Tortilla Soup to Soothe The Soul!

Baby, it’s COLD outside!!

Nothing sounds more appetizing on these wintery days and nights than a nice, hot bowl of soup that warms the tummy and soothes the soul! Even better if it has a bit of a kick!

A few years ago I ran across a FoodNetwork recipe for Hot & Spicy Tortilla Soup. It was an instant favorite!! I’ve lost count to the number of times I’ve prepared it. What I love about this recipe is that if you follow it as-is, it’s an easy, tasty and hearty soup that takes very little time to prepare.  But if you switch it up a bit and make your own chicken stock, your additional efforts pay off! BIG!

Usually I like to add fresh avocado, shredded cheese and tortilla strips as a topping. Last night, in the absence of avocado, I decided to try something new. In addition to the standard shredded cheese and tortilla strips, I added sour cream and salsa! OH MY!! 🙂 What a treat!

Hot & Spicy Tortilla Soup - with homemade tortilla strips!

Hot & Spicy Tortilla Soup

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 onion, finely diced
1 yellow pepper, diced
1 jalapeno, seeded & diced
salt & fresh ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
32 oz low-sodium chicken broth
1 14.5 oz can diced Mexican style tomatoes
1 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed
1/4 cup roughly chopped cilantro + 2 tablespoons
1 12 oz boneless skinless chicken breast, diced
1 cup crushed tortilla chips
sour cream, for topping
Monterey jack cheese, shredded for topping
2 lime wedges

Homemade Chicken Stock. Water, onion, carrots, celery, garlic, cilantro, chicken bullion or a small can of chicken broth, salt & pepper. Oh and CHICKEN! 🙂 I let the chicken cook in the stock and then use for shredding when making the soup!

*I find Mexican styled tomatoes are sometimes hard to find.  A good substituted is Rotel Diced Tomatoes & Chilies.  I’ve also used a can of Rotel tomatoes in addition to a can of Mexican styled tomatoes.
In a large heavy bottomed pot, heat the oil on med-high heat. Sauté the onion. Add bell pepper, jalapeno, salt & pepper. Cook until the onions become translucent. Add the cumin & stir until fragrant. Add the chicken broth, tomatoes, corn and 1/4 of the cilantro. Add the diced chicken and cook through for about 10 minutes. Season with salt, to taste. Ladle soup into bowls and dived the crushed tortilla chips between the bows. Top with sour cream, Monterey jack cheese, cilantro, sliced avocado and lime wedges.

Hot & Spicy Tortilla Soup with store-bought tortilla strips.

 4-6 servings

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