Upon hearing that Jackie Unfiltered is obsessed with making soups, my Georgetown University Law School classmate and dear friend Kim texted me her favorite soup recipe: Chicken Tortilla Soup. I made a few changes like cooking the black beans from scratch, swapping the flour tortilla for corn, fortifying the chicken stock with aromatics and vegetables for more flavor and using a rotisserie chicken to make the recipe easier for busy cooks.
The result is simply delicious. This soup is simultaneously light but also filling. The lime provides a tart and fresh finish while the fortified chicken broth brings flavor depth.
I always suggest that you buy the very best ingredients you can afford and find. But in this soup, it’s especially important because each ingredient must sing on its own. My #Hubbs wanted you to know that this is one of the very best things I have ever cooked. He tends to speak in superlatives when it comes to my food because he loves me. However, I must admit that this one is really good!
Before we start cooking, listen closely. There may seem like a lot of steps here but this recipe is not hard. It’s really about time management. If you follow my instructions on what to cook when and when to chop what then this recipe is a breeze. If you go rouge, things could get messy and hectic so don’t come back complaining to lil ol Jackie. Ok, let’s go. I got you! Remember, follow the directions.
Kim's Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe
There are a million ways to make tortilla soup out there. What makes this one deliciously special? Well, we make the black beans from scratch, swap the flour tortilla for corn, fortify the chicken stock with aromatics and vegetables for more flavor and use a rotisserie chicken to make the recipe easier for busy cooks. This soup is simultaneously light but also filling. The lime provides a tart and fresh finish while the fortified chicken broth brings flavor depth.
Upon first glance, this recipe may seem complicated. However, if you follow my directions on when to chop what and when to cook what, I will have you out the kitchen faster than you can drive across town to your favorite Mexican joint. Don't go rouge on me. Let's get cooking.
- 1 14.5 Oz Can Black Beans (or make the beans from scratch using our recipe, see Notes below.) Organic, Low Sodium
Fortified Chicken Stock
- 8 Cups Chicken Broth Organic, Low Sodium
- 1 Stored bought Rotisserie Chicken Separated & Torn into Pieces
- 2 Tsp Olive Oil
- 1/2 Yellow Onion Chopped
- 4 Garlic Cloves Peeled & Smashed
- 2 Bay Leaves
- 1 Bunch of Parsley
- Fresh Black Pepper
- 1 Tbsp Vegetable Oil
- 1 Medium Yellow Onion Diced
- 4 Garlic Cloves Minced
- 3 Jalapeños Deseeded & Finely Diced
- 2 16 oz cans Organic Fire Roasted Tomatoes
- 2 Limes 1 juiced, 1 sliced in wedges for garnish
- Kosher Salt
- Freshly Ground Black Pepper
- 1 Cup Cilantro Chopped
- 1 corn tortilla per person, sliced into thin strips and toasted in a saute pan until crispy
- 1 avocado Pitted & Sliced
If you are making your black beans from scratch, start that recipe first and get your beans on the stove in the pressure cooker. You can also make the beans ahead of time and store them in the fridge. I always hate when recipes say that because who the heck has time for and plans far enough in advance to make beans the day before, but I felt obligated to tell you this! In this case, there is no real time saver here because you cook the beans at the same time as you fortify the chicken broth (you should know about me is that I will never have you spending unnecessary seconds in the kitchen as nobody has time for that)!
Fortified Chicken Stock
While the black beans do their thang in the magic pressure cooker, let’s start the Fortified Chicken Broth. Heat a couple teaspoons of olive oil in a heavy pot on medium heat. When oil is hot, add onions and garlic, season with salt and pepper, turning occasionally until they soften and start to sweat a bit, about 2 minutes.
Add chicken broth, bay leaves, parsley and torn chicken. Turn up heat to high, bring to a simmer, lower heat and cook uncovered for 25 minutes. As this cooks, occasionally skim any foam off the top with a spoon.
While the Black Beans cook and Fortified Stock simmers, prep your ingredients for the Chicken Soup as listed above: onion, garlic, jalapeños, limes, cilantro, toritilla and avacado (sprinkle a little lime juice on the avacado to keep it from browning). This is a CRITICAL time saver step right here. If you get those 2 pots going at the same time then you can leisurely move through the remainder of this recipe!
Finishing Chicken Stock
Once chicken broth is done, using tongs, remove the chicken pieces from broth and let cool on a plate. Once cool enough to handle, use your fingers to separate meat from bones and skin. Discard the bones and skin. Roughly chop or shred the remaining meat.
While chicken cools, pour chicken broth through a fine mesh sieve or cheesecloth over a wide bowl. Throw simmering vegetables away and set chicken broth aside.
Clean the pot used to make broth (less mess when you reuse a pot during a recipe). Heat 2 tsp of oil on medium heat, add the onions, salt and pepper and cook until they soften and sweat, about 2 minutes. Add the garlic, jalapeños and cook for another minute.
Pour the fortified chicken broth, tomatoes, beans, torn chicken and a couple tablespoons of cilantro into the pot. Add a couple turns of cracked pepper. Raise heat to high, bring to a boil, lower heat and then simmer uncovered for 30 minutes. Occasionally skim foam off the top with a spoon as the soup cooks.
Jackie’s Tip?: While the soup cooks, clean up your prep mess and tidy up the kitchen. There is nothing worse than a sink/kitchen full of dirty dishes after a meal. Hate it!
Remove pan from heat, add lime juice and remaining fresh cilantro. Taste and adjust your seasonings.
Plating the Soup
Ladle the soup into bowls, top with grilled tortilla chips, avocado slices, a couple cilantro leaves and a lime wedge.
Leftovers will store for a few days in the refrigerator and several months in the freezer.
If you decide to make the black beans from scratch, use our recipe here. Although, I made this receipe at my inlaws house in January using canned beans and the result was equally delicious. So I call this a "chef's choice."
As always, thank you for stopping by Jackie Unfiltered and cooking with me. We can’t wait for you to try your hand at this soup. Remember, follow the directions to make this #EasyPeezyLemonSqueezy