Chimichurri Chicken Lentil Soup
A fabulous Slow Cooker Chimichurri Chicken Lentil Soup Recipe with rich hearty undertones and a burst of fresh zesty flavor swirled in!
If this isn’t the perfect week for a warm bowl of soup, I don’t know what is.
Here in the Blue Ridge Mountains we’ve been covered by snow for days. When I step outside each morning, and breath in the shockingly crisp air, I’m immediately struck with two things:
- A swift awakening of the senses.
- A need for a warm hearty meal.
I crave stick-to-your-bones kind of food. Meals that will keep me satisfied for hours to come.
The moment this happens, I walk back into the house and start up a big crock of slow cooker Chimichurri Chicken Lentil Soup, to enjoy later in the day.
…Or at least that’s what I always want to do.
This particular soup is a healthy soothing blend of shredded chicken, savory lentils, veggies and broth. It’s delicious on its own, yet is then elevated to new levels of soupy ecstasy by a swirl of fresh zesty chimichurri sauce.
Chimichurri is fresh tangy sauce made of parsley, olive oil, and red wine vinegar, among other things.
It offers a slightly acidic note to the soup, plus a pop of green freshness that would be lost if the parsley was added directly to the soup early on.
Stirring the chimichurri into each bowl, right before serving, creates a clash of rustic slow cooked flavor with vibrant attributes!
Lentils are a key ingredient in this Chimichurri Chicken Lentil Soup, providing substance, texture, and a deep earthy flavor.
Lentils are possibly my favorite Pulse, a term for part of the legume family, referring specifically to the dry seeds. Think dried beans, chickpeas, peas, and lentils.
Pulses are an extremely practical superfood, providing sustainable earth-friendly protein and fiber at an affordable price.
In fact, I’m always amazed at how one inexpensive bag of beans or lentils will cook and expand into an entire pot of soup or chili that can fill many bellies.
Plus, my kids never turn up their noses when I serve Pulses for dinner!
2016 is the International Year of Pulses. Consider adding Pulses to your weekly diet as a great source of protein, fiber, iron, potassium, and antioxidants.
For added motivation, I encourage you to take the Pulse Pledge with me! You’ll receive recipes, cooking tips, and a chance to win prizes via email, in addition to access to pulses resources.
Also search your favorite social media site for #PulsePledge to see tantalizing pulse recipes people are making and sharing all over the world.
Be sure to start with this Chimichurri Chicken Lentil Soup… You’ll be glad you did!
Chimichurri Chicken Lentil Soup
For the Chicken Lentil Soup:
- 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breast
- 1 pound dried brown lentils
- 1 large onion, peeled and chopped (about 2 cups)
- 1 1/2 cups sliced carrots
- 1 1/2 cups chopped red bell pepper
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon fresh chopped rosemary (or 1 teaspoon dried rosemary)
- 9 cups chicken broth
- Salt and pepper
- Preheat a skillet to medium and add 1 tablespoon olive oil. Once hot, sauté the onions and garlic until soft, 3-5 minutes.
- Pour the onions and garlic into the crock of a large 6-quart crockpot. Add the carrots, peppers, whole chicken breasts, dried lentils, rosemary, chicken broth, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, and 1/2 teaspoon cracked pepper. Stir and cover. Then set the slow cooker on low for 10-12 hours (or high for at least 6 hours).
- Anytime during the slow cooking process, place the chimichurri ingredients in a food processor. Puree the ingredients until mostly smooth. Then salt and pepper to taste. Set aside until ready to serve.
- Once the lentils are soft and the broth has thickened. Remove the chicken breasts with tongs and shred the meat with two forks. Stir the shredded chicken back into the soup. Taste and add salt as needed. Then ladle the soup into bowls and allow each person to stir in as much chimichurri as desired.
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by USA Pulses and Pulse Canada. All opinions are my own.