Here in Southern California, chicken tortilla soup trumps chicken noodle soup when it comes to winter comfort food. You’ll find it on the menu of practically every Mexican restaurant, and it’s a staple in our home as well.
Tortilla soup which can be made several ways. This chicken tortilla soup, inspired by a visit to Olvera Street in Downtown Los Angeles, is the perfect way to use up leftover chicken, or even your holiday turkey.
Mexican Chicken Tortilla Soup
- 2 cups diced cooked chicken or turkey
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 celery stalks sliced
- 2 carrots sliced
- Half an onion chopped
- Small bunch of cilantro leaves roughly chopped
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon ground chili powder
- 15 ounces tomato sauce
- 2 quarts chicken stock or broth
- 1 avocado sliced into lengthwise strips
- 1/2 cup shredded cheddar or crumbled cotjia cheese
- 2 corn tortillas cut into strips and fried
- Preheat your soup pot on medium high. Add butter. Melt it down, and add the carrots, celery and onion. Stir down for 3 minutes.
- Add garlic and cilantro. Stir another minute.
- Add diced cooked chicken and spices. Stir another minute, coating the chicken with the spices.
- Add tomato sauce. Let thicken for a couple minutes, then add the broth or stock. Bring back to a rapid boil, then set heat to low and simmer uncovered for about 30 minutes.
- While the soup is simmering, fry your tortilla strips at 375 degrees about 1-2 minutes. Drain and set aside. You can also shred the cheese and slice the avocado at this time.
- After 30 minutes, check the soup. Add salt to taste. I don’t usually add more than a teaspoon of salt.
- Garnish with tortilla strips, shredded cheese and avocado wedges. Enjoy!