A chicken soup to say goodbye to winter

It’s still freezing cold in London and last night I felt like having a good comforting nutrient-dense soup. You know the kind that is easy to prepare. I remember my mother making this soup when I was little, with my brothers we all loved it.


If you’re a vegetarian, you can add more vegetables, just add some chickpeas and a cup of barley so you'll still get some protein. 


  • 4 to 6 chicken thighs depending on size, with bones and skin on
  • 15 small potatoes cut in half
  • 5 to 7 small carrots, chopped
  • 3 to 4 small brown onions, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon chilli flakes
  • 4 fresh garlic cloves, chopped
  • 3 bay leaves
  • thyme
  • fresh ginger, peeled
  • olive oil
  • Salt and black pepper
  • turmeric
  • 1 cup of barley (optional) 
  • 1 ltr 1/2 water


Ina large pan, sauté the onion, garlic, turmeric and pepper in the olive oil. Add the chicken, to the pan and cook for a few minutes.

Add the remaining ingredients and cover with water. Bring to a simmer.

Cover the soup and cook until carrots and potatoes are soft. Remove the chicken skin and bones, and leave the meat in the pan.

For extra nutrients or for a vegan option you can add a cup of barley and a can of chickpeas (make sure you rinse chickpeas abundantly).

Serve in a nice bowl and eat hot with a slice of good quality sourdough bread. And if you make enough, it could be your lunch the following day! You can also add a side green salad. 

My nutrition tips:  

Chicken is a great source of protein, vitamin B6 and B12,  zinc and iron. Make sure you buy your chicken free-range or organic, remember the quality is always more important than the quantity. Don't use chicken breasts, they tend to become too chewy when cooked for too long. Chicken thighs or legs are the best if you want some tender meat. 

Carrots are rich in dietary fibres and carotene that your body converts into vitamin A. Lutein, another antioxidant present in carrots, is beneficial for eye health. Carrots also contain some B vitamins, potassium and vitamin K. 

Onions and garlic are great anti-inflammatory foods. But be careful, you should avoid them raw if you have irritable bowel syndrome. They are high in fructans which can cause digestive discomfort, bloating and pain. Try to add small quantities to your dishes to see if you can tolerate them cooked.

Onions and garlic are so beneficial, it would be a pity to eliminate them completely from your diet. You can work with a nutrition professional who can support you in making changes to your diet whilst still reaping the benefits of a variety of foods.

Black pepper and turmeric cooked together and in olive oil have many beneficial effects. 

Add chickpeas and barley to your soup as they provide plant protein. They're also a good source of dietary fibres. 

A complete protein is made of 20 amino acids. Nine are essential, meaning they can only be found in the food we consume. We find them in animal proteins but if you are on a plant-based diet it is critical to combine legumes with whole grains or seeds in order to get all nine essential amino acids, you will then have a complete protein. Other possible combinations: lentils and rice, beans and rice, couscous and chickpeas, hummus (chickpeas &and sesame seeds), edamame and rice 

I hope you will enjoy this soup, let me know how you get on hl@huguettelelongehalthylife.com 

The views expressed in this article are those of the author. All articles published on Nutritionist Resource are reviewed by our editorial team.

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London, SW5 0BZ
Written by Huguette Lelong, Nutritionist - Weight Issues-Energy Levels-Healthy Lifestyle
London, SW5 0BZ

Huguette Lelong, passionate nutritionist & foodie truly believes that good health starts with a healthy diet and sustainable lifestyle changes. Originally from Paris, Huguette has travelled the world and has always been curious about local tastes, ingredients and dishes. She loves to challenge her clients with new ingredients and recipes.

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