So creamy and hearty, this creamy chicken and wild rice soup is what your family needs on chilly fall days or wintry cold evenings.
Thick, almost stew like in consistency, but soupy enough to sop up your favorite bread. Lots of flavor. Will fill all bellies to cozy and leave everyone satisfied.
If you have leftovers, this soup is even better the next day. If needed due to extra thickening after refrigeration, you can add more broth.
Tips for the Best Chicken Rice Soup
The key to a great chicken wild rice soup is slow cooking it for an hour. This is necessary in order for the rice to cook thoroughly, but also so the flavors can meld nicely into a tasty pot of soup.
Don't add the cream until the end, as milk products don't do well over a long simmer. They tend to curdle and add lumps to your soup. You want creamy - not curdled and lumpy.
The cream will be added at the very end after you're done simmering to add that final touch of creamy goodness.
The lemon zest adds a wonderful lemon flavor that is slight, but enough to take the flavor up a notch.
How to Make Chicken Wild Rice Soup
First, I like to preheat my Dutch oven to medium heat for 2-3 minutes. This gets the pot nice and hot and ready for the oil and chicken.
Once the pot is hot, you will add your oil and chicken and cook 2-3 minutes, stirring to brown all sides.
Once the chicken is cooked on the outside, you will add the onion, garlic, thyme, and marjoram.
The chicken will finish cooking during the rest of the cooking time, so don't worry if it's not completely done at this point.
You will cook the chicken, onion, garlic, thyme, and marjoram mixture for about 3 minutes before adding the carrot, celery, and mushrooms.
This will cook about 3 minutes to soften the veggies. You will then add salt, black pepper, and paprika and stir to incorporate. All this is done on medium heat, stirring occasionally.
Next, you will add your stock or broth and rice.
Bring the mixture to a boil on high heat. You will then reduce heat to low-medium (2-3), cover and cook for one hour.
Before adding the lemon zest and cream, you will turn off the heat and let sit for about 5 minutes to cool a bit. This is so your cream doesn't curdle in the high heat.
Serve hot with bread and salad if desired.
How to Freeze For Later
Can be frozen in a freezer-safe container after cooking for up to 2 months. When ready to reheat, simply let thaw slightly in container, then transfer to crock pot or stove top pot on low.
For crock pot, cover and heat on low for 4-6 hours or until heated through.
For stove top, cover and heat on low until thawed. Keep heat fairly low so soup doesn't boil (due to the presence of cream).
Ideally, if planning to freeze, don't add cream until after reheating. Once heated through, add cream just close to serving time and heat gently so as not to boil.
Other rice dishes you may want to check out include my Rice and Beef Tips - tender beef with abundant gravy served over your favorite rice.
More Soups You May Love:
Corn Potato Chowder (with lots of zesty cheese!)
Crock Pot Potato Soup (cheesy & delicious!)
Southern Chicken and Dumplings (so hearty!)
Sausage and Lentil Soup (easy & delicious)
Chicken and Wild Rice Soup
- 3 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 pound chicken breast , boneless, skinless, cut into small chunks (about 2 cups)
- 1 medium onion , chopped
- 1 tablespoon garlic , minced (about 2 large cloves)
- 1 teaspoon dry thyme
- 1 teaspoon dry marjoram
- 1 large carrot , sliced (about 1 cup)
- 2 large celery stalks , chopped (about 1 cup)
- 2 cups mushrooms , cremini or white, sliced
- ½ teaspoon salt , more to taste
- ½ teaspoon black pepper , more to taste
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- 8 cups chicken stock (or broth)
- 1-½ cups wild rice , uncooked
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest (or amount from one large lemon)
- 1 cup heavy cream
- Preheat Dutch oven to medium heat for 2-3 minutes. Add oil and chicken. Cook 2-3 minutes, stirring to brown all sides. Add onion, garlic, thyme, and marjoram. Stir and cook 3 minutes. Add carrot, celery, and mushrooms. Cook 3 minutes. Add salt, black pepper, and paprika and stir in.
- Add broth and rice and bring to a boil on high heat. Reduce heat to low-medium (2-3). Cover and cook 1 hour.
- Uncover and turn off heat. Add lemon zest and stir in. Let sit 5 minutes, then add cream and stir.
- Serve hot with bread and salad if desired.