Stewed Chicken and Noodle Soup – Cure or Cliché?

This is the perfect time of year for some of Granny’s Stewed Chicken and Noodle Soup. It is cold here in New England. We haven’t gotten out much, and it seems like almost everyone is under the weather. As you can see, there is a LOT of weather to be under. So I made a big pot of Granny’s stewed chicken noodle soup this weekend hoping it could cure not only some colds, but also some cases of heavy duty cabin fever.

Making this classic comfort food was pretty straightforward. There was nothing challenging about this recipe. I’ve made so many versions of chicken noodle soup, but this one is hands down the best I’ve tried. And, the mindless chopping, stirring and simmering turned out to be a pretty effective cure for my cabin fever.

But, can it really cure a cold or is that just a cliché? Granny loved a good winter-time cliché. “Bundle up or you’ll catch a cold,” and “body heat escapes through your head so you better wear a hat” were her faves. God forbid I did catch a cold, all I heard about was how I needed some stewed chicken and noodle soup. These Grandma-specific clichés drove me nuts. Showing off my cute new sweater was more important than having my coat zipped at the bus stop. The last thing I needed was a hat smushing my perfectly curled bangs. Those suckers didn’t curl themselves or hairspray themselves into place. I felt like Granny was way too old to understand the need for cuteness over warmth.CNS Feature Image 3.jpg
With my cabin fever cured, I did a little research to find out if that whole “eat chicken soup when you have a cold” thing is a real cure or just another cliché. Come to find out, Granny was right. We know now what Granny knew then: the hot steamy soup dilates blood vessels and opens up sinuses, water and salt in broth keep us hydrated, and the soup’s inflammation-reducing capability aleviates some miserable cold and flu symptoms. Go figure.

Final Thoughts:
And now for a granddaughter-specific cliché to wrap up this post: As I get ready to leave the house everyday this winter, I wish like crazy I could hear Granny tell me just one more time to bundle up, wear a hat, and eat my stewed chicken and noodle soup. But since I can’t, I’m telling you (even if you don’t have to wait for a bus, and even if you don’t have bangs)- bundle up, wear a hat and for goodness sake, make this soup!

Here is everything I used:

Stewed Chicken and Noodles
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  • 1.5 quarts water
  • 2.5-3 lb chicken cut into small pieces
  • 4 carrots, bias cut (about 2 cups)
  • 3 ribs celery, cut into 1 inch pieces (about 1 cup)
  • 1 large onion sliced
  • 1/4 c chopped parsley
  • 1 T salt
  • Pepper to taste
  • 1/2 of a 16 oz package egg noodles
  • 1/4 c flour
  • 3/4 c cold water


  • In Dutch oven or large saucepan, combine water, chicken, carrots, celery, onion, parsley, salt and pepper.
  • Bring to a boil, then simmer covered for one hour. Remove chicken.
  • Bring broth to a boil again. Stir in noodles. Boil uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes.
  • Whisk together flour and cold water. Add flour/water mixture and chicken back to the pot. Simmer, stirring occasionally for 5 minutes, or until broth is slightly thickened.
Chicken Noodle Soup Long Pin