Mexican Chicken Soup

Total Time:
1 hr 5 min
15 min
50 min

6 to 8 servings

  • 4 split (2 whole) chicken breasts, bone in, skin on
  • Good olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups chopped onions (2 onions)
  • 1 cup chopped celery (2 stalks)
  • 2 cups chopped carrots (4 carrots)
  • 4 large cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 1/2 quarts chicken stock, preferably homemade
  • 1 (28-ounce) can whole tomatoes in puree, crushed
  • 2 to 4 jalapeno peppers, seeded and minced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander seed
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves, optional
  • 6 (6-inch) fresh white corn tortillas

For serving: sliced avocado, sour cream, grated Cheddar cheese, and tortilla chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Place the chicken breasts skin side up on a sheet pan. Rub with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until done. When the chicken is cool enough to handle, discard the skin and bones, and shred the meat. Cover and set aside.

Meanwhile, heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pot or Dutch oven. Add the onions, celery, and carrots and cook over medium-low heat for 10 minutes, or until the onions start to brown. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add the chicken stock, tomatoes with their puree, jalapenos, cumin, coriander, 1 tablespoon salt (depending on the saltiness of the chicken stock), 1 teaspoon pepper, and the cilantro, if using. Cut the tortillas in 1/2, then cut them crosswise into 1/2-inch strips and add to the soup. Bring the soup to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 25 minutes. Add the shredded chicken and season to taste. Serve the soup hot topped with sliced avocado, a dollop of sour cream, grated Cheddar cheese, and broken tortilla chips.

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    410 Reviews
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    An excellent soup! I omitted the Jalapeno peppers for those with sensitive stomachs, and diners at the table could add hot sauce as they wished. Family loved it. And you should definitely use the cilantro sprinkled on top, the fresh herb aroma as it hit the hot soup was the final touch of flavor. Chips and salsa on the table is the only side dish you need for this meal.
    I used four skinless boneless chicken breasts, dusted them with chili powder, and grilled them. Other than that I stuck with the recipe as written. 
    This is a wonderful soup that freezes well. The cilantro, lime, and cheese at the end are key.  
    One of the better Mexican soup recipes out there...
    Delicious!!!! This recipe made so much soup. I gave half to my son to take home and his family loved it too! I didn't make it spicy so my granddaughter could eat it but added plenty of hot sauce on mine! Yum!! Thanks as usual Ina!
    Fabulous soup! I used boneless breasts (it's what I had on hand) and 4 jalapenos. Soup is full of flavor. Will become a regular around here. With all the cold weather, this really does hit the spot and I don't believe any other chicken soup can hold a candle to this one. Thanks Ina!
    Delicious. This will be the base for my vegetable and Maryland crab soups!
    Our family loves this recipe the only thing that I changed was I added 3 Pablano Peppers and used A pre roasted chicken we purchased, so the time saving there was great. The flavor especially with the added condiments makes this soup a winner. It does make about 16 servings but we love leftovers anytime since we take our lunches to work. MMMMM Good.
    LOVE this recipe! Chicken is moist, juicy, flavorful. Soup is absolutely delicious! Huge hit with entire fam. Served with chopped avocado, sour cream, shredded cheddar, and extra hot sauce.
    I had leftover chicken which is why I picked this recipe. I also used chicken from a can (gasp) and the recipe was DELICIOUS!! loved it!
    Good one but not the best. I prefer Rachel Ray's mexican soup to this one. Something about the celery in it makes it more ordinary for me. Must serve with crushed tortilla chips. Tried it without and it is really not the same.
    This is our "go to" recipe for chicken soup. In fact it is our favorite soup recipe. Once again Ina you have given us a winner. Although I've tried roasting the chicken I prefer to simmer mine in chicken stock, once chicken is cooked I remove chicken from broth, remove skin and cut into pieces. Chicken is added back to broth once veggies are cooked. To me the chicken is more tender and the broth is rich, no garnish needed.
    Very Easy and delicious. I was pretty faithful to the recipe and written and the soup was great. The first time around I served with cheese, sour cream and avocado chunks. During the week, I ate the leftovers without any of the garnishes and it was still super tasty! I will definitely be making this again.
    This is an excellent Chicken Tortilla Soup recipe! My husband thought it was restaurant quality and so did I. I made a few tweaked here and there. In the beginning I browned the chicken breast on both sides for about 5 minutes, in the pot I was going to make the soup in. I then transferred the chicken to a dish and finished cooking it in the oven. I also used regular diced tomatoes in their juices. Lastly, I added black beans, corn, and a corn puree, 2 cups frozen corn and 2 cups chicken stock. It was so yummy!!!
    DELICIOUS! I made this with homemade tortillas from our local latino market and added lime at the end to brighten the flavor. Another winner. Thank you Ina!
    This soup was perfection! Didn't change a thing, other than cooking a bit longer for flavor and crisping up my tortilla strips in the oven and adding to the soup when serving for that extra crunch, and it turned out great. Ive made mexican chicken soup many times and this one is fantastic! It made a lot for leftovers too :) perfect winter comfort!
    Wow! Great kick with just 2 jalapenos. I didn't make any substitutions, and just by fluke, I had the chicken broth from cooking a whole chicken in the crockpot the day before. What a great lowfat meal if you do it that way. I should really add another 2 jalapenos so no one in else in the family will want to eat it. I could have it all to myself!
    This soup is super delicious!!! My family has gone wild over it. I've made it twice over the past 2 weeks and they want another pot this weekend. 
    I added a can of kernal corn and i sqeeze some fresh lime juice into it right before serving, its a nice addition to the toppers; and we love toppings!!
    Very authentic and so delicious! One tweak: there's just a little too much chicken. Instead of 4 breasts, I think 3 is perfect. This allows there to be more broth to accommodate all the yummy toppings like avocado, cheese, tortilla chips, or you will be stuck with a thick stew. I also like to bake my own tortilla strips. Set oven to 425 F, take a few corn tortillas, quarter them, then cut into thin 1/4 inch strips. Toss them in a mixing bowl with olive oil and salt. Spread onto a baking sheet without overlapping and bake in two 10 min increments, stirring in between. Bake them until realllly brown so they are extra crisp. So good!!!
    This is by far my favorite recipe from Ina's kitchen. My husband is a meat and potatoes man and the first time I was going to make this soup he turned his nose up at it saying, "soup, for dinner?" After I made the soup, I kid you not, he asked for seconds! I've made it several times now and it has become a family favorite. We decided to do a Cinco de Mayo family dinner this year. This was the dish that I was asked, no begged to make. I have added freshly grilled corn cut right off the cob to my soup. Thank you Ina, you're the best!
    I cut the recipe in half, as we are only 3, all of whom eat lightly. Still had left-overs. Wonderful flavor here -- we don't like things too spicy, so I used the lower amount of jalapeno and it was wonderful. Served with an extra, warmed tortilla along side. I can see how adding black beans and corn would work very well if you wanted more carbs in it. Looking forward to those left-overs!
    Made this soup for my husband and he said it was the best I have every made. Very flavorful. We like things spicy so next time I will not remove all the seeds in 1 of the jalapenos. But overall the soup was just great!!!
    this soup is amazing and simple. made exactly except sauteed in butter cause i did not have olive oil. other than that it was all the same. soooooo good. really hits the spot!!!!
    I like her version. The addition of the corn tortillas were just the right amount to thicken the soup. I added a teaspoon of dried oregano during cooking, and a couple of splashes of lime juice to the pot of finished soup. Yummy!
    Just made this last week. Great winter warmer.
    Very good flavor. I also added black beans and corn. I browned two large chicken breasts in my soup pot to get those delicious crusts in the bottom of the pot and finished baking in the oven..Juices from that pan were added back to the soup pot along with the on and bone in. While I was browning the onion/celery/carrot/jalapeno's I tossed in the cumin, corriander, and added ancho chili powder....pardon the wake up the powders. my goodness, great flavor. Tossed the cilantro in just before serving. Hope it helps my first cold of the winter go away quickly. Definitely a keeper.
    Wow - what an incredibly EASY & SIMPLE soup to make, but packs a lot of flavor and taste! Like others, I added corn & black beans, but wanting to thicken the broth a little bit and lacking tomato paste, I used the whole 5.5 oz can of V-8 juice to the soup and I think that too added a bit of punch to the soup. Will definitely make this again!
    This soup is awesome!!! We recently had a chicken soup contest at work, we all sign up to bring a pot. Offer tastings and staff vote. Then we sell bowls with proceeds going to our local animal shelter. This is the first time I have made this soup it was so great, I didn't win the contest but I did come in second with multiple people asking me for the recipe. I added black beans and white sweet corn to make it a little heartier, it was so good I am making it for my family today! Thank you Ina, for this wonderful recipe.
    Everything about this soup was fantastic. I was afraid the jalepeno would be too hot, but it was not. I also added corn. Great recipe.
    This soup is great!! I added a can of black beans and corn.
    This way way better than I expected. Roasting the breasts are the way to go. Very simple and thats what makes it so delish. I used the leftover corn tortillas to make baked chips to crumble in the soup. Cut tortillas into wedges, brush front and back with oil and bake 350 for about 15-20 minutes.
    This recipe rocks. It is easy, and can be adapted a little to your preferences. I've made it many times and everyone loves it!!! It's a favorite!
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