Hearty in a Hurry: Make Creamy 30-Minute Chicken Tortilla Soup

Chicken Tortilla Soup
Chicken Tortilla Soup

My kids start school in two weeks. That means it's time to say goodbye to long, drawn-out summer recipes now that carpooling, after-school activities, homework, and the like, are en route. That said, I'm trying to pocket some quick and simple, yet hearty and mess-free, snacks to feed my kids- who are aged 7, 3, and 8 months old. Just as importantly, I need something my husband and I can enjoy after our long, busy workdays! Sounds like a tall order to fill, right? Well, I did it. I came up with a chicken tortilla soup recipe that checks off all the boxes and added another… leftovers the next night! Even the kids were excited for tortilla soup leftovers, which happened to taste better on round two. This will definitely be on our menu for those hurried school nights.

Related: 20 delicious salads hearty enough for dinner

Ingredients:
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 small red onion diced
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon cumin
1 packet Old El Paso Roasted Tomato Sauce
1 can Old El Paso mild enchilada sauce
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
2 bay leaves
1 28 oz can diced tomatoes
1 cup frozen corn
Salt to taste
Olive oil
1 can of refried beans

Toppings:
Tortilla strips
Avocado
Grated cheese
Lime
Sour cream
Cilantro

Directions:
1. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to a stock pot. Using poultry shears or good, clean kitchen shears, cut chicken into bite-sized chunks directly into the pot, and place over medium heat.
2. Add salt, cook for 2 minutes, add the onion, and stir.
3. Cover and cook for 3 minutes, and then add the garlic and cook for one minute.
4. Add the cumin and stir. Now add the rest of the ingredients in order and cook for 20 minutes.

5. To make tortilla strips: Preheat oven to 375°. Stack 3 tortillas and slice with a knife or pizza cutter into strips about a finger's width.
6. Place onto baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Spray the top of the tortilla strips and bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown and crisp.

Note: I like to add a large spoon of refried beans at room-temperature to the bottom of the bowl for a few reasons:
1. It helps to cool down the fresh, off-the-stove soup for the kids without using an ice cube.
2. If there is any spiciness (I'm a spice/heat wimp), the beans will tame the heat of the peppers.
3. It adds a creamy thickness, almost turning it into a stew.

Add the rest of your toppings and enjoy your full meal in under 30 minutes! And guess what? You only have ONE pot to clean!

- By Macki West

For 16 more hearty and healthy soups to warm up to this fall, visit Babble!

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