You’ll love the creamy fresh flavor of this delicious Lemon Basil Chicken Soup. Chunks of chicken breast and slices of mushrooms swim in a broth of half and half that’s been flavored with onion, celery, bay leaves, basil and lots of lemony goodness. The flakes of basil float on top and are accented by the color of chopped red peppers.
Don’t store those soup pots away yet. At least not for us in Colorado. This past Thursday, April 3, we woke up to nine inches of snow here in Highlands Ranch. It really was quite beautiful and full of water. Bob had his work cut out in the shoveling department. Luckily I didn’t have any appointments until 9:30, so by the time I pulled out of the driveway, things were just a slushy inconvenience.
I took this photo of Queso as she monitored the storm from our bedroom window. She had a big job watching the kids walk to the bus and keeping an eye on that robin perched on the roof above. All of which she finds to be pesky intruders. As I type, the snow has melted and our grass is getting greener by the minute.
This elegant soup is perfect for those days when we long for the warm sun, but Mother Nature has colder ideas in mind. Chunks of chicken breast and slices of mushrooms swim in a broth of half and half that’s been flavored with onion, celery, bay leaves, basil and lots of lemony goodness. The flakes of basil float on top and are accented by the color of chopped red peppers. It’s fresh and savory and perfect for this time of year.
Tip: This is a great recipe to practice your knife skills. Cut the onion, celery and red bell pepper in “small dice” cubes. A small dice is a 1/4 inch cube. It’s easy to achieve once you first cut the vegetables into batons. Then cut them down into squares. Uniform cuts will improve texture and insure uniform cooking.
If you don’t have a good chef’s knife, and you’re serious about cooking. I’d highly recommend looking into that purchase. Pick one that feels good in weight and fits your hand well. I own a Shun, a Japanese knife that’s lighter for lighter jobs, and a Wusthof, a German knife that’s heavier. The Wusthof was recommended by my Cooking School. I find them both equally useful. I’ve included affiliate links to help in your research.
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon garlic chopped
- 2 Cups onion chopped
- 2 Cups celery chopped
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 Tablespoons dried basil
- 1/2 Cup fresh lemon juice
- 2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 7 Cups chicken broth
- 1 red bell pepper chopped
- 1 pint container button mushrooms sliced
- 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into bite sized pieces
- 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter
- 3 Tablespoons flour
- 2 Cups half and half
- salt and pepper to taste
In a Dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook until tender, about 10 minutes, stirring frequently.
Add celery and cook for about five more minutes and then add garlic, stirring until fragrant.
Add chicken broth, bay leaves, basil, lemon juice and Worcestershire. Bring to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes.
Add bell pepper, mushrooms and chicken. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes.
In a small saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Add flour and cook, stirring constantly for 3 - 4 minutes. Add 3/4 cup of the hot soup mixture and whisk constantly to avoid lumps. Add this to the soup and stir until well blended. Stir in half and half and season with salt and pepper. Heat thoroughly but do not bring to a boil.
Looking for more light Chicken Soups? Take a look at this version minus the half and half:
Creamy Lemon Basil Chicken Soup …It’s what’s for Dinner.