Slow Cooker Chicken Wild Rice Soup

This slow cooker chicken wild rice soup is creamy and comforting, but still nourishing with lots of veggies, shredded chicken and wild rice. Added bonus: it’s so easy to whip up, gluten-free + dairy-free.

Spring is almost here, but I’m still craving comfort food and easy slow cooker meals. This chicken wild rice soup fits the bill and it’s so delicious.

Plus, lately the weather here in Richmond has been so sporadic. One day it’s warm and sunny and the next it’s cold and rainy. Luckily this soup is the perfect rainy-day dinner!

Two bowls of wild rice chicken soup topped with fresh thyme and served with slices of bread.

A few weeks ago, one of the EBF team members, Emily came to town. She typically manages social media, but came to help me out in the kitchen for a week of recipe testing and creating! It was so great to meet her in person and crank out a bunch of recipes together. This recipe is inspired by her and her love for wild rice soup. Thanks, Emily!

Two bowls of wild rice chicken soup served with fresh thyme and slices of bread. Two spoons and a cloth napkin are around the soup bowls.

Here’s What You Need:

  • dry (uncooked) wild rice 
  • chicken breast
  • olive oil, butter, ghee or vegan butter – be sure to use olive oil or vegan butter for dairy-free
  • vegetables – yellow onion, celery, carrots and garlic
  • seasonings and spices – dried thyme, rosemary, bay leaves, sea salt and pepper
  • chicken broth – I prefer to buy the low sodium version so I can control the amount of salt
  • gluten-free all purpose flour or oat flour 
  • unsweetened oat or almond milk – I like oat milk because it makes the soup a bit more creamy

Bowl of wild rice chicken soup served with bread and fresh thyme.

Chicken Wild Rice Soup in Your Slow Cooker

A lot of people think that all slow cooker recipes are simple, but that’s not true! I’ve made plenty of slow cooker recipes that take a ton of prep before the ingredients go in the pot. Not this one!

After rinsing the rice, you’ll place the rice, chicken, onion, celery, carrots, garlic, bay leaves, broth, water and seasoning blend in the slow cooker. Seriously, dump alllll the ingredients in your slow cooker, set it and forget it. In the last half hour of cooking, remove the chicken to shred it. Once shredded, you just add it back into the soup.

The only other thing you have to do is make a roux to thicken the soup. In a saucepan, melt the butter or oil. Add in the flour and cook for a minute. Whisk the mixture while slowly adding the non-dairy milk. That’s your roux! Add the roux to the slow cooker and stir to combine. If the end result is too thick you can add in additional water or milk.

Label scooping up creamy wild rice chicken soup from a slow cooker.

Ingredient Substitutions and Variations

  • Make it dairy-free – use a dairy-free milk and vegan butter to keep this soup dairy-free. If you’re a dairy lover, feel free to use traditional cow’s milk and butter.
  • Make it gluten-free – use all-purpose gluten-free flour to make this soup gluten-free. Again, if you can tolerate gluten, traditional all-purpose flour works fine as a substitute. You could also use oat flour.
  • Make it vegan – this is a little tricker, but to make this soup vegan simply use vegetable broth in place of chicken broth, use vegan butter and omit the chicken breast. You may want to add more vegetables or even chickpeas or whites beans to make this a heartier soup with more protein!

Slow cooker full of thick and creamy wild rice chicken soup. A ladle is resting in the slow cooker.

What to Serve with Chicken Wild Rice Soup

This meal is truly a complete meal on it’s own  – protein, veggies, healthy fats… it’s balanced! If you’re like me though, you want to serve it with a little something on the side! I love it with a hearty, seedy bread and a side salad. If you want to make your own, this honey whole wheat bread would be delicious with this roasted sweet potato salad or a more traditional side salad with this lemon vinaigrette dressing.

Bowl and spoon with creamy thick wild rice chicken soup topped with fresh thyme and served with bread.

Other EBF Slow Cooker Recipes to Try:

If you make this chicken wild rice soup, be sure to leave a comment and star rating letting me know how it turned out! Your feedback is so helpful for the EBF team and other EBF readers.

Print
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Bowl of wild rice chicken soup served with bread and fresh thyme.

Chicken Wild Rice Soup


  • Author: Brittany Mullins
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 3 hours
  • Total Time: 3 hours 15 minutes
  • Yield: 6
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Description

This slow cooker chicken wild rice soup is creamy and comforting, but still nourishing with lots of veggies, shredded chicken and wild rice. Added bonus: it’s so easy to whip up!


Ingredients

  • 1 cup dry (uncooked) wild rice 
  • 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • ¼ cup olive oil, butter, ghee or vegan butter 
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup chopped yellow onion
  • 3/4 cup chopped celery
  • 3/4 cup chopped carrots
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt 
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 6 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cups water (or additional chicken broth)
  • 1/2 cup gluten-free all purpose flour 
  • 1 cup unsweetened oat or almond milk
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
  • fresh thyme, for garnish (optional)

Instructions

  1. Rinse the rice under running water. Place the uncooked rice, chicken breast, garlic, onions, celery, carrots, thyme, rosemary, salt, bay leaves, chicken broth and water into your slow cooker. 
  2. Cover and cook on the high setting for 3-4 hours or on the low setting for 7-8 hours. In the last 1/2 hour of cooking, remove the chicken from the slow cooker. Allow to cool slightly and then use two forks to shred the chicken into small pieces.
  3. When the rice is done cooking, remove the bay leaves and add the shredded chicken back into the slow cooker. Melt the butter or oil in a saucepan. Add the flour and let the mixture cook for 1 minute. Whisk the mixture slowly while adding in the milk. Continue to whisk until all lumps have dissolved. Allow the mixture to thicken and become creamy.
  4. Add the creamy mixture into the slow cooker. Stir to combine. Add additional water or milk to your preference if the consistency is too thick. Taste and season with salt and pepper if needed. Garnish with fresh thyme and serve. 
  • Category: Soup
  • Method: Slow Cooker
  • Cuisine: American

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1/6 of recipe
  • Calories: 297
  • Sugar: 4g
  • Sodium: 1305mg
  • Fat: 10g
  • Carbohydrates: 22g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Protein: 23g

Keywords: chicken wild rice soup

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    62 comments
    1. Micah
      November 22, 2020 AT 10:38 am

      Hi, I’m making this tonight and curious if you’ve tried it using frozen chicken? Or would you recommend thawing first?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        November 22, 2020 AT 4:23 pm

        Hi Micah. I haven’t tried it with frozen chicken. I think it would be best to thaw it.

    2. Jessica
      November 17, 2020 AT 12:41 pm

      About the try is recipe today. Can you use already cooked chicken? Would I just put it in at the end?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        November 17, 2020 AT 6:26 pm

        Yes! I’d just add it towards the end. It just probably won’t be a shredded.

    3. Gabriella
      November 14, 2020 AT 9:05 pm

      No clue why but I did everything correct and my recipe didn’t turn out 🙁 my soup was very watery and not thick. Not sure what happened

      1. Brittany Mullins
        November 15, 2020 AT 8:01 pm

        Hey Gabriella – sorry to hear that! Did you add the flour in at the end? That’s what helps thicken it up.

        1. lori
          November 22, 2020 AT 5:54 pm

          I made two batches, one in each crockpot. One turned out perfectly, the other is runny. Didn’t do anything differently between the two of them! Baffling!!

          1. Brittany Mullins
            November 23, 2020 AT 10:46 pm

            Mmmm, that’s so strange! The only thing I could think of would be that one batch got some extra liquid, but I know you said you didn’t change anything about the two recipes. Did you add the flour in at the end?

    4. Pamela
      November 8, 2020 AT 10:46 am

      Can I use regular milk instead of oat/almond?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        November 9, 2020 AT 12:01 am

        Yes, definitely!

    5. Lena V
      November 4, 2020 AT 8:13 pm

      So easy and cozy and comforting. I can’t believe its healthy! This will be a repeat recipe for sure! Next time with more veggies!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        November 4, 2020 AT 8:30 pm

        Yay!! So glad this soup was a hit, Lena. Thanks for making it and for coming back to leave a comment + star rating. I so appreciate it. 🙂

    6. Brianne
      October 29, 2020 AT 12:45 am

      This is great! I left it on low all day. May have over cooked it but it was amazing. Also added about 3 small potatoes! Made way more then 6 servings with the addition.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        October 29, 2020 AT 1:46 pm

        Woo!! So glad this soup was a hit, Brianne. Thanks so much for making it and for coming back to leave a review. I so appreciate it!

    7. Clissi
      October 27, 2020 AT 3:59 pm

      My husband said it was one of the best things i have made. He loved it. I made it in the instapot. I think it may have been too much liquid and i cut the water in the recipe. I set it in the instapot for 12 on high after i sautéed everything in the instapot. Let it release the pressure on its own if not you will have a mess like I did. I also used boneless skinless chicken thighs 🙂

      1. Brittany Mullins
        October 27, 2020 AT 4:19 pm

        Ahh that makes me so happy to hear, Clissi! Thanks for coming back to leave a comment and to share how you made this in the instapost. It’s super helpful for anyone else who would like to try that method. 🙂

    8. Hannah Peterson
      October 23, 2020 AT 10:58 am

      Easy, delicious and healthy! I served it with a French baguette but it’s extremely filling on its own. Will be making this again and again 🙂

      1. Brittany Mullins
        October 24, 2020 AT 4:10 pm

        Yay! I’m so glad this soup turned out for you, Hannah. Thanks so much for making it and for coming back to leave a comment + star rating. I so appreciate it!

    9. Erica
      October 14, 2020 AT 2:02 pm

      I love how easy and cozy this recipe is!! Super delish as always!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        October 14, 2020 AT 4:20 pm

        So glad this soup was a hit, Erica! Thanks for making it and for coming back to leave a comment + star rating. I appreciate it!

    10. Julie
      October 14, 2020 AT 12:06 am

      This soup is delicious!! I just made my second batch and it is still amazing! My whole (very picky) family loves it too! Leftovers are gone the next day! Thank you so much for sharing it! Definitely a staple at our house now!😍

      1. Brittany Mullins
        October 14, 2020 AT 4:25 pm

        Yay!! So glad this soup was a hit with your family, Julie!! That makes me so happy to hear. Thanks for making it and for coming back to leave a comment + star rating. I appreciate it!

    11. Carol
      October 13, 2020 AT 5:59 pm

      DELICIOUS! This soup was so good, had with a slice of your Honey Whole Wheat Brown Bread. I was in a hurry & didn’t make the roux & it was still wonderful. Thanks for another great recipe.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        October 14, 2020 AT 4:30 pm

        Yay! So glad this soup was a hit, Carol. Thanks for making it and for coming back to leave a comment + star rating. I really appreciate it. 🙂

    12. Catie
      October 3, 2020 AT 9:31 pm

      This is the 2nd recipe I’ve made from you that turned out incredible! (The first was your falafel recipe.) You have a new fan! The soup was so foolproof, the perfect flavor and consistency. Can’t wait to eat it with some crusty bread 🙂

      1. Brittany Mullins
        October 4, 2020 AT 7:51 pm

        So glad this recipe was a hit, Catie! Thanks for making it and for coming back to leave a comment + star rating. I so appreciate it!

    13. Marnie
      October 3, 2020 AT 8:06 pm

      This soup was so delicious and filling! Definitely will be adding it into our rotation. Just wondering how this soup would freeze and if it should be frozen with or without the wild rice?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        October 3, 2020 AT 10:05 pm

        Hey Marnie – It should freeze just fine after fully cooked with the wild rice. Just make sure it’s completely cooled off before freezing.

    14. Angelina
      October 2, 2020 AT 10:28 am

      Hello, are we supposed to cook the chicken before putting it in a crockpot?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        October 2, 2020 AT 5:27 pm

        Hi Angelina. Sorry that wasn’t clear in the recipe. You add the chicken to the slow cooker raw.

    15. Lara Dillon
      September 28, 2020 AT 10:45 am

      I was wanting to make this somewhat low-carb not just gluten-free so I was wondering if I could substitute something for the all-purpose gluten-free flour. Not sure what low carb thickener I could use though. Suggestions?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        September 28, 2020 AT 2:41 pm

        Hey Lara, The only suggestions I have would be arrowroot powder or cornstarch, but I don’t think either of those would be much difference in carbs compared to the flour.

    16. Ally Gauthier
      May 21, 2020 AT 4:55 pm

      This soup was amazing! Perfect for a cold rainy day in Alberta. It was so easy to whip up, I made it when I woke up this morning for lunch today. My husband also devoured it.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        May 22, 2020 AT 8:04 pm

        Ahh yay!! I’m so glad you enjoyed this soup, Ally! I so appreciate you trying it and coming back to leave a comment + star rating.

    17. Carly
      May 8, 2020 AT 10:13 am

      This was my first time making slow cooker soup and it turned out so delicious. The carrots/celery took longer to cook than everything else, but the soup turned out so yummy. My dad compared it to the taste of chicken and dumplings.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        May 8, 2020 AT 6:55 pm

        Oh yay!! I’m so glad it turned out for you and that it was a hit with your family, Carly!! Thank you so much for trying this recipe and for coming back to leave a comment + star rating. I so appreciate it. <3

    18. carly
      May 6, 2020 AT 2:41 pm

      I am planning on making this tomorrow, but I have one question. I am new to cooking so this might be silly, but how long is it until the rice is done? thanks!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        May 6, 2020 AT 11:07 pm

        Hey Carly – In the crockpot the entire soup will take 3-4 hours on the low setting or 7-8 on high. I would just check the rice at 3 hours or 7 hours to see if it’s done or needs a bit more time to cook. 🙂

    19. Nina
      April 8, 2020 AT 5:56 pm

      Loved this recipe, super easy & delicious. I used regular milk and white flour and it worked out great. I also added spinach at the end of the cooking to add some color and extra goodness!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        April 9, 2020 AT 4:45 pm

        Yay!! So glad this soup turned out for you, Nina!! Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment and star rating, I so appreciate it!

    20. Marcy
      April 4, 2020 AT 7:43 am

      I made this for my family recently on a cold and snowy night and it was perfect in every way. Warm, creamy, hearty and so delicious! This recipe is definitely a keeper! I used the oatmilk as recommended and it made for the perfect amount of creaminess.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        April 6, 2020 AT 1:50 pm

        Yay!! So glad you enjoyed this recipe, Marcy!! Thanks for trying it and for taking the time to leave a comment and star rating. I so appreciate it!

    21. Jackie
      April 1, 2020 AT 11:29 am

      Is it OK to use brown rice instead of wild rice?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        April 1, 2020 AT 12:44 pm

        Hey Jackie – I haven’t tried it with brown rice in the slow cooker, but I’m sure it would work! Just keep an eye on the rice to make sure it doesn’t overcook. Let me know if you try it and how it turns out!

    22. Erin Dunsmore
      March 22, 2020 AT 6:51 pm

      Hey! Can’t wait to make this tomorrow morning–set it and forget it while I work from home all day. Looking forward to the delicious aroma of chicken soup cooking as I work 🙂 one question though–I have chicken thighs (bone in, skin on) that I need to use rather than boneless skinless breasts. Do you think I can substitute the breast for the thighs without much trouble? Thanks!!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        March 22, 2020 AT 8:12 pm

        Hey Erin! I haven’t tried thighs, but I think that would still be just fine! You should be able to shred and remove the bones after cooking for awhile. Let me know how it turns out for you!!

    23. Melissa
      March 21, 2020 AT 7:33 pm

      Delicious. Comforting and filling. Great way to use wild rice.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        March 22, 2020 AT 8:21 pm

        Yay!! I’m so glad you enjoyed this soup, Melissa! Thanks for trying it and for coming back to leave a comment and star rating, I so appreciate it.

    24. Lori
      March 21, 2020 AT 8:56 am

      What brand of wild rice do you recommend? Anxious to try as it sounds amazing!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        March 22, 2020 AT 8:29 pm

        Hey Lori – I love Lundberg rice, but you can use any brand of wild rice!

    25. regs
      March 17, 2020 AT 11:45 pm

      Fabulous recipe!

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