Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Chicken Gnocchi Soup

It officially frosted this morning in central Illinois so that means it’s time to make soup! Actually, I think it’s time to make soup when the temp hits about 60 degrees because for one thing, soup is so easy. Two, it can sit in a crock pot and simmer all day so it’s ready when you want it. Three, well, it’s just warm and cozy so what’s not to love?

I made Chicken Gnocchi Soup to warm us all up and it was delicious so I thought I would share the recipe. It’s loosely based on Olive Garden’s recipe, but as you will see, I add a few special things to mine. For those of you who don’t know what Gnocchi is, it a wonderful little potato dumpling. It’s so good, and what’s even more wonderful is that now you can pretty much find it in any grocery store known to man.


First, I baked 4 large boneless, skinless, chicken breasts. I actually did this in the crockpot early in the morning and threw them in still frozen, but feel free to use your oven. From a thawed state it would take about an hour in a 375 degree oven.


Time to gather ingredients. You’ll need EVOO, spinach (fresh or frozen), 2 chicken bouillon cubes (low sodium), 1 stalk of celery, 1 cup of chopped carrots, 4 or 5 button portabella mushrooms, 1 small onion or half a large, 2 cloves of garlic and Rosemary (fresh is best if you have it). Not pictured:  1 can of evaporated milk and 2 cans of low sodium chicken broth, 1 Tbsp. of fresh Thyme and 1 TBSP. of fresh Sage.


Chop all of your veggies to around the same size so they all cook evenly.


In your soup pot, heat a couple tablespoons of olive oil on medium-high heat.


While my oil was heating, I decided to add one more veggie. I quickly chopped up about half of this Butternut squash and added it to the pile vegetables.


Soften the celery, carrots and onion for about 10 minutes until fragrant and the onion is translucent. Don’t forget to salt them.  In the meantime, I threw the cubed squash in the microwave for about 5 minutes to give it  a head start.


Next, add in the mushrooms and garlic and squash.


Then, pour in the broth and 2 cups of water and the bouillon cubes.


Once it comes to a nice simmer and all the veggies are cooked, add in a cup of frozen spinach or about 3 cups of fresh spinach, your baked chicken (cubed), the herbs, and the can of milk. Let it all come to a simmer again and then add in the gnocchi, cooking by the manufacturers directions ( I think it takes about 10 minutes).


Once the gnocchi is done, it’s ready to serve..


…or you can throw it in the crock pot for later like I did. This recipe freezes well also so feel free to make it in large quantities.  I hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

Happy Tuesday.



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