Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Spice Things Up: Tortilla Soup

Nothing can warm you up on a cool day like a bowl of spicy Tortilla Soup!  But many recipes you find are nothing but glorified versions of chicken noodle soup with tortillas added.  Not this one.  This soup has a full-bodied tomato base, complemented by crispy tortilla matchsticks.  It is both chunky and hearty, with lots of chicken and avocado added.  The texture from the tortillas gives the soup a great body and flavor.  Ole!
Here We Go, Ole Ole Ole!
Cut tortillas into matchstick-sized strips
Cook in hot oil until pale golden and crispy
Drain on paper towels
To pot add onion...
add garlic...

add spices...
Saute together about 5 minutes
Add chicken stock and de-glaze the pan.
Add crushed tomatoes
Add cilantro, bay leaves, 1/3 of the tortilla strips
and season with salt.
Simmer about 30 minutes.
Puree soup in blender and return to pot.
Add chicken and cook until heated through. 
Just before serving, add avocado.
Garnish with any or all of the following: 
tortilla strips, shredded cheese, lime wedge,
avocado, cilantro and sour cream!

Spicy Tortilla Soup

6 tablespoons canola oil
8 corn tortillas, julienned into matchstick sized pieces
1 onion, chopped
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon chili powder (I actually used 1/2 teaspoon Hatch Medium Red Chile Powder and 1/2 teaspoon Hatch Green Chile Powder)
1/4 teaspoon cayenne (use more or less depending on how hot you want it)
1 1/2 quarts chicken stock (I used Better Than Bouillon)
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes, undrained
2 bay leaves
salt to taste
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
2 cups cooked chicken breast, cubed
2 avocado, diced
shredded Mexican cheese for garnish
lime wedges for garnish (optional)

Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat.  Add one-third of the tortilla strips at a time and cook, stirring so they don't stick.  They should be a pale golden color and crispy.  This should take about 2 minutes.  Remove and drain on paper towels.  Repeat with remaining tortilla strips and set aside.  Reduce heat to medium-low and add onion, garlic and spices.  Cook stirring occasionally about 5 minutes.  De-glaze the pot with chicken stock, and then add:  tomatoes, bay leaves, cilantro and one-third of the crispy tortilla strips.  Taste and season with salt.  Simmer uncovered for 30 minutes.  REMOVE THE BAY LEAVES.  Puree the soup in a blender in batches and return to pot.  Add chicken and cook until heated through.  Just before serving, stir in the avocado.  Top bowls of soup with tortilla strips and shredded cheese.  Garnish with a lime slice if desired.  You can also garnish with additional avocado, cilantro or sour cream if you'd like.

Prep Time:  Approximately 25 minutes     Cook Time:  Approximately 40 minutes


  1. i love this recipe so much. i keep going back to it again and again. Thank you!

  2. Thank You! I'm so glad you enjoy it!


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