Lemon Chicken & Tortellini Soup

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It is Fast Friday again and time for another fast and fabulous dinner suggestion. If you are anything like me, by the time Friday rolls around the last thing you want to do to cook a big meal yet we all still have to eat.  The dishes featured in this series aren’t necessarily fancy but they bring together simple ingredients most people already have in their pantries or have easy access to and allow you to put a real meal on the table in between 30 and 45 minutes.  Enjoy and if you have your own fast recipes you want to share, please send them my way and I will in turn share them with all of my readers.

Chicken soup is the ultimate in comfort soup and until I discovered this quick soup adapted from Bon Appetite, I thought all chicken soups needed to be slow cooked affairs.  Not so!  This soup is quick and easy, going from pantry to table in less than 45 minutes.  Lemon and chicken are a natural pairing and the fresh lemon juice in the broth and the lemon served alongside the soup add a brightness that makes this soup perfect for a cool spring evening.  To reduce the cooking time I used boneless and skinless chicken breast filets but you could use any chicken parts you have on hand.  If you chicken is skin on, removing it before cooking will reduce the amount of grease in your broth.  The cheese tortellini (If you aren’t making your own, Barilla makes a good dried version) helps to add bulk to the soup making it a true dinner.

LEMON CHICKEN & TORTELLINI SOUP

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 small red onion, minced

1 small carrot, peeled and diced

1 celery stalk, diced

12 ounces skinless, boneless chicken breasts

6 cups low sodium chicken broth

1 cup dried cheese tortellini

Juice of 1 lemon plus 2 more for serving

1/4 cup chopped fresh dill

Salt & freshly ground black pepper

  • Heat the oil in a large heavy pot set over medium heat.  Add the onion, carrot, and celery and cook, stirring often, until the vegetables are soft, 5-8 minutes.
  • Add the chicken and the broth and season with salt and pepper.
  • Bring to a boil, cover and reduce the heat, and simmer until the chicken is cooked through, 10-15 minutes.
  • Transfer the chicken to a plate and allow to cool slightly before shredding the chicken into bite sized pieces.
  • Meanwhile, return the broth to a boil.  Add the tortellini and cook until al dente, 10-11 minutes.
  • Remove the pot from the heat. Return the chicken to the soup and stir in along with the lemon juice and chopped dill.
  • Serve with the lemon halves for additional flavor.

Serves 4

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