Chicken Tortilla Soup is one of my favorite comfort foods! Chicken breasts, corn, beans, and other delicious ingredients are simmered in a tomato base. Top this delicious soup with crispy homemade tortilla strips, avocado, lime, and cilantro for the perfect Mexican-inspired soup!

We love having Tex Mex and Mexican nights around here. Corn dip, instant pot chicken tacos, beef enchilada casserole, you name it.

tortilla chicken soup in pot

Chicken Tortilla Soup

Chicken Tortilla Soup is one of my favorites and something I always order when I visit Mexico. The great thing about travel is creating versions of those recipes when I get home for my friends and family (and for you) to enjoy!

This chicken tortilla soup recipe is easy to make. As with a classic tortilla soup recipe, tortilla strips are fried crisp and add the perfect crunch. I top this soup with lime and cilantro, and the freshness to finish it off with a fresh flavor.

Add your own favorite toppings, a bit of cotija cheese, guacamole, pico de gallo, and sour cream are all great additions! I like to create a little topping bar when I serve this soup so everyone can add what they love.

What Is Tortilla Soup?

Tortilla soup is a Mexican-inspired soup made with a tomato (or chicken) base. It usually has ingredients like corn, beans, and often other additions like jalapenos and cilantro. It is simmered, then topped with crispy tortilla strips and whatever you’d like to add.

Tortilla soup is most commonly made with chicken but you can also find it made with lamb, beef, and fish. Cooking the protein in the soup adds a ton of flavor!

ingredients unmixed in pot

How To Make Tortilla Soup

It’s easy! Chicken tortilla soup takes just 30 minutes to cook. Prep your veggies first to save extra time. Make the tortilla strips while the soup is simmering (or you can purchase Tortilla Strips online or at the grocery).

You can also make the tortilla strips a few days in advance. They only need to pan fry for a minute or so on each side. Once they’re crisp, salt them and save them for later.

For the Chicken Tortilla Soup:

  1. Saute jalapeno and onion until fragrant (remove the jalapeno seeds to make it less spicy)
  2. Add everything else and simmer
  3. Remove the chicken and shred it with a couple of forks
  4. Add the chicken back in
  5. Serve it with tortilla strips and desired toppings

This recipe is crazy easy!

tortilla strips in bowl

What To Serve With Tortilla Soup

Here’s where it gets fun! Tortilla soup is so versatile that nearly anything can be served with it!

A bright tangy cabbage slaw or a Fresh Corn Salad will complement the rich flavors of tortilla soup as well as a side of cheesy quesadillas.

For soup toppings, try some sliced black olives, green chiles, shredded cheddar or crumbled cotija cheese, or cubes of avocados. This is definitely a recipe that will find it’s way to your table year round!

chicken tortilla soup with lime

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tortilla chicken soup in pot
4.99 from 556 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
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Chicken Tortilla Soup

This soup is simmered to perfection with beans, corn, tomatoes, and chicken. Top it with cilantro, lime, and tortilla chips for the perfect comfort food! 
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 8 servings


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 3 large cloves garlic minced
  • 1 jalapeño diced and seeded
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 14 ½ ounces crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can diced tomatoes with chilis such as rotel
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 14 ½ ounces can black beans rinsed & drained
  • 1 cup corn drained if canned
  • 2 chicken breasts boneless, skinless
  • ¼ cup cilantro chopped
  • 1 lime juiced
  • 1 avocado sliced, for garnish

Crispy Tortilla Strips

  • 6 6" corn tortillas cut into ¼" strips
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • salt


  • Heat ¼ cup olive oil over medium-high heat a small pan. Add tortilla strips in small batches and fry until crisp. Drain and salt.
  • Heat olive oil In a large pot over medium heat. Add onion, garlic and jalapeño and cook until onion is softened.
  • Add remaining ingredients and simmer 20 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
  • Remove chicken and shred. Add back to the pot and simmer for 3 minutes.
  • Spoon soup into bowls and and top with tortilla strips, lime wedges and sliced avocado.


4.99 from 556 votes

Nutrition Information

Serving: 1.25cup | Calories: 278 | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 18g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 36mg | Sodium: 671mg | Potassium: 714mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 290IU | Vitamin C: 19.9mg | Calcium: 69mg | Iron: 2.7mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Chicken, Main Course, Soup
Cuisine American, Mexican

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About the author

Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!
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Recipe Rating


  1. Came across this recipe a couple of years ago hunting for the perfect chicken tortilla soup (for me). My favorite was from a restaurant nowhere near me, and any time I ordered it anywhere else it was never quite as good. This recipe had the same ingredients and looked to be very similar so I gave it a shot and searched no more! It’s so easy and comes out excellent every time. It’s a favorite in my house and the #1 request when it starts getting cold outside. I don’t change it at all, just choose the biggest jalapeño I can find for a good amount of heat. Thank you!5 stars

  2. This is a great, flavorful and easy recipe! I also added a habanero pepper which intensified the flavor. Family loved it!5 stars

  3. Second time making this soup. Absolutely delicious. I used 3-4 chicken breasts and I love having a filling soup with a hearty amount of chicken. The only change I made was using fire roasted Muir Glen crushed tomatoes and no cumin, also added an extra cup of chicken broth due to having so much chicken. This was delicious! It will become a staple at our house for sure.5 stars

  4. This was a delicious soup and very easy. I did sub the canned tomatoes for fresh out of my garden which I cooked down to make a sauce and the jalapeño for crushed red pepper flakes but everything else was to your recipe. It made a lot for one person so I ended up freezing some for a later date. Thanks for a great recipe .5 stars

  5. I’ve made this soup for about a year now and it’s a family favorite. Its honestly one of our go to meals we absolutely love it ; quick and easy, incredibly flavorful and hearty especially in the cold, winter months. I play with varieties of the recipe, sometimes preferring a chunky soup and other times more “brothy.” My next experiment is to substitute the shredded chicken for marinated, shredded jackfruit.5 stars

  6. I think this is more a reflection of my budding cooking skills, but for some reason my soup did not turn out very flavourful. I was hoping for more piquancy, and overall vitality to the taste. Any recommendations? Thank you!4 stars

    1. I’m sorry you found this lacked flavor Jadyn, we always find this bursting with flavor! Topping with the extra lime wedge will give it a burst of brightness as well as the cilantro.

    1. Sure you can! I would add the pork at the end of cooking so it heats through if it’s already cooked. This will keep it from overcooking.

  7. Made your soup tonight this is one of the best receipes I’ve ever cooked. This was so easy will make it again.

  8. Wonderful recipie.
    Easy and delicious.
    Dont bother making a single batch…
    You might as well double it right from the start. Everybody loves it and you will want to share.5 stars

  9. I made this soup, and we enjoyed it, but…. I would have appreciated a little less tomato. The second time I made this recipe, did not use the crushed tomato. And we felt that it improved the broth considerably. Also I added additional corn and beans….. just like a little more! Because my mother has a sensitive stomach I used canned mild green chilies instead of jalapenos. If you are not cooking for a sensitive audience. I would highly recommend red chipotle peppers for a zestier taste. I also dress my soup up a little with guacamole and sour cream dolloped on top. And yes I used some Pico de Gallo on top of mine to give it the zippier taste. Thank you for sharing we did enjoy.4 stars

  10. Just tried your chicken tortilla soup. Soooo good! I cooked in Instant Pot on soup setting for 15 minutes.5 stars

  11. I added some roasted zucchini, some celery, carrots, green peppers. Finished by stirring a shot of tequila into the pot. Excellent!5 stars

  12. Made it for a couple shower. The recipe allowed you to change the number of servings so it adjusted the ingredients.Turned out great. Everyone enjoyed it. Will make this again!!5 stars

  13. Wonderful, easy and a successful every time.
    Only suggestion is….do yourself a favor and make a double batch….freeze some and keep it on hand.
    It’s a winner….and be sure to make the tortilla strips. Easy to make and super good…and just fun to have any time.
    Lorraine5 stars

  14. Made this today for shared supper with friends – doubled the recipe, and used a can of green chiles w instead of jalapeños- and did fire roasted crushed tomatoes. Was so yummy with all the fixins and regular and green Chile cheese cornbread. No one left hungry. Will definitely make again.5 stars

  15. This recipe is AMAZING! So quick and delicious! A much quicker alternative than my slow cook shredded chicken chili. I’ve made it a bunch of times and my family and I love it!5 stars