Last Nights Dinner

Tortilla Soup


We were running a little low on time last night after the gym, grocery shopping, changing out license plates from MA to NY, doing laundry, bills, uploading and editing photos, and regular cleaning things that had to be done. It was one of “those nights.” Anyways, I wanted to cook something that was pretty easy but tasty. My default for these kinds of meals are usually a soup of some sort. I have never made a Tortilla soup before so I was pretty excited to try this. IT WAS DELICIOUS!! I loved it!! I think it was a new thing for Kev but he is always a good sport and ate it all and said he liked it. I grilled him some chicken with some chilli powder on it and then cut it up and added it to his soup.

I think my favorite part was the handmade tortilla strips. They added so much and were so much better than added like corn chips or something. I do with there was a magical spell to ripen avocados right when you need them because it always seems like the grocery store never has ripe ones when you need them. I am not that good of a planner to get them days in advanced to let them ripen.

Tortilla Soup:
1 15-ounce cans diced tomatoes with green chiles
1 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, peeled
1/2 teaspoon Mexican oregano (optional)
1/4 teaspoon chili powder (or to taste)
4 cups vegetable broth
2-3 cups water
3 cups pinto beans, cooked
salt to taste
6 corn tortillas
1 large lime, cut into 6 wedges
1 ripe large avocado, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
4 cups chopped spinach, chard, or kale leaves

1. Add can of tomatoes to a blender.

2. Heat some olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and cook till brown, 4 to 6 minutes. Pour it all into the blender along with the chilli powder and process until smooth.

3. Pour mixture back into sauce pot and heat on medium. Stir consistently for about 5 mins. Let thicken. Add broth, water, oregano (if using), and drained pinto beans. Bring to a boil, then adjust heat to maintain a simmer. Simmer for 30 minutes.

4. While the soup is cooking, prepare the tortillas. Preheat oven to 375F. Cut each tortilla in half (can be done in a stack if you have a sharp knife). Then cut each half into 1/4-inch wide strips. Place the strips in a single layer on a baking sheet and sprinkle with salt,pepper, a little chilli powder or cumin if you want. Bake for about 15 minutes, flipping every 5 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from oven.

5. Add spinach (or chard or kale) to the soup. Cook, stirring, until the greens are wilted, about 2 minutes or so depending.

Serve the soup topped with avocado and tortilla chips in soup bowls. Serve with lime wedges. It taste awesome to squeeze juice of 1-2 lime wedges in soup. MMmmmm Enjoy!

  1. sounds delicious! love tortilla soup, particularly the homemade strips yum yum yum

  2. *raises hand* Oh Oh! I have a way to ripen avocados! Okay, I’m not sure how in advance you have to do this but if you put them in a paper bag and let them sit on the kitchen counter (or I guess any table will do, doesn’t have to be the counter).. I think that works. I haven’t tried it, but I have stuck them in a cabinet before to get them to ripen.

    I LOVE TORTILLA soup… It is soooooo tastey!

  3. oh my…your schedule makes me dizzy. I wouldn’t even be able to get half that done after work. I think you have a secret room where time stops, like the ‘room of requirement’ in Harry Potter. haha.

    Thanks for this recipe. I also just made tortilla soup for the first time, but mine was so-so. Definitely room for improvement. I’ll have to try yours next time.

  4. Tortilla soup is my favorite! If you’re up for it, try adding a pitted chipotle to the mixture by blending it with the tomatoes. It gives tortilla soup a little extra kick and whole different taste.

  5. I love tortilla soup! I was just talking about my favorite recipe last week with someone at work and talking about making the tortilla strips myself! It definitely is good.

    @Alyson – glad I read the comments beforehand because I was about to offer the same trick. It definitely works! Although the cupboard trick is handy too…

    I use close to the same recipe, however I usually do black beans for the added protein and add a can (or fresh) corn. Delish!!

    Oh yeah, and ditto on soup night’s happening when you have too much going on! Monday’s have somewhat turned into soup night around our place since everyone is slow from getting back into the groove.

  6. Sounds yummy, although I don’t know if i’d like the soggy tortilla strips towards the end!

    Adding to what the ladies above have said, I heard that you can

    a) put the avo into a paper bag with a banana. The banana ripens too and releases ethelyne (or some compound, can’t remember) which is responsible for ripening and the avo ripens sooner!

    b) or at the last minute, you can put an avo in a paper bag and pop it into the micro for a few zaps, at a lower setting like medium. But I haven’t tried this so be careful! Noone likes an over done avo..

    Good luck, let us know if you find a way that works. 🙂

  7. MMM I have been looking for a good Tortilla Soup recipe to try – thanks for sharing!!

  8. Yes! – I totally share your advocado pain. If I buy them in advance I sometimes end up forgetting about them, and they’re brown inside by the time I remember them 🙁

  9. Carolyn •

    I can’t thank you enough for posting these delicious recipes every week!! I went vegetarian for health reasons last summer, but I come from a traditional meat-and-potatoes family, and I had no idea how to cook for this new lifestyle. It’s great knowing these recipes have been tried and enjoyed by someone else (I’m sometimes wary of cookbooks, haha). I’ve made several that you’ve posted, and they’ve been wonderful!

  10. katie •

    Your version of tortilla soup sounds great…..I thought I would share the REALLY LAZY shortcut in case anyone is curious. Basically: broth + jar of salsa + can of beans. Then add whatever extras you want/have around (lime, corn, tortilla strips etc).

  11. I tried your recipe Sunday night and it turned out great! I forgot to add the spinach at the end and added some celery and shredded chicken to it, but other than that it was most excellent. Thanks!

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Hi, I'm Jen!

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