Slow Cooker Chicken Noodle Soup

Homemade Slow Cooker Chicken Noodle Soup

Chicken noodle soup.

Not just any chicken noodle soup.  A poor man’s version. For those of us who like to be frugal and get use of every penny.

I’ve been excited to share this soup recipe with you, my dear readers, even if it is 105º in August and the very thought of hot soup causes me to perspire. I still love me a good nourishing soup. Sweat and all.

But, last week something happened.

We got chickens!

Homemade Slow Cooker Chicken Noodle Soup

Call me a newbie farmer,  something just seemed so wrong about posting a chicken soup recipe while watching four beautiful new “ladies” (my new nickname for our hens) outside my window. A week later, morning after morning of poop duty, dealing with thousands of flies (it has been like a plaque, forget Egypt, come visit our backyard homestead), and the reality of life with chickens, has caused life to resume back to normal.

We are back to eating chicken.

All is well with the world again.

I’m finally ready to pull up my polka-dot farm boots and share this incredibly frugal and flavorful chicken soup.

Homemade Slow Cooker Chicken Noodle Soup

When our family consumes chicken, it is nearly always in its whole form. Bones, organs, skin, and even feet.  The local farms in my area only sell whole pastured chickens along with other chicken “goodies” (feet, necks, etc.).  I fully believe in respecting the life of the animal which gave itself for our family’s nourishment. For me, this means making use of the whole animal.

Homemade Slow Cooker Chicken Noodle Soup

I also desire to be a good steward with our finances and the money we spend. Please remind me of this next time I visit Target. Seriously, I need major Target help.

I pay around $4-5 per pound for a whole pastured chicken. At $16-20 a chicken, I feel responsible for being wise with such a purchase. I’m always looking for ways to stretch a whole chicken. Broth, lunches, chicken salad. We use every last edible part.

This soup is perfectly nourishing and makes enough for dinner, lunches, and plenty for the freezer. Music to my ears–nourishing, cheap, and respectful.

Homemade Slow Cooker Chicken Noodle Soup

Have I mentioned how much I love this soup?

A love that extends far beyond 105º summers.

And to top it all off, this soup is made in a crock pot. Five minutes in the morning is all the work needed. The slow cooker does the hard work for you.

Homemade Slow Cooker Chicken Noodle Soup

homemade chicken noodle soup in the slow cooker
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Poor Man’s Chicken Noodle Soup

Ingredients

  • 4 cups water
  • 5 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup carrots chopped
  • 1 cup celery chopped
  • 1 cup onion chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 3 tsp salt to taste
  • 3 tsp ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 whole raw chicken 3-4 lbs
  • 2 cups whole grain macaroni noodles

Instructions

  1. Chop the carrots, celery, and onion. Mince the garlic. Set aside.
  2. Place the chicken in the crock pot.
  3. Add the chopped veggies and garlic to the crock pot along with all the salt, pepper, bay leaves, thyme, water, and chicken broth. Do not add the macaroni noodles.
  4. Turn the crock pot on low and allow to cook 8-10 hours.
  5. Return to your crock pot. Add in 2 cups of macaroni noodles and allow to cook for 20 minutes (still in the crock pot). The heat from the soup will cook the noodles.
  6. Remove the bones and sit down to a frugal, nourishing meal that only took minutes to prepare!

 Homemade Slow Cooker Chicken Noodle Soup



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15 Comments

  • freakobrico says:

    “I save the bones, once removed from the soup, and place them back in the crock pot overnight to make chicken broth. I also add chicken feed.”

    Did you mean chicken feeT and not feeD? I hope so! 🙂

  • Bonni says:

    I just made this the other day with a whole chicken. I threw everything in my slow cooker and 8 hours later, I had probably the best chicken soup ever. Only difference was that I used a whole bird, not just the carcas. Once the soup was done, I pulled the meat off the bones and added it back to the soup, fed the feet and skin to my dog, and added 1 1/2 cups of alphabet pasta. It was (and still is…we’re still working through the leftovers) DELICIOUS!

  • Phyllis Race says:

    Where do you get your chicken? I live in the Seminole area, and have been looking for a local source. And I totally get what you mean about the chickens. A day or two of constantly scrapping chicken poo off your shoes, will make you feel not so guilty about cooking up some chicken. Don’t get me wrong, I love my “girls” but no one warned me about the constant pooping.

    • Kristin Marr says:

      Hi Phyllis, I get my whole chickens from a local co-op in Largo. The chickens are sourced via a farm in Tampa. The co-op is Indianrockscoop.com. I hear ya about the poop, lol, the one downfall to those lovely hens.

  • makalove says:

    Okay, so I just finished making this soup and it is FABULOUS, but I need help!

    I make perpetual bone broth from chicken backs I buy from a local farmer. So making soup from a carcass was not a foreign idea to me, but I usually use my bone broth and add either raw or leftover cooked chicken. Which means that I’ve never had to worry about fishing teensy little chicken bones out of my soup before!

    So here’s me, at 4:00 a.m., having turned off the slow cooker and let the soup cool (no noodles in it yet) with a pair of nitrile gloves on my hands (because I’m squicked by doing it bare-handed), sifting through the veggies and chicken to make sure I get every little bone out of the soup.

    Is there an easier way??

    • Kristin Marr says:

      Hi Makalove,

      Oh no, 4am and finding bones, no fun. Yes, that’s always a huge problem…finding the bones in the soup. I have a big ladle and use it to sift through the soup and scoop out the bones. There are times a couple small bones may get left and we just remove when the soup is scooped into our bowls. A small sieve may also help with finding the bones.

      I’m so glad you enjoyed the soup! We just ate this soup for dinner tonight, always a big winner in our house.

  • makalove says:

    Thanks! I’m kind of thinking that next time I make it I might cook the carcass first, then remove the bones and add the veggies and cook longer, just because it will be easier to sift through it all!

    We are still enjoying the leftovers of this soup. I got three meals out of one chicken last week, yay!

  • Beth says:

    I am new to this way of eating and prepping food and I am loving your blog! To solve the problem of fishing out the bones, a soup sock would solve that problem. They are available on Amazon.

  • Neelam says:

    Hello Kristin,
    I notice you only use carrots,celery and onions as veges in all your recipes. Wether it is soup or broth or many other dishes. When you say veges its mostly these. Is it that these are readily available to you or any other reason.
    Thanks

    • Kristin Marr says:

      Hey Neelam, For a soup, carrots, onions, and celery are a traditional mirepoix and make the base for a lot of soups. The flavor of the combo is something I really love for a base, and these veggies are always available and very inexpensive in our area. I use other veggies in our meals, too :).

  • Neelam says:

    Kristin,
    I meant to say – you mostly use these veges.
    Neelam

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