Cool days are made brighter with a steaming, hot bowl of soup. This zesty, healthy Chicken Tortilla Soup combines leftover chicken or turkey with spices, corn and black beans offering a vibrant, hearty hug in a bowl.
Chicken Tortilla Soup
We’ve layered and built up the flavours in this soup. Allow it some time to cook, then puree and add in the chicken, corn and beans. Allow everyone to add their favourite toppings family style ensuring they add the toppings they love.
What are some of your comfort foods? Soup, casseroles, macaroni and cheese? I’ve got one or two from childhood that I remember, and oddly enough soup wasn’t one of them. My mom was a terrible cook when I was little and our soup came from a can.
In our family we have created several comfort food meals that go on repeat. This chicken tortilla soup is one of them.
What is Epazote
Epazote is an herb used in Mexican cooking to flavour moles, soups, and other dishes. It is popular cooked with beans and said to help relieve some of the bean causing “symptoms” we all know so well. This herb is known to have a pungent, petroleum-like odor. Like cilantro you either like it or you don’t, there is no in-between. People describe the taste to be like a curious combination of turpentine, mint, citrus, pine, oregano, anise, and mustard greens.
We tasted the soup before we added in the Epazote and again after. There was no turpentine smell or taste but there was a slightly noticeable flavour enhancer we picked up on. We have been told not to use to much of this herb as it could over power the dish. A few light pinches in our soup equaling about 1/4 tsp is what we started with.
- use a store bought rotisserie chicken
- substitute regular dried oregano for Mexican oregano
- no epazote, no problem
- do not care for cilantro, use flat leaf parsley instead
- like it spicy? add more of the chipotle in adobo, carefully
- sub in leftover turkey, for the chicken
- the crunchy tortillas added to the top of the soup, stay crunchy – no soggy bits unless kept in soup overnight
- pressed for time, simmer away for 30 minutes and you will be good to go
Try some of our other favourite soups:
If you made this recipe tag Wanda Baker on Instagram and hashtag it #bakersbeans or #wandabaker
- 1/4 cup canola oil
- 6 corn tortillas cut into thin slice
- 1 onion diced
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 2 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp coriander
- 1/2 tsp Mexican oregano, or regular
- salt and pepper
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1/4 tsp chipotle in adobo
- 14 oz can diced tomatoes
- 8 cups chicken broth
- 2 bay leaves
- 5 sprigs cilantro + more for garnish
- 2 1/2 cups shredded cooked chicken
- 1/2 cup frozen corn
- 1/2 cup black beans drained + more for garnish
- 1/4 tsp epazote
- In a cast iron pan or heavy bottom pot, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add 1/4 of the tortilla strips and cook, stirring, until pale golden, about 1-2 minutes. Stir once or twice with tongs or slotted spoon while cooking to avoid sticking. Remove and drain on paper towel lined plate or bowl. Repeat with the remaining tortilla strips.
- In a second large pot add some oil and cook onions over medium-high heat. Cook onions 5-8 minutes. Add garlic cooking another minute. Sprinkle in chili powder, cumin, paprika, coriander, oregano, sprinkle of salt and pepper. Let cook for 1-2 minutes. Move onions to side and add tomato paste and chipotle in adobo cooking another minute.
- Next in the pot is tomatoes, broth and bay leaves. Bring to a simmer. Cook, uncovered, for 30-40 minutes; add cilantro sprigs and epazote cooking an additional 5 minutes.
- Remove the bay leaves. Using an immersion blender puree soup. Put back on heat, add corn, black beans and chicken. Bring to a simmer and let cook 1-2 minutes to heat everything through.
- To serve put your garnishes into individual bowls including the tortillas. Ladle the soup into bowls. Let everyone top their soup with their favourite garnishes and eat while steaming hot.
If you enjoyed this soup you might also like to try: