Mexican Chicken Soup

Mexican Chicken Tortila Soup

This easy Mexican chicken soup is based on a rotisserie chicken, flavorful homemade chicken stock, fresh tomato salsa and corn tortillas. Whether enjoyed as a simple soup or served with a variety of complementary sides for a hearty main course meal, your family will want a second helping.

Homemade chicken stock, made from a rotisserie chicken carcus and a few basic vegetables, can transform a simple soup into something extra special. I always keep a few containers of homemade stock in my freezer as it makes a great base when you want to have soup on the table quickly and effortlessly.

homemade roasted chicken stock
Homemade Roasted Chicken Stock Is Like Liquid Gold

One of the ways I use the chicken stock is in a simple, warm and comforting, Mexican chicken soup called caldo de pollo. Defrost a container of stock, add a few simple ingredients to it and in about 30 minutes you will have a pot of simmering, delicious soup like one you might find in someone’s home in Mexico.

The chicken soup is made from the meat taken from half of a rotisserie chicken, a few vegetables and a couple of corn tortillas that are simmered in chicken stock until the vegetables are tender and the tortillas have dissolved. In the heat of summer, I serve a light version topped with fresh pico de gallo and in the cooler months, I use additional veggies and extra tortillas for a heartier, thicker soup. Either way it is a healthy soup, full of chicken and vegetables in a homemade chicken stock that has an outstanding flavor.  

fresh ingredients for mexican soup
Fresh Ingredients For A Delicious Mexican Meal

Mexican Chicken Soup

Serves 4 as a starter, 2 generously as a main course, adjust the recipe accordingly

  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped (about a 1/2 cup)
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped
  • 2 – 3 carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 2 – 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 c. homemade fresh tomato salsa or use 1 10oz. can Rotel tomatoes with green chiles
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 – 1 1/2 qt. homemade chicken stock
  • 2 – 3 crispy corn tortillas (tostadas), broken into pieces
  • meat from 1/2 roasted or rotisserie chicken, pulled into bite size pieces (about 2 cups)
  • 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro, more for garnish
  • salt and pepper to taste

Heat the olive oil in a pot over medium heat and then add the onions, celery and carrots, cook until the onions are translucent. Add the garlic, tomato salsa and cumin and cook about 3 minutes until it slightly thickens. Add the stock, stirring up any browned bits then add the tortillas, bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the tortillas have disintegrated. Add the chicken, cilantro, salt and pepper then simmer until the chicken is warmed through about 2 to 3 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasonings, if necessary. Ladle the soup into bowls and sprinkle with cilantro.

This is a quick and easy soup, especially flavorful when you make use of homemade chicken stock that you can have readily available in your freezer.

The number of tortillas you end up using depends on how thick you want your soup to be.

If you’d like a thicker soup and don’t want to use tortillas, you can stir in a little masa which is a corn flour used for making corn tortillas or fine corn meal.

Rotel canned tomatoes are a blend of vine ripened tomatoes, roasted green chilies and a savory mix of spices. You could also use canned fire roasted tomatoes or a couple of freshly chopped Roma tomatoes in place of homemade fresh salsa or the Rotel tomatoes. In that case you might want to add some cayenne.

If you would like to spice the soup up, add some fresh jalapeños or other peppers either while the soup is simmering or serve as a spicy accompaniment.

I don’t add salt until towards the end of cooking as the stock is already seasoned well.

A squeeze of lime adds brightness to the flavor of this soup.

Top the soup with your preferred garnishes or serve as sides at the table. 

Cook’s NOTES
mexican chicken soup
A Simpe Bowl Of Mexican Chicken Soup


This Mexican chicken soup is a quick and easy meal that is based on a rotisserie chicken, frozen chicken stock and a few other ingredients that you might already have in your kitchen. It is easily adaptable and perfect to serve any time of the year. The broth in the soup is very flavorful as a result of using a homemade stock. Of course, you could use your favorite brand of canned chicken broth but the flavor of the soup will not be as intense. Another flavor component are the corn tortillas that are simmered in the stock. They dissolve and not only thicken the soup but add a delicious corn flavor as well. For a heartier meal, plan to serve with accompaniments such as creamy avocado chunks or guacamole, grated cheese, salsa, crispy corn tortilla strips, etc. I believe your family will enjoy this tasty bowl of goodness.

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I travel the back roads of the world, sharing great food and interesting places and enjoyable pastimes.

39 thoughts on “Mexican Chicken Soup

  1. I love soup and this one sounds very comforting. I make chicken stock with my left over chicken as well. I also say the ends of onions, carrots, parsley stalks and the small cloves of garlic that are too small to mince. I throw those in the freezer bag and use them for the stock.

  2. I have stock in the freezer too & 2 little cans of Rotel tomatoes on the shelf. I’m missing tortillas, a bunch of fresh cilantro & a fresh jalapeno. I do have some fine yellow corn meal. Hmmmm….I want to make this soup. Maybe tomorrow after a run to the store. Or maybe make it today anyway. I’ll mull this over another cup of tea. Gracias for the quandary, Karen.

  3. Easy, flavorful pantry cooking. A necessity during these times! Love how you’ve seasoned this — such a fun dish. Thanks!

  4. I love your brothy chicken soup which I’m sure is quite comforting. I especially like the add on garnishes that add flavors and textures. Great soup Karen!

  5. This looks simply wonderful, Karen – and a dish any abuela/abuelo would serve in her/his kitchen. Though you and I live in the only warm regions of the country now, we are both seeming to crave comfort foods like your soup.

  6. Homemade broth is the key to making soups taste amazing. This soup sounds wonderful. Love all the ingredients in this chicken soup, thanks so much!

  7. I’ve been in a big soup and stew mode this winter and this one sounds really good! And for once, I think I have all the ingredients when I actually read the recipe so it might get on the table today or tomorrow! Thanks!

  8. This does sound good but I have never seen corn tortillas for sale here, never mind, yes cornflour will do the trick or even a handful of rice I find is good at thickening soup. Hope you are well, Diane

  9. This is nourishing and hearty, Karen, and would be a big hit in my family. I think I might make it tomorrow. I have all the ingredients on hand. 🙂

  10. Karen, this is one of my very favorite soups – I love that you use Rotel, it’s definitely one of those “magic” ingredients that create such awesome flavor. I also love the tortillas for thickening. I really need to make this soon! Perfect for ease of making and SO MUCH FLAVOR!

  11. I don’t think I’ve ever had Mexican chicken soup like this before, Karen, so I’m super excited to try this. It’s packed with flavors my family will enjoy and I love how simple it is to make on busy nights and leisurely weekends too. Thanks so much for the recipe, CoCo

  12. I am roasting a chicken on the BBQ on Sunday and Sopa de tortilla is in my cross-hairs, I’ve been thinking about it all week. just a flavourful, texture-filled soup. Like you, I save my chicken carcasses in the freezer next to a bag of veggie ends and after I have a few saved up, I make a huge batch of chicken stock, it’s always so good and enhances whatever I use it in. This recipe sounds wonderful and although we are approaching the end of February, we are still experiencing winter weather so soup is on my menu plan for one meal every day.

  13. This is fabulous, full of wonderful ingredients. a rotisserie chicken really is a great and easy way to have bits of chicken just ready for a soup. Then I always use the carcass for broth. I’ve never used corn tortillas in a soup like this I guess because we prefer flour, and always have those on hand. I do throw in hominy sometimes, which adds a unique flavor. Great soup!

  14. This soup looks and sounds so good! I usually have a rotisserie chicken in my refrigerator. I’ll have to make my own stock to truly appreciate the flavor of this soup, but it sounds so worth it!

  15. Such a beautiful bowl of healthy and fresh ingredients. I especially love soups made with homemade stocks and/or broths. Yours looks super hearty and delicious! 🙂 ~Valentina

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