Is it fall yet?
It’s not. But for the last week and a half, it has totally felt like fall. And I love it!
In my last post, I mentioned how it has rained for the past 5 days or so. During the summer, rain becomes a very significant event in our household. We dim the lights, we open all the windows, we make a blanket fort in my daughter’s room, and usually (almost always) we’ll bake something. I don’t know why cooler weather and rain = baking. Obviously it’s a proven scientific fact, and I’m not one to argue against facts, so I just go with it.
I don’t even know why I’m talking about baking because this isn’t a baking recipe, but it is a comfort food recipe. And cooler weather + rain also equals comfort food. Today, that comfort food is soup.
Honestly, I can’t believe that I’m even posting a soup recipe. I have stated many times that I absolutely despise making soup. “You put in all that work to make it, then you eat it, and you’re still hungry!” Who knows how many times I have ranted about this. (My husband probably knows.)
I don’t know. Maybe it’s the anticipation of fall. Perhaps it’s the random cold front in the middle of August. Maybe it’s all the wine I bought at Minyard’s SunFresh’s going-out-of-business sale for 50% off. Obviously someone or something brainwashed me into making this soup recipe for you, but you know what? I’m so glad that it happened, dear friend, because this recipe is so good. As in I could put the broth into a thermos and sip on it all day good. As in- I made this recipe as part of my weekly meal prep, figuring that the leftovers would feed us for a couple days, but we finished all 6-8 servings in one sitting good.
Not only is this one of my favorite soups, but it’s officially one of my favorite recipes of all time. The chicken and vegetables are so hearty and tender, and the soup is thickened with cream cheese and a little bit of flour and milk which provides a creamy, silky texture while still being fairly light and- dare I say it- healthy. Did I mention how amazing the broth is? You know those Sprint commercials with the girl dancing her ass off because she gets a new iPhone every year or whatever? Eating this will make you want to do that.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 3-4 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- ½-1 cup corn kernels (I used the kernels from 1 large ear of corn)
- 2 teaspoons dried thyme leaves (or 1 teaspoon ground thyme)
- 2 teaspoons dried parsley (or 2 tablespoons fresh parsley)
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 tablespoon butter (I used Smart Balance dairy-free.)
- 4 tablespoons flour
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- 1 cup milk (I used unsweetened almond milk and it worked perfectly!)
- 4 oz. cream cheese, room temperature, cubed (you can use light!)
- 2 cups cooked shredded chicken
- salt and pepper to taste
- Heat olive oil in a large soup pan over medium high heat.
- Add the onion and carrots and saute until the onions are translucent and carrots begin to soften, about 3-5 minutes.
- Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Add the celery, corn and butter, and stir until butter is melted.
- Stir in your flour, mixing constantly until flour is incorporated, about 30 seconds.
- Pour in the vegetable broth and milk.
- Add your thyme, parsley, red pepper flakes and nutmeg.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Simmer until the soup has thickened, about 3-5 minutes.
- Add the cream cheese and stir the soup frequently until the cream cheese is melted.
- Add your chicken and heat through. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve and enjoy!