Almost everyone loves chicken, and it is so versatile that it has become a mainstay in most households. It’s nice to have some that is already cooked and ready on hand to use in recipes, so this Basic Poached Chicken Module is a must-have-in-the-freezer item. In this timesaving module, boneless, skinless chicken breasts are cooked with a few veggies for flavor, then packaged; they can be thawed quickly and chopped or shredded depending on which recipe they are to be used in. By adding some of the broth to the freezer packs, the chicken stays moist. As a bonus, there will be several cups of the poaching liquid left over, so a quick homemade chicken noodle soup can be on the menu.
Chicken breasts are inexpensive, and can be purchased in 10 pound packages at warehouse stores. Make sure the package says 97% fat free (or somewhere around that) to avoid getting breasts that have a lot of waste and require a lot of trimming.
To make the chicken noodle soup, add 3 or 4 chicken bouillon cubes to the leftover strained poaching liquid and chopped onions, celery, and carrots (1 cup of each to about 12 cups poaching liquid). Bring to a boil and cook until the vegetables are tender. Add noodles (about 8 ounces in 12 cups liquid) and cook until almost done, then add diced poached chicken and heat. Taste for salt and pepper and add if necessary. Those country style homemade-style noodles are especially good in this soup because they don’t seem to overcook when the soup is reheated. 1 1/2 cups of rice can be added instead of the noodles for Chicken Rice Soup.
About 40 Servings, depending on which recipes in which the chicken is used
1 large onion, quartered
1 cup celery tops and leaves
2 carrots, cut into chunks
2 tablespoons salt
10 pounds boneless skinless chicken breast halves
- Place the onion, celery tops, carrots, and salt in a very large soup pot.
- Rinse the chicken breast halves and remove any veins or other gross stuff from them and add them to the pot.
- Cover the chicken with hot water, cover the pan, and bring to a boil.
- Let the chicken boil 15 minutes. The breasts should be almost cooked through; they will continue cooking as they sit to cool. If the chicken breasts are totally frozen, add an additional 10 minutes of boiling time - if they are thawed, they may need only 10 minutes total boiling time.
- Turn off the heat and let cool to room temperature.
- Remove the breasts from the poaching liquid and strain the liquid through a fine strainer.
- Package the breasts in freezer bags, about 4 to a bag, and pour about 1/2 cup of the poaching liquid into each bag.
- Seal the bags, label with the name and date, and freeze.
- Use the remaining poaching liquid and 3 or 4 breasts to make chicken noodle soup.
Amount Per Serving
Calories 177 Calories from Fat 64
Percent Total Calories From: Fat 36% Protein 61% Carb. 3%
Nutrient Amount per Serving
Total Fat 7 g
Saturated Fat 2 g
Cholesterol 76 mg
Sodium 417 mg
Total Carbohydrate 1 g
Dietary Fiber 0 g
Sugars 0 g
Protein 27 g
Vitamin A 22% Vitamin C 2% Calcium 0% Iron 6%