Chicken Soup

Chicken Soup

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Chicken Soup, aka Jewish penicillin, is one of the world’s most iconic soups . Families in every culture have their own special formula. I enjoy knowing that my soup is the same one that was made in my Great Grandmother’s home in Hataivich, my Grandmother’s home in NYC,  in my home as a child and now in my home as an adult.

My family always made Chicken Soup using quartered chickens. I still do it that way when I want the boiled chicken for another recipe. Over the years, I have learned that all the pieces of chicken and bones that I remove when I prepare chicken for other recipes make a terrific and much less costly base for this soup. Add noodles, rice, matzah balls, kreplach ,mini mandels, diced chicken and diced vegetables. Whatever you do, the result will be a healthy, delicious soup that warms your heart and soul.

Regarding Matzah Balls: I use Manischewitz boxed matzah ball mix- the one without the soup mix included. I add about two tablespoons of freshly chopped dill to the mix before I stir it and chill it. Even my three and five year old grandchildren love it!

Try Chicken Pot Pie for a delicious way to use the boiled chicken from the soup.

Prep time: 30 minutes

Hint: I like to prepare my soup a day in advance so I can remove any congealed fat before I serve it. If you are using bones rather than whole chicken you will have much less fat and can easily enjoy it the day you make it.

Chicken Soup

By Gloria Kobrin Published: August 31, 2016

  • Yield:

  • 8-10 Servings


  • 2 large soup chickens quartered and cleaned well
  • 6 large organic carrots peeled and halved
  • 3 large celery stalks with leaves washed and halved
  • 2 large yellow onions peeled and halved
  • 3 large leeks root end removed, washed well and halved
  • 4 large parsnips root end removed and peeled
  • 1 medium celery root peeled and halved
  • 1 large bunch of Italian parsley washed
  • 2 large bunches of fresh dill washed
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt


  • 1 8 quart soup pot with cover I love my pot with a glass top so I can see the soup
  • 1 measuring cup with handle for skimming the soup
  • 1 small mixing bowl
  • 1 large colander
  • 3 large mixing bowls
  • cheesecloth


  1. Put chicken in the pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil. As the water is boiling, you will see a dark film (scum) rise to the top. I use a measuring cup with a handle to remove the film and pour it into a bowl. Do it several times until all the film has disappeared from the liquid. Discard what you have removed.
  2. Add all the prepared vegetables and salt to the chicken. Place the parsley and dill on top. Cover the pot. Return liquid to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Simmer about two hours or until the chicken is falling off the bone. Cool slightly.
  3. Carefully, remove the chicken and vegetables from the pot and place them in separate bowls. Vegetables: Discard cooked leeks, celery onions, parsley and dill. Rinse off celery root, parsnips, and carrots. Slice them into 1/4 inch pieced and set aside. Chicken: Remove all skin, bones and gristle. Cut chicken into the size you need for whatever you're using it for ie. 1/2 inch chunks for Pot Pie or salad, slices for tacos or 1/4 inch pieces to put back into the soup. If using the chicken as simply boiled chicken, leave the pieces as they are.
  4. Soak a large piece of cheesecloth in water. Spread the cheesecloth over the bottom of the colander. Place the colander in a large bowl and pour the soup through it. Repeat this process until your soup is clear. Let soup cool completely before refrigerating overnight.
  5. The next day, remove the congealed fat from the top of the soup with a slotted spoon. Press a sheet of paper towel on top of the soup to remove any fat that's left.
  6. To serve: You can add small pieces of chicken along with the sliced vegetables back into the soup. My preference is to only use the white meat-but that's up to you. You can also add matzah balls, noodles, kreplach, extra chopped dill etc. depending on what your family likes. Serve soup hot. Enjoy