Warming, comforting and hearty: homemade keto chicken soup is like a hug in a bowl! This easy low carb soup recipe is packed with tender chicken, vegetables, fresh herbs and plenty of flavor.
There’s nothing quite as good as wholesome chicken soup. This is my keto version, still loaded with veggies and flavor but low in net carbs.
This keto chicken soup recipe is wonderful comfort food and great for a quick and easy dinner.
It is also my secret remedy for when I'm feeling tired and run-down. I am a firm believer that chicken soup has medicinal properties!
It is filling and hearty, packed with vitamins and protein.
You'll also love to hear that it's ready in just 40 minutes!
You only need a handful of ingredients to make a delicious keto soup:
Chicken. I am using shredded roasted chicken. This means the soup is ready quickly because the meat is already tender. It just needs to be heated and not cooked. You can use a shop-bought rotisserie chicken or leftover chicken from a homemade roast. Option to use raw chicken breast or thighs - instructions are further down the post.
Vegetables. Most great soups start with a mirepoix, which is a classic French flavour base from diced vegetables - chopped onion, carrot and celery. In addition to this, I add leek and cavolo nero or kale.
Chicken Broth. This can be a homemade chicken bone broth or a stock cube.
Herbs and spices. Fresh is best! I use thyme, parsley, a garlic clove, salt, pepper and bay leaves. You can use also use dried parsley and thyme.
This section contains step-by-step instructions and photos that show how to make this recipe. See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities
Sauté the onion, carrots, leek and celery with the chopped thyme and parsley until they begin to soften. Add the garlic and fry another 2 minutes.
Pour in the chicken broth. Add the bay leaves and season with salt and pepper. Bring to the boil, reduce to a low heat and let the soup simmer with the lid on.
Remove the bay leaves from the soup and add the shredded chicken.
Pulse half of the soup with an immersion blender or in a food processor. This way you thicken the soup and add extra flavour.
If you don't like the idea of blending chicken meat, simply blend half the soup with only the vegetables.
Add the other (un-blended) soup half back into the pot, along with the cavolo nero or kale and simmer until the greens soften.
Below are suggestions how you can tailor the soup to your personal taste and preference.
#1 Change up the vegetables.
Most vegetables taste good in Keto chicken soup. The time you add them depends on how long they need to cook:
- cauliflower florets or cauliflower rice
- bell peppers
- spinach (add right at the end)
- green beans
If you miss potatoes in chicken soup, try celery root. It is low in carbs, has a mealy texture just potatoes and tastes similar to parsnip
#2 Use different herbs and spices.
This keeps your chicken soup forever interesting. Here are a few ideas:
- For a fresh kick, try adding chopped lemongrass stalks into the broth or grate some lemon zest into your soup.
- If you're a fan of all things Italian, add basil, rosemary, marjoram and oregano to the seasoning mix and grate over parmesan cheese before serving.
- To go full-out Mexican, replace the carrots with bell peppers and add spices such as chili powder, smoked paprika, oregano and cumin. Serve with a handful of freshly chopped coriander / cilantro.
- For richness and depth, add a bit of ginger, star anise and couple of cloves to the broth. I love the taste, but it is not for everyone, so only use if you're sure you like cloves!
#3 Make it creamy.
Add heavy cream, a splash of sour cream or cream cheese to taste. For a creamy chicken soup recipe, take a look at my keto turkey soup (the turkey can be substituted with chicken, of course!)
Just before serving, mix lemon juice with olive oil and swirl into into the soup. To make it even more delicious I like to stir in a little butter at the end before serving (omit this if you prefer keeping it dairy-free).
Fill into bowls and top with fresh parsley.
Here are some gluten-free bread recipes that go well with soup:
Use a good chicken stock
This is the secret to a really tasty soup. The more concentrated it is, the more flavoursome the soup.
I roast a chicken at least twice a month and I always keep the bones and make bone broth from them. You can also go to your butcher and get chicken carcasses - you might even get them free!
How to make a chicken bone broth?
It's so simple! All you need is a bit of time: Cover 2-3 pounds of chicken bones with water in a large pot. Add pepper, salt, 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar, an onion and optional herbs (such as thyme or parsley).
For more flavour you can also add a carrot and a few of stalks of celery. Bring your chicken broth to the boil and simmer for 4-12 hours. Remove the bones and vegetables.
Regular chicken soup often contains high carb ingredients such as potatoes, noodles or parsnips. This means it is not keto friendly. My keto chicken soup is low in carbs because we are omitting those ingredients.
Most of the net carbs in this soup come from the carrots. You can reduce or remove these, but the soup won't be as tasty. Personally, I loathe to leave out carrots when I make soup because they add a wonderfully rich flavour. For this chicken soup, I have calculated the nutrition on the basis on four GENEROUS main course servings and the net carb count is 7.6 grams per serve.
Of course. You can use chicken thighs or chicken breast meat, either whole or chopped. Simply add it to the soup and cook for around 20 minutes or longer - until it falls off the bone.
Yes, as long as they are keto-friendly pasta alternatives that are low in carbs! You can add shirataki noodles or kelp noodles. This is what I did in my Keto Ramen recipe. Other options are zucchini noodles, shredded cabbage, cauliflower rice or shredded spaghetti squash. Just make sure you cook the spaghetti squash separately and don't add it in until right before serving.
I made this recipe on the stovetop. However, you can also make it in the Instant pot or pressure cooker or in a slow cooker!
Instant Pot Instructions
Use the saute setting to soften and brown the vegetables. Add the rest of the ingredients and use the soup setting.
Cook for 20 minutes, then do a pressure release. Option to proceed with the recipe and puree half of the soup to thicken it.
Slow Cooker Instructions
Sauce the vegetables in a pan. Then, add them to the slow cooker together with the chicken and pour over the broth. Cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 6-8 hours.
In a slow cooker, you can even add a whole chicken. Remove it after cooking, pick out the bones and freeze any chicken meat you don't need for the soup.
Store in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Alternatively, freeze the soup for up to 3 months. I like to portion it into single-serve containers. This way, I can defrost one portion at a time.
More Keto Soup Recipes
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The Best Low Carb Keto Chicken Soupfrom Sugar Free Londoner
Note: The servings slider only changes the first amount in each line and not any subsequent amounts. Please make your own calculations where necessary.
- 1 tablespoon butter or extra virgin olive oil
- 1 ¼ small yellow onion finely diced (87g)
- 2 medium carrots peeled and chopped (122g)
- 1 small leek chopped (67g)
- 3 medium stalks celery chopped (120g)
- 1 tablespoon thyme leaves chopped
- 8 g fresh parsley
- 1 garlic clove minced
- 1.5 quarts chicken stock 1.5 litres
- 2 bay leaves
- ½ teaspoon salt or to taste (dependant on how salty your stock is)
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper or to taste
- 2.5 cups cooked shredded chicken 300g
- 1 cup chopped cavolo nero or kale 50g
- Squeeze of lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon fresh parsley
- Heat 1 tablespoon of butter or olive oil in a non stick soup pot and sauté on a medium heat the onion, carrots, leek and celery with chopped thyme and about ⅔rds of the parsley for about 5 minutes until beginning to soften. Add the garlic and sauté for another 2 - 3 minutes.
- Add the stock, bay leaves, season and bring to boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook with lid on for 15 minutes.
- Add the cooked chicken. Remove half mixture and bay leaves and pulse with stick blender. This thickens the soup and adds flavour.
- Add the rest of soup back into the pan along with the greens and simmer until they soften (about 1 minute.)
- Mix the lemon juice with olive oil and swirl into the soup and top with fresh parsley. Adjust seasoning to taste and enjoy. To make it even more delicious I like to swirl through a little butter at the end before serving too!