Mexican Chicken Soup

20 Dec

To me, nothing says “comfort food” like a big pot of soup. Especially this soup. Growing up in southern California, and with parents who LOVE Mexican restaurants, it’s hard to avoid a good appreciation for Mexican food, Tex-Mex and otherwise. This soup is a tried-and-true favorite, something my mom would make in big quantities, then freeze to send up with me to college. Having discovered just how easy this recipe is, I feel like it’s the perfect food to make in the dorm. Really, all you need to do is chop the onion, mince the garlic, shred some chicken, and open a bunch of cans. I’m home now for my University’s winter break, so this soup was cooked in my “real kitchen.” However, it is entirely possible to make this in the dorm, and in under 20 minutes. Set aside a little bit of time on Sunday to make the soup, and you’ll have delicious hot meals the rest of the week!


  • 1 small onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 (16 oz) cans refried beans
  • 2 (14.5 ounce) cans Hunt’s petite diced Tomatoes
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can hHunts Petite diced tomatoes with mild green chiles
  • 1 ½ to 2 cups chicken broth  (depending on how thick or thin you want the soup)
  • 4 cups cooked, chopped chicken (we get a cooked rotisserie chicken from the grocery store, or you could use canned chicken)

Garnishes (all optional)

  • Tortilla Chips
  • Sliced Avocado
  • Sour Cream
  • Shredded Cheese
  • Squirt of lime juice
  • Chopped cilantro

Pre-cooking Prep

  • Open all the cans
  • Chop up the small onion
  • Mince garlic cloves
  • Chop up the chicken


Saute the chopped onion and minced garlic in hot vegetable oil in a dutch oven (or a pot) over medium high heat for 5 minutes, or until tender. Leave the onion and garlic to do it’s think during this part…don’t stir it too much. Tip: To know when the oil is hot enough, put oil in the pan with some onions…it’ll start to sizzle when the oil’s hot

Add the refried beans, tomatoes, chicken broth, and chicken, stirring until it’s smooth. Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 15 minutes.

Best way to serve:

Ladle the soup into a bowl, garnish with cheese and sour cream. Crunch up some tortilla chips to put on top. If you have avocado, use it! Cilantro is also tasty. If you just want to eat the soup straight up, that’s fine too!

Video: Cutting up an avocado

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Recipe adapted slightly from Southern Living Cooking School cookbook

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