Chicken Soup with Poblano, Parsnips & Leeks

By • January 13, 2016 0 Comments

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Author Notes: This recipe was created by me and posted here originally:

If you’re looking for a chicken soup that will warm your soul in January, look no further. This soup is a twist on the Mexican dish, Caldo Tlalpeño and incorporates some of those great winter veggies that you might be accumulating in your crisper.

Why I love this recipe: This soup is SO versatile. Don’t like parsnips? Use carrots. Or sweet potatoes if you’re really feeling crazy. No poblano? No problem. Try it with a red bell and some crushed red pepper instead. Can’t get any leeks? Dice up an onion. You can mix it up with the greens too – kale, spinach, or collard greens would work just fine. Plus, if you are using a poblano, you can try out the fun little technique of roasting it over an open fire (A gas stove totally counts as an open fire, right?).
Kylie Thompson


Serves 4

  • 2 skin-on, boneless chicken breasts
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 poblano pepper
  • 2 leeks, pale green and white parts only
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 14.5 oz can chickpeas
  • 3 parsnips
  • 2 cups loosely packed Swiss chard
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  1. Prep your ingredients: Season chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Thinly slice leeks cross-wise. Peel and slice parsnips on an angle. Mince garlic and set aside with the leeks. Drain and rinse chickpeas. Remove swiss chard leaves from stems and tear the leaves into bite-size pieces.
  2. Place chicken in a two quart pot with 6 cups of water. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer the chicken for about 15 minutes, or until cooked through. Periodically skim the top of the water to remove any scum or excess fat. Reserve the leftover broth.
  3. While the chicken is cooking, roast the poblano (this will allow you to remove the thin skin). If you do not have a gas stove, place the poblanos on a sheet pan with a bit of olive oil and turn on the broiler. Allow them to roast, turning periodically until the skin is slightly charred and bubbly all over. If you do have a gas stove, slowly rotate the poblano above the open flame until skin is charred and bubbly all over (this made me feel so dangerous, but it’s not that dangerous, I swear). Once the poblano is charred, carefully remove the skin by rubbing it all over with a paper towel. Remove the stem and seeds and rinse the pepper off with water. Dice it up and set it aside.
  4. As the chicken continues to cook, heat two tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add leeks and garlic and sauté for 4-5 minutes until the leeks have softened a bit.
  5. Add the tomatoes, diced poblano, parsnips, and chickpeas to the leeks and reduce heat to simmer. Let these ingredients do their thing for a few minutes as you prep the chicken.
  6. Remove chicken from the water and carefully remove the skin (be careful, it’s hot!). Using two forks, shred the chicken breasts into bite-size chunks.
  7. Add the reserved stock to your pot. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil. Let the soup boil for 5-10 minutes or until the liquid has reduced slightly. Reduce heat to low and simmer the soup until the parsnips are tender. Right before serving, stir in the swiss chard. Once the chard has wilted, the soup is ready to serve.
  8. Ladle soups into bowls and garnish with your choice of toppings! A few ideas: Crumbled cotija cheese, lime wedges, thinly sliced radishes, chopped cilantro, shredded cheddar cheese, sliced scallions, dollop of sour scream.

More Great Recipes: Chicken|Soups|Swiss Chard