Spicy Chicken-Vegetable Soup

Chill the broth overnight. This allows the fat to solidify and come to the surface, making it easier to skim; it also reduces calories.

Yield: Makes 3 quarts
Recipe from Southern Living

More From Southern Living


  • 2 1/2 quarts water
  • 1 (2 1/2- to 3-pound) whole chicken
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 fresh basil sprig
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2 zucchini, chopped
  • 2 carrots, sliced
  • 1 large green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 (15 1/2-ounce) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • Tomato Rice
  • Toppings: chopped fresh cilantro, chopped green onions, minced jalapeño pepper, coarsely chopped tomato, chopped avocado


  1. Combine first 7 ingredients in a large stockpot; bring to a boil, skimming surface to remove excess foam.
  2. Process whole cloves, garlic, and oregano in a food processor until finely chopped.
  3. Add garlic mixture to broth, and cook, stirring occasionally, 35 minutes or until chicken is done. Remove chicken from broth, and cool. Skim fat from broth, and set broth aside.
  4. Skin and bone chicken; shred chicken, and set aside.
  5. Add zucchini and next 4 ingredients to broth; bring to a boil, and cook 5 minutes. Add chicken. Serve with Tomato Rice and desired toppings.
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