It’s soup season and it’s definitely cold outside. When I think of winter, I think of heart-warming soups, chowders, casseroles and all things comforting. In other words, I think of delicious food that will “stick to your bones” which is a term my mom would use when I was younger. Today, I’m sharing this easy Light Chicken Chowder recipe. The best part is that it doesn’t require any form of cream or half and half. You can get the same delightful taste by cutting calories with regular milk. I used 2% milk but you can use any form of milk that you like. Just a few simple ingredients, a little bit of time, and you’ll have a pot of hot chicken chowder.
This is one of those days in which I want to grab my throw blanket, watch a really good movie, and cozy up to a warm bowl of chowder. Doesn’t that sound so relaxing? The only problem is that I have so much to do. With holiday shopping and decorating, I’ll be lucky if I can find an hour and a half to just veg-out. But, that’s okay because I’m prepared to get a lot done today. I have my to-do list, my Christmas list and my dinner menu for tonight. I suspect that all will go smoothly. But, before I get into the swing of things this afternoon, I’m going to fill my belly and re-energize myself with a bowl of Light Chicken Chowder.
I cannot emphasize enough how quick and easy this recipe comes together. Keep in mind that you can prepare the chicken breast by baking which is what I did. You can also slow cook your chicken breast see my recipe for Slow Cooked Chicken Breast or feel free to use any left over chicken breast that you may have. This is a no-fuss recipe so use what you have.
If I had corn, I would have added it as well. Although I was tempted to go to the grocery store for additional add-ins, I didn’t. In fact, I was proud of myself.
For this Light Chicken Chowder recipe, I kept with the basics and added potatoes, kale, celery, green bell pepper, and fresh garlic. I even kept it simple with my seasonings just kosher salt, black pepper, dried oregano leaves, and chicken broth for added flavor and milk of course.
I made a simple gravy to thicken things up a bit. Lastly, I let all that goodness simmer down until I had my desired consistency.
- 3 chicken breast halves with rib and skin on
- 1 celery stick chopped
- 1/2 bell pepper chopped
- 5 garlic cloves 2 minced + 3 whole
- 2 potatoes cubed
- 1 cup milk plus a little more if you'd like
- 2 32 oz box chicken broth plus 1-1/2 cup for baking chicken breast
- 4 tblsp all purpose unbleached flour
- 4 tblsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tblsp kosher salt plus more if needed
- 1 tblsp black pepper plus more if needed
- 1/4 onion sliced
- 2 cups kale roughly chopped
- fresh parsley for garnish
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a pyrex dish, add onions and whole garlic. Wash and pat dry chicken breast using a paper towel. Season both side of chicken breast with salt and pepper. Sit chicken on top of the layer of onions and garlic with skin side up. Add 1-1/2 cups of chicken broth to pyrex. Cook for 40 minutes (baste chicken with liquid from pyrex after 20 minutes, then after 10 minutes and one additional time when chicken is done.
Let chicken rest for about 10 minutes. Shred chicken with fingers and sat aside. Add remaining chicken broth to pot, season with salt, pepper, oregano and add potatoes.
Using a skillet, prepare gravy by adding olive oil and saute celery, bell pepper, and garlic. When veggies soften, add flour and whisk, add milk and continue to whisk until smooth and thick. Transfer to your pot and continue to cook. Add shredded chicken breast and let your pot SIMMER. When you get your desired consistency of thickness, add kale and cook for a couple of more minutes.
Serve hot and enjoy with crusted bread as an option.