Chicken Tortilla Soup

When I was a working girl, one of my favorite lunch spots was Hof’s Hut.  A bowl of steamy chicken tortilla soup, a cool crisp salad and a side of garlic bread – heaven.  When I started to cook on my own more, I created my own version of chicken tortilla soup.  It changes a bit each time I make it, seasonings, ingredients, crockpot or stove top.  But each time it’s hot and filling and good.

chicken tortilla

Chicken Tortilla Soup

14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
2 – 13 oz canned in water chicken breast pieces
4 oz can green chilies
15 oz can black beans – rinsed
1 cup corn – I like the fire roasted corn from Trader Joes
3/4 c to 1 cup chopped carrots
3/4 c to 1 cup chopped celery
3/4 c to 1 cup chopped onion
4 c low sodium chicken broth
2 to 3 c water (if needed)

All seasonings to taste:
salt – table or smoked sea salt (Trader Joes)
celery seed
onion powder
chili powder
few dashes of hot sauce
black pepper sauce (Trader Joes)
dried basil
South African smoke seasoning (Trader Joes)

Crock-Pot.  Combine tomatoes through onions in a 5 quart crock pot.  Pour in chicken broth and add water if needed to cover ingredients.  Season soup and turn on low setting for 5-6 hours.  Stir occasionally and taste to see if any further seasoning is needed.

Stove-Top.  Use a 5 quart dutch oven or heavy stock pot.  On medium to med-high heat, coat bottom of pot with olive oil.  Start with the onions and garlic, saute till the onions begin to turn clear.  Add carrots and celery, saute for another 2 minutes.  Add in corn and chicken, saute for another couple minutes, then add the tomatoes, chilies, beans and broth, using water if needed to cover ingredients.  Season your soup, and bring to a low simmer.  Turn heat to low and let sit until everything is heated through.

Serve with: Tortilla chips, shredded cheese, sour cream or black olives.


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