Lemony Basil Quinoa Chicken Soup Recipe

This has got to be my favorite recipe discovery of 2014.  I love a good, hearty old-fashioned chicken soup, Campbell's or otherwise, but finding this light and lemony twist on the classic recipe has made me appreciate a fresher side to chicken soup. Plus, more protein from the quinoa!  




Ingredients (for 2 servings)

• 1 tablespoons butter • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil • 1/3 red onion, chopped • 1 large carrot, peeled and diced • 1 large clove garlic, pressed or diced fine • Salt & black pepper • 1/2 teaspoon herbs de Provence, Italian mix, or just basil and oregano • 2 1/2 cups hot chicken stock • 1/2 cup fresh or frozen peas • 1 cup zucchini, or green beans, diced • 2 cooked chicken breasts, shredded or cubed (cheat: buy rotisserie) • 1 teaspoon lemon zest • 1 tablespoons fresh lemon juice • 1 cup cooked quinoa • 2-3 chopped, fresh basil leaves • lemon wedges to garnish

Chop the veggies and cook the quinoa beforehand. Heat butter and oil on a medium-large pot over medium heat. Add sliced onion and carrots and sweat for 3-5 minutes, until the leeks start turning translucent and the carrots soften a tiny bit. Add the garlic and heat for a few minutes, add a dash of salt and pepper and dried herbs.

Stir in the chicken broth and bring to a simmer. Cover partially, reduce the heat, and let simmer gently for 15-20 minutes

Turn the heat off and add in the peas, diced veggies, the shredded or cubed chicken breast, and the lemon zest and juice. stir to combine, and allow the peas/zucchini to become tender and bright green, simmering about 3-4 minutes longer.

To serve, add about ½ cup of the cooked quinoa to a bowl and ladle the soup with the veggies and chicken over top; sprinkle with some of the fresh basil, and squeeze in some additional lemon juice from the lemon wedge garnish, if desired.

Recipe adapted from The Cozy Apron.