Dishing Up the Dirt

Spicy Ginger Chicken & Rutabaga Soup

Not only are we all dealing with COVID-19, but it’s also regular flu and cold season. And while we all try our best to boost our immune systems I thought I’d share this super nourishing and delicious soup. It’s got quite a bit of kick thanks to plenty of ginger and fermented chili paste (you can control the amount of chili paste you add but I go heavy!). It’s the perfect soup to accompany a warm slice of sourdough bread (have any of you tried my sourdough bread recipe from my latest cookbook?) and really feels like the best medicine during these dark and cold months. I added some parsnips and a gnarly looking rutabaga from our winter stash of storage vegetables instead of using the usual suspects (carrots and potatoes) I am really happy with how lovely the flavor of the parsnips and rutabaga shined. I know they aren’t the most photogenic of all the root veggies, but I think they deserve a bit more love when you’re cruising the farmers market or grocery store.

What I love about this soup (or really any chicken soup) is that you can roast a chicken at the beginning of the week for dinner, have a few chicken sandwiches and then use the carcass and any leftover bits of meat to make a big batch of chicken soup. It’s a great way to use the whole bird in a variety of ways and bonus, homemade broth is just the best. Of course, you can use store-bought and adjust the recipe below to cater to what you’ve got on hand and what you have time for. But I hope this soup finds its way into your kitchens and bellies and warms you from the inside out.

Stay safe, stay cozy, and sending lot’s of love from the Tumbleweed Farm kitchen.

Spicy Ginger Chicken & Rutabaga Soup

Prep Time: 20 minutes    Cook Time: 1 hour    Serves: 6

  • Carcass and bones from one 3-4 pound roasted chicken, with some meat still left on
  • 4 cups chicken stock or broth
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons cooking fat of choice (butter, oil, ghee, bacon fat)
  • 1 medium sized onion, thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons freshly grated ginger
  • fat pinch of salt and pepper
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 2 medium-sized parsnips, chopped
  • 1 medium-sized rutabaga, peeled and chopped
  • 1-2 tablespoons fermented chili past (we love the chili paste from our friends at Blue Bus Cultured Foods)


  1. In a large pot, cover the bones and carcass with the broth and water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 25 minutes. Skimming foam off the top as necessary.
  2. Remove the bones and carcass with tongs and keep the broth on low heat. When cool enough to handle, pick off the meat and shred it into bite-size pieces. Keep to the side.
  3. In a large dutch oven or soup pot add the cooking fat. Once hot add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally until beginning to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and ginger, salt, pepper and thyme. Stir to combine. Add the parsnips and rutabaga. Stir until the veggies are all mixed together nicely. Pour the broth over the veggies and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, add the shredded chicken and simmer until the vegetables are tender.
  4. Stir in the chili paste (starting with less and adding more to taste) and another fat pinch of salt. Let the soup simmer a bit longer to let the flavors melt. Give the soup a taste and add more chili paste, salt and pepper as desired (you can also let folks add more chili paste to their own individual bowls)
  5. Serve warm with a few hunks of sourdough bread for dunking.


*Use this recipe as a guide and adjust measurements and ingredients as necessary.

Leave a Reply

4 thoughts on “Spicy Ginger Chicken & Rutabaga Soup

  1. Jane says:

    Andrea, I make this for my hubby and love you for all you do

  2. Cary says:

    Wow just made this soup with leftover shredded Turkey from thanksgiving and it was so delicious!! I used a mix of store bought chicken broth and bean broth (beforehand I cooked 1.5 cups of dry beans and then put those in the soup too). My husband said it was the best soup I’ve ever made. Thanks for the great recipe!

  3. Lexie says:

    made this tonight – my first of your recipes! and definitely won’t be the last, it is so delicious! I didn’t have a whole chicken & carcass, so I cut up about a pound of chicken thighs and it worked beautifully. Thanks so much 🙂

    1. Andrea says:

      Yay! I’m so happy to hear!!

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