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Colorful Chicken 'n' Squash Soup Recipe

Colorful Chicken 'n' Squash Soup Recipe

When I turned 40, I decided to live a healthier lifestyle, which included cooking healthier for my family. I make this soup every week, and everyone loves it. It’s nutritious, too. —Trina Bigham Fairhaven, Massachusetts
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. Cook: 1-1/2 hours YIELD:14 servings


  • 1 broiler/fryer chicken (4 pounds), cut up
  • 13 cups water
  • 5 pounds butternut squash, peeled and cubed (about 10 cups)
  • 1 bunch kale, trimmed and chopped
  • 6 medium carrots, chopped
  • 2 large onions, chopped
  • 3 teaspoons salt


  • 1. Place chicken and water in a stockpot. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 1 hour or until chicken is tender.
  • 2. Remove chicken from broth. Strain broth and skim fat. Return broth to the pan; add the squash, kale, carrots and onions. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 25-30 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
  • 3. When chicken is cool enough to handle, remove meat from bones and cut into bite-size pieces. Discard bones and skin. Add chicken and salt to soup; heat through. Yield: 14 servings (5-1/4 quarts).

Nutritional Facts

1-1/2 cups: 228 calories, 8g fat (2g saturated fat), 50mg cholesterol, 579mg sodium, 22g carbohydrate (6g sugars, 6g fiber), 18g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 2 lean meat, 1 starch, 1 vegetable, 1/2 fat.

Reviews for Colorful Chicken 'n' Squash Soup

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Gramma Amy User ID: 6989823 255059
Reviewed Oct. 5, 2016

"Looking for soup recipes without added grain, like noodles, rice, barley, etc I came across this recipe. It will now be a regular soup in my menu planning. So yummy! Since we enjoy herbs and seasonings, I added a bay leaf, garlic powder, black pepper, salt, and basil. Great flavor and so nutritious."

Pcjd User ID: 7872971 253768
Reviewed Sep. 6, 2016

"I've made this soup a couple of times. It has become one of my favorites. I love how versatile it is also, you can use chard or spinach, you can even add white beans and you can switch from butternut squash to pumpkin or even sweet potatoes. Also instead of water, I use chicken broth."

MtnGrandmaJan User ID: 7372481 168819
Reviewed Dec. 28, 2013

"Instead of adding the kale with the other vegetables, I chop it coursely and put some in the bottom of each bowl and pour the hot soup over the top, The kale is just lightly cooked and the taste doesn't overpower the rest of the vegetables."

summerpls User ID: 4246258 118738
Reviewed Dec. 13, 2013

"This soup is delicious but the broth needed more flavour and I knew that from reading the reviews and recipe. I added chopped carrots, celery, onions and a bay leaf to the chicken and simmered it for about 2 hours. I then strained the broth to get all of the cooked vegetables and chicken out of it. I discarded the vegetables and removed the meat from the chicken to put aside for later and then discarded the bones and unusable chicken parts. Then I continued on with the recipe as it goes and added 1 tsp. thyme, 1 clove minced garlic and a bay leaf and cooked until the vegetables were tender. Then I added the chicken and spinach and let it cook for about 5 more minutes. It was delicious. I would have given a 5 star but the broth really lacked in flavour as listed on the recipe."

PhilGabi User ID: 7520645 94860
Reviewed Dec. 5, 2013

"Great but used modifications: Cooked chicken thighs with onion & garlic in pan keeping drippings. Used chicken stock to replace water, added bay leaf & 1 tsp of thyme. Placed in slow cooker on low over night then added spinach just before serving.

This was great with the modifications."

Beckatha User ID: 7369893 118722
Reviewed Oct. 9, 2013

"Was great. I brought leftovers to work and got rave reviews. Will make again."

Sheena_808 User ID: 7111196 149148
Reviewed Jan. 29, 2013

"This was pretty good. The only changes I made was; I substitute onions with green onions, fresh garlic, 2 chicken breast, cut the cooking time for the chicken to 45 minutes, and added 2-3 Tbsp of soy sauce for tasting. The next time I'm going to make this with fresh spinach instead of kale. The kale was over-powering and it didn't match to the soup. If I made this with spinach, I would rate this 10 stars.

And yes, I did de-bone the meat and shred it and I kept 2-3 bones in the soup for the flavor."

Shawn Morgan User ID: 1893759 95658
Reviewed Jan. 6, 2013

"Good with cabbage instead of kale, too!"

kristenkcole User ID: 2348391 67438
Reviewed May. 20, 2012

"One of my most favorite soup recipes of all time. The spinach and butternut squash make this soup very colorful as well as flavorful."

seasons4 User ID: 978190 149107
Reviewed Mar. 27, 2012

"I have made this recipe several times, but it definitely needs some spicing up. Last night, instead of chicken,t I used andouille sausage and added some fresh ground black pepper, and that did the trick. My husband raved about it and said that I could make it any time! A little less healthy, but a lot more flavor!"

kristinscotth User ID: 2609242 168817
Reviewed Nov. 5, 2011

"I was quite disappointed in this recipe. It was an "okay" soup, but nothing great or special, and definitely not worth the work that went into it. I really don't understand why it was awarded the grand prize in the Feb/March 2007 issue. I think there are much better soups than this. It probably won because of the "health" factor. I started making this around 2:00, and we were eating dinner by 4:30... just to let others know how long it took. I did have all the vegetables (except the kale) chopped and ready earlier this morning. This soup was good enough to try one time, but I won't be making this one again."

Patricia Serio User ID: 5940313 165016
Reviewed Jun. 25, 2011

"I have made this recipe so many times and, of all the recipes I repeat this one is my favorite. My husband loves it and so do the friends I have shared it with. This recipe definitely deserves a 5-star rating. It is colorful in looks as well as flavor."

jeannie145 User ID: 1441984 163041
Reviewed Mar. 16, 2011

"I made this using boneless skinless chicken breast and low sodium chicken broth. I also cut the recipe in half. Have to say it turned out to be very delicious."

MY REVIEW User ID: 2058167 94857
Reviewed Jan. 17, 2011

"I make a soup similar to this and instead of squash I add a can of Italian seasoned diced tomatoes. It adds quite a bit of flavor. I have also made it with turkey sausage instead of chicken. There are many varieties to this. I have even added pasta to this dish to make it heartier. Add some chicken soup base or bouillon to it and minced garlic."

MNCookster User ID: 5716532 76041
Reviewed Dec. 21, 2010

"This soup has zero flavor. Don't waste your time."

jaelspike User ID: 4785474 163380
Reviewed Sep. 15, 2010

"So good, tasty and healthy. Only problem: preparation time involves lots of chopping!! Only make it with helpers."

Sopht User ID: 1382053 76006
Reviewed Sep. 4, 2010

"Nothing fancy and lots of work, but healthy and nourishing."

xicota User ID: 944314 148665
Reviewed Apr. 17, 2010

"First, I halved this recipe, because the original amount is too much for four people.

Allow yourself LOTS of time to prepare this--it took so long to prepare the chicken and chop all the vegetables, I was beginning to think we would be eating this soup while wearing our pajamas!
I recommend adding whatever seasoning you prefer to "spice up" the soup, as it is very "basic". If I were to make this recipe again, I would use some "short cuts"--frozen squash, boxed broth, even a rotisserie chicken from the market."

BethTurner02 User ID: 3106202 163710
Reviewed Feb. 20, 2010

"This is my favorite soup. It's very healthy, filling and I lose weight. I buy the all-natural whole broiler and trim off the extra fat. I add Better Than Bouillon chicken base to the stock."

joyfulstamper User ID: 1358576 148639
Reviewed Jan. 26, 2010

"We buy a package of 3 chicken breasts w/bone. We boil all three w/bone in for flavor - de-bone two to use in the soup, and the third one we de-bone & shred, then put in a freezer bag for use in other recipes. (1 breast is about 1 cup of meat.)"

angelawati User ID: 3131954 149105
Reviewed Jan. 20, 2010

"I didn't find anything spectacular about this soup. I did like the fact that it is healthy, but I probably won't make it again. It just seemed kind of bland and lacking. The butternut squash gave it a sweet type of flavor, which is something I'm not used to in a soup."

joeychick User ID: 4388747 67436
Reviewed Jan. 20, 2010

"qwm: boiling the chicken with the bones will give the soup more flavor than if just boiling the meat alone. The bones are what makes the stock in any soup or stew."

qwm User ID: 1379428 148638
Reviewed Jan. 20, 2010

"Would there be any reason why you couldn't de-bone the chicken before cooking it?"

patricia vagos User ID: 1653924 102313
Reviewed Jan. 20, 2010

"first great to see a receipe from my area New Bedford, 2nd you lost me at squash. Not a fan what can I substitute it with? Some potatoes?"

debkfl User ID: 2984569 148636
Reviewed Jan. 20, 2010

"I loved this soup,but I did add some spices. Garlic powder, thyme,oregano. The squash did get a little mushy when heated up again."

Pegib User ID: 3482497 94795
Reviewed Oct. 17, 2009

"Yes, Yes and Yes. A great recipe for the entire family and for winter football gatherings at home."

joyfulstamper User ID: 1358576 208675
Reviewed Aug. 19, 2009

"Yes, this soup freezes very well! We make this soup ALL THIS TIME and find that we lose weight when we eat it a lot."

joyfulstamper User ID: 1358576 163707
Reviewed Aug. 19, 2009

"Yes, this soup freezes very well! We make this soup ALL THE TIME and find that we lose weight when we eat it a lot. The last time we used only chicken breast meat - will probably do that from now on."

smazuelas User ID: 3178410 94785
Reviewed Mar. 16, 2009

"Can this soup be frozen? It makes a ton and there's only two of us, so freezing some would be ideal."

joyfulstamper User ID: 1358576 102312
Reviewed Jan. 11, 2009

"I wasn't too sure how much I'd like it - but since it was so healthy decided to give it a try. My husband & I BOTH thought it was great and we'll definitely make it again. (The Y style peeler is good for peeling the squash.)"

GRMABARB User ID: 107917 163039
Reviewed Jan. 8, 2009

"Any ideas for a substitute for the kale? In the dead of Winter in Northern Minnesota it's not available.


ClaraEmma User ID: 1692446 149023
Reviewed Dec. 5, 2008

"This is our most favorite soup to make. So full of rich flavors, it is perfect for a cold fall or winter day. I use organic vegetable broth in place of the water and it is fabulous!"

cindyamt User ID: 2019917 163214
Reviewed Oct. 27, 2008

"I'm not sure what gave me the courage to try this soup. Usually, my definition of "healthy" is "doesn't taste good." But my husband was out of town, so I decided to give it a try. My children actually liked it - I loved it and have passed the recipe on to my sisters and friends. Everyone who has tried it loves it."

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