A Winter Soup Recipe Perfect for Any Day

Looking for a comforting, hearty winter soup recipe? Look no further than this delicious Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup from Epicurious. This classic comfort food is sure to warm you up on those shockingly cold winter days and leave everyone in the house satisfied. Read on for the full recipe and learn how to make it for yourself.

When it’s chilly outside and you’re in need of some comfort food, this creamy chicken and wild rice soup recipe is the perfect meal. It’s warm, hearty, and filling – everything you want in a winter soup. Plus, it’s easy to make and can be on the table in under an hour.

This soup starts with a simple base of chicken broth, onions, and celery. Then, you add in some shredded chicken breast for protein and diced carrots for sweetness and color. The wild rice gives the soup a nice earthy flavor and chewiness, while the milk and cream make it rich and creamy. Finally, we season it with salt, pepper, thyme, and parsley for flavor. One bite of this hearty soup and you’ll be hooked, as it’s the perfect way to warm up on a cold winter day.


  • 1 whole 3 ½ – 4 pound chicken
  • 4 cups of wild rice
  • 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter
  • 5 cups of heavy cream
  • 2 medium-sized leeks, roughly chopped
  • 1 fennel bulb and fronds, roughly chopped
  • 5 stalks of celery, roughly chopped
  • 3 medium yellow onions, roughly chopped
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and finely diced
  • 10 cloves of garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 5 sprigs of parsley, plus ¼ cup chopped
  • 2 sprigs of thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 quarts of water
  • 2 tablespoons of fine sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper

Directions for Winter Soup

  1. You’ll want to begin this hearty soup recipe by making your own homemade chicken stock, allowing for the final product to be much richer than it would be if using store-bought chicken stock. Begin by grabbing a stock potand combining your whole chicken, water, 1 leek, ½ of a fennel bulb, 2 stalks of celery, 2 medium onions, 6 crushed garlic cloves, 2 sprigs of thyme, 5 sprigs of parsley, and 2 bay leaves in the pot. Cover, and bring your stock pot of ingredients over high heat. Once it’s boiling, you’ll uncover the pot, reduce the heat to a gentle simmer, and cook for 1 ½ hours.
  2. Remove your chicken stock from the heat and then remove the chicken from the pot, setting it aside. You’ll strain the liquid of the stock pot into another pot and discard your solids. Wait until the chicken is cool enough to handle and then shred the meat from the bones by using your hands. Receive this meat for the soup. Discard the skin and bones when finished.
  3. Begin the soup by taking a large soup pot and heating your butter over medium-high heat. Add your remaining fennel, celery, leek, onion, carrot, and garlic to the pot. You’ll then allow these vegetables to “sweat” until they’re soft and translucent, which should take about 3 to 4 minutes.
  4. Add your homemade chicken stock to the soup pot, and bring the contents to a boil. Once the pot is boiling, you’ll add your wild rice and salt, stirring to combine. Bring the soup to a simmer, cover the pot, and cook until the rice pods have opened. This should take about 25 to 30 minutes.
  5. After the wild rice pods have opened, you’ll add in your cream, chicken pieces, and black pepper. Bring the soup back up to a boil in order to combine flavors. Once it’s tasting to your liking, you’ll remove the pot from the heat and prepare to serve it.
  6. Divide the soup among bowls, garnish with parsley, and enjoy.


  • If you’re making your chicken stock ahead, you can refrigerate it for up to 4 days ahead of time or you can freeze it for up to 6 months.
  • Be sure that you take your time to simmer your soup gently so that the flavors have time to develop and meld together.
  • For a heartier soup, add some chopped potatoes. For a more veggie-packed soup, add in some frozen peas or corn. Not a fan of chicken? Swap it out for diced ham or cooked ground beef. Don’t have wild rice on hand? Use brown rice, white rice, or even quinoa.

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