What's For Dinner: Slow Cooker Chicken and Wild Rice Soup

Slow Cooker Chicken and Wild Rice Soup || A Less Processed Life

After coming in from the cold, there's nothing I like better than a steaming bowl of hot soup to warm me back up. Well, that and a huge cardigan sweater. And maybe my fuzzy slippers, too.

Slow Cooker Chicken and Wild Rice Soup || A Less Processed Life

This past summer we pasture-raised 40 broilers on our farm, so now our freezer is stocked full of roasting chickens. Which means we probably roast a chicken once or twice a week. I hate to let any part of the bird go to waste, so after eating our fill of roast chicken, I immediately place the carcass (not the most appetizing word) into my slow cooker, along with some chopped carrots, celery, onion, a pinch of herbes de Provence, and a couple of bay leaves. The slow cooker is then filled to the brim with water and when I wake up in the morning, chicken stock is ready to be strained and jarred for my fridge.

Slow Cooker Chicken and Wild Rice Soup || A Less Processed Life

I immediately used about one jarful of homemade chicken stock for this chicken and wild rice soup recipe. I like to saute my vegetables before throwing them into the soup to add a little tenderness (I'm not a fan of crunchy vegetables in my soup), but you could make things even easier by skipping that step and tossing everything into the slow cooker as-is. I like this recipe because it immediately uses up some of the leftover chicken from the night before, and it is hearty enough to serve for dinner. (Even better when served alongside a salad and crusty loaf of bread.)

Slow Cooker Chicken and Wild Rice Soup (printer-friendly version)
makes about 8-10 servings

1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup chopped celery (1 celery heart)
1/2 cup chopped carrots (1 medium carrot)
1/2 cup finely chopped shallot (2 medium shallots)
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup uncooked wild rice
2 cups pre-cooked shredded chicken
8 cups homemade chicken broth (or low-sodium vegetable broth)
1 teaspoon herbes de Provence
1/4 teaspoon rubbed sage

1/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour (gluten-free AP flour would also work)
1 cup 1 percent organic milk

fine sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

1. Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add the celery, carrots, and shallots along with 1/2 teaspoon sea salt and saute until tender, 5-7 minutes. Stir in the garlic and saute until fragrant, 30 seconds Then carefully spoon the cooked vegetables into the bowl of your slow cooker.
2. Add the wild rice, cooked shredded chicken, and chicken broth. Top with herbes de Provence and rubbed sage. Set the lid on the slow cooker and cook on low for 2-3 hours, or until the wild rice is tender and the kernels have split open.
3. When the rice is finished cooking, make a slurry with flour and milk to thicken the soup: In a small bowl, whisk together the flour and milk until smooth. Pour the mixture into the slow cooker bowl and stir to combine. Cook for an additional 10 minutes.
4. Season to taste with salt and pepper before serving.

Slow Cooker Chicken and Wild Rice Soup || A Less Processed Life