Chicken Tortilla Soup

About a week ago, Donna showed off her jars of homecanned chicken enchilada soup and awakened a craving. Not too long ago, I had many jars of a similarly fantastic, spicy, stick to your ribs soup in my pantry, but ran out in early fall. I never canned up a new batch of tortilla soup, because that would require canning up a batch of enchilada sauce first, for which I need a lot of my homemade chipotle paste. And I just didn’t have enough left to fill up the canner. Still don’t. And running the canner for just 3 jars is not an option.

I’m severely lacking motivation for all that prep work. The chipotle paste needs to be made outside. It’s like tear gas while it cooks, but oh so good when it’s finally done. It’s a lot like chipotle in adobo, just so much better tasting (and way less expensive)! I should have made a batch last summer instead of now being stingy with the little bit I have left.

My cravings got so bad that I managed to part with enough chipotle paste to make a small batch of soup including leftovers for the freezer. I had to tweak the recipe a bit, forego the enchilada sauce and add the flavor profile another way. I was also able to thicken the soup up with a slurry and add sour cream and cheese to it, so it’s ready to eat. Can’t do that if I want to can it up.

I’m enjoying a giant bowl right now and I’m not so sure about the portions for the freezer anymore… I might keep to this recipe.

For a bit over 3 liters (6 portions), you need:

  • a bit of cooking fat
  • 1 kilo chicken meat (I use a mix of thighs and breasts)
  • 1,5 liters chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup tomato powder (or 1 liter chicken stock and 1/2 liter crushed tomatoes)
  • 1 heaped Tbsp chili powder (the mix – there’s a recipe all the way down)
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 heaped tsp salt
  • 1 tsp mexican oregano
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1-2 heaped Tbsp chipotle paste (you can sub pureed chipotle in adobo) depending on how hot you like things
  • 300g canned corn
  • 300g pre-cooked pinto beans

For later:

  • 1-2 tsp cornstarch mixed with a bit of cold water
  • 200g shredded cheese
  • 100g sour cream

For toppings (pick what you like):

  • tortilla chips
  • sliced limes
  • sliced jalapeno
  • sliced avocado
  • cilantro
  • another dollop of sour cream
  • more cheese

Cut the chicken into bite sized pieces, brown them a bit in the fat, then add everything else and let it simmer for about 20 minutes, so the flavours can meld. This is a soup that’s definitely best the 2nd day.

Towards the end of the cooking time, add the cornstarch slurry to the soup, let it thicken, and melt the cheese and cream cheese into it. Let it cool slightly, then fill it into bowls and add your favorite toppings.

Enjoy! I do 🙂

Chili Powder

  • 2 Tbsp sweet paprika
  • 0.5 tsp smoked, hot paprika
  • 1.5 tsp garlic powder
  • 1.5 tsp cayenne
  • 1.5 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp mexican oregano
  • 1 tsp cumin

Mix and store in an airtight container.

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