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Spicy Chicken Tortilla Soup and Snow Daze

By January 20, 2011June 10th, 2011Goals, Kitchen, Main Courses, Recipes, Sides, Soups, Yoga

Spicy Tortilla Soup

We woke up this morning to 8 inches of snow. Everything was and still is completely covered, including the roads. I don’t think I’m ever going to get used to Missouri’s idea of snow removal. Just because people drive on it and does NOT mean it’s clear! If we didn’t have the Jeep, we’d be home right now, but since we do, we were able to make it to work fairly easily.

I’ve been pretty frustrated for the past week. I feel like we’ve run into hurdle after hurdle trying to stick to our gym and running goals. First we had a snowstorm, then the flu, and now another snow storm. I’m hoping we’ll be able to make it to the gym tonight (it hasn’t actually stopped snowing), otherwise I’m going to have to resort to my stack of workout DVD’s and some living room yoga, a real treat with two cats and a dog.

Clive has sympathy flu.

Neil and Clive during our bout with creeping crud.

Needless to say, between being sick and being cooped up, we’ve been eating pretty light. I still don’t have much of an appetite, but soup, toast and fruit have been my go-to meals and snacks for the past few days. It feels pretty nice. Even though we didn’t commit to doing a real detox, eating clean and simple foods has been detox enough for my system, and we’re realizing we should probably be doing it more often than we do.

I fell in love with tortilla soup in college. I worked in a natural health market, and fell deeply for Amy’s Tortilla Soup. I’ve been trying to find it for years, and have yet to find it again. Devastated and wanting tortilla soup to warm winter nights, I’ve been experimenting with tortilla soups for the past month. I’ve made two different soups, one that I completely hated and this one that I completely love. Herein is my favorite, thus far anyway.


25 oz. crushed tomatoes
15 oz. fire roasted tomatoes
4 oz. canned chopped green chile peppers
2 habaneroes, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
½ medium onion, diced
3 cups chicken stock
3 cups shredded cooked chicken
4 tablespoons minced chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
1 ½ cup fresh or frozen fire roasted corn
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground chipotle
½ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons black pepper

1/2 cup shredded cheese
Baked Tortilla Chips
Greek Yogurt


Spicy Tortilla Soup

Spicy Tortilla Soup

Slow cooker instructions: Place the spices, tomatoes, chiles in adobo sauce, broth, garlic, onion and peppers in the slow cooker. Cover, and cook on low for about 6 hours. Approximately 45-60 minutes before you’re ready to eat, add the chicken and the corn.

Stovetop instructions: In a large pot, saute the onions, garlic, habanero and chiles in adobo sauce in a tablespoon of canola oil. Add the tomatoes and spices. Bring to a light rolling boil and add corn and cooked chicken and and reduce heat to medium. Cook through for 45-60 minutes.

Ladle the soup into bowls, then sprinkle with cheese, Greek yogurt, avocado, lime or tortilla strips.

I learned in all my research (hey, I did some serious digging on this topic!) that there seem to be two schools of thought on tortilla soup: more liquid and broth-like or thick and chunky. We happen to prefer the thick and chunky, and if you do too then this is a tortilla soup for you. It’s hearty without being heavy, and spicy and lightly sweet with tomatoes and the chiles in adobo, which I swear are now a pantry staple for us. I hope it warms the snowy nights for you as it did for us, and just think, January is almost over!

How do you combat cabin fever stay on track with your fitness goals?