Homemade Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe photo by Taste of Home
Total Time
Prep/Total Time: 30 min.
There's nothing quite like an easy soup recipe on a busy night. This flavor-packed chicken tortilla soup will warm up your kitchen (and then your belly) in just 30 minutes.

Updated: May 15, 2024

If Mexican-inspired soups are your jam during the cooler months, this chicken tortilla soup should definitely be on your must-try list. While most soups need to simmer on the stove or in a slow cooker for hours, this soup only needs about 20 minutes on the heat. This is largely thanks to a rotisserie chicken, which you just need to strip and shred before adding to your soup.

Chicken Tortilla Soup Ingredients

  • Olive oil
  • Onion
  • Canned chopped green chiles
  • Garlic cloves
  • Jalapeno pepper
  • Ground cumin
  • Canned tomato sauce
  • Canned diced tomatoes with garlic and onion
  • Reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • Rotisserie chicken
  • Fresh cilantro
  • Lime juice
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Crushed tortilla chips

Chicken Tortilla Soup Toppings

To really bring out the flavors in this savory Mexican-inspired soup, prep your toppings ahead, and feel free to go overboard—no one says you can only choose two toppings.

Tortilla Toppings

If you need to use up a package of flour tortillas, preheat your oven to 375°F and bake your lightly oiled and salted tortillas until crispy. Chop into 1/2-inch strips with a sharp knife, and you’ll have some perfectly crispy tortilla strips. If you really want to impress, make your own corn tortillas, bake them and chop them into strips the same way you would for flour tortillas.

Produce Toppings

A squeeze of lime adds brightness and freshness to this easy chicken tortilla soup. You can serve limes on the side in a little bowl or on top of a dollop of sour cream and sliced avocado. This will really give your soup a citrusy punch. Like a bit more heat in your soups? Slice a fresh jalapeno to add to the soup with grated pepper jack cheese.


Step 1: Combine ingredients

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In a Dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat. Saute onion until tender, about five minutes. Add the chiles, garlic, jalapeno and cumin; cook for one more minute until fragrant. Stir in the tomato sauce, tomatoes and broth. Bring the soup to a boil, reduce the heat and stir in the chicken.

Step 2: Simmer and serve

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Simmer the soup, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Add the cilantro, lime juice, salt and pepper. Portion the soup into serving bowls and top each bowl with cheese and chopped chips or tortilla strips.

Chicken Tortilla Soup Variations

This pressure cooker chicken tortilla soup is an easy way to dump all your ingredients into one spot and cook in a short time. If you prefer a long simmer time so you can enjoy the scent of this delicious soup wafting through your kitchen, try a slow cooker chicken tortilla soup.

How to Freeze Chicken Tortilla Soup

Just like most other types of soup, this recipe is great to save in the freezer for later. Skip freezing the chips, cheese or any other toppings. We suggest freezing the soup in small containers so it’s easier to defrost leftovers. And don’t forget to label it! Mark each container with the recipe name and the date prepared. Frozen chicken tortilla soup lasts for four to six months in the freezer.

Chicken Tortilla Soup Tips

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How do I thicken chicken tortilla soup?

If your soup is looking a little thin, thicken it with cornstarch. You’ll want to make a slurry by combining a tablespoon of cornstarch with an equal amount of water in a small bowl. Whisk the mixture until a smooth paste forms. Then, add the slurry to your soup and stir well over medium-high heat until the soup starts to thicken.

What goes well with chicken tortilla soup?

Besides your favorite margaritas? A whole bunch of tasty sides! We recommend serving chicken tortilla soup with cornbread, crackers or a fresh salad. Still hungry? Pair your soup with a hot sandwich recipe.

Watch how to Make Homemade Chicken Tortilla Soup

Homemade Chicken Tortilla Soup

Prep Time 30 min
Yield 8 servings (2-1/2 quarts)


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 can (4 ounces) chopped green chiles
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes with garlic and onion, undrained
  • 5 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 rotisserie chicken, shredded, skin removed
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • Crushed tortilla chips
  • Optional: shredded Monterey Jack and/or cheddar cheese, avocado, sliced jalapeno, and lime wedges


  1. In a Dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat; saute onion until tender, about 5 minutes. Add chiles, garlic, jalapeno and cumin; cook 1 minute. Stir in tomato sauce, tomatoes and broth. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Stir in chicken.
  2. Simmer, uncovered, 10 minutes. Add cilantro, lime juice, salt and pepper. Serve with chips and desired toppings.

Nutrition Facts

1-1/4 cups: 200 calories, 8g fat (2g saturated fat), 55mg cholesterol, 941mg sodium, 9g carbohydrate (4g sugars, 2g fiber), 22g protein.

This chicken tortilla soup is as good as (if not better than) any I've had in a restaurant. I get so many compliments when I serve it: you will, too. —Laura Black Johnson, Largo, Florida
Recipe Creator