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Tortilla Soup

Warmly spiced and satisfying, this chicken tortilla soup comes together fast thanks to the ultimate easy dinner party trick: a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store.


a bowl of chicken tortilla soup with topped with sour cream avocado and tortilla strips and lime

What is Tortilla Soup, Anyway?

Spiced, but not necessarily spicy, tortilla soup is simple, flavorful Mexican chicken soup traditionally flavored with tomatoes, garlic, onions, and chilies. While our version may not qualify as the most authentic tortilla soup recipe ever, we know for sure it’s the most weeknight friendly. Our recipe combines major flavor and minimal effort thanks to these 3 superstar ingredients that deserve a place on your grocery list every time:

  1. A can of fire-roasted tomatoes. Keyword here is “roasted”! It adds a lot of depth to our soup base.
  2. A can of enchilada sauce. This underrated pantry staple adds more of that rich smoky, roasty flavor—lots of complexity, zero effort.
  3. A store-bought rotisserie chicken. A huge time-saver that lends yet another layer of fire-and-smoke flavor to the tortilla soup.
a bowl of shredded chicken, enchilada sauce, onions, canned corn, fire roasted tomatoes, green chilis and garlic
a large pot of chicken tortilla soup made with fire roasted tomatoes and enchilada sauce

Rotisserie Chickens—a Love Story:

Can we talk for a second about how many easy dinners a rotisserie chicken can make? So many. You’re no less of a home cook for relying on the occasional shortcut, and cooked whole chicken is one of the greatest shortcuts of all time. If you don’t end up using all of the chicken for this soup, toss the leftovers into a Chicken Salad for school lunches, or save some for tomorrow nights’ dinner (Chicken Quesadillas, anyone?).

But we digress. You get the idea—rotisserie chickens are great. Don’t leave the store without one. Back to this easy chicken tortilla soup.

A large pot of chicken tortilla soup with a ladle

How To Make Tortilla Soup:

This might not be the most authentic version of tortillas soup, but we love easy. A few minutes of prep, and a quick simmer on the stove is all that this forgiving meal requires. Enlisting some help—the job of pulling chicken apart is ideal for tiny hands—turns prep time into quality time.

  • Remove all the meat from the chicken (and don’t forget to save the bones for stock!)
  • Chop the onion, garlic and zucchini.
  • Toss everything into a big pot along with the canned tomatoes, chilies and spices.
  • Put your feet up and snack on tortilla chips while the soup simmers. (optional, but recommended).

Super satisfying, healthy, quick and inexpensive—what more can we ask for in a weeknight dinner? If you're looking for a vegetarian tortillas soup, go ahead and skip the chicken. The flavor will be just as delicious.

A bowl of chicken tortilla soup made topped with lime, tortilla strips, cheese and avocado with a spoon

Tools You'll Need:

Other Quick & Easy Mexican-inspired Favorites:

  • Feeling ambitious? This bright, fresh Pico De Gallo would go beautifully with this soup.
  • Or maybe this day demands a cocktail? If so, this meal demands a Spicy Margarita.
  • Mexican food is great for breakfast, too. Like in these (freezable) breakfast burritos.
tortilla soup made with canned fire roasted tomatoes, shredded chicken topped with avocado sour cream and cilantro

Tortilla Soup for Dinner, Anyone?

If you make this chicken tortilla soup, we’d love to hear about it! Be sure to snap a photo, add it to your Instagram feed or stories and tag us @themodernproper and #themodernproper if you do.

Watch and Learn

Tortilla Soup

  • Serves: 6
  • Prep Time:  20 min
  • Cook Time:  40 min
  • Calories: 296


  • 1 rotisserie chicken, shredded (3 to 4 cups) (see Note)
  • 1 quart chicken stock
  • 1 (14.75-ounce) can creamed corn
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced fire- roasted tomatoes
  • 1 (10-ounce) can red enchilada sauce
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 medium zucchini, chopped
  • 1 (4-ounce) can green chilies
  • 4 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • Tortilla strips

For Serving, Optional

  • Chopped fresh cilantro
  • Fresh lime juice
  • Sour cream
  • Shredded cheddar or pepper Jack cheese
  • Diced avocado


1. In a large soup pot, combine the shredded chicken, chicken stock, creamed corn, the tomatoes and their juices, the enchilada sauce, onion, zucchini, chilies, garlic, bay leaves, cumin, chili powder, salt, and pepper. Place the pot over high heat and bring the soup to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened and translucent and the zucchini is tender, about 30 minutes. Season to taste and discard the bay leaves.

2. Serve the soup in bowls topped with tortilla strips, and any additional toppings of your choice, as desired.

Note: Chicken is easier to pull off the bones and shred when it’s warm. We like to purchase rotisserie chicken from the store and pick off all the meat before storing it in the refrigerator—that way it’s ready to go whenever we want to use it. Alternatively you can make 3-4 cups Shredded Chicken at home and add it to the soup.

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories296
  • Protein28 g
  • Carbohydrates22 g
  • Total Fat8 g
  • Dietary Fiber4 g
  • Cholesterol27 mg
  • sodium1148 mg
  • Total Sugars10 g

Tortilla Soup

Questions & Reviews

Join the discussion below.

  • Jody

    Could you tell me how much a serving size is? I am planning to try this tonight, but am tracking my calories. Thanks!

    Hi Jody, we unfortunately don't have yield for this soup right now. As of now a serving size is 1/6th of the recipe.

  • Chet Bowen

    Loved this soup. It was a bit too "hot" for me, and I usually enjoy some kick. I would recommend that people add the chili powder to taste, or I will just add some to my bowl each time. My wife does not like as spice as me, so it was too hot for her.

    I also added 2 more cans of fire roasted tomatoes to help cool it off. As it was too good to not eat. Any other ideas on making it not as hot? I double checked that I used 1 teaspoon of chili powder and not a tablespoon (I can confuse those at times). The enchilada sauce was mild, and so was the green chilis., so I think it was the chili powder.

    Thank you for a great recipe. My wife and I have enjoyed everything we have tried here.

    Ya cut back on chili powder I guess and I would leave out the green chilies if you are trying to cut back on spice.

  • Mary Williams

    Tortilla soup and yet I don't see where there is any tortillas in the ingredients. Do you use tortilla chips in the soup at all?

    They're used as a garnish here! We refer to them as "corn chips" in the recipe—they're optional, but definitely suggested!

  • Marissa

    Can I cook this soup in a Dutch Oven?


  • Rhonda Roach Choisser

    Can this soup be frozen?

    Yes. But save the toppings for after you reheat it. Also a recommend completely thawing it out before reheating it.

  • R D

    Love this soup. Easy to make using the rotisserie chicken and doesn't take long to cook.... AND YUM. It is delicious

    Thanks RD, we are so happy you enjoyed it!

  • Lynn

    I work from home - tied to my computer all day. I love cooking for pleasure on the weekends, weeknights, not so much. I LOVE these quick alchemy-like recipes. You mix everything together and let it go for a bit. I feel accomplished kicking back and enjoying the mouth-watering depth of scent wafting thru the house. thank you!

    Thanks Lynn, so glad you enjoyed it!

  • Mary Butler

    By far the best tortilla soup receipe I have ever tried. It's ridiculously simple and easy to make, sooooo tasty, and pretty dang healthy. Thank you! My family LOVES it!

    Thank you so much Mary! This is so great to hear, we are so happy to hear you find it simple and that your whole family loves it! That's always a win!

  • Courtney

    This soup is DELICIOUS and so easy to make! Will be making again for sure. Thank you!

    Thank you Courtney, this is so great to hear. we are so glad it was easy and delicious!

  • Victoria B

    This was delicious and easy enough that my 8 year old could help me cook! Such a hit in my house, might make this part of our regular line up! 😊 thanks!!

    Thank you Victoria, this is so great to hear! We are so glad you and the family enjoyed it and love when the kids help with cooking, so fun!