I’ve been to Olive Garden for their unlimited soup, salad, and breadsticks lunch more times than I can count. How can you go wrong with that combination? I tend not to choose creamy soups when I’m out for lunch, as they’re usually so full of calories that I feel bogged down for the rest of the day. That doesn’t mean I haven’t had the chicken and gnocchi soup, though, because hello, gnocchi! My favorite. Upon deciding to make some at home from scratch, I had to make it a good bit healthier, of course!
I started out with homemade whole wheat gnocchi (recipe can be found here). Homemade gnocchi is pretty easy to make, as long as you have a little bit of time, and it’s so worth it. The resulting gnocchi are light like pillows. If you don’t have time to make your own, you can just as easily use a package from the store, but try to make sure it’s fresh (found in the refrigerated or frozen section)
Along with the whole wheat gnocchi, I added in greek yogurt for the bulk of the creaminess, rather than a whole lot of heavy cream. It’s always a good thing to add a bit more protein, right? I use a combination of chicken breasts and thighs, but you can use any kind of chicken you want. If you have any leftover chicken, this is a great way to use it!
The resulting soup is nice and creamy, although not quite as thick as what you’d have at Olive Garden. The flavor is what matters here, though! And don’t skip the grated parmesan on top – it makes the soup!
What is your favorite kind of soup to get when you eat out?
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 cup carrots, diced
- 1 cup onion, diced
- 4-5 cloves garlic, minced (I always add extra garlic to everything)
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1 cup milk (I used whole)
- 1 pound chicken, cooked and shredded (about 2 cups)
- 1 cup plain greek yogurt
- 1 pound gnocchi (or 1 recipe homemade)
- 3 cups fresh spinach
- 1 tsp dried basil
- salt & pepper, to taste
- grated parmesan, for serving
In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the carrots, onions, and garlic, and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until softened.
Add the chicken broth, milk, and cooked chicken, and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Whisk in the greek yogurt, until smooth.
Cook the gnocchi according to the package or recipe's instructions, and add the cooked gnocchi to the pot after simmering, along with the spinach and basil. Allow to heat until the spinach is wilted. Season with salt and pepper.
Serve with freshly grated parmesan.
adapted from Cinnamon Spice & Everything Nice