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Chicken Noodle Mac n Cheese Soup

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Chicken Noodle Mac n Cheese Soup is like a cozy blanket on a cold day. Loaded with chicken, carrots, noodles and a cheesy broth, this family friendly meal is a must try this winter.

Chicken Noodle Mac n Cheese Soup in bowl with spoon

What is Chicken Noodle Mac n Cheese soup?

We love Mac n Cheese in our house. We also love Chicken Noodle soup, especially during the Fall and Winter months.

I can make either of those two things, and know that my whole family will basically lick their plates clean.

The other night, I was gearing up to make pot of chicken noodle soup and realized that the only small shaped noodles that I had in my pantry, were the small shells. And that’s when the idea hit to do a Chicken Noodle Soup/ Mac n Cheese mashup.

Sometimes, my best ideas come when I am out of an ingredient!

Similar to traditional chicken noodle soup, I use a chicken broth base with shredded chicken and fresh veggies. I use flour and half and half to thicken the soup a bit, and add small shell noodles. The best part it when we simmer the soup with two different kinds of cheese, (like mac n cheese) giving this meal an extra layer of comfort food goodness.

What ingredients do you need?

ingredients for Chicken Noodle Mac n Cheese Soup
Knorr chicken stock tub up close
close up of the Knorr Homestyle Stock gel tub

How to make Chicken Noodle Mac n Cheese Soup

There are a lot of ingredients in this recipe, so I recommend chopping the veggies, mincing the garlic, shredding the cheese, etc ahead of time to get yourself organized before you turn on the burner. I like to lay everything out on the counter in the order that I need it, so I an easily grab it.

You will need approx 2.5 cups of cooked and shredded chicken for this recipe. Check out my favorite method here or get a rotisserie chicken and shred it to save time.

In a medium pot, bring salted water to a boil and cook 8oz of small shell noodles. Before draining, reserve 1/2c of the pasta water. Drain noodles and set aside.

Meanwhile, in a large pot or Dutch oven, melt 2T butter over medium heat, add 1/2c of chopped onion and 1c thinly sliced carrots. Cook until soft.

Stir in 4 cloves of garlic (minced) and then quickly whisk in 3T of flour.

Pro Tip: Have your garlic minced and your flour pre-measured out ahead of time so that you can work quickly on this step. You don’t want the garlic to burn or it will become bitter tasting.

Pour in 6 c chicken broth, the Knorr Homestyle Stock or 1 T of the Better the Bouillon Chicken (whichever one you are using), and 1/2 c of half and half.

Cut the rind off the wedge of parmesan cheese and discard. Roughly chop 2oz of the cheese into chunks or strips. Its ok to have it in larger pieces vs shredded as this will allow it to melt slowly into the soup as it simmers.

chop parmesan cheese into strips or large chunks

Add the parmesan cheese to the pot as well as the shredded chicken 1/2t salt and 1/4t pepper and bring to a simmer stirring frequently for 5-7 mins.

adding Knorr chicken stock tub to soup

Shred 2oz of cheddar cheese. Its very important that you DO NOT use pre-shredded cheese as it has a coating on it to prevent clumping. That coating will prevent your cheese from melting properly, and will cause soup to grainy.

Turn burner to low heat. Stir in 2oz of freshly shredded cheddar. Once mixed, add in 1T lemon juice, the pasta shells and the reserved cooked pasta water. Give everything a good stir to combine.

Scoop into individual bowls and serve topped with additional shredded cheddar cheese as a garnish (optional).

Chicken Noodle Mac n Cheese Soup in bowl with spoon
Chicken Noodle Mac n Cheese Soup next to large pot of the soup

This soup makes 6 servings.

How do you reheat leftover soup?

Store leftovers in an airtight container in fridge for up to 4 days.

When you are ready to re-heat the soup, simply warm it in the microwave or in a pot on the stove.

The noodles may have soaked up some of the broth. Simply add in some extra chicken broth and some additional parmesan cheese. This will add more liquid back into the soup while maintaining the rich, cheesy flavor.

If you will be freezing the soup, follow my easy method here.

Pro Tip: I recommend freezing the soup without the noodles to prevent them from getting mushy. Add all other ingredients to the soup, except the noodles. Then when you are ready to eat the soup, simply thaw and re-heat it. Cook your noodles in a separate pot at that time, and then add them to the re-headed soup prior to serving.

What can you serve with the soup?

Chicken Noodle Mac n Cheese Soup in a bowl

FAQ’s

Can you use pre-shredded cheese?

No. Do not use pre-shredded cheese. It has a coating on it that prevents it from clumping while it sits on store shelves. That coating also prevents it form melting properly and it will give your soup a grainy or clumpy texture.

How do you prevent soup from being grainy?

Freshly shred or chop your cheese (don’t use pre-shredded). Also, turn down the heat on your soup before adding the cheese. You want to add it while soup’s at a low simmer vs a rolling boil.

Can you add uncooked noodles to this soup?

I recommend cooking the noodles in a separate pot and then adding them into the soup at the end. If you cook them in the soup, the will absorb some of the soups liquid and there will not be enough broth when you are ready to serve the soup.

Chicken Noodle Mac n Cheese Soup in pot with wooden spoon

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Chicken Noodle Mac n Cheese Soup in a bowl

Chicken Noodle Mac n Cheese Soup

Chicken Noodle Mac n Cheese Soup is like a cozy blanket on a cold day. Loaded with chicken, carrots, noodles and a cheesy broth, this family friendly meal is a must try this winter.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course dinner, lunch, Soup
Cuisine American
Servings 6
Calories 418 kcal

Equipment

  • 1 large pot or Dutch oven
  • 1 sharp knife
  • 1 cheese grater

Ingredients
  

  • 2 T butter
  • .5 c onion diced
  • 1 c carrots thinkly sliced into coins
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 3 T flour
  • 6 c chicken broth
  • .5 c half and half
  • 1 T Better than Bouillon Chicken Knorr Homestyle Stock gel tubs (not bouillon cubes) or Better the Bouillon Chicken both work
  • 2 oz parmesan cheese wedge (not pre-shredded)
  • 2 oz cheddar cheese (not pre-shredded)
  • 8 oz small shell pasta
  • 2.5 c chicken breasts cooked and shredded
  • 1 T lemon juice
  • .5 t salt
  • .25 t pepper
  • .5 c reserved pasta water

Instructions
 

  • You will need approx 2.5 cups of cooked and shredded chicken for this recipe. Check out my favorite method here or get a rotisserie chicken and shred it to save time.
  • In a medium pot, bring salted water to a boil and cook 8oz of small shell noodles. Before draining, reserve 1/2c of the pasta water. Drain noodles and set aside.
  • Meanwhile, in a large pot or Dutch oven, melt 2T butter over medium heat, and add 1/2c of chopped onion and 1c thinly sliced carrots. Cook until soft.
  • Stir in 4 cloves of garlic (minced) and then quickly whisk in 3T of flour.
  • Pour in 6 c chicken broth, the Knorr Homestyle Stock or 1 T of the Better the Bouillon Chicken (whichever one you are using), and 1/2 c of half and half.
  • Cut the rind off the wedge of parmesan cheese and discard. Roughly chop 2oz of the cheese into chunks or strips. Its ok to have it in larger pieces vs shredded as this will allow it to melt slowly into the soup as it simmers.
  • Add the parmesan cheese to the pot as well as the shredded chicken 1/2t salt and 1/4t pepper and bring to a simmer stirring frequently for 5-7 mins.
  • Shred 2oz of cheddar cheese. Its very important that you DO NOT use pre-shredded cheese as it has a coating on it to prevent clumping. That coating will prevent your cheese from melting properly, and will cause soup to be grainy.
  • Turn burner to low heat. Stir in 2oz of freshly shredded cheddar. Once mixed, add in 1T lemon juice, the pasta shells and the reserved cooked pasta water. Give everything a good stir to combine.
  • Scoop into individual bowls and serve topped with additional shredded cheddar cheese as a garnish (optional).

Notes

This soup makes 6 servings.
Store leftovers in an airtight container in fridge for up to 4 days.
The noodles may have soaked up some of the broth if you eating this soup as leftovers. Simply add in some extra chicken broth and some additional parmesan cheese. This will add more liquid back into the soup while maintaining the rich, cheesy flavor.
TIP: There are a lot of ingredients in this recipe, so I recommend chopping the veggies, mincing the garlic, shredding the cheese, etc ahead of time to get yourself organized before you turn on the burner. I like to lay everything out on the counter in the order that I need it, so I an easily grab it. 
 

Nutrition

Serving: 1cupCalories: 418kcalCarbohydrates: 38gProtein: 32gFat: 15gSaturated Fat: 8gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0.2gCholesterol: 87mgSodium: 1382mgPotassium: 423mgFiber: 2gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 3938IUVitamin C: 4mgCalcium: 242mgIron: 2mg
Keyword chicken, chicken noodle soup, mac n cheese, soup
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