This Vegetarian Chicken Noodle Soup is the perfect stand-in for standard chicken noodle. With a savory broth full of chickpeas, pasta, and carrots, this chickpea noodle soup is so familiar and comforting, but without a lick of chicken!
Sometimes when a cold (or the dreaded flu) hits, the only thing that sounds remotely palatable is a nice, hearty, nostalgic bowl of chicken noodle soup. That brothy goodness, the comforting steam … it’s kind of a healing experience.
But when you’re a vegetarian or vegan – stating the obvious here – chicken is a no-go. So what’s a sicky to do?
Have no fear! Vegetarian Chicken Noodle Soup is here!
But I decided it was time to turn to a classic – chickpea and straight-up noodles. I wanted something as classically chicken-noodle as it gets without, you know, the chicken or chicken broth.
And I wanted uncomplicated – if I’m making this for myself and I’m under the weather, it needs to come together with a minimum amount of time and fuss.
But most of all, I wanted the cold-fighting comfort of chicken noodle soup, but in vegetarian form. I wanted to sit down, wrap my hands around the bowl, inhale the steam, and FEEL BETTER.
Olive oil – to sauté the aromatic veggies.
Onion, carrots, and celery – the standard mirepoix that adds the BEST flavor to comforting soups like this chickpea noodle soup.
Garlic – adds savory flavor and is a magic cold-fighting ingredient, too!
Thyme – Adds earthy, familiar flavor. My recipe calls for dried thyme but fresh thyme is amazing too!
Turmeric – More cold-fighting action in the house! Though mostly I add turmeric to this vegetarian chicken noodle soup because I like the familiar yellow hue it lends to the situation.
Salt & pepper – Because always!
Vegetable broth – Use homemade or store-bought, but either way I recommend a low-sodium version. This allows you to better control the salt content.
Chickpeas – I use one can, drained, which is easy peasy. If you prefer to use cooked-from-scratch chickpeas, add about two cups.
Egg noodles – for that classic chicken noodle soup experience, but you can use any pasta you like. For a vegan chickpea noodle soup, avoid egg noodles and instead choose a vegan pasta. For a gluten-free version, go with gluten-free pasta. Brown rice spirals would be amazing!
Parsley – Love the added nutrition, flavor, and green.
Lemon – Lemon juice added at the end brightens this soup and just takes it to another level.
This chicken noodle soup without chicken is super easy to make – arguably easier than traditional chicken noodle soup, because there’s no need to worry about handling/cooking chicken.
First, set a medium soup pot on the stove and heat some olive oil in it. Then, add your mirepoix – onions, carrots, and celery. Saute the veggies until they are tender, then add the garlic, herbs, and salt and pepper. Continue sautéing until aromatic.
Next, add the broth and chickpeas. Bring to a boil, add the noodles, and simmer for a few minutes until the pasta is tender.
Once the pasta is done, remove the soup from the heat and add your squeeze of lemon juice and parsley. Taste, and add a bit more salt and pepper if you like.
That’s it! Super easy chickpea noodle soup, am I right?!
When you’re under the weather, this soba noodle soup with coconut milk, ginger, and turmeric feels so unbelievably healing.
Another soup with chickpeas (one of my very favorite additions to soup!) this Lemony Chickpea Soup with Orzo and Dill is so full of flavor.
Thick and hearty Vegetarian Pasta e Fagioli is flavored with rosemary, garlic, and smoked paprika. A frugal and comforting fave!
Vegetarian Minestrone Soup is probably my favorite pantry recipe. It is SO full of flavor!
I made quite a few versions of this no-chicken noodle soup until I hit upon this one, the keeper of all keepers. In my opinion, it’s the perfect balance of simple and easy but also comforting and delicious.
I hope you like this one as much as we do. And if you’re making this because you’re fighting a cold too, I hope you feel better soon!
Sub in a vegan pasta.
Use gluten-free pasta like brown rice rotini.
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Leftovers keep for about 3 days. To reheat, simmer over the stovetop until warmed through.
Originally published Feb. 26, 2020
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