good for what ails ya. (quick chicken noodle soup)

Posted on Jan 17, 2011 in Food

If you follow me on Twitter, you know that I’m sick. Yesterday, I asked everyone about their favorite home remedies for cold and flu symptoms.

I thought is was only fair that I shared mine as well.

Now, a bit of prefacing. I’m, of course, not a medical professional, nor do I even really think any of the items I’m about to show you have any sort of scientific impact on a cold or flu. That being said, these are the things that make me feel better, and isn’t that half the battle anyway?

Clementines

A pretty standard one to start off with. It helps that those irresistible wooden crates of clementine cuties are in season and on sale every where you look right around the same time that cold and flu season gets in full-swing. Of course, Vitamin C is a pretty accepted way of boosting your immune system, but also, these little guys are great for an unsettled stomach that may not want to take in something heavy. A little blood sugar and Vitamin C boost all wrapped in an easy-to-peel wrapper. Plus, they are sweet and delicious!

smoothies

Anything smooth, creamy and cold is a great idea for a scratchy, itchy, and sore throat. Plus, you can pack in a nice nutrient punch in a small smoothie package. My favorite cold-busting smoothie for two (Babyface is in prevention mode):

1 cup vanilla almond milk
2 large handfuls spinach
2 tablespoons flax
2 tablespoons chia seed
1 banana
1/2 cup pineapple
2 clementines

Smoothies are also a great one for sick kids, too. Use blueberries and strawberries, and bananas for a fun “purple slurple” smoothie. Add a silly straw and you are good to go. It’ll feel good on their scratchy throat, plus get them a nice dose of calories and nutrients in a small, fun package.

Tea

As you can see by my assorted collection, I’m a big believer in medicinal teas. The simple act of drink a hot liquid helps to sooth your throat and annihilate any germs that live in your throat and nose. Combine that with powerful herbs and you’ve got a cold-killing powerhouse on a string. My favorites are Traditional Medicinals Cold Care P.M. (puts me right to sleep, no Nyquil in this house!) and Yogi Echinancea Immune Support (unpictured because I ran out).

There have long been studies saying that sugar depresses your immune system, but more and more studies are coming out saying that a little sugar doesn’t hurt (the real problem comes when your body is unhealthy and your immune system is compromised). So I’d say put a little honey in that tea (I do!) and enjoy how it feels and tastes.

Sherbet

You are probably thinking this is totally random, but sherbet is a comfort food of mine! My Mama always bought me sherbet when I was sick growing up. The cold felt great on my throat, the flavor was powerful enough for me to still taste it when I was stuffed up, and there wasn’t enough dairy to make my body produce more mucus (gross, right?).  Plus, now as an adult, it just makes me feel better. And happy people recover from colds faster. Or at least I think so.

carbonation

You know me. We’ve been doing this for a while. So you know that I almost never drink soft drinks (with the except of a rare Mountain Dew). That being said, soft drinks are some of my most favorite things, in moderation, when I am congested. The cold, fizzy bubbles feel so good on the throat and nose and almost immediately help me feel better. Of course, you want to keep hydrated with other liquids while you are sick, but try a soft-drink next time. Ginger Ale is my favorite!

Chicken Noodle Soup

You knew this was coming, right?

A perfect combo of protein, carbs and fat. Veggies, meat and fiber all in one bowl. Plus a hefty dose of hot broth to kill any lingering germs stuck in your nasal cavity. There is a reason chicken noodle soup is the stuff of flu legend.

The can is fine, but homemade is better.

But who wants to spend hours in the kitchen while they are coughing, aching and fevering? I certainly didn’t.

So I bring you Quick-en Noodle Soup, ready in 20 minutes flat. So you can get back to your trashy TV and comfy bed (because that’s really the only good part about being sick).

Quick-en Noodle Soup

print recipeview recipenutritional info

1 tbsp. butter
1/2 c. celery, diced
1/2 c. onion, diced
1/2 c. carrots, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
4 c. chicken broth
1 1/2 c. water
1 1/2 c. shredded chicken meat
1 1/2 c. whole wheat pasta, dry
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp. sage
1/2 tsp. rosemary
1/2 tsp thyme
Salt and pepper

Melt butter over medium-low heat in a large saucepan. Add celery, onions carrots and garlic and saute until just softened, about 5 minutes. Add chicken broth and water. Bring to a boil. Add remaining ingredients and simmer until pasta is cooked and all veggies are soft, about 15 minutes. Remove bay leaf before serving.

Makes 4 2-cup servings.

Quick and easy ways to get the “1 1/2 cups shredded chicken meat”:

  • boil chicken breasts or chicken thighs until cooked through, shred (this is what I did)
  • buy a rotisserie chicken at the grocery store, remove meat from bones and skin, shred
  • buy canned chicken (good canned chicken, please)

chicken noodle soup

Hope your three-day weekend has gone better than mine. Hey, at least my fever is gone, that’s something to cheer about!

14 Comments

  1. Being sick sucks! :( Well… except for that trashy tv/warm bed/fuzzy pajamas part ;)

    I love to make fresh ginger tea by boiling a chunk of ginger, plus a cored, quartered apple in 4-6 cups of water. Then strain the tea and add truvia or honey or some other sweetener. It always feels so warming and soothing.
    Hope you feel better real soon! With all those yummy cures, I know you will! :)

    • OooH! Ginger tea, I must try this!

      • Yay! I hope you like it! I actually got the idea from a beautiful cookbook called “Drink To Your Health”, by Anne Mcintyre ( http://www.amazon.com/Drink-Your-Health-Delicious-Smoothies/dp/B000C4SVMI/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1295412443&sr=8-1 ) . Each page is a full color photo, and it’s full of recipes for natural healing drinks/smoothies/teas, and information on each ingredient and how it helps the body. Her ginger tea recipe (on pg 141) is as follows:

        French Apple and Cinnamon Tea
        4 apples, washed and sliced
        2 1/2 cups water
        2 tblsp honey
        1 tsp ground cinnamon

        Place the apples in a pan, add the water, cover, and cook over low heat until soft. Strain and stir in the honey and cinnamon. Serve hot. :)

        Please let me know if you try the recipe – you inspire my food choices and recipes on a daily basis, so I would feel so honored and wonderful if I could help inspire you too. I’m also sending “get better” vibes your way! I hope they help! :)

      • Mmm! That looks delicious. When the roads finally get cleared, I might have to run out and get some apples!

      • Doh! I just realized I typed up the wrong recipe (no ginger!). I also realized that when I made the tea I actually combined the apple tea recipe with the “Malaysian Ginger and Lemon Tea” recipe (on pg 63):

        1 ounce fresh gingerroot, peeled and sliced (I am lazy and therefore didn’t peel it, I just washed it really well)
        2 1/2 cups water
        squeeze of lemon juice
        honey, to taste

        Place the gingerroot in a pan with the water (here’s where I modified the recipe by adding the apples). Bring to a boil, cover, lower the heat, and simmer for 20 minutes (the apples might’ve gotten really soft before 20 minutes, so I scooped them out). Add the lemon juice and sweeten with honey to taste. Drink hot.

  2. Hope you feel better soon. I drink tea with honey and have extra fruits when I’m feeling sick.
    I love your food ideas for a sick day. That smoothie sounds great!

    • The smoothie is amazing. I feel so much better after having them just a few times.

  3. TV is my comfort food. As is chicken soup. I get sick about once a year and watching Friends re-runs and Grey’s Anatomy always makes me feel better.

    • TV is totally my comfort food, too. :)

  4. Hope you are feeling better! I woke up this morning feeling as if I swallowed an alligator whole. My throat was so scratchy and on fire! I have been drinking water like mad, eating oranges like they are going out of style and found some Throat Coat tea that has done the trick :)

    I have the toddler down for a nap, and I’m cuddled up on the couch with my DVR, the laptop and waiting until the kids get home from school.

    Jen

    • Aww, I hope you feel better soon! Enjoy your DVR. :)

  5. Hope your feeling better. I check in every day to see if you have blogged! I am loving your creativity and spunk. Keep it up!
    -Emily in CT

    • Thanks, Emily! I’m getting there. Still not 100%.

  6. I know this is quite late – and possibly a repost to you- I apologize on both accounts. Soup is always a good thing but what I do that works for me is take a HOT bath in epsom salts (2cps), baking soda(1cup), add some drops of eucalyptus and tea tree oil AND ginger. some people take the ginger and make a little bag and run the hot water through it. Me, I am too lazy for that and just add it to the water, though it can look a little funny. :) Soak in the bath for at least 20 minutes. I personally would do this more than once during the cold. This can relax you and make you very very sleepy….
    Two other items that I have in my arsenal are oregano oil gel caplets. First sign of a sour throat I will bite down on two of these and swallow. This will generally kick that sore throat to the curb. Be forewarned though that the oregano oil can be quite warm, especially if you are not used to it.
    The second item is zinc/elderberry lozenges. I swear by these babies. My mom took these at the first sign of her last cold and barely had the sniffles.
    As you stated in your blog I am not a health professional but tell others what works for me. Research and see if it will work for you!

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