December 2018 – Chicken Tortilla Soup

On damp, chilly fall and winter nights, isn’t it cozy to curl up with a hot bowl of soup? Adding corn tortillas (made from whole grain!) directly to the broth will thicken the soup slightly and impart a delicious flavor. This variation on classic chicken soup will have the whole family coming back for more!


  • 2 lbs. boneless chicken breasts, trimmed
  • 1 medium onion
  • 3 stalks celery
  • 1 can (10 oz.) diced tomatoes with green chilies (e.g., Ro-Tel)
  • 1 can (8 oz.) low sodium tomato sauce
  • 1 can (15.5 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 4 large carrots
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 1 orange or yellow bell pepper
  • 2-3 cloves garlic
  • 6 corn tortillas (6″ diameter; e.g., Banderita), plus 4 additional for garnish
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Optional: Jalapeno peppers or hot sauce of your choosing


  1. Place whole chicken breasts in 8 qt. stock pot and fill 2/3 full with cold water. Set on the stove over high heat to bring to a boil.
  2. While chicken is heating, dice celery, onion, and bell pepper to 1/4″ dice; peel and slice carrots.
  3. When stock pot comes to a boil, stir in any foam that develops- do not skim.
  4. Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, beans, and chopped vegetables, as well as salt and pepper.
  5. Bring to a boil again and reduce heat to simmer for 1 hour.
  6. Remove chicken to a plate and allow to cool 5 minutes before chopping into pieces, then return chicken to the pot.
  7. Tear tortillas into small pieces and add to pot. Allow soup to simmer at least 1 additional hour, adding more water if necessary.
  8. Cut additional tortillas into strips and bake on a baking sheet at 250 until crispy.
  9. Top with tortilla strips (and/or jalapenos and hot sauce) before serving.