Lemon Chicken Soup with Orzo, Kale and Mushrooms

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I think of this Lemon Chicken Soup as flu soup or cold soup, because it is just what I want to eat when I have a cold or the flu. This soup is hydrating, easy to digest, full of nourishing chicken and vegetables and is brightened with lemon juice for extra vitamin C.


  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1/3 pound carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 2 stalks celery, sliced
  • 1/3 pound mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 quarts chicken stock
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 2/3 cup of orzo
  • Zest and juice of one lemon
  • 2 t dried dill
  • 3 ounces baby kale
  • Grated parmesan cheese for garnish (optional)


  1. In a large soup pot, heat olive oil. When oil is hot add onions and cook for about 10 minutes over medium heat. Add carrots, celery and mushrooms and cook another 10 minutes.
  2. Add chicken stock and chicken thighs and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cook for 15 – 20 minutes until chicken thighs are done. Remove the thighs from the pot with tongs and set them on a plate to cool. When cool enough to handle, chop chicken thighs into 1/2″ pieces.
  3. Add orzo to the pot, bring to a boil and cook for 10 minutes on medium low. Add chicken pieces, kale, lemon zest, lemon juice and dill to the pot, cook another 2 – 3 minutes to wilt kale.  Season with salt and pepper. 
  4. Serve with a sprinkling of grated parmesan cheese.


  1. When chicken is cooking a foam will appear on the top of the pot. Skim the bulk of the foam off with a spoon and discard. Don’t worry about removing all of the foam. 

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