These Restaurants Have The Best Chicken Soup In The US, According To Reviews

Capable of alleviating a nasty cough or the mid-day blahs in a pinch, there's no comfort food quite like chicken soup. The calming broth is easy to slurp, the melange of chicken and garden vegetables is hearty, and noodles provide some starch and body amid the liquid mouthfeel. Its association with common colds isn't unearned, but the delightful simplicity should also make it a no-brainer for lunch, dinner, or any circumstance where you need some nourishing warmth. 

Though whipping up a batch can be fairly easy, classic chicken noodle crafted with the know-how of a loving guardian is what really hits the spot. And when this hunger for authenticity takes over, anyone's best bet will be a culinary institution with history and time in its corner. Seeking out a soothing cup to help you ride out the rest of the chilly season? Need a new remedy to heal that stuffy nose? Drawing on feedback from guests and culinary resources alike, our hunt for the best chicken soups will take you to luncheonettes and delis around the country, where chefs ladle superb recipes that brim with top-tier ingredients and homestyle flair. 

Famous 4th Street Deli -- Philadelphia

In the City of Brotherly Love, the Famous 4th Street Deli has cultivated a century-long following for authentic Jewish staples. Ensconced next to charming colonial architecture, the institution enjoys a neighborly feel, and from this quaint corner store guests pour in to acquire massive heaps of smoked brisket and pastrami when necessary. A decent amount of the establishment's revenue comes from to-go orders, according to Philadelphia magazine, so highly portable items, such as soup, are a fantastic buy for everyone involved. 

However, guests may want to plant their bums in a seat to tackle this particular menu highlight. That's because the Famous Chicken Soup is a big ol' bowl of soup, and the establishment makes good on its word that it can take two to three mouths to tackle it. Parsnips are key to thickening its luscious broth, and the pot — yes, it really is a whole pot's worth — teems with tender chicken and vegetables. All that is served with bowtie pasta, rice, kreplach (a type of dumpling that's a favorite during Purim), and kasha, a form of buckwheat. Add in a humungous matzo ball for good measure, and it's a feast samplers say lives up to the promise. As a Yelp reviewer gushed, "their chicken soup is probably the best I've had, ever."

The Bagel Deli & Restaurant -- Denver

The Bagel Deli & Restaurant, at first glance, could fall off any foodie's radar since it is cradled in an unremarkable strip mall. But don't write off its ambiance as some kind of shortcoming. Since 1967, when Lola and Paul Weiner opened a storefront on East Hampden Avenue, the humble little shop has chugged along providing Denverites with authentic Jewish bites on par with any Big Apple institution. Towering Reubens, filled blintzes, and classic salmon lox are available alongside all-day breakfast and an impressive display of desserts like rugelach and cheesecake. 

Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives swung by The Bagel for the first time during its 11th season, and one of many dishes Guy Fieri gobbled down during his visit was the establishment's Homemade Chicken Soup. Essentially, it's the ultimate form of what's popularly termed Jewish penicillin, prescribed at a current rate of $5.50 per cup (or two dollars extra when springing for a bowl). This soothing stew contains a comforting mix of moist chicken and carrot coins, and diners can customize their bowl with three different starches — either noodles, kreplach dumplings, or big, bouncing matzo balls. 

Soup Thyme -- Monroe, Connecticut

Chicken pot pie, just like chicken soup, is coziness personified. If you're a fan of both entrees, you're sure to fall in love with this charming little shop in Monroe, Connecticut. Soup Thyme is home to a tantalizing range of bisques and bouillons, catering to excellence through flavorful, fresh ingredients. Chicken & Rice and Chicken Spinach Gorgonzola are some of the poultry-centric choices, but the Chicken Pot Pie variety, which took home a top prize at the 2014 Chowdafest competition, is backed up by official accolades — and also reviews: "The chicken pot pie soup was the best soup I've had in a long time," raved a repeat customer on Tripadvisor. 

So what's in it? You'll find plentiful chunks of chicken and diced veggies, blended in a luxurious cream base that looks a lot like the filling to a classic chicken pie. This would suffice on its own as a delicious chicken pot pie minus the crust. But Soup Thyme goes even farther and incorporates the buttery pastry as a final garnish. Considering the fact that a staggering 20 gallons of the soup are churned out any given day, this is a pick that's endured and is clearly a contenderfitting for a must-try soup stateside. 

Strouds -- Kansas City, Missouri

Strouds emerged amidst the Great Depression, debuting first as a barbecue joint before turning to cheap chicken dinners. Nowadays, it runs two dining rooms in Kansas City and Overland Park, with both restaurants situated in inviting, homey settings that resemble a farmhouse kitchen. Additionally, the eatery was a first-year inductee into the "American Classics" category that the James Beard Foundation unveiled in 1998. 

Considering that frying all parts of the poultry is the eatery's M.O., that level of effort will surely translate to a proper broth for slurping — right? Well, that would be correct. For under $5, the Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup is a slam-dunk for fresh, grandma-approved sustenance that barely costs a thing. Spoons will sift through juicy chunks of poultry, stewed carrots, and floppy noodles that are eminently tender, while herbs unleash a delightful earthiness throughout the broth. Such a seemingly simple recipe has diners enraptured. "The soup was fantastic!" exclaimed one Yelp reviewer, attesting to the dish tasting "homemade all the way." Another glowing testimony praised the sensational flavor that, without fail, delivers a whopping dose of that simmered-from-scratch coziness. 

The Rainbow Bar & Grill -- Hollywood

Situated on the Sunset Strip, The Rainbow Bar & Grill is something of a historic site in West Hollywood. Active during the heyday of glamorous starlets, by the 1970s the club had morphed into a hangout for rock musicians. Presently, the party hardy atmosphere remains intact, and this largely includes the food, which covers greasy bar bites catering to late-night snacking. But The Rainbow is also a from-scratch kitchen, and it might surprise some that fresh soup just like mom used to make (literally) is also on the menu.  

Scarlett's Chicken Soup doesn't sound nearly as rock n' roll as the hair of the dog, but all the same, it's a meal that generates a lot of hype amongst visitors. Being a family recipe helps. Late owner Mikael Maglieri, who oversaw the club after his father, told the City of Santa Monica that the dish was concocted by his mother (hence the name). One Yelp review speculates that the soup (or as the kitchen calls it, Italian Penicillin) contains roasted poultry, since the meat is shredded and pulls apart perfectly. Wanna spice things up? Go Mexican-Style, which spikes the broth with zesty jalapeños and chopped scallions.

Veselka -- New York City

On the corner of 2nd Avenue and East Ninth Street, within the brick-laden sprawl of Manhattan's East Village, Veselka's Ukrainian delicacies invite acclaim from morning to the midnight hour. Prior to slinging toasted latkes and pierogi by the thousands, the Eastern European spot was a vendor that doled out the daily paper and quick foods for purchase. Now it's a fashionable cafe, embracing dark wood interiors and colorful murals honoring its cultural heritage. 

Among loads of enthusiastic reviews, the Chicken Noodle is praised for its cold-curing powers. But relieving a stuffy nose is far from its only purpose as a must-slurp chicken soup to secure in the States. Any soup made from scratch is going to possess a fresher, more complex taste than the canned stuff, and the giant slabs of simmered chicken, stewed carrots, and bright parsley will have no one doubting the restaurant is telling the truth. One Yelp reviewer testified to the scratch-made recipe, noting with approval that "the chicken is tender and pulls apart by the tendrils easily." When ordering the soup, feel free to opt for a single serving, or as part of a tantalizing sampler plate touting filled cabbages, dumplings, and salad. 

The Soup Peddler -- Austin

Encompassing seven locations in Texas's weirdest city, The Soup Peddler draws its name from the transportation David Ansel relied on for hawking his scratch broths — a bicycle. Today, an off-site facility assembles the soups, which are then delivered to the restaurants for ladling to hungry sit-down crowds, or for extra convenience, portable quarts that guests can snatch out of the fridge and enjoy at home. Should savory consommés not suffice, the menu boasts other cafe staples including fruit smoothies and salads. 

Focusing on culinary experimentation translates to a lineup that's constantly in motion. However, the Lone Star business ensures an array of dependable choices are for sale. One of the five mainstays, that remains beloved as a fantastic option according to reviews, is the restaurant's Chicken Soup with Rice. 

Though commonplace within the canned aisle, this version unleashes some real complexity as a result of intensive labor. The meat and vegetables arrive generously chopped, rather than as wispy scraps draining the bottom of your cup, while the stock, a key component in any recipe, is simmered by hand. The rustic presentation contributes to a richer-feeling soup, and this has clearly pleased plenty of first-hand tasters. According to one visitor writing on Yelp, "The chicken and rice, available every day, has actual chunks of chicken in it and is quite tasty."

Weiss Restaurant Deli Bakery -- Henderson, Nevada

Fifteen miles south of Las Vegas, Weiss Restaurant Deli Bakery crams a trifecta of comfort bliss under a single suburban rooftop. It's a sandwich shop, a diner, and a confectionary, and slot machine zombies seeking refuge from Sin City's neon glare will appreciate unwinding with a no-frills bite. Gayot, a nationally-recognized culinary arbiter, points to the freshly-baked bagels and chicken Marsala meal as particular highlights, but the selection is seemingly bottomless and can appeal to whatever mood diners are in when they walk through the door. Pastrami and whitefish salad, flapjacks and gravy-smothered biscuits — it's as if all of Greenwich Village hitch-hiked out West. 

At the time of this writing, the restaurant's chicken soup lays credit to 118 reviews on its Yelp page. And from our findings, a solid consensus of customers claim that it's one of the best chicken soups they've ever sampled, counting even America's absolute best delis. Going off the gushing testimonies, Weiss simply knows how to make a warming bowl that hits the spot, first and foremost. The exact specifications of its recipe aren't spelled out, but pictures showcase a luscious broth, brimming with carrots and chicken that orbit a voluminous matzo ball adorning the very center. 

Brooklyn Diner -- New York City

The name Brooklyn Diner sounds like it would operate in the iconic borough, doesn't it? However, the snazzy dining concept is actually smack-dab in Midtown Manhattan (as well as a location in the LaGuardia Airport), where retro fun awaits from its brightly-lit storefronts on West 57th or West 43rd Streets. Per tradition the menu is broad, and in true melting pot fashion, it showcases the unique delicacies that define the city's culinary contributions. 

Though it's impossible not to entertain an egg cream soda or chicken pot pie the size of a toadstool, "Our Famous Chicken Soup with Plenty of Chicken & Egg Noodles," a starter, continuously reels in approval from visitors. What indicates the item's status as a regular order? Among complimentary opinions, the wholesome flavor is definitely driven by the establishment apparently simmering it around the clock. What's more, the soup is accompanied by a slab of challah, which sweetens the experience for dipping and dredging into that liquified gold. The chicken morsels are also succulent, and generously dispersed amongst the typical ingredients that makes chicken soup the ultimate comfort food. "The chicken soup is a must if you like noodles and real pieces of chicken," said one happy customer. 

Lou's Diner -- Las Vegas

Another Vegas greasy spoon, Lou's Diner (initially named Jo-Ells before it traded out its name in 1997) has mastered the art of comforting American eats spanning five decades — and if its 4.7-star average out of more than 1,000 reviews on Yelp doesn't prove its longevity, then we don't know what does. Between kitschy trinkets that adorn the walls and homespun jellies stationed table-side, coming here for a meal will feel nostalgic, even if it's your first time cruising down the Strip and you're miles away from home.  

Work up an appetite, because Lou's fixes up a staggering array of grub for breakfast and lunch (closing time is 3 p.m., so be sure to arrive early). It's clear the Chicken Noodle, served exclusively on Tuesdays, manages to wow crowds on a regular basis. A hearty bowl of well-seasoned broth, swimming in chicken and carrots? Nothing gets the mouth watering quite like that. 

Even better, according to the establishment, its broths are cooked and simmered on-site with no short cuts taken. We've encountered a fair share of homemade chicken soup recipes already, but making the noodles by hand, as customers have clarified, is what entitles this entry to super status. Those slinky strands of eggy goodness are the real deal, and not something most mom-and-pops (or perhaps even your own mom) would try to make. 

ReUnion Brewery -- Iowa City, IA

Steaming hot chicken soup is swell and all, but something this simple and cozy can invite delicious twists that'll have all manner of cooks saying "why didn't I think of that?" ReUnion Brewery, whose two taprooms encircle downtown Iowa City (near the University of Iowa) doles out its line of house beers with a generous array of nibbles, and these menu items often forge playfulness with a serious aptitude for scratch-cookery. 

Costing $7 to $9 per order, the Chicken Noodle soup is quite underrated in terms of the usual suspects celebrated by clientele (the Yelp favorite seems to be the chicken tortilla). Yet don't miss it, as you'll find that the entree is as homemade as it comes (it touts fresh pasta strips among its many perks) and incorporates the most tender rotisserie meat to compliment the boiled-down veggies, all of which is simmered homestyle. 

The dish's grand flourish is an unexpected but completely welcome addition to the bowl: a heaping dollop of mashed potatoes. Whipped spuds are an all-time comfort food, but according to customers, plunging them into a flavorful broth is an inspired move that marries the best of both worlds. Smitten diners call the meal nothing short of amazing. 

Danny's Deli and Grill -- Ventura, California

Soup lovers who find themselves north of Los Angeles ought to experience Danny's Deli & Grill at least once. A true blue diner, guests can casually stroll in for excellent grub that's seemingly endless in volume and won't break the bank. Core attractions range from the corned beef to gooey, cheese-stuffed blintzes, but ignoring the chicken soup would put one out of lockstep with the masses. On Yelp, there are over 20 posts celebrating Grandma's Famous Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup so far, and the positive consensus is worth your attention. 

Visitors, of course, vouch for its ailment-reducing capabilities, but the homestyle execution is given equal footing. Though the establishment is mum on its recipe specifics, it's safe to say from customer feedback that the entree doesn't skimp on solid fixings to scoop with your spoon. A good meat-to-veggie ratio is part of the proceedings, and it's clear from pictures that the kitchen includes wide egg noodles in the bowl to round out the soup. Knowing restaurants of this ilk rarely dabble with presentation, Danny's offers a bonus little treat by dressing its spoons with a crispy bagel chip.

New England Soup Factory -- Newton, Massachusetts

As the domain of artisanal bisques in the Boston area, the New England Soup Factory caters to all palates with exceptional creations. The business, which culinary wiz Marjorie Druker began in 1995, proffers rotisserie chicken as well as quick-serve staples like salads and sandwiches. It's Chicken Vegetable soup is available year-round alongside other standbys such as Chili Con Carne and Lobster Newburg, and to diners, it encapsulates the greatness of a simple poultry bouillon. It's a homey, delicious broth that incorporates juicy white chicken, say many satisfied customers. "If I get sick this winter," one commenter vowed, "I know where I'm coming for a cold remedy!"

Knowing that New England Soup Factory takes pride in its use of organic meats (family-operated Murray's Chickens is the supplier), it's apparent from the first slurp that the quality of its chicken is high. Carrot medallions and egg noodles complete the mouthwatering blend and, for an up-charge, diners can toss in a matzo ball for a traditional touch. We also found that the Chicken Vegetable ticked off the boxes as a dietary slam-dunk, devoid of both milk and gluten so long as you avoid the starches. 


With how ubiquitous chicken noodle soup is on restaurant menus, we found that it was crucial to develop a methodology that was fairly and consistently applied. With that in mind, we selected our restaurants by sorting through the highest scores on review sites like Yelp and Tripadvisor. We then examined those reviews with an eye towards overall satisfaction from customers. 

In addition to prioritizing recipes made from scratch, we also paid heed to critical judgements, including but not limited to competitions and culinary resources.