Well, after all of that “fun food”, we were ready for some plain ol’, good old-fashioned, comfort food! The past few recipes were a blast! But you can’t eat “candy” every day, if you know what I mean! 😉 So, a giant pot of Homemade Chicken ‘n Noodles sounded like just the ticket!
I was about worn out, and wanted things to be as simple as possible. So I dumped most of the ingredients into my crock pot, and let it do most of the work for me! I love the way it turns, (otherwise usually kind of bland and semi-tough), boneless skinless chicken breasts, into melt-in-your-mouth tender, juicy, chunks of chicken!
Sometimes I make homemade noodles from scratch, but #one excuse: I was extremely tired. Excuse #two….they have to dry out overnight. So, the next best thing to use are those frozen Homestyle Egg Noodles by Reames! We both LOVE them and they work brilliantly for this!
I first learned about them when my ex-MIL swore she made her own noodles one Sunday….and I saw the bags in the garbage can. 😉 I think that was the last time she cheated! Ha! 😉
These noodles come in handy for many things, especially dishes like this, but if you plan ahead and have the time, do make homemade ones. And be sure to NOT roll them too thin or they overcook, turn to mush, and break up. My Great Aunt Lola was famous for hers, and they needed nothing but a little broth and butter! I so miss her. She was such a fun person, an amazing cook, and her pies??? OMG…best in the world!! NOT kidding!
So, since I was tired and was pretty much making this on a whim, resort we must to frozen. But if you’ve never used these, you’ll be quite SHOCKED at how much they truly do resemble homemade. Never a disappointment! And always a much welcomed helping hand when you need it. 🙂
I keep the ingredients for these basic, simple and classic to tradition. They really don’t need anything fancy, and would probably just ruin them. Celery, onions and a little fresh parsley when I happen to have some on hand, is all that’s needed and tastes best. And before I go any further, just to make clear, this dish is not “soup” or even “stew” for that matter. It should just be the chicken, vegetables, noodles and a little “gravy” that holds everything together. They should NEVER be runny or swimming in a soup or sauce. And pleeeeaaaaase don’t “thicken” them by using “cream of crap” soup. Stirring in a simple cornstarch slurry eliminates a shitstorm of chemicals. 😉
Speaking of “chemical shitstorms”, always be careful of what kind of bouillons and chicken-flavored bases you add, too. Those horrid little cubes are nasty. And that extremely el cheapo “soup base” that turns everything bright yellow is nothing but chemicals, fake artificial chicken “flavor”, and a boatload of salt and dyes. Stay away from that stuff!! Your chicken and noodles should never be a neon “Crime Scene Tape YELLOW”!
I use a little Better Than Bouillon in mine, that has real chicken in it and therefore must be stored in the fridge, and that works beautifully. You can make it even simpler by using just plain salt and pepper like our Grandmothers, Great Grandmothers and Aunts did, but the Superior Touch brand really does a fantastic job. I think that even my Great Aunt Lola would’ve approved! 😉
And I think that’s about all of the tips that I can give you, other than NOT over-stirring or trying to make too large of a pot at once. You’ll just end up breaking up the noodles trying to stir them. If serving a large crowd, best to just get two pots going. And be careful of what type of spoons you use, as well. Sharp-edged metal spoons wreck the noodles. They will literally cut them into tinier and tinier pieces every time you go to even gently fold them. Use the cheap, plastic, thick-edged spoons, or wooden spoons, and gently fold MINIMALLY, and you’ll end up with a beautiful pot of chicken and noodles every time!
I hope that you find this post helpful and that you get a pot started soon! They’re VERY easy to make when you start the chicken in the crock pot, and then just finish on the stovetop! And your family will not only want this to be a new tradition, but it will be memories that are created and remembered for a lifetime! Enjoy!! 🙂
**Maybe it’s just a “midwest thing”, but we always serve this dish with a veggie and Homemade Mashed Potatoes. And biscuits or homemade bread is also very much enjoyed to sop and swipe the plate of every last drop of gravy!
- 2½ lbs. boneless skinless chicken breasts, about 4 medium-sized
- 5 cups chicken broth (from a 48 oz. box – *you may need that last cup of it the next day to refresh )
- 2 Tbl. Better Than Bouillon Chicken Base
- 3 – 4 large ribs celery, sliced, as you like
- 1 large onion, chopped medium to large
- 1 large bay leaf
- ½ tsp. coarse ground black pepper
- ¼ tsp garlic powder
- 1 Tbl. finely chopped fresh parsley, optional but very good in it
- 1 tsp. salt, or to taste
- more coarse ground black pepper to taste
- 4 Tbl. butter, cut up
- 1 (24 oz.) bag Reames Homestyle Egg Noodles, cooked with 1 Tbl. kosher salt, and drained
- 4 Tbl. cornstarch mixed with 4 Tbl. cold water, milk, or chilled chicken broth
- In large crock pot, (I use my oval one, but one a little smaller will work, too), add first 8 ingredients. Cover and turn crock pot to HIGH. Cook for 5 hours.
- Remove chicken breasts and pull into large chunks with 2 forks. Add back to crock pot. Add parsley, more salt and pepper to taste, and butter. Cover and turn to LOW.
- Bring a medium to large stock pot ⅔ full of water to a boil. Add 1 Tbl. kosher salt and noodles. Bring back to a boil, stir to make sure they aren’t sticking together, and boil over medium-high for 20 minutes. Do not over cook.
- Pour noodles into colander to drain. Pour chicken mixture into stock pot that noodles were in. Add butter and drained noodles, and gently fold to lightly mix. Bring to a simmer.
- Add cornstarch slurry, fold in, and simmer for 2 minutes until sauce thickens. Fold once or twice to make sure they don’t get overcooked on the bottom.
- Serve hot with buttered mashed potatoes, a green veggie such as sweet baby peas, and homemade biscuits or bread.
In a small saucepan, add 1 cup chicken broth, 1 tsp. of the chicken base, and 1 Tbl. butter. Bring to a boil, stir and reduce heat to simmer. Add 1 Tbl. cold water to 1 Tbl. cornstarch in small glass, stir to mix, add to simmering broth and stir for 2 minutes. Pour over chicken and noodles and fold in. Spoon leftovers into a serving bowl and reheat in microwave. Good as new! (That’s why I love those big 48 oz. boxes! Then you have plenty extra to play with!)
*This is not a sponsored post and the opinions are my own.