I always look for ways to improve my recipes, and one way to do that is to use herbs and spices.
When it comes to making a delicious chicken noodle soup, the right herbs and spices are essential.
Herbs and spices can add complexity, depth, and flavor to the soup and make it even more enjoyable.
In this article, I’ll be sharing my top 20 must-have herbs and spices for chicken noodle soup.
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From classic favorites to more exotic flavors, I’ll be showing you how to get the most out of your ingredients.
So, if you’re looking for ways to make your chicken noodle soup even more delicious, look no further.
20 Best Herbs and Spices for Chicken Noodle Soup
I’m not saying that chicken noodle soup is boring, but there are a few herbs and spices that can really take it to the next level.
And of course, you don’t have to use every single one of these herbs and spices to make a delicious soup.
But if you’re looking to add some extra flavor to your soup, these are some of the best herbs and spices to use.
1. Black pepper
Black pepper is an essential ingredient in many dishes, including soup!
Not only does it add a spicy heat to the dish, but it also helps bring out its flavors and deepen its aromas.
But how much should you use?
First off, black pepper has a slightly astringent bite that can easily overpower the subtle flavors of chicken noodle soup.
For this reason, you want to be relatively conservative with your measurements.
Start by adding just 1/4 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper at first, then adjust as needed according to taste.
Black pepper pairs extremely well with other complimentary herbs and spices such as thyme, garlic powder, allspice, and nutmeg.
When combined with the other ingredients in small amounts (generally no more than 1/4 teaspoon at a time), they will contribute to the creation of an incredibly flavorful broth without making it too spicy or pungent.
2. Garlic Powder
Garlic powder adds an extra layer of flavor to this classic dish while also enhancing the natural flavor of the chicken.
Just a pinch can go a long way, so use it sparingly unless you’re aiming for bolder flavors!
Try combining garlic powder with paprika, nutmeg, and herbs such as rosemary and thyme for maximum flavor enhancement.
The key to success is balancing out all of these savory ingredients without overpowering the subtle flavors of essential comfort foods like chicken noodle soup.
When using garlic powder in your recipe, start off by adding just 1/4 teaspoon or even less (depending on taste preference).
You can add more if needed after tasting for desired flavors.
Ginger is a wonderful addition to chicken noodle soup because it adds warmth, complexity, and sweetness to the overall flavor profile.
It pairs wonderfully with garlic as well as other aromatic herbs such as rosemary and thyme, which can be found in traditional chicken noodle soups.
The amount of ginger used should be kept relatively low since too much may overshadow the subtle flavors of the broth and vegetables in the soup.
A good guideline would be one tablespoon for each gallon of soup; adjust accordingly depending on personal preference.
Ginger can also be added at multiple stages during preparation so that more or less depth is achieved throughout the cooking time.
4. Onion Powder
Onion powder is a great way to give your soup that extra boost of flavor without overpowering its subtlety.
Onions have an intense flavor, and when cooked, the sweetness can really stand out in soups.
Onion powder helps accentuate this sweetness and adds complexity to the overall flavor profile.
In addition, onion powder pairs well with other spices like thyme, garlic powder, pepper, and parsley.
Depending on how much you’d like to add to your soup recipe, start with a teaspoon of onion powder for every four cups of broth or stock used for a milder taste or increase up to two tablespoons for more bold flavors.
You could also opt to use fresh onions instead, but be sure not to cook them too long as they might lose their texture (especially if using sweet onions).
Turmeric is the perfect spice to add depth and a nice color to this kind of soup.
This yellow root has many well-documented health benefits and adds an earthy, warm flavor that doesn’t overpower the other ingredients.
When using turmeric in your soup, you’ll want to pair this spice with ingredients like garlic, onion powder, thyme leaves, parsley flakes, and black pepper.
Start by adding 1/8 teaspoon of ground turmeric to the pot when sautéing aromatics such as onions or garlic; then add 2 tablespoons per 4 servings of broth for a mild flavor.
You can always adjust according to taste!
Finally, simmer for 10-20 minutes to allow all flavors to meld nicely.
6. Bay leaves
Bay leaves are notorious for their bold flavor—one leaf is enough to enhance any type of soup.
But when it comes to chicken noodle soup, you’ll want to use a light touch.
That’s because the fragrant herbs used in this classic dish already have robust aromas like thyme, oregano, and parsley.
The bay leaf adds complexity without being too overpowering.
Here’s how much bay leaf to use:
Start with 1/4 teaspoon of crushed or powdered bay leaves per quart (32 ounces) of water or broth you’d otherwise be using in your recipe.
If desired, add another teaspoon or two depending on your preference, but don’t go overboard!
Too much can easily ruin the delicate balance that makes chicken noodle soup so great.
You’ll want it merely as background music—just enough so that people take notice without realizing why they do!
Thyme is one of the best herbs to add when making chicken noodle soup.
Its earthy flavor complements the lightness of the broth, adding robustness and complexity without taking away from the traditional flavors.
Additionally, thyme pairs well with other ingredients that are often found in chicken noodle soups, such as celery, carrots, onions, and bay leaves.
This combination of herbs creates a well-rounded flavor profile, with each ingredient complementing the others perfectly.
When it comes to how much thyme you should use, moderation is key. If you use too much thyme, your soup can end up tasting overly herbal and a bit too focused on this one herb instead of highlighting all its components delicately.
A great rule of thumb is to start by using roughly half a teaspoon per four servings of soup.
Parsley is a great addition to any bowl of chicken noodle soup.
It not only adds an appealing visual presentation, but its mild flavor also complements the subtle flavors in this classic comfort dish.
Parsley works well when paired with other herbs like oregano and thyme, as well as onions, celery, garlic, and carrots cooked in the soup.
To get the most out of parsley’s flavor without overpowering the broth, use only half a teaspoon per four servings of chicken noodle soup.
Adding fresh parsley right before serving will yield more flavorful results than dry parsley sprinkled on top at the end, although both options are great choices!
Rosemary is an invaluable spice to use in chicken noodle soup.
It not only adds a distinct flavor, but also helps to improve the overall flavor of the soup.
Rosemary has an earthy, herbal aroma that is strong enough to complement the flavors but not overpower them.
When using rosemary in combination with other herbs, the best way to ensure that your dish doesn’t become too spicy or overwhelming is by pairing rosemary with another herb like thyme or tarragon.
Also, keep in mind that dried herbs are more potent than fresh ones and can easily overpower dishes if used excessively.
Oregano is a member of the mint family and brings out many other flavors in soup.
It adds earthy notes with a hint of sweetness, so it makes the perfect addition to any chicken noodle dish.
To use oregano in your soup without overpowering its subtle flavors, start by adding one teaspoon at a time and tasting before adding any additional seasoning.
Then, depending on how strong you would like the flavor to be, you can add up to two teaspoons as needed.
To balance out the taste level further and give it complexity, pair oregano with parsley, chives, or basil (or all three!).
These herbs will bring brightness while still allowing oregano’s presence in each bite!
Basil goes incredibly well with chicken noodle soup.
Its aroma is complementary to the subtle yet flavorful notes that come from this comforting dish, and it can really enhance its flavors when used appropriately.
The key here is using the basil sparingly so as not to overpower the delicate flavor of the soup.
Try adding a few leaves or a teaspoon of chopped basil at the very end of your cooking time—just enough for it to be present without being dominant in flavor.
- For best results, pair basil with other aromatics like onion and garlic, which are often found in chicken soups.
- Additionally, try pairing it with parsley for an extra boost of fresh green flavoring (since both herbs work well together).
- Lastly, garnishing your bowl of soup with whole basil leaves gives it a finished look that adds another layer of aromatic fragrance!
Cumin is an excellent addition to chicken noodle soup.
Not only does cumin bring a welcome hint of heat and complexity, but it’s also rich in numerous vitamins and minerals.
Plus, its warm aroma makes the dish even more comforting.
When adding cumin to your soup, make sure not to overpower the subtle flavors of the broth.
A good rule of thumb is to start with half a teaspoon per batch or four servings, then add more if desired after tasting it.
To complement the taste of cumin and enhance the flavor profile further, consider pairing it with freshly ground black pepper or smoked paprika (or both).
Both provide extra warmth that goes nicely with cumin as well as other spices like garlic powder and onion powder.
Dill is a commonly used herb in many cuisines.
Its fragrant aroma and vibrant taste make it an ideal addition to delicate dishes like chicken noodle soup.
The flavor of dill accentuates the subtle flavors of chicken, adding depth and complexity to its broth-based base.
Additionally, the herb adds a bit of warmth without overpowering the dish’s overall flavor profile.
When it comes time to add dill to your soup—choose flat-leaf or curly varieties—go easy on it; if you add too much, the rich characteristics will become overwhelming quickly.
A tablespoon per serving is usually enough for most soups.
You can also pair dill with additional herbs such as parsley or thyme for added aromatic complexity that pairs beautifully with mild bases like chicken and vegetables.
Paprika adds a subtle smokiness and earthiness that pairs really well with the traditional broth base, vegetables, and herbs.
However, if you’re not careful, paprika can overpower the delicate flavors of this classic dish.
The key is to start small!
A half teaspoon should be plenty for one serving of soup, so try adding it bit by bit until you find just the right amount for your taste preference.
Paprika also goes great in combination with other flavorful ingredients like garlic powder or freshly ground pepper.
Both provide hints of spice that complement the dry smoked eastern spice perfectly while allowing it to take center stage in a comforting bowl of chicken noodle soup.
Nutmeg is one of those secret ingredients you’ll find in many traditional recipes.
It is a warm, sweet, and nutty seasoning that pairs perfectly with this type of soup.
Not only does the nutmeg add a hint of sweetness to your soup, but it also helps accentuate the other flavors.
Used at just the right amount, it will not overpower subtle flavors like celery or carrot found in chicken noodle soup.
To achieve maximum flavor balance, pair nutmeg with ingredients such as rosemary, thyme, onion powder, or garlic powder that have an earthy aroma and taste.
These can be added before serving so that each spoonful carries both these aromatics and the delicate sweetness of the nutmeg.
The key to using freshly ground nutmeg is adding it toward the end of cooking time to maintain its full-bodied flavor without having it dissipate quickly due to heat exposure over long cooking hours.
Cardamom might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of soup.
But it’s actually a great addition!
Cardamom has a sweet, citrusy flavor with hints of cinnamon and mint.
It’s ideal for bringing out the subtle flavors in chicken noodle soup without overpowering them.
When making this soup, start by using one teaspoon of cardamom powder per quart of broth or stock. You can adjust this amount according to your personal preferences.
For extra flavor, pair cardamom with other ingredients such as bay leaves, thyme, oregano, or garlic powder.
For an even sweeter taste, add a pinch of nutmeg or allspice to the mix.
17. Mustard seeds
These small, flavor-packed seeds have a slightly earthy and mustardy flavor that is the perfect complement to the classic flavors of chicken noodle soup.
Mustard seeds pair well with other ingredients such as garlic, onions, and bay leaves.
They add an extra layer of flavor without overpowering the delicate flavors of the chicken and vegetables in your soup.
When adding mustard seeds to your soup, make sure not to use too much; otherwise, they will overpower all other flavors in your dish!
One tablespoon should be enough for four servings of soup, or more if desired.
Be careful when tasting while cooking; it’s easy to add too much due to their strong flavor.
To avoid this mistake, start off by using half a teaspoon, then adjust accordingly if needed—especially since everyone’s taste preferences can vary greatly!
Coriander adds a touch of herbal sweetness, which complements but doesn’t overpower the subtle flavors of the dish.
An important part of getting the right balance when cooking with coriander is knowing how much to use.
A good rule of thumb is generally 1 teaspoon per quart (4 cups) of chicken broth used in your soup recipe.
It’s also important to pair it correctly with other herbs, like thyme and oregano.
What you want here is harmony; aim for subtly blending the three herbs together so that no one herb stands out over them all.
Finally, remember not to cook this ingredient too long, as its flavor will change significantly over time due to evaporation during extended cooking times!
19. Celery seeds
Celery seeds are often overlooked in the realm of cooking, but when used correctly and to their full potential, celery seeds can really elevate a dish.
Celery seed has a unique flavor that enhances the subtle flavors of chicken noodle soup without overpowering its delicate broth.
It tastes earthy and slightly bitter, which pairs beautifully with the sweetness of carrots and onions.
If you’re looking to give your soup some extra oomph, I suggest adding 3/4 teaspoon of celery seed per 4 cups of broth.
This is enough to bring out an amazing flavor in your bowl without overwhelming it or taking away from its signature taste.
Additionally, giving your chicken breasts the duxelles treatment (sautéing them in butter and chopping any fresh herbs before incorporating them) allows for great flavor infusion with just one additional step!
20. Fennel seeds
Fennel is a great way to enhance any dish you’re making, especially in this soup.
When adding fennel seed to your chicken noodle soup, be sure not to overpower the subtle flavors of the broth and noodles within.
An appropriate amount would be 1 teaspoon per 6 cups of broth or stock.
For even more flavor, pair fennel seeds with other savory spices like garlic powder, oregano, thyme, bay leaves, and parsley flakes.
Adding these flavors helps create an overall depth that could otherwise be missing from some soups.
You can omit them if you prefer, but it’s definitely worth a shot!
20 Best Herbs and Spices for Chicken Noodle Soup
- Black pepper
- Garlic Powder
- Onion Powder
- Bay leaves
- Mustard seeds
- Celery seeds
- Fennel seeds
- Choose your favorite herbs or spices from this collection to add to your soup.
- Prepare the rest of your delicious meal.
- Enjoy your meal in no time!