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Country Chicken Soup with Bacon

It is that time of year again when walking outside basically becomes a sprint to the nearest door in order to find some warmth again. Last night was definitely one of those times. Not only was it roughly 40 degrees outside, but it was raining. Hard. Which means even when I made it to my car I was pretty soaked and never really got warm. Luckily for me, I had this soup at home waiting for me. The combination of bacon and shredded chicken breast makes it protein heavy, while the combination of vegetables, corn, and lima beans gives you a dose of healthy carbohydrates, as well as a host of vitamins and minerals. Additionally, this soup is fairly low in calories but makes you feel very full, which is helpful for fat loss. Plus, it is really warm on a cold winter night. Which just feels like a nice way to end the day.

Ingredients: 

  • 4 slices of high quality bacon, chopped
  • 1 1/2 pounds chicken breast, chopped
  • 2 stalks of celery, diced
  • 2 large carrots, diced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, diced
  • 4 cups low sodium chicken stock
  • 1 bag frozen corn
  • 1 bag frozen lima beans
  • Salt, Pepper, and Red Chili Flakes to taste

Steps: 

  • Heat a large dutch oven or soup pot over medium high heat, and then add the bacon. Allow the bacon to cook until the fat has been rendered out, and the bacon is cooked. Remove to a plate, but leave the fat in the pan.
  • Add the onion, celery, and carrots, and season with salt and pepper. Allow to cook until the onion is translucent, and then add the bell pepper.
  • Once the vegetables are browned, add the chicken. Season again with salt, pepper, and red chili flake, and brown the chicken on all sides. Add the garlic and cook until it is very fragrant.
  • Add the bacon back to the pan, pour in the stock, and bring to a boil. Then reduce to a simmer and cook until the chicken shreds easily, roughly 30 minutes.
  • Once you have shredded the chicken (I like to do this with forks) bring the soup back to a slow boil, and pour in the corn and lima beans. Let it cook until those are completely cooked through. Check for seasoning, and then serve. I like to shake a little more red chili on top, as well as fresh cracked black pepper.

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