This easy and fast version of classic chicken noodle soup tastes like it’s been simmered all day but only takes about an hour from start to finish. Brown bone-in chicken pieces, and then sauté carrot, celery, and onion with the flavorful browned bits in the saucepan. Add chicken broth and simmer until the chicken is cooked all the way through and the vegetables are tender. Shred the chicken, add it back to the soup, and toss in a block of instant ramen for an easy, no-boil solution to noodles. (Trying to use a lot of leftover chicken? See our leftover chicken recipe.)
Game plan: You can substitute 4 ounces of any variety of dried short pasta for the ramen noodles. Just cook it according to the package directions while the soup is simmering and add it at the end in place of the ramen.
For a thicker chicken soup, try our chicken tortilla soup recipe. Or mix it up with a chicken wild rice soup recipe.
- 1 bone-in chicken breast (about 1 pound)
- 1 whole chicken leg (thigh and drumstick, about 3/4 pound)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 medium carrots, medium dice
- 2 medium celery stalks, medium dice
- 1/2 medium yellow onion, medium dice
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more as needed
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more as needed
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 6 cups (1 1/2 quarts) low-sodium chicken broth or stock
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 (2- to 3-ounce) package instant ramen noodles, flavor packet removed
- 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
- Pat the chicken dry with paper towels and season generously all over with salt and pepper; set aside.
- Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the chicken and cook, turning occasionally, until it’s browned all over, about 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a large plate and set aside.
- Reduce the heat to medium. Add the carrot, celery, onion, measured salt, measured pepper, and thyme to the saucepan and stir to combine. Cook, stirring occasionally and scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan, until the vegetables have softened and are just starting to brown, about 5 minutes.
- Add the broth or stock and stir to combine. Add the bay leaf and return the chicken pieces and any accumulated juices to the saucepan. Increase the heat to medium high and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer until the chicken is cooked through, about 20 minutes. Turn off the heat.
- Transfer the chicken to a cutting board. Using 2 forks, remove the meat from the bone, discarding the skin, cartilage, and fat. Shred the meat into bite-sized pieces and add it back to the saucepan.
- Break the noodle block into large pieces, add them to the saucepan, and stir to combine. Let sit, stirring occasionally, until the noodles are cooked through, about 5 minutes. Add the parsley and stir to combine. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed.