Aguadito de Pollo is one of our favourite hearty and healthy Peruvian soups to cook at home.
Our homemade Peruvian Chicken Soup recipe is quick and easy to make, ready to serve in under 1 hour!
Spoon through a bowl of our healthy gluten free Peruvian Soup featuring simple and affordable ingredients like Aji Amarillo Paste, garlic, onion, jalapeno peppers, cilantro, rice, potato, carrots, red bell pepper, peas and lime juice.
Enjoy Peruvian Soup as a wholesome lunch, with a salad for dinner or as a trusty hangover cure.
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What Is Soup?
Soup is a liquid food, generally served warm or hot (but can also be served cold like gazpacho), that is prepared by combining meat or vegetables with stock or water.
Hot soups are additionally characterized by boiling solid ingredients in liquids in a pot until the flavours are extracted, creating a rich broth.
Soups are similar to stews, and in some cases there may not be a clear distinction between the two. Soups generally have more liquid (broth) than chunkier and heartier stews.
In traditional French cuisine, soups are classified into two groups: clear soups (bouillon and consomme) and thick soups (purees, bisques, veloutes).
Purées are vegetable soups thickened with starch; bisques are made from puréed shellfish or vegetables thickened with cream; cream soups may be thickened with béchamel sauce; and veloutés are thickened with eggs, butter, and cream.
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History of Soup
Evidence of the existence of soup can be found as far back as about 20,000 BC. Boiling was not a common cooking technique until the invention of waterproof containers, such as clay pots. To boil the water hot rocks were used.
The word soup comes from French soupe (broth), which comes through Vulgar Latin suppa (“bread soaked in broth”) from a Germanic source, from which also comes the word “sop”, a piece of bread used to soak up soup or a thick stew.
The word restaurant (meaning “restoring”) was first used in France in the 16th century, to refer to a highly concentrated, inexpensive soup, sold by street vendors, that was advertised as a cure to physical exhaustion. In 1765, a Parisian entrepreneur opened a shop specializing in such soups. This prompted the use of the modern word restaurant for eating establishments.
In America, the first colonial cookbook was published by William Parks in Williamsburg, Virginia, in 1742, based on Eliza Smith’s The Compleat Housewife; or Accomplished Gentlewoman’s Companion, and it included several recipes for soups and bisques.
English cooking dominated early colonial cooking; but as new immigrants arrived from other countries, other national soups gained popularity. In particular, German immigrants living in Pennsylvania were famous for their potato soups. In 1794, Jean Baptiste Gilbert Payplat dis Julien, a refugee from the French Revolution, opened an eating establishment in Massachusetts called The Restorator, and became known as the “Prince of Soups”.
What Is Aguadito de Pollo?
Aguadito de Pollo, also referred to as Aguadito, is a traditional chicken soup in Peruvian cuisine consisting of chicken, cilantro and fresh vegetables.
The hearty and healthy Peruvian soup is often flavoured with Aji Amarillo paste, garlic, onion, rice, potatoes, carrots, bell pepper, peas and lime juice.
The broth typically has a vibrant green colour due to the generous amount of cilantro incorporated in the soup.
In Peru,Aguadito de Pollo is often used as a hangover cure and is considered one of the most popular soups in the world.
Travel to Peru by Making Aguadito de Pollo at Home
I love traveling to Latin America.
As a professional food and travel journalist, I’ve had the opportunity to enjoy amazing meals in Central America, South America and the Caribbean, from traditional markets to award winning restaurants.
For over ten years, I’ve been on the hunt for the bestAguadito de Pollo recipe. I’ve embarked on culinary adventures at local restaurants in Mexico, Cuba, Belize, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, Curacao, Colombia, Ecuador, Bolivia, Chile, Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil.
In Peru, I’ve slurped through steaming bowls of traditionalAguadito de Pollo at restaurants in Lima, The Sacred Valley, Cuzco and Puno.
Authentic Peruvian Chicken Soup features a flavourful green broth featuring tender chicken meat, rice, potatoes, carrots, red bell pepper and peas.
After enjoying your first few sips, you’ll realize why a steaming bowl of traditionalAguadito de Pollo is a must-try when visiting Peru!
Where To Eat Peruvian Chicken Soup
If you live in a large city in Canada or America you’ll likely have access to a local Peruvian restaurant that serves an authenticAguadito de Pollo.
Haven’t traveled to Peru before? It may be helpful to first sample Peruvian Chicken Soup at a local restaurant to better understand how the dish is served. You’ll get an idea for the desired spiciness of the broth, intensity of Aji Amarillo Paste flavour and ideal proportion of fresh vegetables to liquid.
In Toronto, popular South American restaurants that may offer healthyAguadito de Pollo include Mira Restaurant, Paracas Peruvian Restaurant, Chotto Matte, Los Chicos Brasa and Aldo’s Restaurant.
You May Also Enjoy These Soup Recipes…
- Pkaila Tunisian Butter Bean Stew Recipe
- Spicy Gukbap Korean Rice & Beef Soup Recipe
- Turkish Mint Yogurt Corbasi Soup
- Thai Pork Rib Soup with Vermicelli Noodles
- Flädlesuppe German Pancake Soup
- Pepper Milagu Rasam Vegan South Indian Soup
- Portuguese Bean Soup Recipe with Kale and Sausage
- Chipotle Mexican Bean Soup
- Romanian Soup Ciorba de Perisoare
- Fakes Soupa Healthy Vegetarian Greek Lentil Soup
- Ogorkowa Zupa: Creamy Polish Dill Pickle Soup
- Creamy Vegan Cauliflower Soup
My Family Loves Peruvian Soup
My family has a tradition of eating soup and salad for lunch on Sunday’s after getting home from church. Soup is such an simple and brainless meal to serve a busy family with kids.
My dad would often make cream of tomato soup and serve a bowl with grilled cheese sandwiches and pickles. Our family also loved slurping through bowls of Butternut Squash Soup and Chicken Noodle Soup.
After traveling to Peru I was excited to introduce my family to a new soup recipe. I knew my parents would enjoyAguadito de Pollo because they love soups featuring fresh vegetables and are big fans of roast chicken.
We love to serve Peruvian Chicken Soup in the Spring when fresh local vegetables like peas, carrots, sweet bell peppers and potatoes are available at our local farmers market.
If you thinkAguadito de Pollo is tasty we suggest making another traditional Peruvian Soup called Chupe de Quinoa.
Aguadito de Pollo Health Benefits
Our Peruvian Chicken Soup recipe is packed full of healthy ingredients!
Chicken is high in protein and provides B vitamins such as niacin, which helps your body access the energy in foods.
Onions are a humble vegetable packed with vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals. Regular consumption of onions can help boost digestive health and reduce the risk of developing heart disease.
It is only recently that scientists have begun to identify the components responsible for garlic’s myriad health benefits. Rich in phytochemicals and potassium, garlic helps boost your immune system, fight cancer and protect your heart.
Bell Peppers are an incredible source of vitamins C and A, which support your skin and immune system. They also provide beneficial carotenoid compounds such as beta-carotene, which has been shown to reduce the risk of certain cancers.
A good source of bone-strengthening vitamin K, cilantro is also rich in antioxidants that help protect the eyes from damage by free radicals.
Nearly 50% of the people in the world get over 50% of their daily calories from rice. If eating brown rice featuring nutritious bran you’ll enjoy health benefits like cancer risk reduction and diabetes control.
Potatoes are rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Studies have linked potatoes to a variety of impressive health benefits, including improved blood sugar control, reduced heart disease risk and higher immunity.
An excellent source of vitamin A and the phytochemical beta-carotene, carrots help keep your eyes and bones healthy, and may help protect against several types of cancer.
Pears are rich in essential antioxidants, plant compounds, and dietary fibre. They pack all of these nutrients in a fat free, cholesterol free, 100 calorie package.
A rich source of phytochemicals and vitamin C, limes help boost your immune system and neutralize free radicals that cause disease and skin aging. Lemons also protect against heart disease and help improve blood flow to the brain.
Aguadito de Pollo Cooking Tips
This healthy homemade Peruvian Soup recipe is quick and easy to make at home. We’ve included a few tips for first time soup makers!
- Use a large cast iron dutch oven with a high rim to reduce splatter when cooking.
- We suggest using a high quality rubber spatula spoon when making soup so you can easily stir, scrape down the side of the pot and sip to check if it needs to be seasoned further with more salt before spooning into bowls.
- Traditional recipes typically feature Peruvian Aji Amarillo Paste which you can purchase at your local Latin American market or Mexican grocery store. You can also buy it on Amazon.
- We’ve used Spanish cooking onion but you can substitute for red onions, shallots, white onion or vidalia onion.
- We’ve used Yukon Gold Potatoes in this recipe but you can substitue for sweet potatoes.
- We love serving this Peruvian Soup topped with Baked Chicken Cracklings but can be omitted if you prefer.
What To Serve with Peruvian Chicken Soup
There’s nothing more comforting on a cold day then cozying up to a bowl of soup.
We most often serveAguadito de Pollo as a hearty lunch. If you’re hosting a large dinner party you might want to serve Peruvian Chicken Soup as a small appetizer before serving meaty mains.
If you’re hosting a Peruvian or Latin American dinner party you may want to serve a buffet of dishes including:
- Tallarines Verdes Peruvian Green Spaghetti
- Chupe de Quinoa Gluten Free Peruvian Soup
- Batida de Coco Brazilian Coconut Cachaça Cocktail
- Guasacaca Sauce Venezuelan Guacamole
- Albondigas al Chipotle Smoky Mexican Meatballs
- Salsa de Huevo Vegetarian Mexican Scrambled Eggs
- Cheesy Vegetarian Antojito
- Baked Jalapeno Poppers
- Chicken Fajita Tacos Recipe
- Mexican Sweet Potato Rice
- Mexican Queso Recipes
If you have leftover soup you can store the soup base in the fridge in an airtight container for up to a week. To reheat simply zap it in the microwave or simmer in a small saucepan on the stove.
We love doubling our soup recipes so can store leftovers in the freezer and save time on cooking in the kitchen. We suggest storing leftover soup in Pyrex freezer safe containers that have a snug lid so there’s not spilling. My mother often uses old glass pasta sauce jars to store soup in the freezer.
Be sure to let your soup reach room temperature before storing it in the freezer. If you add a hot jar of soup to a cold freezer it will significantly reduce the interior temperature and potentially spoil your food.
How To Make Peruvian Aguadito de Pollo
Aguadito de Pollo Peruvian Chicken Soup
- Dutch Oven
- French knife
- baking sheet
- 1 1/2 lb Bone-in Skin-on Chicken Thighs
- Kosher Salt and Black Pepper
- 1 tbsp Canola Oil
- 4 Garlic Cloves minced
- 1 Spanish Onion finely chopped
- 2 Jalapeno Peppers seeded and finely chopped
- 1 tbsp Aji Amarillo Paste
- 1 bunch Cilantro chopped
- 1 cup Long Grain White Rice rinsed and drained
- 1 lb Yukon Gold Potatoes diced
- 2 Carrots peeled and diced
- 1 Red Bell Pepper cut into 1/2 inch pieces
- 1/2 cup Peas
- 2 tbsp Lime Juice
- Preheat oven to 400 F. Season chicken thighs with salt and pepper. Place chicken on a greased baking sheet and bake for 40-45 minutes until browned and fully cooked. Set aside and let cool.
- In a dutch oven or large pot over medium heat, heat the oil. Add the garlic, onion, jalapeno, aji amarillo paste and 2 teaspoons of salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture begins to brown, 6-8 minutes. Add 7 cups of water and bring to a simmer, scraping up the browned bits.
- Meanwhile, remove crispy chicken skin from the thigh meat and using a French knife finely chop. Set aside the skin to use as a garnish for the soup before serving. Using your hands, shred the chicken off the bones and set aside. Discard chicken bones. Using a spatula, scrape the chicken fat into the pot. This adds chicken flavour to the broth.
- In a blender, combine the cilantro leaves, pinch of salt and 1/3 cup water. Blend, scraping the sides as needed until smooth. You should have approximately 1/2 cup puree. Set aside.
- To the pot, add rice, potatoes, carrots, bell pepper and stir to combine. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, then cover, reducing to low and cooking until the rice and vegetables are tender, around 10 minutes.
- When the rice and vegetables are tender, stir in the shredded chicken and peas into the soup. Cook until the peas are heated through, about 1 minute. Stir in the cilantro puree and lime juice, then season with salt and pepper.
- Serve hot garnished with chopped cilantro and crispy chicken skin.
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