Thursday, December 2, 2010

Cream Cheese Chicken and Vegetable Soup


I found this recipe at Mel's Kitchen Cafe while I was looking at her cornbread recipe. (Also very yummy!) The soup has cream cheese in it and I said to myself...."If it has cream cheese in it, it can't be bad." ;) In short, my family LOVED it. It makes a good size batch and I barely had 1 bowl leftover. It was nice that I always have all the ingredients on hand. It will definitely be going on our list of favorite soups.

2 TBSP butter
2 TBSP minced onions (can use yellow onion, but I prefer dry minced)
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 stalks celery, finely diced
1/2 cup diced carrots (I used my ones I freeze each fall)
3 cups chicken broth
2-3 potatoes (Mel suggests leaving the peels on the reds if you use them)
1 cup milk
4 tablespoons flour
1 (8 oz. package) cream cheese (light can be used)
About 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and diced (I seasoned with salt & pepper also)
Salt and pepper (I had to add about 1 tsp+ after it was all done)

In a large pot, melt the butter and add the onion, garlic, celery and carrots. Saute, stirring often, for 3-4 minutes, until the veggies are slightly tender and the onions are translucent. Add the chicken broth and potatoes. Bring the soup to a simmer and cook, partially covered, until the potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes. In a liquid measuring cup, vigorously whisk the flour and milk together until smooth. Whisk the mixture into the soup, stirring quickly, and cook over medium heat for 3-4 minutes, until the soup begins to thicken slightly. Stir often to ensure the soup doesn’t burn. Soften the cream cheese in the microwave until it is very soft/melty. I usually place the unwrapped cream cheese on a plate and microwave it for one minute at 30% power. I like it really, really soft so it doesn’t leave lumps in the soup. Add the cream cheese to the soup in small tablespoon-size pieces. Let the pieces sit in the soup and warm through then whisk or stir the soup until the cream cheese melts and mixes in well. Add the cooked chicken and heat through. Season with salt and pepper. Serve.

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