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Chicken Lemon Rice Soup with Butternut Squash & Kale

Easy Meals

Chicken lemon rice soup with butternut squash and kale makes for a delicious meal that is easy to make in one pot and nutritious! 

best chicken lemon rice soup with kale and squash

I don’t know about you, but to me nothing sounds better for lunch or dinner when it’s cold outside than a big bowl of soup. Soups are great because you can pack a lot of nutrition into them, and make them ahead of time to enjoy for the next few days.

This chicken lemon rice soup has all the characteristics of chicken noodle soup that we know and love, but it’s thicker and creamier thanks to the addition of rice. Extra lemon gives each bowl more vitamin C and bright, fresh flavor! 

It’s also packed with vitamins, minerals, fiber and whole grains thanks to the U.S.-grown long-grain rice, butternut squash and kale! Rice is the most popular grain globally and the primary dietary staple for more than half the world’s population.

This tiny but mighty U.S.-grown grain is nutrient-rich, supplying energy, complex carbohydrates, protein, fiber, beneficial antioxidants and more than 15 vitamins and minerals.

Rice Nutrition

Brown, wild, black, red and purple rice are 100% whole grain varieties. Research shows that eating whole grains can help reduce heart disease, may reduce the risk of certain cancers and may aid in weight maintenance.

Rice is a nutrient-dense, complex carbohydrate that the body slowly digests to help you stay energized throughout the day. Plus, research shows that eating rice increases levels of the feel-good chemical serotonin, which helps boost mood and keeps appetite in check. I’ll definitely take that mood boost as we head into the colder months with less sunshine!

Is all rice gluten free?

Yes, rice is naturally gluten-free, highly digestible and the least allergenic of all grains. It’s a great option for people with Celiac disease or who choose to follow a gluten free diet.

Ingredients for Chicken Lemon Rice Soup

  • U.S-grown long grain white rice
  • Chicken stock
  • Lemon
  • Butternut squash or sweet potato
  • Kale or spinach 
  • Egg yolks
  • Fresh thyme
  • Salt 
  • pepper
best chicken lemon rice soup with kale and squash

Chicken Lemon Rice Soup with Butternut Squash & Kale

Maggie Michalczyk, RDN
Chicken lemon rice soup with butternut squash and kale makes for a delicious meal that is easy to make in one pot and nutritious! It’s the perfect cozy soup recipe for the winter months!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 -5 servings


  • 5 cups chicken stock
  • 2 cups U.S.-grown long-grain white rice
  • 1 ½ cup shredded chicken
  • 2 cups lacinato kale washed and stems removed, torn into smaller pieces
  • 1 ½ cup cubed butternut squash
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 egg yolks
  • Juice of 3 lemons
  • 1 tbsp. fresh thyme
  • 2 tsp.salt
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper + more on top


  • Prepare rice according to package directions in a rice cooker or on the stovetop.
  • While the rice is cooking, peel and cube the butternut squash, cutting into small cubes. Toss with 1 tbsp. Of olive oil and bake at 375 degrees F for 15-20 minutes until fork tender. Set aside.
  • Once the rice has cooked add 1 cup to a blender along with the egg yolks, 1 ½ cup of chicken stock, and lemon juice. Blend until combined.
  • Heat the rest of the chicken stock over medium to high heat. Add the mixture from the blender, the rest of the rice, cooked butternut squash and fresh thyme. Stir together and add the kale pieces. 
  • Let simmer on low for 10-15 minutes as the soup thickens. You can always add more chicken stock to thin it out.
  • Remove from heat and enjoy with extra fresh black pepper and more lemon juice squeezed on top if desired. Store covered in the fridge for 3-4 days. 
Keyword chicken lemon rice soup

The blog post is in partnership with the US Rice Federation. All opinions are my own and I’m proud to partner with brands and organizations that share my mission of making healthy food more accessible to everyone.

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