Simply Lebanese

Freekeh Soup with Chicken

Freekeh Soup
  • Prep Time
    5 mins.
  • Cook Time
    90 mins.
  • Serving
    8
This warm and comforting soup combines the ancient grain of Freekeh with chicken, fresh chicken broth, and 7 spices for a delicious Lebanese soup.
Freekeh Soup

What is Freekeh?

Freekeh is a fire-roasted grain popular to the Levantine and North African countries. It is a wheat, originating in the Meditterranean, where durum wheat originated. Freekeh is similar to the cracked wheat used in my Hareesa soup recipe, but the wheat is smoked, giving a nuttier and earthier flavor.

Freekeh Soup

Loaded with antioxidants, freekeh is low in calories (in comparison to brown rice and other grains) and is loaded with protein, fiber and iron. You can find freekeh at your local Middle-eastern grocer, or even in the international aisle at many supermarkets (like Whole Foods, or Sprouts).

You want to make sure to clean the freekeh very well before cooking. Often, there is debris like small stones that you can remove by hand and later through washing thoroughly. If you cannot find freekeh, you can substitute wild rice/white rice combo or barley instead.

How to make Freekeh Soup with Chicken

To make this Lebanese freekeh soup with chicken, you want cook the chicken first. I like to use a whole chicken for extra flavor, but, bone-in breast also works great. Freekeh soup can also be made with lamb or beef if you prefer. I cooked the chicken in a large pot, but you can cook in a pressure cooker in half the time.

Freekeh cooks fairly quickly, in about 30 minutes. The freekeh is cooked in the chicken broth, giving it wonderfully flavor. This freekeh soup with chicken is very simple in flavor, seasoned with just 7 spices, white pepper and the chicken broth.

This soup is great for Ramadan as it is both filling, and loaded with nutrients. It freezes very well, in an airtight container for about 2-3 months.

STEP 1

In a large pot add the whole chicken and your aromatics. I added a half onion cut into two, as well as some bay leaves, cloves and cinnamon sticks. I seasoned with salt and black pepper and topped with about 10 cups of water.

Freekeh Soup
Cook the chicken over medium-high heat until boiling, and lower to a medium. Skim any white residue that rises to the top.
Freekeh Soup

STEP 2

Cook for an hour or until chicken reaches 165F and is fall apart tender. Remove the chicken and set aside to cool before shredding.

STEP 3

Place the 1 ½ cups of freekeh in a medium sized bowl.

Freekeh Soup
Run your hands through it and remove any debris. Wash the freekeh and drain anything that rises to the top.
Freekeh Soup

STEP 4

Finely dice the onions.

In a large pot, heat up the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook until softened. Add the washed freekeh and season with the 7 spices. Sauté for about two minutes before adding all the fresh chicken broth.

Add the washed freekeh and season with the 7 spices. Sauté for about two minutes before adding all the fresh chicken broth.
Freekeh Soup
Freekeh Soup
Season with the 7 spices.

Once boiling, lower the heat to a medium, cover and let cook until freekeh is tender, about 30 minutes.

STEP 5

Add the shredded chicken, season with white pepper and salt as needed. Serve hot!

Freekeh Soup
Freekeh Soup

Freekeh Soup with Chicken

This warm and comforting soup combines the ancient grain of Freekeh with chicken, fresh chicken broth, and 7 spices for a delicious Lebanese soup.
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: Lebanese
Keyword: chicken soup, freeke, freekeh soup, Soup
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 370kcal
Author: Iman

Ingredients

  • 1 Whole Chicken
  • cups Freekeh (Whole Grain Roasted Green Wheat)
  • 2 Onions
  • 1 tsp. Seven Spices
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • ½ tsp. White Pepper
  • 3 tb. Olive Oil

Boiling Chicken

  • 10 cups Water
  • ½ Onion
  • Bay Leaves
  • Cloves
  • 2 tsp. Salt
  • 1 tsp. Black Pepper

Instructions

  • In a large pot add the whole chicken and your aromatics. I added a half onion cut into two, as well as some bay leaves, cloves and cinnamon sticks. I seasoned with salt and black pepper and topped with about 10 cups of water.
    Cook the chicken over medium-high heat until boiling, and lower to a medium. Skim any white residue that rises to the top.
  • Cook for an hour or until chicken reaches 165F and is fall apart tender. Remove the chicken and set aside to cool before shredding.
  • Place the 1 ½ cups of freekeh in a medium sized bowl. Run your hands through it and remove any debris. Wash the freekeh and drain anything that rises to the top.
  • Finely dice the onions.
    In a large pot, heat up the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook until softened. Add the washed freekeh and season with the 7 spices. Saute for about two minutes before adding all the fresh chicken broth.
    Once boiling, lower the heat to a medium, cover and let cook until freekeh is tender, about 30 minutes.
  • Add the shredded chicken, season with white pepper and salt as needed. Serve hot!

Nutrition

Calories: 370kcal | Carbohydrates: 24g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 71mg | Sodium: 800mg | Potassium: 243mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 139IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 50mg | Iron: 2mg

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