The Ultimate Chicken Tortilla Soup recipe

  • Recipes
  • Ingredients
  • Meat and poultry
  • Poultry
  • Chicken
  • Cuts of chicken
  • Chicken breast

This Mexican soup is not only delicious and hearty, it's also easy to make. Chicken is simmered with tomatoes in a chicken stock, then garnished with fried corn tortillas, sliced avocado and grated Cheddar.

101 people made this

IngredientsServes: 12

  • 6 skinless, boneless chicken breast fillets
  • 700ml vegetable oil for frying
  • 36 corn tortillas, cut into strips
  • 3.6 litres water
  • 15 cubes chicken stock
  • 1 (400g) tin chopped tomatoes with juice
  • 1 small onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon chilli powder
  • 4 tablespoons dried oregano
  • 125g chopped carrots
  • 125g chopped celery
  • 1 (400g) tin chopped tomatoes with chilli
  • 340g grated Cheddar cheese
  • 3 avocado, peeled, pitted and sliced

MethodPrep:20min ›Cook:1hr10min ›Ready in:1hr30min

  1. In a saucepan, cover chicken breasts with water and boil for 30 minutes or until tender. Shred into small pieces with two forks; set aside. Meanwhile, heat oil in a deep fat fryer or large cast-iron frying pan to 190 degrees C. Fry tortilla strips from about 6 tortillas at a time, stirring occasionally, until golden brown. Drain on kitchen towels and set aside.
  2. In a large stock pot, bring the water to the boil. Stir in the stock cubes and reduce heat to a simmer. In a liquidiser, combine the tinned tomatoes, onion and garlic. Blend on high until smooth. Pour the blended mixture into the stock pot and stir in the coriander, cumin, black pepper, chilli powder and oregano. Add carrots, celery and chopped tomatoes with chilli. Cover pot and simmer for about 25 minutes, until vegetables are tender. Stir in shredded chicken and cook 5 more minutes.
  3. Serve hot topped with fried tortilla strips and garnish with grated cheese and avocado slices.

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(108)

Reviews in English (85)

by lynniescorner

This is a good jumping off recipe, that tastes those from restaurants. I used chicken with bones/skin and boiled it in the water, just as for chicken noodle soup. I strained the broth thru a wire strainer into another pot. I estimated the water to add to make the 15 cups. I wasn't going to measure hot liquid. I didn't have coriander. I coarsely chopped up cilantro (the leaf part of the same plant as coriander) and added it to the bowls of those who wanted it. I didn't have tomatoes with chile peppers, so I chopped up two jalapeño peppers. Fresh just seemed better than canned. My chili powder was hot. Despite my changes, this soup came out mild, which is fine. Some like it mild, some like it hot. Those that liked it hot added hot pepper sauce to their own bowl. The last 5 minutes of the 25 I added a half a bag of frozen sweet corn. Also, I used the little pieces of nachos at the bottom of the bag. How I served it: I put a scoop of rice and a pinch of cilantro into the bowls. I laddled on the soup. On top I put the cheese first and then the chips. Then they added hot pepper sauce. This did make a HUGE amount. But with 7 people, I loved the leftovers. If my two child want Mexican for their graduation party, I will double this recipe. *laughs* As I am writing this, my oldest is going back for his 5th bowl! I think this was a wonderful recipe. But it also leaves room for the chef's imagination and taste difference. *S* Way to go Zeke!-11 Jun 2007

by K8K8VT

This soup was delicious. I read through the other reviews and added in additional ingredients and removed the tortilla strips altogether (it doesn't need them). I made the recipe for 6 servings instead of 12 and it still made about 8-10 cups worth! I added in 1 can of black beans (drained and rinsed), 1c. frozen corn, lime juice from 1 lime, and 2tbs. cilantro. I reduced the broth/water to 4c. and added in 2, 10oz. cans of Rotel tomatoes/chiles. I served it with the avocado and also a dollop of sour cream. Really yummy & easy!-22 Jan 2010

by Vicky Gunkel

This was a great soup, full of flavor, and texture, but I tinkered with it. I only made 1/2 of the recipe as it seemed like enough to feed an army. I added a can of rinsed, drained, black beans and 1 1/2 c. frozen corn for texture. Instead of blending the onions (which bruises them) I fried the onion and garlic in margerine till tender, then I added the water and bouillion. If you like your soup smooth-blend the vegetables. But if you like texture, try it this way. We topped with cheese-but also added a dollop of sour creme. For a southwest recipe-there was a very strong Italian taste, so next time I will cut back on the amount of oregano-but it was good with the full amount, I just wanted more of a southwest taste. The kids loved it (even the picky 1 year old) and half of the recipe fed 7 of us with enough leftovers to feed us another meal. I will definately fix this again. Thanks Zeke!-31 Oct 2003

Tortilla Soup

Warmly spiced and satisfying, this chicken tortilla soup comes together fast thanks to the ultimate easy dinner party trick: a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store.

Chicken Tortilla Soup

Oh this Chicken Tortilla Soup doesn’t appear in the Loehner household as much as it use to and I don’t know why, it’s so damn good!

There are things in restaurants that you simply can’t make at home. For me I can’t make chicken wings to save my life. I don’t know what it is…yeah I do. It’s called trying to eat healthy and no deep fry anything. I even make Baked Donuts.

I know what you are thinking…why are you depriving yourself from yummy and delicious foods? I’ll tell you. Because I feel like complete and utter shit when I eat like garbage. There was this quote I saw over on Pinterest and I try to remind myself of it every day.

Now I’m not one to preach, but, I’ve been clean eating (no processed foods, no GMO’s, organic, whole grains, etc.) for almost 2 years now. Sure there’s a moment every now and then when I will pick something up in the store and want to throw it in my cart, but, I’ve gotten pretty damn good! I walk the outside of the store first and fill it up with as much as I can. The outside of the store is filled with the things that I want in my house. Lunchmeat, fresh fruits and vegetables, organic & natural foods, meat and seafoods, the refrigerated salsa case (Damn you Jack’s Mild Salsa, you are my weakness and so good!) and then the dairy section.

I pretty much avoid the middle aisles like the plague. I do grab diapers, the occasional cereal the girls indulge on during Saturday as they are glued to Saturday morning cartoons , I also have to hit up the condiment aisle to grab white vinegar…WTH is up with that anyway.

So while I’m not a total hippie, I’m just trying to feed my family wholesome foods. I tend to hit the grocery store every other two weeks. I HATE shopping at my local Kroger. It’s so big, there’s always a million people in there and it’s freaking HOT. Not to mention when you are at the checkout there’s a billion people there, no where to put your cart to load it up and often people huffing and puffing because they just want out at all costs.

As my two weeks came to an end and grocery shopping was needed I had sick children at home. Literally I had ingredients to make two things:

The Hubs voted that I make Chicken Tortilla Soup and so I did. I also ended up doubling my recipe and gave to a friend who is in desperate need of yummy meals. If you can say a prayer for her Husband, he’s currently battling Hodgekins Lymphoma. I had to stay away from pepper in this recipe simply because he has a food allergy to peppers…who knew.


  • 3 chicken breasts
  • 1 ½ TBSP Oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • bag of frozen corn
  • 15 oz Hunt’s Diced Tomatoes
  • 7 oz. Hunt’s Tomato Paste
  • 4 C Water
  • 2 15 oz Chicken Broth (¾ of a carton)
  • 15 oz black beans, drained
  • &frac13 Cilantro, chopped
  • ½ TBSP sugar
  • ½ TSP Garlic Powder
  • 2 TSP Cayenne Pepper (omitted for friend)
  • ½ TSP Cumin (omitted for friend)
  • 3 TBSP Masa (or cornmeal)

*Tortilla Chips, Shredded Cheese and Sour Cream for serving

In a large skillet add oil. Season both sides of chicken breast with salt and pepper. Once the chicken is cooked through set aside. Add onion in the skillet and cook until translucent. Dice chicken. Add in corn, chicken and tomatoes. Stir until heated.

Add in tomato paste, chicken broth and water. Stirring until paste is mixed into the water (you can also do this in a bowl and pour in, but, I hate doing dishes!). Drop beans into the mixture carefully and stir. Add in cilantro, sugar, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, lime juice and cumin.

Let the Chicken Tortilla Soup simmer on low for about an hour.

With a small amount of water add to the masa. Add into the soup mixture and let simmer for another 15-30 minutes.

Taste the soup and adjust the seasonings according to your families taste buds.

Prior to serving crush tortilla chips into the bottom of the bowl. Ladle the soup into bowl and top with sour cream, shredded cheese and fresh cilantro.

Weight Watchers FreeStyle Plan: 1 SmartPoint per serving


This Chicken Tortilla Soup is pretty versatile! Here are some ways you can customize it:

Spicy: If you want a little more kick in your soup, simply add more jalapeno or red pepper flakes.

Chicken: You can make this using chicken tenders or chicken thighs if you prefer. You can use this shredded chicken or chicken from a rotisserie chicken. Cut the cook time in half if you’re not using raw chicken.

Broth: Any broth will work in this recipe. We recommend chicken broth, turkey or vegetable broth.

Veggies: This recipe would also work with extra celery, onions, corn, tomatoes, or black beans according to your preferences.

Recipe Summary

  • 2 ½ teaspoons vegetable oil
  • 6 (6 inch) corn tortillas, cut into 1/2 inch strips
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (15 ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
  • 2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cut into bite size pieces
  • ½ cup salsa
  • ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro

Heat 2 teaspoons of the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add half of the tortilla strips, stirring often, until crisp. Drain on paper towels. Repeat with remaining 1/2 teaspoon of oil and remaining tortilla strips and set aside.

Add the broth, cumin, chili powder and oregano to the pot. Raise heat to high and bring to a boil. Add the beans, corn, chicken and salsa. Reduce heat to low, stir and simmer for about 2 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through and no longer pink inside.

Add the cilantro and half of the reserved tortilla strips. Ladle into individual bowls and garnish each bowl with some of the remaining strips.

Toppings for Chick-fil-A Chicken Tortilla Soup

The possibilities are endless when it comes to top this soup! Switch it up every time for a completely different experience.

Play into the recipe&rsquos southwest flair with some fresh avocado slices. You can never go wrong with a squirt of lime juice, either!

Top your tortilla soup with tortilla pieces, and your meal will live up to its name! If you opt for the hotter taco seasoning, you may appreciate a cooling dollop of whipped cream.

Tortilla soup fits in the same category as tacos. If you would put it on a taco, you can put it on this soup!

Black olives, salsa, and shredded cheese are some other good options for topping this soup. If you like your tortilla soup spicy, you could add some fresh jalapeno.

Each family member can customize their bowl to be just right for their palette!

Hearty Chicken Tortilla Soup

  • Author: Krista
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 50 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 10 - 12 1 x
  • Category: Soup
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: Mexican


Hearty Chicken Tortilla Soup filled with vegetables, chicken, chipotle peppers and fresh cilantro. Top this chicken tortilla soup with avocado for a healthy recipe that&rsquos a definite crowd pleaser.


  • 1 lb. boneless skinless Chicken Breasts
  • 6 cups of Low-sodium Chicken Broth
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 Tablespoons of Coconut Oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 large Chipotle Pepper (from can of Chipotle Pepper in Adobe sauce)
  • 1 teaspoon of sauce from Chipotle Pepper can
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 28 oz . can diced fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 1 large zucchini, diced
  • 1 large yellow squash, diced
  • 15 oz . can of sweet corn , drained
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • Juice of 2 large limes
  • Salt & Pepper to taste


  1. To a medium sauce pan add chicken broth, bay leaf and boneless chicken breasts. Bring to a boil, poach the chicken so it is cooked all the way through, approximately 10-15 minutes. (depending on size of chicken breasts)
  2. Heat a large stockpot or dutch oven to medium high heat, add coconut oil, diced onions and garlic. Sauté until onions are translucent.
  3. Then add minced chipotle pepper, chipotle pepper sauce and smoked paprika. Stir and let cook for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Then add diced fire roasted tomatoes. Stir and let cook for 2-3 minutes.
  5. Add diced zucchini and squash. Season with salt & pepper. Stir and simmer for 5-6 minutes.
  6. By this time the chicken should be done. Remove the chicken from the pot of broth and shred chicken using two forks. To the dutch oven add, sweet corn , shredded chicken, lime juice, fresh cilantro and chicken broth.
  7. Turn heat down to medium low and let simmer for 30 minutes to let all flavors absorb.
  8. Optional toppings: diced avocado, cheese (Cheddar or Queso Fresco)
  9. Serve with crunchy bread or with crushed tortilla chips.


  • Serving Size: 1 1/2 cups
  • Calories: 170
  • Sugar: 8 g
  • Sodium: 372 mg
  • Fat: 5 g
  • Saturated Fat: 3 g
  • Carbohydrates: 15 g
  • Fiber: 2 g
  • Protein: 16 g
  • Cholesterol: 33 mg

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What toppings go on Chicken Tortilla Soup?

This is my favorite part of soups like this Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup! Here are a few ideas of what you can top your soup with:

  • Shredded cheese
  • sour cream
  • diced avocado
  • cilantro
  • lime wedges
  • tortilla strips
  • tortilla chips
  • hot sauce
  • chopped green onion
  • jalapenos

Tortilla Soup Recipe

My neighbor gave me this recipe for Tortilla Soup with shredded chicken after she served it at an ice skating party at their house.

Her husband, a pilot, builds a skating ring every year in their backyard with two by fours and a huge sheet of plastic. (there may be many sheets of plastic, I just never asked)

He then spends days filling this thing up with water and is out there every night working on the ice to get it smooth. And I thought I spent a lot of time on my hobby.

As soon as I tasted this soup, I had to have the recipe. I made a few changes to the ingredients and rewrote the directions to my style.

Normally, I would say this is an easy to prepare recipe, but I challenged myself today by making it with a cast on my right hand (see above). This is one of those recipes you want to have all the ingredients in place and ready to go before you start (mise en place).

Also, I am giving you a range on the spices. I would start out with the lesser amount and then add more according to how hot you like your foods. I made this with the greater amounts and although I liked the hotness, my wife thought it was a little too spicy.

Chicken Tortilla Soup

I just love a good, hearty soup in the winter – and especially on the gloomy, dark days in April when the showers are suppose to bring May flowers! You will often hear me say how canning and preserving is a year ’round adventure. Well, this recipe is testament to that notion!

Garbanzo beans used instead of Black beans

Now there are several fun ingredients in this recipe – but please know, if you prefer a pinto bean over a black bean or dried Arbol peppers rather than dried Cayenne, feel free to swap out an ingredient listed with one you know your family will love.

Keep in mind, if you decide to use a lighter bean your soup will take on a lighter color like the soup shown in this image. Instead of black beans, this batch used garbanzo beans!

Chicken Tortilla Soup – makes approx. 8 quarts or 16 pints

This authentic flavored soup has amazing body and boasts delicious flavors! Perfect soup to enjoy during the colder winter months or anytime you feel like hosting an authentic Mexican dinner. Top this soup with thin tortilla strips, shredded cheese, a dollop of sour cream and dash of Tabasco sauce before serving.

4 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1 ½ cups carrots, sliced half-moon shaped ½” thick

1 large Vidalia onion, diced

1 cup mild green chilies, chopped fine

6 cups chicken stock (not broth)

4 cups corn kernels, fresh cut or frozen and thawed

1 Tbsp ground chili powder

In a small stainless steel stock pot, cover chicken breasts with 2” of water and boil until cooked through, about 15 minutes. Using canning tongs remove chicken and set aside to cool on a cutting board. Discard water. Once chicken has cooled, shred or cut into bite size pieces.

Bean Prep: Dried black beans may be added to the soup once they have been properly cleaned and rinsed in a colander. The beans will soften naturally during processing. If you prefer softer beans in your soup, you may pre-boil in a saucepan separately for 15 minutes, drain, rinse and then add to soup.

In a large stainless steel stock pot, combine all ingredients and bring to a boil on medium-high heat. Mix well. Boil gently for 3 minutes then add cooked chicken. Bring to boil and boil gently for 5 minutes then remove from heat. Using a slotted spoon, remove dried cayenne peppers from soup and discard.

Using a slotted spoon and funnel, fill your hot jars just over half full with the soup contents. Next, ladle soup broth overtop the soup contents being sure to leave a generous 1” headspace. Remove any air bubbles and adjust headspace as necessary. If you prefer a thinner soup, simply ladle soup into hot jars.

Using a warm wash cloth dipped in vinegar, wipe jar rim and screw bands. Place sterilized lid and ring atop each jar and hand tighten.

Process in a pressure canner at 10 pounds of pressure 75 minutes for pints and 90 minutes for quarts. Be sure to adjust pressure if living in a higher altitude.

Best part of pressure canning one-quart meals, soups and stews is you simply need to pop the lid, heat and eat. Super easy for busy, active lifestyles! Serve this delicious soup with a topping of thin tortilla strips, a dollop of sour cream and a dash of freshly chopped green onions!

Watch the video: 30 MInute Chicken Tortilla Soup (January 2022).