Summer 2014 Bucket List

Friday, August 6, 2010

Chicken & Vegetable Medley Soup

I like to cook sometimes, though I haven't been doing much cooking from scratch lately. It's too hot and I find I don't have much appetite in the summer. I had a package of chicken thighs in the freezer which I let thaw over night, and needed to use them up. I have a slow cooker so I decided to make something in that. I didn't have a recipe, but looked through my slow cooker cookbook, and checked to see what I had on hand in the cupboard. What I came up with was really tasty, and I decided to turn the leftovers into a soup. The story of the slow cooker dish and how I turned it into soup is what follows.


  • 1 package of chicken thighs
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic, minced (I ran out so I used garlic powder, don't judge)
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes (omit or use less if you don't like spice)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tbsp white vinegar
  • 1 litre of water (omit this if you are planning to serve the chicken over rice)
  • 1 cup of rice (I used basmati)
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 tbsp Better Than Bouillon (or sub chicken/veg stock that you normally use)
  • dash of fish sauce (I use this in fried rice too) 
  • 1 cup of frozen vegetable medley or other diced vegetable (mine was green beans, carrots, corn, fava beans, and peas)


What I planned initially was to a chicken dish served over rice, so I am including the description of what I did with the slow cooker first. Really though it's better as a soup, so read on to find out how to skip the slow cooker part and make soup. I just wanted you to know what I did at first, you know, in case you do want a chicken dish to serve over rice. 

Add onion and garlic to the slow cooker, then layer chicken pieces on top. I seasoned the chicken between layers with the garlic powder, pepper, salt, oregano, and red pepper flakes. Once all the chicken has been placed in the cooker, add the can of diced tomatoes. Cook on high for 2-3 hours, or until the chicken is done. 

While the chicken was cooking, I rinsed the cup of rice until the water was clear. I added all the rice ingredients, gave it a stir, and cooked it in my rice cooker. Once the chicken was cooked through, I served it over the rice. It was really tasty, but a bit watery due to the canned tomatoes probably. I decided it would make a great soup, so that's what I did with the leftovers.

After I finished eating, I took all the chicken out of the slow cooker to cool. I added the rice to the slow cooker with the tomatoes and vegetables so (the slow cooker was turned off at this point, just wanted flavours to meld together). When the chicken was cool enough to handle, I removed all the chicken and added it to my soup pot, setting aside the bones and skin to make stock later. I shredded the chicken into smaller pieces, then added the mixture of rice, vegetables and tomatoes that had been sitting in the slow cooker pot. With the soup pot on medium heat, I added more water (maybe a litre) and more frozen vegetable medley. There was an open package of pasta sitting on the counter that I forgot to put away, so I threw that in too (it was about 1 cup dried). I let the soup simmer on medium until everything was heated through.


This is a very hearty and filling soup. You could use any kind of vegetables you have, just dice them up all the same size (if using frozen make sure to thaw before adding to the slow cooker). If your slow cooker is large enough you could make the soup in it, but mine is rather small so I would use my soup pot. Next time I'll just sauté the onions on the stove before adding the chicken to the pot. Once the chicken is browned I would add the other ingredients (leaving out any rice, pasta, or frozen vegetables) and simmer until the chicken is cooked. Then add the vegetables, and simmer until everything has warmed through. The rice turned to mush so I will not bother adding any next time. It's good to cook the pasta separately before adding it to the soup (maybe under cook it a bit).

I froze the leftovers and it has kept up well once reheated. The soup is a bit oily as you can see from the picture above. I did skim off some of the fat and surely you could skim off more if you are concerned about that. A few days later I made chicken stock by adding a couple of litres of water, the skin and bones, and some seasonings into the slow cooker (would normally add aromatic vegetables but didn't have any sadly). After a few hours on high I had delicious chicken stock!

Woo, that's a lot. I don't think I would not make a great recipe writer, hehehe.