I spent the entire afternoon in my kitchen today. The oven was on and so was the stovetop which can only mean one thing. It is fall! It’s cool enough to want to have five things going on at once in the kitchen!
We are part of a homeschool co-op where there are a lot of kids. We also attend a fairly large church on Sundays and are around many people who probably should take a sick day but don’t! You can’t help but be around sick people, especially this time of year. It’s just the way it is.
Prevention is the best medicine! You can help yourself though by building your immune system with nutrient dense foods and herbs.
One of my favorite way to strengthen my family’s immune systems year after year is with soup. I call it Chicken Immu-Noodle Soup, immunity soup, or herbal soup because it gives you an immunity boost. It’s full of herbs, vegetables, pastured chicken, and bone broth. The noodles are optional. I use Einkorn pasta but you can use gluten-free pasta, rice or no grains at all if you are paleo or grain-free. If you are a vegetarian you could use a good homemade vegetable stock and leave out the chicken.
I like to add miso to my soups because it’s fermented and add to the nutrient-denseness of the soup. You can find miso paste in the refrigerator section of your local health food store.
You don’t have to use all the herbs that I do. I have them on-hand so I put them in. I chose them because of their immune boosting properties and liver fortifying and cleansing abilities. I also like to throw in some fresh or dried nettle in at the end for and added vitamin and mineral boost.
This soup is full of flavor and very delicious! My kids gladly eat it! Don’t skimp on the seasonings The amounts are suggested though, just add as much or as little as you wish. If you’d like to add some spice, put in some chili pepper or cayenne.
Garlic is a key ingredient in immu-noodle soup. Use a whole head. Yes, I mean the whole thing! Peel it and roughly chop it. It adds so much flavor and illness fighting properties!
The base is bone broth infused with medicinal mushrooms. I use dried mushrooms and remove them before serving.
- 2 quarts mushroom infused bone broth
- 1 quart water
- 1 lb cooked chicken thighs or other dark meat (can use raw if using a crock pot)
- 4 large carrots
- 4 stalks celery
- 1 large onion
- 1 bell pepper, any color
- 1 whole head garlic
- 1 inch fresh ginger (grated)
- Miso paste (optional)
- Real salt to taste
- Black pepper to taste
- 5 astragalus root slices
- 1 TBS echinacea root
- 1 TBS burdock root
- 1 TBS yellow dock root
- 1/2 tsp dried rosemary or 1 TBS fresh
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme or 1 TBS fresh
- 1/4 tsp dried oregano or 2 tsp fresh
- Handful of fresh parsley (about 1/4 cup chopped)
- Handful of fresh or dried nettle (about 1/4 cup)
- 1-2 cups fresh spinach, swiss chard, kale or escarole - roughly chopped (optional)
- 10 oz-1lb Einkorn or other pasta or 1 cup rice (optional)
- Bake chicken and season with Herbamare or salt and pepper.
- Infuse broth with mushrooms in a medium saucepan.
- Cook pasta or rice in a separate pot in salted water or broth.
- Peel or wash and roughly chop veggies.
- In a soup pot, heat ghee and add onions and garlic.
- Saute for a minute or two and add remaining vegetables.
- Cook until softened and add salt and pepper.
- Make a bouquet garni using cheesecloth and kitchen twine to hold medicinal herbs.
- Add broth, water, chopped chicken, bouquet garni and dried kitchen herbs.
- Allow to cook through for at least 20 minutes and add miso (if using), greens and fresh herbs at the end.
- Add cooked pasta or rice (if using).
- Check seasoning and remove bouquet garni.
- Serve hot!
- Put all ingredients (if using raw chicken, include. If using cooked chicken, exclude that and noodles or rice until later) in a crock pot and cook on low for 6 hours.
- At the end, add cooked chicken and cooked noodles or rice if desired.
What’s your favorite immune boosting method? Tell us in comments! We’d love to hear from you!