Chicken Soup in 8 qt IP (good for IBD flare)

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By C C
from Seattle, WA

The SCD (Specific Carbohydrate Diet) has an “intro diet chicken soup” that people often go back to when trying to recover from an IBD flare. This is how my family does it, in our 8 qt. Instant Pot, with the veggies & herbs of our preference, to flavor the broth & give some nutrition. If you are starting the SCD, and are not sure what foods you do well with, you may want to stick to just the ingredients for the intro soup, suggested in the Breaking the Vicious Cycle book. If you add new foods one at a time, you can pinpoint what foods you do well with.

serves About 25 cups of soup
prep time 15 Min
cook time 1 Hr 10 Min
method Pressure Cooker/Instant Pot


  •   about 3.5 lb
    boneless, skinless chicken thighs (3 costco packages; frozen is fine)
  •   about 2
    carrots, peeled & cut into big chunks
  •   2 stalks
    celery, cut in chunks
  •   2
    onions, cut in eighths
  •   12 clove
  •   5 sprig(s)
  •   about 20
    black peppercorns
  •   1 Tbsp
    dried dill weed
  •   2 tsp
    dried savory
  •   about 5
    mushrooms, sliced
  •   1 inch
    chunk of peeled ginger
  •   about 12.5 c
    water (up to “max” fill line on the pot)
  •   4 tsp

How To Make

  • 1
    Add a few tablespoons light flavored olive oil or cooking oil to Instant Pot (optional), and place chicken at the bottom of 8 qt. Instant Pot.
  • 2
    Add all the veggies and herbs to a cheesecloth bag & secure with clean cotton kitchen string. You can place the dried herbs in a metal tea strainer, if you prefer to keep them even more contained, for less clean up. Place on top of the chicken in the pot.
  • 3
    Add enough water to reach the “max” fill line of the pot. For me, it was 12 1/2 cups, last time I made it. Add 4 tsp. salt.
  • 4
    Pressure cook on high for 30 minutes. It should be done about an hour and 10 minutes after pressing the start button.
  • 5
    Carefully remove the cheesecloth bag with the veggies, into a separate bowl. If anyone in the household can eat any of these veggies, they may do so, adding them to their portion of the soup. Even if no one can eat the veggies, cooking the veggies in the broth will add nutrition and flavor to the soup. The cheesecloth makes it easy to remove the veggies & let the broth remain. If no one is eating the veggies, feel free to squeeze all the liquid you can out of the veggies in the cheesecloth. This is easiest if you cool the soup in the fridge first.
  • 6
    Taste, and feel free to add extra salt, to preference. I transfer to glass jars, cool in the fridge, and then freeze what is not going to be eaten right away. It will fill 13 two-cup glass mason jars, with 3/4 inch space at the top to allow expansion for freezing. My kid can usually handle butternut squash when recovering from an IBD flare, so they usually add some steamed butternut squash to their portion of the soup. I don’t cook it with the soup, so they can have the option of not having the squash, if needed. (Update: my kid is now adding puréed well-steamed green beans as well as puréed steamed butternut squash to their soup, during their flares, which works well for them.)
  • 7
    If you need clear chicken broth for colonoscopy/endoscopy prep, you can filter the broth through 2 doubled-up unbleached coffee filters. After the soup has cooled overnight in the fridge, I use a baster to pipe out the broth, avoiding the fat & chicken pieces as much as possible, and piping it into the coffee filters, collecting the filtered broth in a container below. I then freeze this until ready to use on the day of the prep. The left over chicken soup (with much less broth) can be revitalized into soup again simply by adding more water & salt, to taste. This works surprisingly well and still gives you a flavorful soup. Since this recipe doesn’t use bone-in chicken, the broth tends to have less sediment & filter to a fairly clear golden yellow-brown colored broth, that has worked beautifully for our scope prep. Just remember to discontinue anything with protein (including the chicken broth and anything made with gelatin) 8 hours before the procedure, when they tell you to only have water, sprite or apple juice (up until 4 hours before the procedure at which point nothing goes in the mouth.) These are just generals...Of course follow the directions your doctor gives!