“Tortilla” Soup

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Tortilla Soup is one of my favorites at Mexican restaurants, but they are not all created equal, I’ve learned.

My very first exposure to Tortilla soup was at a little place in San Antonio called El Mirador.  My Dad and Mom kept bringing up how fantastic this soup was and we finally went to try it.   What a flavor delight!  It was every bit as good as my parents had advertised!  Let me tell you, I’ve had it many places since and none shine a light to El Mirador’s rendering of it.  🙂  I know the restaurant is still there and assume they are still offering this wonderful soup, but it looks like at their website linked above, they have changed the name of the soup to Chicken Cilantro Soup.  I’m sure it’s the same soup though.  You San Antonio dwellers who were unaware of this culinary treat need to get on over to El Mirado and try it if you haven’t yet!  The rest of you might want to try my version of it.

I’ve tried to recreate that wonderful soup ever since I tasted it!  And I got pretty close, but not quite as good as theirs.  This low-carb version of my creation, without the little strips of tortillas usually found in tortilla soup, is VERY good.  If the base soup is good enough, you really don’t need the tortilla strips in this soup.  I hope you’ll give it a try, as it is simply DELICIOUS!  This recipe is Induction friendly and also suitable for Keto and Primal lifestyles.  Paleo followers will want to omit the cream or sub in coconut milk.

This and many more low-carb soup recipes can be at your fingertips in Jennifer Eloff’s latest cookbook series:  Low Carbing Among Friends.  Jennifer has brought together a number of very talented low-carb cooks who offer some of their best low-carb creations. A sampling of what awaits you can be seen at their Facebook page.    You can order copies of this 5-volume set (or individual volumes) at Amazon or here:  http://amongfriends.us/order.php


13 oz. cooked chicken meat (canned is OK if just meat, salt and water)

1 qt. water + 2 c. chicken broth

1  oz. tomato paste

1 c. yellow squash, diced (about ½ med-large squash)

2 oz. yellow onion

2 oz. green bell pepper

1 oz. poblano pepper, seeded and chopped

1/2 tsp. chili powder

dash chipotle chile powder (smoky)

1 small Guajillo chile, seeded and chopped (these are very mild and found in most stores’ produce dept. dried, sold in a bag)

Dash cumin

1/4 c. heavy cream

DIRECTIONS:  Cut chicken meat up into small pieces.  If using canned meat, just break up the large chunks.  Put all ingredients but the cream into soup pot.  Bring to a boil and then lower heat and simmer until squash and all veggies are tender but not falling apart (about 15-20 minutes).  Turn heat to lowest setting. Now add cream and stir.  If you like, you can puree this soup with a stick blender or in small batches in your food processor. I think I like it better chunky myself.  That’s how El Mirador served theirs as well.  I’ve done it both ways though.

VARIATION:   Cut 1 corn tortilla into thin strips, bake at 350º until golden and garnish each bowl of soup right before serving.  Be sure to recalculate numbers below to add for this “carb-y” change.

NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION:  Serves 4, each serving contains:

283 calories, 15.1 g.  fat, 6.95 g.  carbs, 1.6 g.  fiber, 5.35 NET CARBS, 26.3 g.  protein, 780 mg sodium

5 thoughts on ““Tortilla” Soup

  1. Ro

    In Mexico where I first tried this, it is just broth with some onions veggies etc, no chicken and no squash. I made it once and it was identical. I fried two halves of tomatoes added broth and some other seasonings, I had to make Tortilla shreds, I fried them in oil, placed them in the boil right away then poured the broth over it, they sizzled and it was ready..

    1. Sounds good! I’ve never been to Mexico, so I don’t know if the tortilla soups I get in Mexican restaurants in Texas are authentic or not. I think it’s one of those dishes like gumbo in Louisiana, in that every kitchen cooks it up a little differently. But the results are usually outstanding. 🙂

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