When you aren’t a great cook and don’t enjoy it in the first place, finding out you need to go gluten and dairy free can seem a little overwhelming. Or maybe A LOT overwhelming. It’s especially challenging when not everyone in the family likes the same foods.
So I thought, “Okay, what regular meals do I make that I can find substitutions for?” Some recipes were easy but trying to find a suitable substitute for Campbell’s cream of mushroom soup so I could make this family favourite was my hardest to date.
8 years ago when we first started this dietary adventure (not by choice mind you), the options for dairy and gluten free products were much more limited than they are now. Fortunately at that time I could lean on my sister for a few recipes as her family had the same restrictions.
However this was one recipe that she didn’t have any answers for but I was determined to figure it out, there must be a soup mix out there somewhere or maybe I could attempt to make something myself (I was that desperate).
But I’m all about the easy so I kept looking.
And then I found it!
Gluten free, dairy free AND organic cream of… potato leek soup?!?
Doesn’t sound like something picky eaters would like but what the heck, I’ll give it a try. Remember I’m desperate, right?
It wasn’t quite the same taste, a little more oniony, and doesn’t have that dairy creaminess BUT it does make a thick sauce that complements the chicken and mushrooms, isn’t too strong and even better, everyone liked it! Score one for Mom.
- 1 large package of chicken thighs (approximately 18)
- 1 litre Imagine Organic Creamy Potato Leek Soup
- 10 fresh white mushrooms or use the type and as many as you prefer
- 1 zucchini
- Slice mushrooms and zucchini.
- Pan-fry each separately in a wok (preferably) or large saucepan on slightly higher than medium heat. When done, move to a separate bowl.
- While pan-frying vegetables, cut up chicken thighs into smaller pieces for faster cooking.
- Once vegetables are done, use the same pan to pan-fry the chicken in batches. Don't try to do it all at once, as it will take much longer.
- Pan-fry each batch with some pepper and salt (to taste) until there is no pink in the chicken and remove to a separate bowl.
- Turn heat to medium low.
- Shake soup in container before opening. Then pour whole container into saucepan/wok.
- Warm mixture and then add all vegetables and chicken and simmer for 5 minutes, or until heated through.
- Serve with rice.
In the image at the top of this post I also added pan-fried brussel sprouts to add more veggies but they aren’t always in season. Another vegetable suggestions are cauliflower or frozen peas. But boil the peas separately first, don’t just add to the soup mixture, otherwise it will come out more runny.
Time Saver Tip
Boil your veggies while you pan-fry the chicken if you are using vegetables other than mushrooms and zucchini.
You can also use sliced chicken breast though when I do I find I overcook it and it becomes tougher and dry. If you’ve mastered the art of cooking chicken breast then go for it!