Crack Chicken Noodle Soup

Crack Chicken Noodle Soup is the epitome of comfort food, blending tender chicken, savory bacon, and a creamy ranch-infused broth. Ideal for cozy nights or family gatherings, this soup promises to satisfy every palate with its rich flavors and hearty textures.

Ingredients :

To recreate this delightful soup, gather these essential ingredients:

  • 3 cups cooked, shredded or chopped chicken breast (or rotisserie chicken)
  • 1 10.5 oz. can condensed chicken soup
  • 6 cups low-sodium chicken stock
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • ½ cup chopped celery
  • 2 medium carrots, sliced
  • 1 1 oz. packet Ranch dressing mix
  • 12 slices thick-cut bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 1 ½ cups shredded mild cheddar cheese
  • ¾ cup cream cheese, softened
  • 8 oz. thin spaghetti or angel hair, uncooked

Directions :

Follow these straightforward steps to cook up a batch of this comforting soup:

  1. Prepare the Bacon: Cook the bacon until crispy, drain, and crumble. Set aside for later use.
  2. Combine Ingredients: In a large Dutch oven, combine the cooked chicken, condensed chicken soup, chicken stock, whole milk, softened cream cheese, chopped celery, sliced carrots, ranch dressing mix, and the crumbled bacon.
  3. Bring to a Boil: Over medium-high heat, bring the mixture to a boil.
  4. Simmer: Reduce the heat to medium-low and let the soup simmer for 20-25 minutes, allowing the flavors to meld together.
  5. Add Noodles and Cheese: Stir in the uncooked spaghetti or angel hair noodles and shredded mild cheddar cheese. Continue simmering until the noodles are fully cooked and the cheese is melted, ensuring a creamy consistency.
  6. Serve and Enjoy: Once cooked, ladle the Crack Chicken Noodle Soup into bowls. For an extra indulgence, top with additional crumbled bacon pieces.

Quick Stats

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cooking Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Servings: 8

Serving and Storage Tips :

After preparing your delicious Crack Chicken Noodle Soup, here are some tips to ensure it’s served and stored perfectly:

1. Serving Suggestions:

  • Garnish with Flair: Sprinkle extra crumbled bacon or shredded cheddar cheese on top of each serving for added flavor and texture.
  • Side Accompaniments: Serve with warm, crusty bread or a side salad to complement the richness of the soup.
  • Fresh Herbs: Garnish with fresh parsley, chives, or green onions for a pop of color and freshness.

2. Storage Guidelines:

  • Refrigeration: Store leftover soup in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. Make sure it cools completely before storing.
  • Freezing: Crack Chicken Noodle Soup can be frozen for longer storage. Place cooled soup in freezer-safe containers or resealable bags, leaving room for expansion. Freeze for up to 2-3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
  • Reheating: When ready to enjoy leftovers, reheat gently on the stovetop over low to medium heat, stirring occasionally until heated through. Alternatively, reheat in the microwave, stirring at intervals to ensure even heating.

3. Safety Notes:

  • Avoid Boiling Creamy Soups: When reheating, avoid boiling the soup rapidly as it can cause separation or curdling of the dairy ingredients. Heat slowly and stir gently.
  • Check for Freshness: Before reheating leftovers, always check for any signs of spoilage such as off smells or unusual texture changes.

4. Make Ahead Tips:

  • Meal Prep: Prepare the soup ahead of time, excluding noodles if possible. Cook and add noodles just before serving to prevent them from becoming mushy.
  • Portion Control: Portion out individual servings into containers for quick and easy lunches or dinners throughout the week.

5. Customize for Dietary Needs:

  • Dairy-Free Options: Substitute whole milk and cream cheese with dairy-free alternatives like almond milk and vegan cream cheese.
  • Gluten-Free: Use gluten-free noodles and ensure all other ingredients are gluten-free certified if needed.
  • Lower Sodium: Opt for low-sodium chicken stock and reduced-sodium bacon to control the salt content.

By following these serving and storage tips, you can extend the enjoyment of your Crack Chicken Noodle Soup while maintaining its delicious flavors and creamy texture. Whether freshly served or reheated, this comforting soup is sure to satisfy everyone at the table!

Variations :

Crack Chicken Noodle Soup is a versatile dish that can be customized in various ways to suit different tastes and dietary preferences. Here are some exciting variations to try:

1. Creamy Vegetable Crack Soup:

  • Add More Veggies: Increase the vegetable content by adding diced potatoes, peas, or spinach to the soup.
  • Creamy Base: Substitute the chicken soup with cream of mushroom or cream of celery soup for a richer, vegetable-centric flavor.

2. Spicy Crack Chicken Soup:

  • Heat it Up: Add diced jalapeños, crushed red pepper flakes, or a dash of hot sauce to the soup for a spicy kick.
  • Mexican Twist: Use taco seasoning instead of ranch dressing mix and top with diced avocado, cilantro, and a squeeze of lime juice.

3. Mediterranean Crack Chicken Soup:

  • Herbaceous Flavor: Replace the ranch dressing mix with a blend of Mediterranean herbs like oregano, basil, and thyme.
  • Greek-Inspired: Stir in chopped Kalamata olives, sun-dried tomatoes, and crumbled feta cheese before serving.

4. Lemon-Herb Crack Chicken Soup:

  • Brighten with Citrus: Add freshly squeezed lemon juice and lemon zest for a refreshing twist.
  • Fresh Herbs: Stir in chopped fresh dill, parsley, or basil right before serving to enhance the flavors.

5. Asian-Inspired Crack Chicken Soup:

  • Soy Sauce Base: Replace the ranch dressing mix with a mixture of soy sauce, ginger, and garlic for an Asian flair.
  • Vegetable Additions: Include sliced mushrooms, bamboo shoots, and bok choy for an extra dimension of flavor and texture.

6. Cauliflower Crack Chicken Soup:

  • Low-Carb Option: Replace the noodles with cauliflower florets or cauliflower rice for a low-carb alternative.
  • Creamy Cauliflower Base: Blend cooked cauliflower with milk or cream to thicken the soup instead of using cream cheese.

7. Coconut Curry Crack Chicken Soup:

  • Curry Infusion: Stir in curry powder or paste along with coconut milk for a creamy and aromatic twist.
  • Garnish with Freshness: Top with chopped cilantro, green onions, and a squeeze of lime juice before serving.

8. Loaded Crack Chicken Soup:

  • Extra Toppings: Top each serving with sour cream, diced tomatoes, avocado slices, and a sprinkle of shredded cheese for a loaded soup experience.
  • Tex-Mex Influence: Add black beans, corn kernels, and diced green chilies for a Tex-Mex inspired version.

9. Seafood Crack Soup:

  • Oceanic Flavors: Substitute chicken with cooked shrimp, crab meat, or a seafood medley.
  • Seafood Stock: Use seafood stock instead of chicken stock for a more pronounced seafood taste.

10. Vegan Crack Soup:

  • Plant-Based Proteins: Replace chicken and bacon with tofu or tempeh crumbles and vegan bacon bits.
  • Creamy Base: Use vegetable broth, coconut milk, and vegan cream cheese for a dairy-free and vegan-friendly option.

Experiment with these variations of Crack Chicken Noodle Soup to discover new flavors and find your favorite version. Whether you prefer spicy, creamy, or loaded with vegetables, there’s a variation to suit every palate and occasion!

FAQs :

Here are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) about Crack Chicken Noodle Soup, along with helpful answers:

1. Can I use pre-cooked chicken for Crack Chicken Noodle Soup?

  • Yes, you can use pre-cooked chicken such as shredded rotisserie chicken to save time. Add it to the soup during the final stages of cooking to heat through.

2. How can I make Crack Chicken Noodle Soup creamier?

  • To make the soup creamier, increase the amount of cream cheese or add heavy cream towards the end of cooking. Stir well until the cream cheese is fully melted.

3. Can I use a different type of pasta instead of thin spaghetti or angel hair?

  • Yes, you can use any pasta shape you prefer or have on hand. Adjust the cooking time according to the package instructions for the type of pasta you choose.

4. Is Crack Chicken Noodle Soup gluten-free?

  • No, the traditional recipe is not gluten-free due to the use of pasta and ranch dressing mix which may contain gluten. To make it gluten-free, use gluten-free pasta and ensure all ingredients including the ranch mix are gluten-free certified.

5. How can I adjust the seasoning in Crack Chicken Noodle Soup?

  • Feel free to adjust the seasoning by adding more ranch dressing mix, salt, pepper, or other herbs and spices according to your taste preferences.

6. Can I make Crack Chicken Noodle Soup ahead of time?

  • Yes, Crack Chicken Noodle Soup is great for meal prep. Prepare the soup as directed but wait to add the noodles until just before serving to prevent them from becoming too soft.

7. Can I freeze Crack Chicken Noodle Soup?

  • Yes, you can freeze Crack Chicken Noodle Soup without the noodles. Freeze in airtight containers or resealable bags for up to 2-3 months. Add cooked noodles when reheating.

Make Crack Chicken Noodle Soup a staple in your recipe collection for its comforting flavors and straightforward preparation. Whether it’s a chilly evening or a family gathering, this soup is sure to warm hearts and satisfy appetites alike!