This Chicken Potato Soup is the ultimate comfort food for cold winter nights! A rich, flavorful broth is packed with crispy bacon, gooey cheese, and rotisserie chicken.
Soup season is upon us and you MUST add this chicken potato soup to the top of your list. It’s loaded with crispy bacon, fluffy potatoes, tender chicken, and CHEESE. What’s not to love?!
The combination of bacon and apple smoked gruyere cheese makes this soup extra special!
- Bacon – cooked until crispy. For the best results, use quality thick-cut bacon. The texture and flavor is much nicer and it’s easier to work with — it doesn’t stick to the pan as much as “regular” cut. Bacon adds a great, smoky flavor and crispy texture, but if bacon isn’t your thing, replace with 1/4 cup unsalted butter or extra virgin olive oil.
- Onion, Celery, and Carrots – aka a “mirepoix”. This trio of vegetables is a very common base for soup recipes which provides flavor, texture, and nutrients. If you’re short on time, some grocery stores will carry chopped mirepoix in the produce section — you’ll need about 1-2 cup(s) for this recipe.
- Garlic – provides a subtle, nutty flavor and *bonus* is loaded with good-for-you vitamins and minerals. Buy jarred minced garlic to save on prep time.
- Salt and Pepper – enhances the flavor of the other ingredients and provides just a hint of spice. Be sure to season throughout the cooking process, not just at the end; this allows the salt to meld with ALL the ingredients. The recipe calls for 1/2 teaspoon, but I end up using about 2 teaspoons worth of salt.
- All-Purpose Flour – used to thicken the broth. All-purpose flour is the best flour to thicken a soup, because of it’s moderate levels of starch and protein — it will thicken the soup *just* right.
- Chicken Broth – provides a rich, flavorful base for our soup. Vegetable broth may be substituted if that’s all you have on hand. Beef broth would make this too rich and salty whereas water wouldn’t provide enough flavor. Use your favorite store-bought variety of chicken broth or feel free to make your own. If you’re using homemade broth, you’ll need 32 oz or 4 cups.
- Half-and-Half – a dairy product made with half whole milk and half cream and makes the soup ultra creamy, but not overly heavy. If you’d like a richer soup, try heavy cream. Want it lighter? Use whole milk. You might even be able to get away with skim milk, but it won’t be as thick and creamy.
- Yukon Gold Potatoes – the BEST potatoes for soup, because they hold their shape, but you’re still able to achieve a soft, fork tender, fluffy texture. Potatoes like russets may be used in a pinch, but they’re much more likely to fall apart.
- Chicken – any cooked and cubed (or shredded) leftover chicken will do, but use a store-bought rotisserie chicken for ease. For the best results, remove the meat from the skin and bones while it’s still hot.
- Sour Cream – provides a creamy texture and subtle tang to balance out the richness from the shredded cheese. Be sure to add this into the soup AFTER it’s removed from the heat to avoid curdling. Plain greek yogurt may be used as a substitute.
- Cheddar Cheese and Apple Smoked Gruyere Cheese – this combination of cheeses provides a sharp, yet smoky, ultra cheesy flavor to the soup. Feel free to use YOUR favorite combination of cheeses — I recommend something bold (cheddar) with something that’s creamy and melts well (gruyere). Whatever cheese you use, shred your own! Pre-shredded cheeses contain an anti-caking agent which means it won’t melt as smoothly into the soup.
- Green Onions or Chives – optional, but highly recommended for garnish! Fresh herbs provide an earthy, bright flavor to balance out the richness of the soup.
How to make
This soup does require some chopping, so prep in advance if you can!
- Cook bacon in a large stockpot, then remove and set aside.
- Add in celery, carrots, onion, garlic, salt, and pepper and cook until the veggies have softened.
- Sprinkle in flour, then cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.
- Slowly whisk in chicken broth, then pour in half and half and potatoes.
- Cover and simmer until the potatoes are cooked.
- Slowly stir in sour cream, cheddar, and gruyere until the cheese has fully melted, then stir in bacon and chicken, taste and re-season, if necessary, then serve with green onions/chives and enjoy!
Do you cook chicken before adding it to soup?
Yes. For this soup, you’ll need 1 pound (about 4 cups) of cooked and cubed (or shredded) chicken. Any leftover chicken will do, but I love using store-bought rotisserie chicken to keep things quick and easy.
Can you put raw potatoes in soup?
Yes. Peeled and chopped raw potatoes are stirred into the soup with the broth and half-and-half. The soup is brought to a simmer, then covered, to cook the potatoes. Depending on the size of potatoes, you’ll need to cook them for about 15 minutes, or until fork tender.
How do you thicken potato soup?
This potato soup is thickened four ways:
- Flour. Flour is sprinkled over the bacon grease to create a “roux”, which thickens the soup.
- Potatoes and Simmering. Potatoes soak up liquid and simmering allows some of the excess moisture to evaporate. If the soup isn’t thickened to your liking after the cheese has been stirred in, bring the soup back to a simmer, but this time, keep it uncovered.
- Cheese. Stirring cheese into the soup after it’s cooked will help to thicken it.
- Let it sit. The soup will continue to thicken as it sits and cools.
What to serve with chicken potato soup
Potato soup is great served next to a sandwich or bread for dunking and a salad!
How to store
Store leftover soup in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days or in the freezer for 1-2 months.
To reheat, thaw in the fridge if frozen then heat either on the stove or in the microwave.
Chicken Potato Soup
Equipment for this recipe
- 6 slices raw bacon
- 2 ribs celery diced
- 2 carrots diced
- 1 yellow onion diced
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 teaspoon salt plus more to taste (I used 2 teaspoons)
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 (32 oz) carton chicken broth
- 2 pints half and half room temperature
- 2 pounds Yukon gold peeled and cut into 1/2 - 1 inch cubes
- 1 pound cooked and cubed chicken about 4 cups cubed (I used a store-bought rotisserie chicken)
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1 (8 oz) block cheddar cheese shredded
- 1 (8 oz) block apple smoked gruyere cheese shredded
- Green onions or chives for serving
- Place bacon in large stockpot over medium heat.
- Cook until crispy, then reserve grease, but remove bacon, crumble, and set aside.
- To the hot pan and grease, add in celery, carrots, onion, garlic, salt, and pepper.
- Cook, stirring often, until the celery and carrots are tender, about 10 minutes.
- Reduce heat to low.
- Sprinkle in flour, then cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.
- Slowly whisk in chicken broth.
- Pour in half and half and potatoes.
- Increase heat back to medium, bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally.
- Cover and simmer (you'll probably need to lower the heat back to low) until the potatoes are cooked, about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Remove from heat and slowly stir in sour cream, cheddar, and gruyere until the cheese has fully melted.
- Stir in bacon and chicken, taste and re-season, if necessary, then serve with green onions/chives and enjoy!
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*Note: Nutrition information is estimated and varies based on products used.