Chicken soup is good for the soul. I mean, there’s a whole series of books devoted to it, right? This is my go-to recipe for when one of my boys (big or little) are sick. It’s gentle enough for the sick one, but flavorful enough for the rest of us not to be bored during dinner. Instant pot chicken soup is fast, but most importantly, it’s literally one pot to clean up. Is there anything better than that when you’re not feeling well?
This Instant Pot chicken soup has big pieces of shredded chicken so it feels like a MEAL. Adding in the butternut squash adds a little bit of a sweetness to the broth, while the kale gives some crunch and the freshness you want all year long. Using thyme essential oil in the broth means you get the amazing flavor of the herb without having to have it in your fridge or garden. You also get all the great benefits that come with using thyme essential oil— including supporting a healthy immune system, which is EXACTLY what you need when you’re not feeling your best! Just make sure that if you use essential oils in your cooking, they’re the best on the market so you get the best benefits you possibly can. To find out more about which ones and why, check out this post.
Rather than adding the kale to the Instant Pot, I like to rip up the kale I want for my bowl so I can add a ton of it (it’s my favorite part!) and put it in the bowl before I ladle the soup over the kale. The soup is warm enough that it cooks the kale just enough so that it’s still crunchy, but not raw. Plus, it means that when you rewarm the soup the next day, you don’t have soggy, gross kale.
If you’re not feeling up to roasting a chicken and cubing a butternut squash, you can always grab a rotisserie chicken from your supermarket and usually find a package of pre-cubed butternut squash in the refrigerated part of your produce section.
Instant Pot Chicken Soup with Kale and Butternut Squash
2 T butter (or butter substitute)
1/2 sweet onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 butternut squash, cubed
1/2 roast chicken, shredded
6 c chicken stock
5 drops thyme essential oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 bunch kale, washed and ripped
- Set your Instant Pot to saute and add the butter and onion. Allow to saute until translucent.
- Add the garlic to the Instant Pot and allow to cook for 30 seconds to a minute.
- Put the chicken and butternut squash into the pot before pouring in the chicken stock.
- Set your Instant Pot to the soup setting for 20-25 minutes.
- Allow to natural release for 10 minutes before flipping it open to quick release.
- When the pressure has dropped, add your thyme essential oil (to preserve the benefits, you don’t want to heat it too much), salt, and pepper to taste.
- Meanwhile, rip up the kale into each bowl (we rip it extra small for the toddlers, bigger for those of us taller than 4 feet, and leave it out for those who aren’t feeling well).
- Pour the soup over the kale and serve.