This Peruvian chicken soup (aka: aguadito de pollo) is a delicious winter soup full of rotisserie chicken, rice, vegetables, and LOTS of cilantro. Super simple to make and ready in just an hour.
A thick, bright, and hearty soup warms the soul and fuels the body.
This Peruvian chicken soup is bursting with fresh, herbaceous cilantro, smoky cumin, spicy serranos, and tangy lime juice.
With its gorgeous bright green color, it’s hard to eat just one bowl!
Made and ready to serve in just an hour, this Peruvian chicken soup is a fast and delicious way to feed the whole family.
Trust me, you’re going to love the festival of flavors in this aguadito de pollo soup!
Table of Contents
Ingredients for Peruvian chicken soup
- Rotisserie chicken – Pre-made, affordable rotisserie chickens can be found at most major grocery stores.
- Onion and garlic – Classic additions that bring an earthiness to the soup.
- Vegetables – Bell pepper, potatoes, and carrots bulk up the soup and make it hearty and full of vitamins.
- Uncooked white rice – The rice will cook and thicken in the soup, adding to its richness.
- Chicken stock – Feel free to use your favorite store-bought variety or homemade stock for this recipe.
- Cilantro – Fresh cilantro is absolutely necessary for this soup. It is herbaceous, slightly floral, and citrus in flavor.
- Serrano – These are about 5 times spicier than jalapeños, feel free to remove the seeds if you want to cut down on the level of heat!
- Lime – Bright and zippy, fresh lime juice helps all of the flavors in this soup shine.
Using chicken breast in aguadito de pollo
The easiest way to bulk up any meal is to use your grocery store to your advantage.
The premade rotisserie chickens available at most major grocery stores are super affordable and easy to find.
However, if you’d rather roast your own chicken, no problem!
The best way to get juicy, flavorful chicken breast at home, is by roasting them in the oven on the bone.
You can find these (often called split chicken breasts,) in your local meat department.
Set an oven to 375 degrees F.
Rub your split chicken breasts generously with olive oil and salt and pepper, and roast on a baking sheet for about 30-40 minutes or until a thermometer reads 165ºF.
Set aside for 5 minutes to cool, and shred away!
This roasted chicken breast meat can be stored in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the refrigerator.
Or you can freeze it in vacuum-sealed baggies or a regular freezer zip-top bag for up to 2 months.
Feeding a crowd
Want to be your favorite neighbor on the block and share your delicious soup?
This recipe easily doubles and even triples!
Levels of heat
Serrano peppers are 5 times spicier than jalapeños. That’s a lot of heat!
By removing the seeds and the ribs (the white parts of the pepper that the seeds attach to,) you significantly cut down on how spicy the pepper is.
If this is still too hot for your preference, feel free to replace the serrano with a jalapeño, (while still removing the seeds and the ribs).
More soup recipes
- Want a hearty winter soup? Try my Italian Sausage Fennel White Bean Soup.
- Need flavor fast? Try my Instant Pot Asian Chicken and Rice Soup.
- Craving more South American flavor? Try my Chilean Carbonada Soup.
- Short on time? Try my Spicy Thai Pumpkin Soup.
Peruvian Chicken Soup
- 1 small rotisserie chicken meat picked off and shredded, about 4 cups
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 4 ounce can diced green chiles
- 1 small yellow onion diced
- 1 red bell pepper seeded, cored and diced
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon Black pepper to taste
- 4 cloves garlic minced, divided
- 1 pound baby potatoes quartered or halved (depending on size)
- 2 medium carrots cut into 1/2 inch pieces
- 1/2 cup white rice uncooked
- 4-1/2 cups chicken stock divided
- 1 cup packed cilantro leaves and stems
- 1 serrano pepper seeded
- 1 lime juiced
- Thinly sliced green onions for topping
- Pick the meat off of a rotisserie chicken and set it aside.
- In a soup pot add olive oil and set over medium-high heat.
- When the oil is hot add the yellow onion, bell pepper, green chilies, cumin, kosher salt, and black pepper to the pot. Cook For about 10 minutes or just until the onions start to soften. Don't let the vegetables brown too much. You just want to help soften them.
- Add the 2 cloves of minced garlic and saute for another 30 seconds or just until the garlic is fragrant.
- Add in the potatoes, carrots, white rice, and chicken stock. Stir to combine.
- Let the soup simmer for about 30 minutes or until the rice and potatoes are fully cooked. Stir the soup while it's cooking so the rice does not stick to the bottom of the pot.
- While the soup cooks add the cilantro, remaining 2 cloves of minced garlic, remaining 1/2 cup chicken stock, seeded serrano pepper, and lime juice to a blender. Blend until smooth and no large chunks remain.
- When the soup is fully cooked turn down to low, add in the rotisserie chicken and the cilantro mixture. Cook for 5 minutes just to help warm the chicken and incorporate the flavors of the cilantro mixture.
- Serve with thinly sliced green onions.
- You can also add frozen corn kernels and frozen peas to the soup to bulk it up even more.
- I like to use picked rotisserie chicken but any leftover, frozen, or even canned chicken can work in a pinch. You can also opt to roast and shred your own chicken.
- Add more serrano peppers if you want your soup spicy.