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Lemony Chicken and Orzo Soup Recipe

Lemony Chicken and Orzo Soup Recipe

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This weeknight chicken soup goes Greek with orzo, lemon juice, and a handful of fresh dill.


  • 1 medium leek, white and pale-green parts only, halved lengthwise, sliced crosswise 1/2-inch thick
  • 1 celery stalk, sliced crosswise 1/2-inch thick
  • 12 ounces skinless, boneless chicken thighs
  • 6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
  • Lemon halves (for serving)

Recipe Preparation

  • Heat oil in a large heavy pot over medium heat. Add leek and celery and cook, stirring often, until vegetables are soft, 5-8 minutes. Add chicken and broth; season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat, and simmer until chicken is cooked through, 15-20 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate. Let cool, then shred chicken into bite-size pieces.

  • Meanwhile, return broth to a boil. Add orzo and cook until al dente, 8-10 minutes.

  • Remove pot from heat. Stir in chicken and dill. Serve with lemon halves for squeezing over.

Recipe by Mary-Frances Heck,

Nutritional Content

4 servings, 1 serving contains: Calories (kcal) 200 Fat (g) 7 Saturated Fat (g) 1.5 Cholesterol (mg) 80 Carbohydrates (g) 10 Dietary Fiber (g) 1 Total Sugars (g) 3 Protein (g) 21 Sodium (mg) 1110Reviews SectionGreat recipe. Light and rich at the same time.So good, I make this all the time. Great mid week dinner!AnonymousMelbourne, Aus05/20/20This is my favorite soup when eating at a Greek restaurant. I was excited to come across this recipe, but confused that there is no lemon in the base recipe and it’s called a lemony soup. I figured, the lemon for serving was intended to be squeezed into the soup at the end. I subbed chicken breast for thighs bc it’s what I had. I followed the instructions to cook the chicken in the broth. This resulted in quite a bit of scum on that I had trouble spooning out with all the leeks and celery. Maybe the scum doesn’t happen with thighs? Or maybe it is intended? Either way, I prefer it without. I’d like to try it this soup again, but I will cook the chicken separate from the broth & add in at the end. I will also add more lemon juice.A local Greek restaurant makes a similar soup with rice and lots of Rosemary. The lemon and rosemary is so delicious together, and fresh rosemary is easier to find than dill, and lasts longer. I love Better than Bouillon paste, and I often make some extra broth to add to my leftover soup because the restaurant gives you lots of chicken and rice, and not just a lot of liquid.I've even taken regular chicken noodle soup and added herbs, rice or orzo, and lemon juice when I didn't have time to make homemade. This is a great way to use the leftover chicken from a rotisserie chicken. Make stock with the vegetables and bones,and add the leftover chicken meat at the end.TheSouthernBlackbirdNC04/09/20I made this with the sour cream and onion biscuits! Both are delicious. For this soup, I added garlic to the vegetables while cooking and after adding in the chicken and dill I squeezed in half a lemon along with its zest to make sure it was lemony! Sadly, due to the pandemic my grocer didn't have leeks so I subbed green onion- tasted great! I'm sure leeks would be better thoughlizzievvDetroit, MI03/26/20really good nourishing soup! but not heavy at allI squeezed half a lemon into the soup and left it in there for 5 mins or so while it was simmering to impart extra lemon flavour as there's none in the so-called 'lemony' recipe :palso, subbed orzo for pearl barley (due to stupid panic buying of pasta in the UK) & it worked just fine!saccharine serfcambs03/15/20This is really good soup! We made it up using some leftover shredded chicken breast so we didn't have to cook down the meat but it was still excellent. However, I did add some lemon zest to the soup to intensify the lemony flavor and then added in the lemon juice to the bowl just before serving. Loved it!!AnonymousMichigan02/28/20This soup is amazing and instantly became my favorite soup. I was skeptical at first because it seemed too simple to be good. I decided to add garlic and lemon zest and it came out really good!michelleortizzzSan Antonio, Texas02/27/20This is AMAZING. I added some kale that I’d massaged with lemon juice a few days ago to use it up and it amped the lemony flavour. So good!tess.healyMelbourne, AUS08/26/19Great recipe! I used preserved lemon for serving, which was delicious.Hubby thought this was divine! You can ease up on the salt if you want low sodium version and give the table extra to add to their own taste. I would double or quadruple it if you have a big family or if you like to have leftovers. Hearty enough to stand on its own as a meal, with maybe a salad on the side if you want. Easy, inexpensive, and will be added to our dinner round. Very enjoyable. Use a heavy hand with the lemon and it really brightens it up nicely! A glass of cold green white would go fabulous with this.AnonymousRochester, MN 01/12/19I really enjoy this recipe and make it all the time. It's very easy to tweak based on what vegetables I have on hand and great as a weekday lunch meal prep. I tend to skip the leek and just throw in some chopped baby carrots. It's great with the dill and lemon.How is this "lemony" if there is no actual lemon in the recipe, just squeezed on top at the end. Perhaps there is an ingredient missing, like a tablespoon of lemon juice added to the broth?!A stalk of celery is comprised of 6-10 celery ribs surrounding the heart. A celery rib is not a stalk.

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3/4 cup cubed carrot
  • 1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh garlic
  • 3/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 6 cups unsalted chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup uncooked whole-wheat orzo
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 3 cups shredded rotisserie chicken
  • 3 cups chopped baby spinach
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh dill

Nutritional Information

  • Calories 261
  • Fat 8g
  • Satfat 2g
  • Unsatfat 4g
  • Protein 32g
  • Carbohydrate 16g
  • Fiber 3g
  • Sugars 3g
  • Added sugars 0g
  • Sodium 641mg
  • Calcium 5% DV
  • Potassium 8% DV

Lemon Chicken Soup Recipe

Can any other recipe compare to the healing power of a warm bowl of chicken soup? It might just be the original comfort food. Our take on the childhood classic has a grownup spin that we know you&rsquoll love. We added white wine, English peas, flat-leaf parsley, lemon juice, and lemon zest to create our Lemon Chicken Soup. It has the warm and comforting feel of traditional chicken soup recipes, but with a fresh flavor profile that is just what the doctor ordered. Chicken soup is already relatively fool-proof, but we took it a step further and prepared this recipe in the slow cooker. Simply add broth, cooked shredded chicken, onion, carrots, celery, wine, and salt to the slow cooker. Cook the soup on LOW for about four hours, or until the vegetables are tender. Uncooked orzo is added directly to the slow cooker. Turn the slow cooker up to HIGH and cook another 15 to 20 minutes or until the orzo is tender. Just before ladling the soup into bowls, stir in peas, parsley, lemon juice, and lemon zest. Serve with your favorite crusty bread and a glass of white wine. Now all that&rsquos left to do is find a cozy spot on the couch in front of a crackling fireplace. But, if you&rsquore making our Lemon Chicken Soup when the weather outside is less of a winter wonderland and more like a sauna, we can assure you this chicken soup is every bit as good when enjoyed in the summer.

Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup

If you’re looking for the perfect meal to get you through those still-chilly spring evenings, this Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup is a must try!

It’s a lighter soup with a refreshing hint of lemon, but it’s still warm and cozy too. Basically, this soup is the perfect way to transition from winter to spring. I know we still have plenty of cold March days where I live. With a side of crusty bread or some homemade rolls, this soup has become a family favorite.

My family loves anything with orzo in it, and although I’ve seen lots of lemon chicken soup recipes online, I knew my version had to have orzo.

It really is the perfect pasta for a lighter soup, but adds enough substance that this dish still fills up my hungry teenage boys. Needless to say, they love this soup and always go back for seconds!

Of course, you can always substitute a similar pasta, like ditalini or small shells. And regular egg noodles would be great too, if you’re looking to make this into a more traditional chicken noodle soup.

If you’d like to cut back on calories a bit, you can always substitute half and half for the cream. I’m of the opinion that a bit (or a lot) of cream makes almost any soup taste better, but it’s definitely something you could even omit if you prefer.

And if you don’t have turmeric, don’t worry. I add it for it’s nice yellow color (to make the soup look more lemony), but if you need to omit it, it really won’t change the flavor that much.

Like all good soup recipes, this one is highly adaptable to suit your tastes and what you have on hand. It’s definitely become a new favorite at our house. I hope you love it as much as we do!

Recipe Lemon Chicken Soup with Orzo

  • Calories: 120
  • Protein: 14 g
  • Total Fat: 1.5 g
    • Unsaturated Fat: 1.5 g
    • Saturated Fat: 0 g
    • Natural Sugar: 2 g
    • Added Sugar: 0 g

    This recipe is addictively flavorful, creamy, and totally hits the spot. It’s the perfect remedy for a pesky winter cold, thanks to its citrusy lemon and soothing warm temperature. Bonus: This simple dish is ready in 30 minutes. Soups on!

    • • 1 medium yellow onion, finely diced (about 1 cup)
    • • 4 medium carrots, diced into coins (about 2 cups)
    • • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
    • • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
    • • 3 cloves garlic, minced
    • • 1½ teaspoons lemon zest
    • • 8 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
    • • 1 cup whole-grain orzo (or any small whole-grain pasta)
    • • 2 tablespoons arrowroot flour/starch
    • • ¼ cup lemon juice
    • • 3 cups cooked, shredded chicken*
    • • ¼ to ½ cup roughly chopped fresh dill, optional

    *You can use rotisserie chicken or any leftover cooked chicken and shred by hand.

    Liberally coat a large pot with olive oi l spray and wa rm over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot, salt, and black pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, for 7 to 9 minutes, until the veggies are softened. Add the garlic and lemon zest and cook for another minute. Stir often to prevent the garlic from burning.

    Next, add the chicken broth to the pot, increase the heat to high, and bring the soup to a boil. Add the orzo, reduce the heat to a simmer and continue to cook, stirring occasionally to prevent the orzo from sticking to the bottom of the pot, for about 6 minutes or until the orzo reaches al dente. Meanwhile, make the arrowroot slurry by adding the arrowroot and lemon juice to a small bowl, and whisking until smooth. Set aside until ready to use.

    O nce the orzo is cooked, add the shredded chicken and arrowroot-lemon juice slurry to the pot and mix everything together. Simmer for 10 to 15 minutes to allow the soup to thicken. Add additional salt, pepper and fresh dill, if desired, and serve hot.


    • 1 large lemon
    • 2 tablespoons olive oil
    • 3 large shallots, thinly sliced (about 1 cup)
    • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
    • 8 cups unsalted chicken stock
    • 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch cubes (about 4 cups)
    • 3 (8-oz.) boneless, skinless chicken breasts
    • 2 3/4 teaspoons kosher salt
    • 3/4 cup uncooked orzo
    • 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

    Using a vegetable peeler, remove 6 (2-inch) lemon peel strips from lemon. Squeeze lemon to equal 2 tablespoons juice. Set aside strips and juice.

    Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high. Add shallots and rosemary. Cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, 4 to 5 minutes. Add lemon peel strips, stock, and potatoes. Bring to a boil over high reduce heat to medium. Add chicken and salt, and cook 10 minutes. Add orzo, and cook until a thermometer inserted in thickest part of chicken registers 165°F and potatoes and orzo are tender, about 10 minutes more.

    Remove and discard lemon peel strips. Remove and shred chicken return to soup. Stir in lemon juice. Ladle soup into bowls sprinkle evenly with chopped parsley.

    Homemade Chicken Stock is Better

    I probably grew up on boxed chicken stock and was none the wiser. Until I met Myra. Cookbook author, Myra Kornfeld, convinced me years ago that no self-respecting chef opts for boxed stock.

    I acknowledge, boxed stock is a time-saver. But, let’s face it. It doesn’t hold a flame to freshly simmered chicken and vegetables seasoned generously with salt.

    Fresh parsley brightens a steaming pot of Chicken Orzo Soup

    This is exactly why, when a soup relies solely on its broth, it’s worth it to simmer some raw chicken with celery, carrot, and onion rather than save time on boxed stock and a rotisseries bird.

    Lemon Chicken & Orzo Soup

    I know I always say this but this Soup recipe is so delicious and really easy to make! It’s hearty and has a great mix of textures from the Orzo. I also love the brightness that the Lemon adds. I used Soy Curls for the Chicken (which are made from Non GMO Soy Beans are an all natural source of plant protein. I’ve linked the company here Butler’s Soy Curls but you can also get them on Amazon. You can also easily substitute Chic Peas or any other Vegan Chicken.


    1 1/2 cups Butler’s Soy Curls (you can sub 1 can of Chic Peas)
    1/2 med Onion Chopped
    2 cloves of Garlic minced 2 Celery Stalks chopped 2 Carrots peeled and chopped
    2 Tbsp Vegan Butter
    1 Tbsp of Grape Seed Oil 2 tsp of Poultry Seasoning (it’s just a blend of herbs, no chicken) 1 1/2 tsp of Thyme 1 Bay Leaf 2 Tbsp of Flour 6 cups of No Chicken Broth ( I use Edward & Sons No Chicken Bouillon Cubes) 1 cup Orzo uncooked 2 cups Spinach chopped 1/3 cup Lemon Juice ( you can use less if you don’t like too much Lemon) Salt & Pepper to Taste

    1. Break apart the Soy Curls into smaller pieces and add them to a large bowl with 1/2 tsp of Poultry Seasoning and enough Hot Water to cover them. Set aside

    2. Melt the Butter in the Grape Seed Oil and sauté the Onions and Celery until the Onions become translucent.

    3. Add in the Carrots and Garlic until the Garlic becomes fragrant and then add in the Thyme and remaining Poultry Seasoning. Let cook 1-2 minutes.

    4. Add in the Flour and mix well to coat all the veggies. Keep mixing for a minute to help cook out the raw Flour taste.

    5. Add in the No Chicken Broth and mix well. Allow everything to come to a boil. Then lower the heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

    6. Add in the Chicken Soy Curls, Bay Leaf and cook for another 5 minutes.

    7. Add in the Orzo and cook for 10 minutes covered. Stir occasionally to prevent the Orzo from sticking.

    8. Add in the chopped Spinach and once it has wilted add in the Lemon Juice. Season with Salt & Pepper before serving.

    And if you like this recipe&hellip

    • You might also enjoy this baked Greek chicken orzo. It&rsquos also a perfect quick and easy meal for midweek that the whole family will enjoy!
    • How about this 30-minute Greek mac and cheese bake? It has a creamy evaporated milk and egg sauce (no roux and flour) and works great as an easy midweek main dish or side.
    • This easy crockpot chicken gnocchi soup is very popular and you can make it either in your slow cooker or pressure cooker.


    Watch the video: Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup. Easy u0026 Delicious Comfort Food (July 2022).


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