Cheat Meal: Chicken “Cheat” Soup

Chicken soup

This is a shortcut for making very good chicken soup; in a pinch you can even use frozen veggies! The prep and cooking times may vary depending upon the options you choose: employing frozen diced carrots will cut prep and cooking time, although using fresh will produce a better end result.

Prep time: 15 minutes Cooking time: 30 minutes


  • 1 rotisserie cooked chicken (available in most supermarkets)
  • 3-4 cups chicken stock
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced (if pressed for time, you can use frozen, diced onion)
  • 1TBSP garlic paste
  • 1TBSP lemongrass paste
  • 3 stalks celery, diced
  • 1 cup coined carrots (use pre-peeled baby carrots, thinly sliced, or, use frozen diced carrots)
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked rice (I have even used leftover rice from Chinese takeout!)
  • 2TBSP parsley (fresh is best, but dried is fine)
  • 1TSP each: cumin, onion powder, turmeric
  • 1TBSP olive oil
  • Salt/pepper to taste

Cooking Instructions:

  • Remove meat from cooked chicken; the fastest way to do this is by hand, but you can use a knife if you prefer. Strip the skin from the bird before removing the meat
  • In a pressure cooker, heat the oil until a few drops of water sizzle when dropped in. Add the cumin, onion powder and turmeric, along with the diced onion.; stir for about a minute to activate the spices If you are using fresh celery and carrots, add these to the pot and stir over med-low heat for 3-5 minutes
  • Add stock to pot, along with chicken and cooked rice
  • Add salt/pepper to taste
  • Seal pressure cooker and leave to simmer for 20-25 minutes

Servings suggestions:

  • For a bit of texture, you can top with fried shallots, or onion strings (even the canned ones will do!)
  • This reheats well — bring leftovers for lunch!
  • If you prefer, freeze it in pre-portioned freezer bags (make sure that it is cooled enough!) Using freezer bags instead of containers will allow you to layer multiple portions and lay flat — this is a real space-saver