The Healing Powers of Homemade Soup…

Well… I prefer to think I’m invincible and never get sick. But unfortunately, there is that occasional bug that gets even the cupcake queen down. *sigh*

As I was bedridden today, I took advantage of the situation and watched a day full of my favorite Food Network shows. Ina worked her magic with some fresh herbs and goat cheese… Guy took me on a culinary wild ride with Triple D but it wasn’t until Giada whipped out a homemade chicken noodle soup that I was inspired enough to get out of bed, go to the store and work some kitchen magic of my own.

Lemon Chicken Noodle Soup. Lemon. Oh yes, she did. She added lemon to what was probably already an incredible recipe. And I was hooked. Lemon is so good for your inner body, take note, sickies. Put it in your water. Drink it straight. And now, add it to your soup. Trust me (and GIADA!)… it’s fantastic!

A couple side notes:

1. Giada says use ANY type of small noodle. I used Gluten-Free Quinoa noodles because I ADORE Quinoa noodles. And I’m avoiding Gluten at all costs… but feel free to use what you wish.

2. DO NOT (and I repeat), DO NOT omit the parmesan rind. Her recipe says its optional, and I almost didn’t add it. But when you taste this soup, it is permeated with a depth of flavor that I’m certain is largely due to the cheese rind. Just cut a hunk off a real piece of parmesan and toss that baby in there. You won’t regret it! You can even eat it when the soup is ready too… if it doesn’t melt all the way, you’re left with a warm, gooey hunk of parmesan. It’s quite tasty!

3. I loved the broth so much, I wished I had more. When I make this again, I’ll use 8 cups of broth instead of 6 and add extra lemon juice.

Lastly, don’t cut corners. This took me about 30 minutes (and I’m moving somewhat slow from being sick). So it doesn’t take that long to use all fresh ingredients and chop/cut them up. You’ll be so happy with this soup if you do!

Here’s the recipe: (Click this link for Giada’s original recipe.)


  • 6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
  • 1 dried bay leaf
  • 1 (2-inch) piece Parmesan cheese rind, optional
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 1 cup (about 2 1/2 ounces) spaghetti, broken into 2-inch pieces, *see Cook’s Note
  • 2 cups diced cooked rotisserie chicken, preferably breast meat
  • 1 cup grated Romano cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley (I used curley leaf because I like it better)
  • Kosher salt


In a large stockpot, bring the chicken broth, lemon juice, bay leaf, and Parmesan rind, if using, to a boil over medium-high heat.

Add the carrots and simmer until tender, about 5 to 8 minutes.

Add the broken pasta and cook until the pasta is tender, for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the chicken and heat through, about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and the Parmesan rind and discard. Stir in 1/2 of the cheese and the parsley. Season with salt, to taste. Ladle the soup into serving bowls and sprinkle with the remaining cheese.


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