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Milk Street Recipe
Milk Street Bowtie Tortilla Soup

Tortilla Soup

40 minutes

Tortilla Soup

Free

This sopa de tortilla is a simple, homestyle tortilla soup like we had in Mexico. It is pureed for smoothness; contrasting colors, flavors and textures are added with garnishes. For the best results, ripe tomatoes are key—in non-summer months, we find Campari tomatoes to be a good option, as well as cherry or grape tomatoes. The tomatoes need only to be cored before they’re tossed into the pot (cherry or grape tomatoes can be used whole). Tortilla chips, called totopos in Mexico, are used in two ways: they’re cooked and pureed with the base to thicken the soup, then fresh chips are added to the serving bowls before the soup is ladled in.

2 tablespoons lard or neutral oil
1 large white onion, halved and thinly sliced
6 medium garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
2 jalapeño chilies, stemmed, seeded and sliced
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 bunch cilantro, stems roughly chopped, leaves chopped, reserved separately
2 pounds ripe tomatoes (see note), cored
2 cups yellow or white tortilla chips, plus more to serve
1½ quarts low-sodium chicken broth
1 teaspoon white sugar
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
Sour cream or crumbled cotija cheese, to serve
Diced avocado, to serve (optional)
Ingredients
  • 2

    tablespoons lard or neutral oil

  • 1

    large white onion, halved and thinly sliced

  • 6

    medium garlic cloves, smashed and peeled

  • 2

    jalapeño chilies, stemmed, seeded and sliced

  • 1

    teaspoon cumin seeds

  • 1

    bunch cilantro, stems roughly chopped, leaves chopped, reserved separately

  • 2

    pounds ripe tomatoes (see note), cored

  • 2

    cups yellow or white tortilla chips, plus more to serve

  • quarts low-sodium chicken broth

  • 1

    teaspoon white sugar

  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper

  • Sour cream or crumbled cotija cheese, to serve

  • Diced avocado, to serve (optional)

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Comments
  • Amy P.

    This recipe was delicious. So simple and fresh. Great recipe if you have an abundance of tomatoes from your garden. Nice change from other tortilla soups.

    0 votes
    0 comments
  • Alero O.

    Tasty recipe and so easy to make!!

    0 votes
    0 comments
  • Gustavo C.

    I made this recipe two times already. My family loves it. I would recommend adding a little shredded chicken along with the avocado.

    0 votes
    0 comments
  • Gustavo C.

    I made this recipe two times already. My family loves it. I would recommend adding a little shredded chicken along with the avocado.

    0 votes
    0 comments
  • Thomas M.

    A nice quick version of a recipe that can take a while to prepare. I used half supermarket tomatoes and a can of whole tomatoes and it came out tasting really good. I appreciate that the whole cilantro is used too. I could not find cumin seeds but the ground stuff worked OK. A splash of lime on when serving it added a nice flavor. I used an immersion blender and that probably cut some of the time. Just be careful not to splash any of the hot soup.

    0 votes
    0 comments
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Tortilla Soup

Get Ready to Cook

4-6

Servings

40 minutes

Tip

Don’t blend all of the soup mixture at once. If the blender jar is too full with hot liquid, when the machine is turned on, the rapid burst of steam may loosen the lid and cause splattering.

Ingredients
  • 2

    tablespoons lard or neutral oil

  • 1

    large white onion, halved and thinly sliced

  • 6

    medium garlic cloves, smashed and peeled

  • 2

    jalapeño chilies, stemmed, seeded and sliced

  • 1

    teaspoon cumin seeds

  • 1

    bunch cilantro, stems roughly chopped, leaves chopped, reserved separately

  • 2

    pounds ripe tomatoes (see note), cored

  • 2

    cups yellow or white tortilla chips, plus more to serve

  • quarts low-sodium chicken broth

  • 1

    teaspoon white sugar

  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper

  • Sour cream or crumbled cotija cheese, to serve

  • Diced avocado, to serve (optional)

Step 1 of 3

Combine Ingredients In Pot

2
tablespoons lard or neutral oil
1
large white onion, halved and thinly sliced
6
medium garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
2
jalapeño chilies, stemmed, seeded and sliced
1
teaspoon cumin seeds
1
bunch cilantro, stems roughly chopped
2
pounds ripe tomatoes, cored
2
cups yellow or white tortilla chips
quarts low-sodium chicken broth
1
teaspoon white sugar

In a large pot over medium-high, heat the lard until shimmering. Add the onion and cook, stirring, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, jalapeños, cumin and cilantro stems, then cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds.


Stir in the tomatoes, tortilla chips, broth and sugar. Bring to a boil, then cover, reduce to medium and cook, stirring, at a simmer, until the tomatoes have softened and their skins begin to peel away, about 10 minutes.

Step 2 of 3

Blend Soup

Remove the pot from the heat and cool, uncovered, for 5 minutes. Using a blender and working in batches so the jar is never more than half full, puree the mixture until smooth; transfer each batch to a large bowl.

Step 3 of 3

Taste, Season and Serve

Kosher salt and ground black pepper
1
bunch cilantro, leaves chopped
Sour cream or crumbled cotija cheese, to serve
Diced avocado, to serve (optional)

Wipe out the pot, then pour in the puree. Cook over medium, stirring often, until heated, about 5 minutes. Taste and season with salt and pepper, then stir in half of the chopped cilantro leaves.


To serve, add tortilla chips to individual bowls, then ladle in soup. Sprinkle with the remaining chopped cilantro leaves and top with sour cream and avocado (if using).

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Tortilla Soup

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