Featured, Low Carb

Authentic Chicken Tortilla Soup

Cooks in 30 Minutes Difficulty Easy 22 comments This post may contain affiliate links. We may earn money from the companies mentioned in this post.

An Authentic Chicken Tortilla Soup recipe made with fresh ingredients and topped with crispy tortilla strips. This recipe has become one of my household favorites.

Chicken Tortilla Soup

It’s that time of year when many of us are trying to stay out of the cold weather — and for those of us in Texas — trying to escape the one day it actually drops below 40 degrees. Haha. Regardless if you enjoy the winter weather or want to escape it, a bowl of hot soup is one of those dishes that is always right on time.

As I have been creating different types of soups, I’m starting to realize that sometimes going the simple route is a lot better. This chicken tortilla soup is easy to make and it takes a very traditional approach. Similar to the preparation you would find if you visited Mexico City; with a few small adjustments.

The is the absolute best Mexican chicken tortilla soup recipe!

Making Chicken Tortilla Soup:

In my recipe, I start with a base of chicken broth and combine that with tomato paste, onions, garlic, jalapeños, and tortillas, cut into strips and fried.

Authentic Chicken Tortilla Soup

The flavor profile begins to build with fresh cilantro and chopped onions. It’s amazing what these two ingredients can do for a dish and fresh cilantro brightens any recipe. And as you know, jalapeños can be hit or miss, but if you get a spicy one the dish will have quite the kick. If not, you’ll end up with a more mild heat.

Authentic Chicken Tortilla Soup

The chicken stock is the most important ingredient and I only use a tablespoon of tomato paste. You can also use fresh roasted tomatoes, but tomato paste is intensely flavored. A small dab of tomato paste adds a hit of tomato flavor to the soup without the excess liquid that comes when fresh tomatoes are used.

Authentic Chicken Tortilla Soup

I save time by buying the pre-cooked rotisserie chicken from the grocery store and pull the meat into two cups of shredded chicken. You can also use chicken breast, but I find the shredded chicken soaks up all the flavors of the soup better.

However, if you have more time, check out my Instant Pot Whole Roasted Chicken recipe.

Authentic Chicken Tortilla Soup

Topping the soup off with fried corn tortilla strips adds amazing texture. And this step only takes two minutes to cook to the perfect crispiness.

Authentic Chicken Tortilla Soup

What to serve with chicken tortilla soup:

  • I serve my soup with a handful of shredded cheddar cheese (crumbled cotija cheese is great too), chunks of avocado, fried tortilla strips, and a dollop of sour cream.
  • Add on some green chiles, chopped cilantro, or chopping green onions.
  • You could also make a cold small side salad; think fresh corn salad or a traditional green salad.
  • If you love Tex-Mex like I do, this soup will go well with quesadillas or enchiladas.
  • Mexican rice is also a great accompaniment.
  • Black, refried, or pinto beans also make the perfect companion for chicken tortilla soup.

How long does the soup last in the fridge/freezer?

This soup recipe can last in the refrigerator for approximately 3 days stored in an airtight container. You could also freeze the soup and it will late in the freezer for at least 2 months.

Authentic Chicken Tortilla Soup

This healthy chicken tortilla soup is a great way to bring everyone together no matter what the weather says. Enjoy!

Authentic Chicken Tortilla Soup

Looking for other tasty soup recipes? Try out my:

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Authentic Chicken Tortilla Soup

Authentic Chicken Tortilla Soup

  • Author: Eric Jones
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x


An authentic (and easy) Chicken Tortilla Soup recipe made with fresh ingredients, like onion and cilantro, and topped with crispy fried tortilla strips.



  • 1 Medium Yellow Onion
  • 1/4 cup Jalapeno Peppers
  • 1/2 cup Fresh Cilantro
  • 4 cup Chicken Stock
  • 1 tbsp Tomato Paste
  • 6 Soft Corn Tortillas
  • 2 cups Shredded Rotisserie Chicken
  • 1 tbsp Butter
  • 3 tsp Minced Garlic
  • 2 tsp Chili Powder
  • 1 tsp Paprika
  • 1 tsp Black Pepper
  • 1/4 tsp Red Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1 tsp Adobo All Purpose Seasoning


  • Sour Cream
  • Mexican Shredded Cheese
  • Sliced Avocado


  1. Begin by stacking your soft tortilla shells and cutting them into strips. 
  2. Remove fresh cilantro leaves from stem, chop into pieces and set to side. Chop onions and jalapeno into small pieces and set to the side. 
  3. Pre-heat cooking pan (I use an Enameled Cast Iron 5 Quart pan) to medium/high heat and add cooking oil. Cook soft tortilla strips for 2 minutes or until they begin to brown and remove from heat. Place on paper towel and allow to drain. 
  4. Slightly lower heat to medium and add butter and chopped onions. Cook until onions are translucent. Add chopped cilantro, minced garlic, jalapeno, and seasonings. Stir together then add in tomato paste. 
  5. Add chicken stock to the cooking pan and add shredded chicken. 
  6. Cover and allow to cook for 15 minutes on medium/low heat then change heat to simmer. 
  7. Serve soup in a bowl and top off with toppings.


You can use chilies in place of jalapenos.

  • Category: Soup
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: Mexican


  • Calories: 140
  • Sugar: 2g
  • Sodium: 812mg
  • Fat: 4g
  • Carbohydrates: 3.8g
  • Fiber: 0.7g
  • Protein: 21.5g
  • Cholesterol: 57mg

Keywords: Authentic Chicken Tortilla Soup, Chicken Tortilla Soup, Tortilla Soup, Authentic Tortilla Soup, easy soups, Mexican soup


  1. Super tasty! I added rotel instead of jalapeños and added corn. Love the heat this soup has. Definitely would make again. 😁

    • Eric Jones

      Thanks, Alissa! Love rotel and that is a great addition! Thanks for taking the time to share your feedback. It is appreciated.

  2. Ran out of tomato pasted substituted a couple tablespoons of tomato sauce. I haven’t had tortilla soup in so long! This was by far an amazing recipe! I love the spicy-ness. I also added a half of canned corn for some more texture.

  3. Everyone in my family loves this Chicken Tortilla Soup. I made big crumbs of the tortilla strips but the soup was delicious with all of the seasonings and fresh cilantro from the garden. Thanks for the great recipe.

  4. Best tortilla soup ever!!!

  5. We shall call this “quarantine” chicken tortilla soup! LOL had everything except Cilantro but came out great, anyway! When you are oh so bored, a fresh check breast and most all of the ingredients, why not? So very yummy! I did have the jalapeño, so all was not lost! LOL
    Thanks a bunch!

  6. Ben Cardenas

    Made this recipe tonight and it was SO good. I went overboard on the jalapeños and even added a bit of extra hot sauce so it was super spicy. Still delicious but I’ll definitely tone it down next time I make it!

  7. Wow! This soup is amazing! Love this recipe!! So fresh and I used homemade bone broth (nothing better!). The corn tortilla strips really add to it! So quick to make and tastes like you spent all day in the kitchen. Thank you @dudethatcooz. Can’t wait to try more of your recipes.

    • Eric Jones

      Homemade bone broth is a great idea! That would surely enhance the flavor. So glad you enjoyed the soup! It’s a family favorite.

  8. Brittany Skelton

    Loved this! It was simple and delicious and the spicy jalapeño made it perfect for a cold rainy night. My family and I loved it.

    • Eric Jones

      Thanks, Brittany! The jalapeños really take it to the next level — especially if you enjoy it spicy.

  9. So easy and delicious!

  10. Was out of tomato paste so used a can of rotel. So fast, flavorful and healthy. Thanks

  11. Charlotte Knox

    I am so excited to see some good home style recipes.
    Just found you on Instagram and am looking forward to using some of your recipes.

    • Thanks for stopping by Charlotte! You’ll find plenty of recipes to try here. Let me know if you ever have any questions.

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