This lemon chicken orzo soup is packed with great flavors and good-for-you ingredients. With a few shortcuts, you can have this soup on the table in 30 minutes or less!
MIREPOIX: Add olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Once the oil is shimmering, add in onion, celery, and carrots. Cook until the onion is translucent and veggies are crisp tender, stirring occasionally, about 7-9 minutes (Reduce heat if veggies are browning) Add in the garlic and stir for 30 seconds. While veggies are cooking, measure out all the spices.
SEASON: Add in the spices (chicken bouillon powder, salt, pepper, parsley, oregano, thyme, and Italian seasoning) and stir around for 30 seconds. Add in the chicken broth and bay leaf. Increase heat to a boil. Once boiling, add in the orzo pasta. Boil according to package directions, subtracting 2 minutes from what the package says.
CHICKEN/SPINACH: Stir in the shredded rotisserie chicken and then spinach. Gently stir to warm through chicken and allow spinach to wilt, about 2-3 minutes. Remove from the heat. Stir in the lemon zest and juice. Season to taste if any additional salt/pepper is needed.
SERVE: Ladle into bowls and garnish if desired with fresh thyme. Add parmesan cheese if desired to individual bowls. Serve with crusty bread.
Note 1: if you want to have leftovers of this soup, I recommend cooking the orzo pasta separately and then adding a few spoonfuls into individual soup bowls. When storing this soup, the pasta continues to bloat and take on liquid.
Note 2: if your grocery store sells it, grab a lemon herb seasoned rotisserie chicken for extra lemon and herby flavor.
Note 3: add lemon juice and zest gradually to personal taste preferences. What is written is how we love it, but you may like slightly less or slightly more. If you're a huge lemon lover, you can also add in some lemon herb seasoning (Mrs. Dash) or lemon pepper instead of regular pepper to the soup.