This soup starts with boneless, skinless chicken breasts. I decided to go with breasts because there is enough liquid surrounding the chicken to keep it moist. I also felt that there was enough indulgence in the soup with the half and half and bacon that we didn’t need to add more fat with dark meat chicken. I threw my chicken breasts in frozen and I used 1 3/4 pounds. Which was plenty. I love my kitchen scale and use it all the time. If you don’t have one they are a good little tool and are pretty inexpensive.
Next, chop up some onions, carrots and celery. I actually really liked grated carrots in this soup instead of sliced carrots.
Instead of sauteing on the stovetop we are going to use the microwave. We are going to add in a bit of oil and the spices and microwave it all for about 5 minutes. This gives the veggies a chance to soften up and it blooms the spices at the same time.
Add all of that into the slow cooker along with some chicken broth and a bay leaf and you’re set to cook on low for about 4 hours.
Once the chicken is tender, you’ll add in some half and half and some bacon. I like buying these little packages of bacon because it’s just really easy and convenient. But if you want to fry up some bacon, more power to you!
And don’t forget the best part…the gnocchi. I just like saying that word a lot. Gnocchi! I found mine at Smith’s/Kroger by the pasta. It was $2.50 for a pound. I think you could actually add more than a pound in this soup and it would be awesome. These cook fairly quickly in the hot soup so you’ll be ready to eat in no time!
Don’t forget to add in a pop of green and nutrition with the kale. Make sure to take out the stem when you chop it up. Here is a one minute video that shows how to cute up kale…so helpful!
Finally, you’ll add the finishing touch of a bit of freshly grated Parmesan cheese. I promise you’ll love this! Try it soon 🙂
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Yields 8 servings
A cream based soup with tender, moist bites of chicken, bacon crumbles, bright green leafy kale and dumpling-like gnocchi. This soup is a 10 out of 10 at my house. If I start a soup restaurant and can serve only 3 soups this will be one of them.
20 minPrep Time
4 hrCook Time
4 hr, 20 Total Time
- 1-2 pounds of boneless skinless chicken breasts (I used about 1 1/2 lbs which I felt was perfect)
- 1 large onion, diced
- 2 medium carrots, grated or finely diced
- 3 celery stalks, grated or finely diced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 2 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp dried parsley
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 5 cups chicken broth (or you can use water and bouillon)
- 3 Tbsp cornstarch
- 2 cups half and half
- 3 oz bacon bits
- 1-2 lbs gnocchi (I used one pound)
- 4 kale leaves, roughly chopped (as shown in video above)
- 1/2 cup Parmesan
- Place chicken in the bottom of the slow cooker.
- In a microwave safe bowl, combine the onion, carrot, celery, garlic, oregano, basil, parsley and olive oil. Microwave on high for 5 minutes, stirring halfway through. Add concoction to the slow cooker.
- Add in the bay leaf, pepper, salt, and chicken broth. Cover and cook on LOW for 4 hours, or until chicken is tender. Alternately, you can also cook on HIGH for about 2-3 hours. (I do feel that chicken turns out better in the slow cooker when cooked on low though).
- Remove chicken and place on a cutting board. Turn the slow cooker to high. Mix 3 Tbsp of cornstarch with an equal amount of water and stir together until smooth. Stir into the slow cooker and keep the lid off. Go back to the chicken and slice it into bite size pieces or shred it. Add the chicken back into the slow cooker.
- Warm the half and half (or else it will curdle) and add it into the slow cooker. I always just stick mine in the microwave for a couple of minutes.
- Add the bacon bits, gnocchi and kale into the slow cooker and give a little stir. Let it cook on high for 10 minutes.
- Ladle into serving bowls and top each serving with a tablespoon of Parmesan cheese.
I use my 6 quart slow cooker for this recipe.
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