Lemony Garden Vegetable & Chicken Soup

Update 1/27/2018: I love photography, and have learned a lot over the last few years! This recipe is on of the most popular on my blog, but it's images we lacking, so I shot new ones. One of the original photos is at the bottom of this post if you need it as a reference. Hope you enjoy this one! 

Lemony Garden Vegetable & Chicken Soup

My middle name is Summer, and I'm not just saying that. I've always loved that my middle name is Summer because when I use the saying, it rings true in more ways than one. My first name is fine but Summer... That's something I can identify with. It's a bit off beat, and outdoorsy, and warm. It's full of light and fun to write. Plus, I loooove summer, so it just fits.

About now, you may be wondering why this post, titled Lemony Garden Vegetable and Chicken Soup, is all about summer. Soup and summer aren't usually thought of as a "match". But I have a few reasons to share a soup recipe with you on this bright summery day.

Lemony Garden Vegetable & Chicken Soup

First, one of my friends reminded me that even in summer we can all use a bit of bone broth in our lives. She recently had knee surgery and said that even though it's definitely not soup season, she needs more ways to eat healing foods! Eating this felt so nourishing, I hadn't realized that my body was craving bone broth until I started eating. 

Second, this recipe can be made either in your Instant Pot OR in a stove-top pot. Cooking in your pressure cooker is ideal over the summer, because....

1. It doesn't heat up the kitchen, and you don't have to slave over a hot pot!

2. Its beautiful outside and you can go outside while the Instant Pot does the cooking! 

3. It's fast. This recipe is fastest if you use an Instant Pot, being even in a regular pot it comes together in a flash--the vegetables are best cooked until just tender. 

Lemony Garden Vegetable & Chicken Soup

I have all kinds of reasons to share this soup today, but I only have one reason for loving it: it's full of garden flavor and hints of light lemon. And that medly has me won over for the week! 

Lemony Garden Vegetable & Chicken Soup

Lemon Garden Vegetable & Chicken Soup

Paleo, Gluten-Free, Grain-Free    |      |    Print This Recipe

Feel free to flex your creative muscle with this recipe. Every garden is different, so every garden vegetable soup should be different, too. The instructions below are for either a pressure cooker (Instant Pot) or simply using a soup pot on the stove.

Serves: 4   |    Total Time:



Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 pound chicken breasts (boneless, skinless)
  • 1 leek, sliced thin OR 1/2 cup yellow onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 large carrots, diced
  • 2 stalks of celery, diced small
  • 1 medium zucchini, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 medium summer squash, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • Juice from 1 lemon, plus additional lemon slices for garnish
  • 6 cups chicken broth OR bone broth
  • 1/4 teaspoon each salt & ground black pepper
  • 2 cups fresh baby spinach OR 1 cup frozen chopped kale
  • Optional additional veggies: 1 cup fresh sugar snap peas, chopped; 1 cup fresh asapragus, chopped

Directions:

  1. Heat the coconut oil in the bottom of your Instant Pot on the sauté setting, and add the leeks/onion and garlic to the pot.
  2. When the leeks/onions are soft, add the chicken, carrots, celery, zucchini, summer squash, canned tomatoes, rosemary, thyme, salt, pepper, and if using, the asapragus and and sugar snap peas. Pour in the broth and lemon juice, and stir.
  3. Secure lid on Instant Pot, and turn to Soup setting. Set timer for 4 minutes, with the vent sealed.
  4. When timer goes off, release pressure. Remove lid, and stir in spinach/kale.
  5. Serve in bowls and top each bowl with a single lemon slice. Serve hot! Goes great with a slice of grain-free "Seeduction" Bread.