Not that I am counting but I think I have eaten soup at least 17 times in the last two weeks. What can I say? It’s just that time of year. And this big pot of chicken tortilla soup has fed me nearly half of those. This soup goes a long way!
KC has experienced a bit of a cold front over the last few days so when I found myself shivering a bit this weekend, I found myself craving comfort food. And that comfort food craving turned into soup craving that turned in to a tortilla soup craving. And a big plus that was on my side: I had every single last ingredient in the fridge or pantry so no grocery run needed. And when it’s the first cool weekend of fall, that is a big score!
Not only is this tortilla soup incredibly simple, if you are short on time, it can be done in as little as 45 minutes. Score again! I love the mix of canned and fresh vegetables, lots of fresh cilantro and lime juice and, of course, the (homemade!) crispy tortilla strips. It wouldn’t be tortilla soup without ’em!
Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe
Yield: 8 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Classic chicken tortilla soup loaded with veggies, roasted chicken and favorite Mexican flavors.
for the soup:
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 1/2 tsp. cumin
1 1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. oregano
1/4 tsp. paprika
1 Tbs. olive oil, divided
1 large red onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 jalapeno pepper, diced
1 lime, juiced and zested
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 (10-ounce) can green chiles
1 (14.5) ounce can diced tomatoes
1 cup fresh corn
1Tbs. tomato paste
32 ounces low-sodium chicken stock
Salt & pepper to taste
for the garnish:
Tortilla strips (see note below)
Chopped fresh cilantro
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl, mix the cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, black pepper, kosher salt, oregano and paprika. Brush both sides of each chicken breast with a light coating of olive oil. Sprinkle a small amount of the spice mixture onto both sides of each chicken breast and transfer to a non-stick baking sheet. Roast the chicken in the oven for 20-25 minutes, turning once, until the chicken is cooked through. Allow the chicken to cool for about 10 minutes, and then shred.
While the chicken cooks, heat the remaining olive oil over medium heat in a large Dutch oven. Add the onion and garlic, along with a pinch of salt, and saute for 3-4 minutes until the onions are very fragrant and they begin to soften. Add the bell pepper, jalapeno pepper, lime juice, lime zest and cilantro and stir well. Cook for another 3-4 minutes until the peppers begin to soften. Add the remaining spice mixture, black beans, green chiles, diced tomatoes and the corn and stir well. Cook for about 6 minutes until all of the vegetables are tender. Add the tomato paste and stir to combine.
Slowly stir in the chicken stock and add the cooked & shredded chicken and bring the soup to a boil. Cover, reduce to a simmer and cook for another 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add salt & pepper to taste.
If you prefer beef: cook one pound of ground beef in a skillet. Add about half of the spice mixture and 2 tablespoons water. Cook for about 10 minutes until the liquid is evaporated, stirring occasionally. Add into the soup when instructed to add the chicken.
To make homemade tortilla strips: preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cut 4-5 round corn tortillas into strips. Toss the strips with two tablespoons of olive oil and one teaspoon salt. Spread in an even layer on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes, flipping once, until golden brown and crispy.
Inspired by The Pioneer Woman's Chicken Tortilla Soup