Creamy Chicken Soup

Chicken noodle gets creamy! For this creamy chicken soup recipe, skip the roux and cut the cream—add puréed cannellini beans for a lighter, easier route to favor with a bonus protein and vitamin boost.

A white bowl filled with the best creamy chicken noodle soup set on a grey linen against a blue background with a bundle of thyme near by and a hunk of sourdough bread..
Alison Bickel

When the winds outside are barreling down from the north, and snow has covered every speck of green as far as the eye can see, I crave this soup.

Healthier Creamy Chicken Soup

In most cases, the base is heavy cream, a roux made of fat and flour, or both. I love a good stick-to-your ribs soup as much as the next person, but for this Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup, I wanted to lighten it up a bit and increase the protein, without adding loads of heavy cream or making a roux.

To do that, I pureed a couple cans of cannellini beans. It gives the soup a creamy texture, without the extra step of cooking a roux or the heavy caloric load of heavy whipping cream.

I do finish the soup with a little cream to add a velvety texture that only cream can provide, but you can leave that out if you’re dairy-free or just want to skip it.

A white bowl filled with the best creamy chicken noodle soup set on a grey linen against a blue background with a bundle of thyme near by and a hunk of sourdough bread..
Alison Bickel

What’s the Scoop on Cannellini Beans?

Beans are a great source of plant-based protein. One can of cannellini beans contains 28 grams of protein and 28 grams of dietary fiber. That’s the same amount of protein as one skinless chicken thigh!

Regardless of the nutritional value of beans, I eat them because they are affordable, and they taste good. For this soup, they add just the body I wanted. The texture isn’t exactly that of soup made with cream, which is why I add a little at the end, but honestly, you don’t miss it.

What Does Apple Cider Vinegar Do?

I like to finish most of my soups with some kind of acid—usually vinegar, lime juice, or lemon juice.

In this case, I use apple cider vinegar. Acid in soup brightens the other flavors similar to the role salt plays on flavor. All the flavors of pepper, bay, garlic, and chicken are there; vinegar just helps you notice them more.

Alison Bickel

Storing and Freezing Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup

This soup will keep in the fridge for about five days. Just reheat it on the stovetop or in the microwave. The soup will thicken as it sits, because the noodles will continue to absorb some of the liquid.

You can freeze this soup for up to three months. I like to freeze it in individual containers and reheat it for my lunches. Just make sure you leave about half an inch of headspace for the soup to expand once frozen.

Looking for More Chicken Soup Ideas?

Creamy Chicken Soup

Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 65 mins
Servings 8 to 10 servings


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 6 large carrots, diced

  • 4 stalks celery, diced

  • 4 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1/2 large onion, diced

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper

  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 8 cups chicken stock, store-bought or homemade

  • 4 bone-in chicken thighs (about 1 1/2 pounds)

  • 8 ounces egg noodles

  • 2 (14-ounce) cans cannellini beans

  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley


  1. Sauté the vegetables:

    Heat olive oil in a stock pot or Dutch oven set over medium heat. Add the vegetables, garlic, salt, pepper, thyme, and bay leaf. Stir only 2 or 3 times, then let it sit for 10 minutes, stir the veggies every 1 to 2 minutes for the next 6 minutes until you notice some color developing on the vegetables. You want them to brown a bit, but not too much.

    Putting vegetables in a pot for homemade chicken noodle soup.
    Alison Bickel
    Carrots, onions and celery in the bottom of a dutch oven for easy to make homemade healthy creamy chicken noodle soup
    Alison Bickel
  2. Add the stock and cook the chicken:

    Add the chicken stock, scraping any fond that has developed on the bottom of the pan. Bring to boil, then reduce the heat to medium to a simmer.

    If the thighs have skin, remove it and trim them of any excess fat. Add the thighs to the simmering stock and let it cook uncovered for 20 minutes. If any foam forms on the surface, just skim it off.

    Stock being used to delgaze the bottom of the pan filled with vegetables.
    Alison Bickel
    Trimming chicken thighs for homemade chicken noodle soup
    Alison Bickel
    Raw chicken thighs being placed into simmering stock.
    Alison Bickel
  3. Cool the chicken and cook the noodles:

    Check the chicken for doneness (160°F). If it isn’t cooked through, cook for an additional 5 minutes.

    Use tongs to remove the thighs from the soup, and transfer to a cutting board to cool. Bring the stock up to a boil, add the noodles and cook for 8 minutes or until al dente. Reduce the heat to medium low. Remove the meat from the bones.

    Temping chicken
    Alison Bickel
    A blue pot full of homemade chicken noodle soup.
    Alison Bickel
  4. Make the bean puree:

    In a medium sized bowl, add the drained beans, 1/2 cup water, and apple cider vinegar. Puree using an immersion blender (or you can do this in a food processor or countertop blender).

    Pureeing beans in a white bowl with an immersion blender for homemade creamy chicken noodle soup
    Alison Bickel
  5. Finish and serve:

    Add the meat back to the pot to reheat. Stir in the bean puree, along with 1/2 cup heavy cream and chopped parsley. Taste and add additional salt or vinegar to suit your fancy.

    A blue cast iron dutch oven with easy to make homemade creamy chicken noodle soup and cream stirred into it.
    Alison Bickel
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
434 Calories
19g Fat
37g Carbs
30g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 8 to 10
Amount per serving
Calories 434
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 19g 25%
Saturated Fat 7g 33%
Cholesterol 109mg 36%
Sodium 555mg 24%
Total Carbohydrate 37g 14%
Dietary Fiber 7g 24%
Total Sugars 5g
Protein 30g
Vitamin C 4mg 20%
Calcium 121mg 9%
Iron 5mg 27%
Potassium 973mg 21%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.