Healing Chicken Noodle Soup

Healing Chicken Noodle Soup

Healing Chicken Noodle Soup – good for broken hearts, hangovers and sniffles

My recipe for healing broken hearts, delirium tremens and sniffles is inspired by Vietnamese phở gà (pronounced ‘four gah’). On the morning after sampling more than one’s fair share of bia hoi there is no better pick-me-up than a hearty breakfast of chicken,  chilli and rice noodles – a perfect foundation for a day of touring Confucian temples with the local cyclos.

In the past decade Scientists have concluded that chicken soup really does have healing powers, in particular anti-inflammatory properties to soothe sore throats and nasal passages. Chilli is also widely recognised for its health benefits, including clearing congestion, boosting circulation, and aiding relaxation and sleep.

Much loved readers if you are cooking this soup for want of soothing or healing, my heart-felt sympathy goes out to you. If you can muster up the strength, I’d love to hear your feedback on the recipe.

  • Serves: 4 to 6, depending on hunger
  • Preparation time: 50 mins, mainly waiting for stock to boil
  • Cooking time: 1 hour


For the stock:

  • 1 chicken carcass or 300gm chicken on the bone
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 whole stick of celery, including leaves
  • 2 shallots or 1 brown onion
  • 1 long red chilli
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp Chinese five spice
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 heaped tbsp chicken stock powder
  • 2L water

For the soup:

  • 1 chicken breast
  • 2 spring onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 long red chilli
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely sliced
  • 200gm rice noodles, any size or shape
  • 1 bunch coriander, roughly chopped
  • Salt and pepper


Heat the olive oil in a large soup pot and sweat the onions. Turn up the heat and brown the chicken bones, then throw in all the other stock ingredients. Bring to the boil, then reduce heat, cover and simmer for 40 minutes. Strain the soup into a seperate bowl, reserving any chicken meat and discarding everything else.

Return the stock to the pot to finish the soup. Finely chop the reserved chicken and add to the broth. Add the chilli and garlic, and pop in the whole chicken breast uncut to poach for about 20 minutes. Remove the poached chicken breast and slice into thin pieces, then return to the pot. Add the noodles and simmer until translucent and cooked through, about 5 minutes.

To serve, scatter some coriander over each bowl of soup, and season to taste. Ngon!

Tags: , , , , , ,

Categories: Chicken & Poultry, Soups


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20 Comments on “Healing Chicken Noodle Soup”

  1. Nina
    August 5, 2012 at 8:06 am #

    This soup is so comforting, I loved it. After a night of awful stomach pains I woke up pretty knackered, and stumbled upon this recipe. Had all the gear in the fridge, so I made it for breakfast.. Yum.. My belly thanks you :)

    • August 5, 2012 at 9:11 pm #

      Nina you poor thing. I hope you’re feeling better today. So glad you liked the recipe!

  2. Nina
    August 8, 2012 at 4:32 pm #

    Beck, thanks so much…I’m feeling much better now :) I have told so many people about your recipe, and have another pot simmering away on the stove right now. It would have to be my favourite food!! I have been making it with chicken legs instead of frame and fillet. The meat I shred off the legs is so tasty and tender..I use about 6 for this recipe ..

    • August 9, 2012 at 1:12 pm #

      I do hope I hear their feedback! Great idea on the dark meat suggestion – especially if that’s your favourite bit of the chicken. And thank you for thinking to pass on the recipe, and I’m glad to hear you’re feeling better :)

  3. H
    August 8, 2012 at 9:34 pm #

    Found this last night, went to the supermarket today to get ingredients as we’re all feeling a bit under the weather. My 11.5 month old daughter loved it. She was sitting on the couch next to her dad, opening her mouth so he could feed her another mouthful.

    • August 9, 2012 at 1:11 pm #

      Oh dear – does your family have a bout of that awful flu that’s going ’round? Dreadful! I’m very pleased that the soup was enjoyed by great and small, and wish the best health to you and yours. Thank you for your lovely feedback.

  4. Cheri-Ann Durgin
    September 2, 2012 at 7:32 pm #

    I just have to say that I was so pleased to find your recipe here. My darling little daughter and I have been down with a dreadful… I don’t even know- cold/yucky stomach/lung thing, and it seems as though the only thing that works for us is to visit our nearest Phở (pronounced in my Vietnamese extended family is – “Fah”) Kictchen. My gal is 4 years old, and she truly can’t get enough of this incredible soup, nor can it be hot enough. -Well it gets a bit pricey to accommodate three bowls of Phở, every other day. So my sweet-heart of a husband went on an internet scouring date to try and find a recipe that would match our likes. He found your recipe, and slaved away in the kitchen to make 2 whole pots for our baby, himself, and I . I’m so impressed at how delicious yet simple this recipe is. Many thank you’s and well wishes to you !

    • September 2, 2012 at 7:37 pm #

      Hi Cheri-Ann, Gosh I hope you are all faring ok. What a wonderful man for making this for you. I’m so glad the whole family found a bit of comfort from it. Wishing you and yours imminent wellness, and thank you for finding a moment to leave feedback.

  5. Reni
    January 14, 2013 at 1:48 pm #

    I absolutely love this soup. So easy to make but so delicious and so comforting. Thank you for sharing.

    • January 15, 2013 at 3:33 pm #

      It’s a pleasure Reni, thank you kindly for your feedback.

  6. January 15, 2013 at 5:47 pm #

    This soup is incredible! I finally got around to purchasing the necessary ingriedients so I could make it. The broth is SO flavorful, even though I left out the chilis (subbed red pepper flakes instead) and didn’t use any cilantro. I cannot get over how delicous it was! I loved the fragrant, pho-like broth. I will definitely be making this again ASAP for my boyfriend. Thanks!

    • January 15, 2013 at 7:03 pm #

      Fabulous feedback thank you FB! I’m glad you loved it and I hope your boyfriend loves you extra for making it for him! Thanks for the tips on alternative ingredients too, always appreciated.

  7. Shameka
    May 8, 2013 at 12:05 pm #

    What does your gram measurements equal to in cups

    • May 9, 2013 at 8:34 pm #

      Tricky question Shameka – have you tried googling ‘grams to cups’? That should help… If you’re in the US you could also try ‘grams to ounces’. Get back to me if you need more help :)

  8. Tara
    May 26, 2013 at 11:19 am #

    Hi Beck, we just made this and it was wonderful! Such robust flavor–made it with a carcass from a rotisserie chicken and it turned out great. I think maybe I missed a couple things about the recipe, though–it starts out mentioning olive oil, but I didn’t see that anywhere in the ingredients. And the spring onions don’t seem to appear in the instructions…assuming those are supposed to be garnish alongside the cilantro? Anyway, thanks so much for sharing this fantastic recipe–we’re really looking forward to trying more of your recipes.

    • May 26, 2013 at 12:40 pm #

      Thank you for the feedback Tara, I will fix the recipe to make things clearer. I’m really glad you liked the soup and look forward to hearing more feedback after your testings! :)

  9. Samara Cassidy
    June 8, 2013 at 1:34 pm #

    Yum!! I just made a batch of this soup for our lunch and dinner tonight as we are all under the weather with the flu (2 adults, 2 kids)! I took the seeds out of the chilli so the kids will eat it but it is so good. Hubby and I just had 2 bowls each for lunch :-) Thanks so much for such a yummy robust soup!

  10. Nat
    August 30, 2013 at 10:04 pm #

    Beck, this soup has been a godsend today. With two adults and two kids under the weather your restorative soup has lived up to its expectations. The master stock was perfect and the second stage made it even better. Thanks

  11. Callie
    September 24, 2013 at 9:28 am #

    I found this recepie and was instantly excited to make it! Unfortunately I couldn’t find every ingridient, so I had to improvise a little, but I’m trying a version. It was absolutely delicious!

  12. Yvonne D
    August 30, 2014 at 4:19 am #

    I found this recipe on Pinterest and I will tell you it had already become my favorite :) thank you for helping my broken heart and my fluish body :)

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