory benefits, and I promise not just your kids will love it!
What type of noodles to use
I use German store-bought egg noodles that Germans use specifically for soup recipes. They look like short angel hair pasta and my kids just LOVE them. They're also the same type of noodles that my grandma used for all sorts of German soup recipes such as this German smoked ham soup called Kasslersuppe. They save you an extra step and extra dirty dishes. However, if you'd like to make your egg noodles, go for it! I think even homemade spätzle (a German homemade egg noodle) would work great in this soup.
There are a few simple, but powerful ingredients you will need for my German recipe of homemade chicken noodle soup.
- Organic, whole chicken. I use organic chicken for this recipe because I can taste the difference. This recipe creates a rich chicken stock full of healing properties.
- Yellow onion. You don't peel the onion for this recipe, but simply cut it in half and throw it into your stock pot. The peel will pass off additional color to the soup.
- Carrots. I peel and trim my carrots before roughly chopping them up to cook with the chicken.
- Celery root. Celery root is commonly used in German soups and has a milder, sweeter flavor than celery stalks. I simply peel it using a vegetable peeler and cube it to throw in. You can also use celery stalks if you can't find the root.
- Leek. Belonging to the onion family, this vegetable gives off great flavor to this soup.
- Fresh ginger. The amount of fresh ginger I add to this soup just adds some freshness and you may not even be able to tell that it's in there.
- Bay leaf. I add one dried bay leaf to my soup.
- whole peppercorns. You will strain them out with the vegetables when the chicken is done cooking.
- Salt. I use pink Himalayan sea salt for extra nutrition.
- Vegetables for serving. Commonly used vegetables for serving are sliced carrots, peas, and cauliflower florets (I used broccoli florets), but feel free to use any vegetables you like.
- Soup noodles. I use a German egg soup noodle for this soup that I cook separately and then add to the soup when serving. Feel free to make homemade egg noodles if you wish!
- Fresh parsley or chives. I used fresh parsley as a soup garnish, but chopped chives are also great and add more of an onion flavor.
How to store it
I like keeping all of my soup ingredients such as the broth, chicken meat, noodles, and vegetables separate, so nothing gets mushy and gross while sitting in the fridge, waiting to be reheated. You can store these your chicken noodle soup ingredients for up to 5 days in the fridge. If you have leftover stock, you can freeze it for up to a couple of months.
Is chicken noodle soup healthy?
There is a reason why chicken noodle soup is the number one chosen soup when a cold or the flu hits. It is a powerhouse soup that has healing properties. There are minerals and proteins in the chicken that help with inflammation and combined with the vitamins in the cooked vegetables, this soup may have the ability to heal. Moreover drinking and eating hot foods helps loosen mucus, which is always helpful when you're clogged up. So next time you feel that sniffle coming on, prepare yourself with this simple, homemade chicken noodle soup recipe.
Instant pot tips
I don't frequently use my instant pot, BUT I love using it for soups! Not only does it cook the soup faster, but the pressure cooker function also helps preserve more taste (I swear!). Plus it's more energy efficient because cooking takes a third of the time. So next time that chicken noodle soup emergency hits, consider pulling out your pressure cooker. I cooked a FROZEN 5-pound chicken in just about 90 minutes in a pressure cooker and ended up with fall-off-the-bone meat and a super flavorful soup. The general rule is that you'll cook a frozen, whole chicken in 13 minutes per pound and a fresh, whole chicken in 6 minutes a pound. With each method, you're adding 15 minutes of natural pressure release time in the end.
How To Make Chicken Noodle Soup Video
Watch this quick one-minute video to help you know the steps to make the best homemade chicken noodle soup.
More German soup recipes
German Chicken Noodle Soup
- 1 whole chicken I use an organic chicken that weighs around 5 pounds.
- 1 leek trimmed and sliced
- 1 large carrot or 3 little ones, peeled and chopped
- ½ celery root peeled and roughly chopped
- 1 yellow onion large, skin on, cut in half
- 1 piece fresh ginger thumb-sized piece
- 1 dried bay leaf
- 1 tablespoon whole peppercorns
- 1 tablespoon salt I use pink Himalayan sea salt
- vegetables of choice I used frozen peas, sliced carrots, small broccoli florets (or cauliflower)
- parsley use the stems to cook with the chicken and the leaves for garnish
- 1 package egg soup noodles I love these German ones that look like short angel hair pasta
- Prep the chicken by running cold water over it (whether frozen or refrigerated), then add to a stock pot (or pressure cooker if using).1 whole chicken
- Trim and peel the vegetables, then roughly chop them up and add them to the chicken (just cut off the parsley stems and add them whole). Don't peel the onion, but just cut it in half and add it to the chicken with the peel on.1 leek, 1 large carrot, ½ celery root, 1 yellow onion, 1 piece fresh ginger, parsley
- Add the bay leaf, pepper and salt and 3 quarts of COLD water (if using a pressure cooker, fill water to the max line, then add more water after removing the chicken when it's cooked).1 dried bay leaf, 1 tablespoon whole peppercorns, 1 tablespoon salt
- Place a tight fitting lid on the stock pot and simmer for 2 to 3 hours or until the chicken can easily be pulled off the bones using a pair of tongs (see notes below if using a pressure cooker such as an Instant Pot).
- Strain the soup, saving the chicken and liquid, and toss (or compost) the vegetables. Shred the chicken.
- Bring the liquid back to a simmer, then season to taste with more salt and pepper. Add your fresh soup vegetables such as frozen peas, sliced carrots, small cauliflower or broccoli florets and cook until desired consistency.vegetables of choice
- Boil the egg noodles separately, so it doesn't get all mushy for when you're storing leftovers. This also helps the soup to stay clear and not become slimy and cloudy.1 package egg soup noodles
- In individual bowls, combine the noodles, shredded chicken and broth with vegetables and garnish with fresh herbs like parsley or chives.parsley