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Chicken and Wild Rice Soup with Beans and Kale

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Hearty, light and filling all at the same time! Chicken and wild rice soup simmered with chopped kale and protein-rich white beans, this easy to make soup is healthy comfort food in one cozy bowl.

overhead of a bowl of soup

What the world needs now are bowls of cozy soup with a great balance between pantry staples and fresh ingredients…and lots of handwashing.

Best part?  Make this edible hug on the stovetop, Instant Pot, slow cooker.  Every option yield equally delicious results, here’s what you’re going to love about it:

  • pantry staples – wild rice and beans
  • fresh ingredients – kale and chicken
  • aromatic veggies – onions and garlic
  • time-saving tips 
  • simple steps 

We’re on board with that, right?

ingredients for chicken and wild rice soup

How do you make chicken and wild rice soup from scratch?

Start chopping friends!  An onion, kale, and mince some garlic to be exact.  You can even buy the kale pre-chopped in the bags if prep life is not on your agenda.

For the chicken, buying a rotisserie chicken is a fast and tasty way to cut corners.  Just pull about 1 pound of meat off the bones and run the knife through it until it’s bite-sized.  If you’re cooking the chicken from start, bake 1 pound chicken breast at 375°F for about 12 to 20 minutes depending on the thickness.  If you have a meat thermometer, the thickest part of the chicken breast should register a minimum of 165°F after cooking.

Once the chicken breast is done, just heat the pan and sauté the base veggies – onion, then garlic and kale – and deglaze with white wine.  This will help cook down the kale so the other ingredients fit better in the pan.  Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil, then just simmer until the rice is soft!  

chicken and wild rice soup in bowls with spoon sticking out of them

Easy, peasy friends!

Can you make this in the Instant Pot?

Absolutely!  The great thing about using the instant pot or the slow cooker is that the chicken can be cooked along with the soup.  After cooking, you’ll just have to pull the chicken into smaller pieces.

Making this chicken and rice soup in the instant pot starts the same way….use the pressure cooker on the sauté setting to cook the onion, garlic, and kale.  Add the remaining ingredients, close and seal then cook.  You can quick release after cooking, add the final touches to the chicken and season with salt and pepper.

Using the instant pot is a nice option because it’s low maintenance and gives you the option of not being tied to the stovetop.

two bowls of soup with buttered bread

Can this soup be made in the slow cooker?

Yes!  The slow cooker is probably the most low maintenance option.  Just load up the ingredients (chicken can be raw) and cook on low heat for 6 to 8 hours.  Set it, temporarily forget it (but, like, not completely just to be safe.)

What can you serve with it?

Bread!  Give me all the bread to go with soup, any day, any time.  Who’s with me?!

This crusty soup bread is no-knead and laced with roasted garlic.  A perfect pairing with chicken and wild rice soup.  Another great option is this brown bread.  It’s similar to the famous cheesecake factory brown bread and addictingly good.

Fresh warm bread slathered in butter with a sprinkle of salt is just sooo, ugh, it’s like your food is giving you a hug.  More hugs!

If you’re loving this heart chicken and wild rice soup, give any of these other hearty soups a try:

Did you make this recipe?  Leave a comment and rating below!  Don’t forget to snap a pic of your delicious eats and tag #hungerthirstplay on social media or post the picture on Pinterest for others to see!


overhead of a bowl of soup

Chicken and Wild Rice Soup with Beans and Kale

Cozy, comforting and healthy!  Our family loves this lightened up version of chicken and wild rice soup with chopped kale and white beans because it's so easy to make and a crowd pleaser!
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Course: Soup
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chicken and wild rice soup, fast wild rice soup, healthy chicken and rice soup, wild rice soup
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 376kcal
Author: Lauren


  • 1 pound chicken breast, thighs, or both chopped or shredded
  • 1 tablespoon olive or canola oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • ¼ cup white wine
  • 1 can small white beans drained and rinsed, 15.5-ounce can
  • 1 head tuscan kale about 6 cups roughly chopped
  • 1 cup wild rice
  • 10 cups chicken stock
  • 1 bay leaf
  • salt and pepper to season


Stove Top Instructions

  • Season the chicken with salt and pepper and bake in a 375°F oven for 15 to 20 minutes until the thickest part of the chicken breast reached an internal temperature of 165°F.  Let cool 5 minutes and cut into bite-sized pieces.  A time saving option is to use the meat from a cooked rotisserie chicken.
  • In a large saucepan, heat the oil over high heat. Sauté onion for 1 minute then add garlic and kale. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for 30 to 60 seconds, stirring.
  • Stir in the wine and add the remaining ingredients. Cover and cook on high for 10 minutes, then reduce to medium-low and simmer for 20 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Instant Pot Instructions

  • Starting with the pressure cooker on the 'sauté' function, add the oil and cook the onion for about 1 minute before adding the garlic and kale.  Cook for about 30 to 60 seconds before stirring in the wine.  Add the remaining ingredients, cover and seal the instant pot.
  • Cook for 30 minutes on high pressure - whether using cooked or raw chicken.  Quick release the vent. When the pressure valve is down open the Instant Pot, remove the chicken to a cutting board, cut into bite-sized pieces and return to the soup.
  • Season with salt and pepper and serve.

Slow cooker instructions

  • Season chicken with salt and pepper and add to the slow cooker.  The chicken breast can be cooked whole and cut after cooking or cut into bite sized pieces before so it's ready to serve immediately after cooking.
  • Stir in the remaining ingredients and cover.  Cook on low heat for 6 to 8 hours.  If cooking the chicken breast whole, remove the cooked chicken and cut into bite-sized pieces then stir back into the soup.
  • Give a final season of salt and pepper to taste and serve!


  • Cooked chicken can be used in any of the cooking methods, it does not change the cooking times of the instant pot and slow cooker directions.
  • Rotisserie chicken is the easiest, time saving hack for getting this soup done as fast as possible.
  • To lighten this soup up even further, after refrigerating overnight skim off any fats that have hardened on top.


Calories: 376kcal | Carbohydrates: 36g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 52mg | Sodium: 616mg | Potassium: 684mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 106IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 41mg | Iron: 2mg


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