Chicken Tortilla Soup Authentic Mexican Recipe
Today is Mexican Independence Day and we are celebrating with a Chicken Tortilla Soup authentic Mexican recipe. The sopa de tortilla is made with chicken broth, tomatoes, chile ancho, and pasilla, and of course with stripped fried tortillas. What makes this Mexican Soup something traditional and unique is the flavor that epazote brings to this authentic chicken tortilla soup.
Tortilla Soup: Love At First Taste
Even to this day, I credit that bowl of tortilla soup as one of my most significant food memories.It deeply influenced my passion for foodand helpedlead me to my current path of sharing food through my blog & photography. I recently found myself craving a bowl of tortilla soup and I knew exactly who to turn to for a traditional recipe
I would like to introduce you to my dear friend, Lorena Masso. Born and raised in Mexico, Lorena relocated to the Bay Area of California 15 years ago. Lorena and I met through my food photography mentoring last year and have since grown close. I reached out to Lorena to see if she would be willing to share a recipe for tortilla soup with me . Thankfully, she was more than happy to transcribe her recipe, capture it in photos and share the history of this beloved soup here on the blog! Without further ado,I present to you Lorena Masso and her Traditional Mexican Tortilla Soup:
One of the things that we Mexicans love is our food. For us, food carries so much meaning. Food means family, home, friends, traditions, and celebrations. Living far away from home has taught me to appreciate my Mexican culture, our traditions, and especially our food. There is no doubt that we take pride in our beans, chiles, and tortillas!
- bella | ful-filledApril 13, 2021, 12:49 pm
Perfect timing Gerlinde! I cannot wait for you to try this!
My mouth is watering!!!!!!! I can not wait to make this soup, thanks for sharing.
Mexican Tortilla Soup Toppings:
Then, of course, comes the best part. The toppings! This is what brings Mexican tortilla soup together and takes this soup over the top. Each one contributes texture, flavor, and balance.
- crushed tortilla chips
- grated extra sharp cheddar cheese
- diced avocado
- cilantro leaves
- freshly squeezed lime juice
If youre serving this soup to a crowd, you can set out individual bowls of toppings and have everyone help themselves.
Alternatively, you can add the toppings to each empty soup bowl and ladle the hot soup over them just before serving. Its up to you!
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What To Serve With Taco Soup
Taco Soup can be served with a bun or a slice of bread, tortilla chips and cheese.
If your taco soup is more of an appetizer or the first course for a dinner party, it is perfect served before Chicken Fajitas or Shrimp Fajitas! And dont forget to include a delicious dessert-like Apple Pie Tacos!
Set out a tray of toppings for everyone to garnish their own bowls! Some of my favorite toppings are:
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How To Make This Soup In An Instant Pot:
If you are making this chicken tortilla soup in the Instant Pot, set it to the Sauté function and heat the oil until shimmering. Add the onion and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes, until they are soft and fragrant. Add the garlic and sauté another minute or so.
TIP: Burned garlic has a very pungent bitter taste. Whenever you are working with garlic, it is a good practice to cook it only until fragrant and then add liquid to ensure the frying stops.
Season your chicken with salt. Add the chicken, soup base, and remaining chicken broth to the pot, give everything a good stir and then secure the lid. Switch the Instant Pot to the pressure cook function and pressure cook on high for 20 minutes, allowing a 10 minute natural release.
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How To Make The Best Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe
How To Make Tortilla Soup :
Detailed instructions are included in the full recipe below, but here is a brief overview of the process for how to make tortilla soup plus a few helpful tips!
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How To Serve Chicken Tortilla Soup
Traditionally, this soup is served hot as an appetizer, side dish, or main course with tortilla strips or tortilla chips that are crushed between the hands and sprinkled in the bowl. The most satisfying way to serve the soup is with a dollop of sour cream, a few pinches of shredded cheddar or Mexican cheese, a pinch of diced jalapenos, green onions, and a sprinkle of cilantro in bowl. Give it a little stir and taste away!
I HATE cilantro! Can I leave it out of the soup? Yes, but absolutely mix a little into a seperate bowl to try. I used to hate cilantro, but the herb lends just the enough flair without going overboard. Plus, it totally makes the soup. Trust me. It is not an overwhelming cilantro flavor, but certainly is missed when made without this herb.
Can I Take Out The Cilantro
Yes and no. Yes, you can take out any ingredient, but NO it will not taste the same. I will say, I have served this easy chicken tortilla soup recipe to several cilantro haters, and they loved it.
They say the illusive soapy taste is removed through the cooking process. Just be sure to leave the fresh cilantro off at the end.
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How To Make Authentic Sopa De Tortillas
I have been reading other recipes for Sopa de Tortilla and I really get impressed by how much foods that people consider Mexican is added to traditional Mexican recipes. We would never EVER have beans in a tortilla soup neither less elote no corn amigas!! gosh! no cummin. In American restaurants that serve Mexican food, they love to add cumin to ALL Mexican food! we do not use cummin on everything for sure! and Tortilla Soup flavor comes from the smoothness of a homemade tomato sauce, in a combination with some delicious dry chiles and the epazote that you can substitute with cilantro. Actually, authentic Mexican Tortilla Soup does not have chicken on it! although I must recognize that is a good idea as it becomes a complete meal. Carbs, veggies, and protein at the same plate! and it tastes delicious for sure!
Recipe Chef Notes + Tips
Make-Ahead: You can make this soup up to 2 days ahead of time. Be sure to keep the toppings separate.
How to Store: Cover the soup, separate from the toppings, and keep it in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. Freeze the soup covered, separate from the toppings, for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator for 1 day before reheating.
How to Reheat: Add the desired amount to a small saucepot and heat over low heat until hot. You may need to readjust the seasonings with salt and pepper.
When making in the summertime, replace the canned tomatoes with fresh tomatoes.
If you do not want to fry tortilla strips, feel free to use tortilla chips.
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Making Chicken Tortilla Soup:
In my recipe, I start with a base of chicken broth and combine that with tomato paste, onions, garlic, jalapeños, and tortillas, cut into strips and fried.
The flavor profile begins to build with fresh cilantro and chopped onions. Its amazing what these two ingredients can do for a dish and fresh cilantro brightens any recipe. And as you know, jalapeños can be hit or miss, but if you get a spicy one the dish will have quite the kick. If not, youll end up with a more mild heat.
The chicken stock is the most important ingredient and I only use a tablespoon of tomato paste. You can also use fresh roasted tomatoes, but tomato paste is intensely flavored. A small dab of tomato paste adds a hit of tomato flavor to the soup without the excess liquid that comes when fresh tomatoes are used.
I save time by buying the pre-cooked rotisserie chicken from the grocery store and pull the meat into two cups of shredded chicken. You can also use chicken breast, but I find the shredded chicken soaks up all the flavors of the soup better.
However, if you have more time, check out my Instant Pot Whole Roasted Chicken recipe.
Topping the soup off with fried corn tortilla strips adds amazing texture. And this step only takes two minutes to cook to the perfect crispiness.
How Do You Make Chicken Tortilla Soup
Chicken Tortilla Soup is very easy to make and you can prepare it from start to finish in under thirty minutes. The secret to making this soup even better is making sure that the tortilla strips are still perfectly crunchy when it is time to serve the soup.
You can achieve this by frying to tortilla strips right at the end and adding them to the bottom of the bowl right before pouring in the soup.
Although there are different ways to make this soup, almost every version starts with a similar base of fresh ingredients and that is why it is one of my favorite recipes!
You start out by roasting the tomatoes on a hot stove, along with the onion and cloves of garlic. Next, you blend it together with ancho chilies and chicken stock.
I always get excited when I see tortilla soup on a menu at restaurants here in the United States. Unfortunately, I havent found any that have that authentic Mexican taste, which is why I usually end up making my own version at home.
The last step after making the soup is to fry the tortilla strips and add all of the toppings. I am positive that you will love this version and I hope that you will try it soon!
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How To Make Authentic Chicken Tortilla Soup
- Step 1. In a pan start with the corn tortillas, cut them into strips then shallow fry for 2 minutes. Drain them and set aside.
- Step 2. Now heat butter, then sauté chopped onions. Add coriander, minced garlic, and jalapeño peppers. Combine all ingredients well.
- Step 3. Add in the seasonings followed by some tomato paste
- Step 4. Add the shredded chicken and stock to the pan and stir well
- Step 5. Cover and cook for 15 minutes then serve topped with tortilla chips
How To Make Mexican Chicken Soup
Start with finely chopping the onion and finely mince the garlic cloves. Heat a small pot and add the olive oil on medium heat.
Add the onion and stir it round in the pan to let it absorb the oil. Then add the garlic and let the onion and garlic go soft and translucent
Now chop the plum cherry tomatoes into small pieces and add to the pot. Stir for a couple of minutes to let the tomatoes go soft.
Then it is time to add the fire-roasted tomatoes. Use a wooden spoon to break the tomatoes up into smaller pieces.
Increase the heat to medium-hot to let the tomatoes boil. Then add the taco seasoning and stir to evenly distribute the seasoning through the soup.
Then it is time to add the kidney beans, the corn, and the shredded chicken. If you like it spicy you can add some finely chopped jalapeno pepper as well.
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Recipe For Easy Mexican Tortilla Soup
If you love soups as much as we do, check out my Soup Category. Youll find lots of delicious cozy comfort food recipes, including the most popular on my site of Hatch Green Chili. And if youre looking for more Hatch Green Chile recipes, dont miss my Green Chile Recipe Page.
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The Best Authentic Mexican Tortilla Soup
In central part of Mexico, chicken tortilla soup is very popular, and that is especially true when it is served with recently fried tortilla strips.
There are a few different popular tortilla soup variations. For example, you can add beans and it becomes Tarasca soup, or if you omit the chicken it is called Azteca soup.
This soup is a real hit! It is Spicy creamy, the crispy tortilla strips and Mexican fresh cheese simply combine this soup in a heavenly harmony. Try it, it will be divine!
Today, though, Im going to share my recipe for Chicken Tortilla Soup, which is a classic. Its ideal for cold, wet days, but if youre anything like me, youll enjoy it all year.
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Instant Pot Or Stovetop Chicken Tortilla Soup + Video
This flavorful Chicken Tortilla Soup recipe is made in under 30 minutes, with or without an Instant Pot. Chicken thighs and chicken breasts simmer in a spicy tomato broth full of smoky and spicy flavors. The chicken is cooked to tender perfection and then shredded. I have included instructions for both stovetop and Instant Pot cooking methods.
Classic tortilla soup, the way I ate it in Mexico City, is simply good chicken broth combined with roasted tomatoes, onion, garlic, chiles, and topped with fried corn tortilla strips and an assortment of garnishes. It is food for the soul.
In an effort to bring Mexico to my home in Colorado, I recreated this soup. It transports me to Mexico City whenever the mood strikes.
While I have seen quite a bit of Tex-Mex chicken tortilla soup recipes online that include corn kernels and black beans, this recipe does not include either. This Mexican soup recipe is traditional, modest, and simple.
Why I Am Obsessed With The Instant Pot
My family loved this chicken tortilla soup. It was one of those throw-it-all-in-and-press-a-button recipes that is totally hands off. My favorite kind of cooking for a busy weeknight.
As you all might have guessed Im slightly obsessed with my Instant Pot. Frijoles de la Olla, Frijoles Charros, Tamales, and even Brownies can all be made in an Instant Pot. I am a tad tardy to the Instant Pot game, so I have a lot of catching up to do.
But dont worry, my goal is to always share instructions on how to make recipes with and without an Instant Pot. If you want to make this same recipe on the stove top, you can scroll down in the recipe card for the instructions.
Check out this video to see how easy it is to make this authentic chicken tortilla soup.
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A Note About Pasilla Chile:
Its unique earthy and smoky flavor defines tortilla soup in most of central Mexico. In other parts, like Michoacan, its ancho chile, in New Mexico a little smoky chipotle is added.
Should only powdered chile be at your fingertips , ancho or any other), add about 1 tablespoon to the spice mix. The smokiness of the chicken with the smoky flavors of the chile pasilla with hints of lime is so tasty!