I enjoy both Cajun and Mexican cuisine, and this rich, elegant soup combines the best of both. I serve it with a crispy green salad and glass of white wine for a simple but very special meal. —Karen Harris, Castle Rock, Colorado
A few years ago, a friend at work shared the recipe for this wonderful soup. With beef, barley and vegetables, it's hearty enough to be a meal. A big steaming bowl with a slice of crusty bread is so satisfying on a cold day.
-Lynn Thomas, London, Ontario
"You wouldn't guess that this quick-and-easy soup is low in fat," relates Becky Christman of Bridgeton, Missouri. "Since my husband loves spicy foods, I sometimes use medium or hot salsa in this recipe for extra zip."
When we're lucky (or have been good—I'm not certain which), this soup is served in the staff cafeteria at my high school, where I am a media specialist. The cooks have served it for years, and it remains a special favorite. —Mary Lindell, Sanford, Michigan
The recipe for this super soup evolved over the years. I've been diabetic since I was 12, so I've learned to use herbs and spices to make dishes like this taste terrific. It also has a colorful blend of vegetables.
-Linda Sand, Winsted, Connecticut
When we lived in Michigan, this was a perfect comforting soup when blustery winds blew into town. The steaming bowls of soup warmed up icy toes just right! The Taste of Home Test Kitchen came up with this lighter version. —Christine Schenher, San Clemente, California