Spicy Chicken Soup

Shredded chicken and sweet corn simmer in a cilantro, serrano pepper and garlic infused tomato based broth. 113 calories a cup!

Spicy Chicken Soup

When my husband and I first married, my skills in the kitchen were …well…let’s just say that I was young and really only had a couple of dishes that I could make successfully. If you count oatmeal, eggs and pancakes….that totally counts right? And if that wasn’t bad enough, Jeff and I have very different tastes when it comes to food. One of the first dishes he ever made me was steak and eggs. Just a slab of red meat with 2 eggs on top. It was very…filling;) Of course, he tells the funniest stories of some of my “creations”.  This soup though was something that we started making together very early on in our marriage (almost 8 years now) in an attempt to recreate the tortilla soup from The Cracker Barrel (and to find something that we could both agree on for dinner).

Spicy Chicken Soup

Its taken years to do but dare I say that this soup is even better than the Cracker Barrel’s…gasp…yes…its true! I wasn’t even sure what to call it. Jeff calls it “Samantha Jo’s chicken tortilla without the tortillas spicy chicken surprise soup”. I kid you not, he actually calls it that EVERYTIME we make it. When it’s not driving me nuts, it’s actually kind of endearing but shhhh, don’t tell.
I’m  fairly confident that he won’t make it this far when reading my write-ups, so I opted to shorten the title just a smidge. I’m so excited for you to try one of the best spicy chicken soups that you’ll ever have. It’s been lovingly perfected over the years and I just know you’re going to LOVE it!

Spicy Chicken Soup

Spicy Chicken Soup

  • Yield: 18 servings (1 cup)
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes


  • 8 cups reduced fat/reduced sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 2.5 pounds chicken breasts, frozen
  • 1 medium onion, quartered
  • 1 large bunch cilantro (washed and stems trimmed)
  • 6 cloves garlic (peeled)
  • 2 small-medium serrano peppers* (stems trimmed)
  • 1 10 ounce can Ro'tel (diced tomatoes with green chilies)
  • 1 15 ounce can tomato sauce
  • 1 6 ounce can tomato paste
  • 4 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons garlic salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 15 ounce can corn (drained) (frozen works as well)


  1. In your largest soup pot, combine the broth, 2 cups water, and chicken breasts and bring to a slow boil.

  2. Using a large food processor or blender, combine the onion, cilantro, garlic, peppers, and Ro'tel and blend until smooth

  3. Once the chicken is cooked through and no longer pink inside, remove from the broth and set aside.

  4. Pour the spicy blend from the food processor into the broth and set to simmer.

  5. Add tomato sauce, paste, cumin, salt and chili powder. Continue to simmer stirring occasionally.

  6. Once the tomato paste has dissolved, combine the cornstarch with 1/2 cup of cold water, stirring until it is completely dissolved. Stir into the broth and continue to simmer.

  7. It's time to shred the chicken breasts. You can do this using 2 forks (and perhaps a little kitchen helper) I prefer to use the shredding attachment on my food processor. I can literally shred 2.5 pounds of chicken in less than 2 minutes this way!

  8. Turn the heat down to just below a simmer or slow boil. Add the shredded chicken

  9. Stir in the corn.

  10. Top with cheese or sour cream and serve with tortilla chips or corn bread. The leftovers are fabulous, as the flavors continue to develop over time. This soup does freeze well.


* Serrano pepper can pack some serious heat. 2 small peppers provided the perfect amount of heat for me. My husband LOVES this soup when I make it using 2 medium - larger peppers. Adjust the size of the peppers to fit your preferences.

Nutrition Facts Servings 18.0 Amount Per Serving Calories 113 Total Fat 2g Saturated Fat 0g Monounsaturated Fat 1g Polyunsaturated Fat 0g Trans Fat 0g Cholesterol 31mg Sodium 670mg Potassium 170mg Total Carbohydrate 10g Dietary Fiber 1g Sugars 4g Protein 15g

Spicy Chicken Soup



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