A gentle soup, chock full with wild rice and shredded chicken, that is creamy enough without being too light or too rich.
1 medium yellow onion
2 medium carrots
2 medium stalks celery
3 cloves garlic
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
3/4 teaspoon dried thyme
2 dried bay leaves
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided, plus more as needed
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more as needed
1 cup wild rice (not wild rice blend)
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
2 cups whole or 2% milk
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 4)
- Prepare the following vegetables, adding each to the same medium bowl as you complete it: Dice 1 medium yellow onion (about 1 1/2 cups). Peel and halve 2 medium carrots lengthwise, then cut crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces (about 1 cup). Cut 2 medium celery stalks crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces (about 1 cup). Finely chop 3 garlic cloves.
- Melt 3 tablespoons unsalted butter in a Dutch oven or large pot over medium heat. Add the onion mixture, 3/4 teaspoon dried thyme, 2 dried bay leaves, 1 teaspoon of the kosher salt, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened and translucent, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, rinse 1 cup wild rice in a fine-mesh strainer.
- Sprinkle 1/3 cup all-purpose flour into the pot and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes to cook the floury taste out. Add the wild rice. While stirring constantly, pour in 6 cups low-sodium chicken broth and 2 cups whole or 2% milk. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
- Reduce the heat to low. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the wild rice is almost tender and the vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, season 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt.
- Add the chicken thighs in a single layer. Cook, stirring occasionally to keep the wild rice from sticking, until the wild rice grains split open and are tender, and the chicken is cooked through, 12 to 15 minutes.
- Remove the pot from the heat. Using tongs, transfer the chicken to a clean cutting board and use 2 forks to shred into bite-size pieces.
- Remove and discard the bay leaves. Return the chicken to the soup. Taste and season with more kosher salt and black pepper as needed.