Chicken Enchilada Soup

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Last month, I had chicken enchiladas on my menu plan, but family schedules changed and I couldn’t make the dish. I had to make due with leftovers for dinner instead. By the time I got around to making the chicken enchiladas later that week, I didn’t have enough corn tortillas or chicken to make them. But, I did have leftover Mexican chicken and fresh tomatillos that needed to be used. That’s when I thought about the soup challenge posted by Linda @ The Gluten-Free Homemaker. I did have enough ingredients to make soup. So, I got started making a Chicken Enchilada Soup.

The bad news about making this soup is that my kids won’t eat soup. The good news is that knowing my kids weren’t going to eat it, I felt free to add in the jalapeños to give it a little heat. And more good news: I absolutely loved it. I mean, I like chicken enchiladas, so why wouldn’t I like it as a soup? My husband liked it too. And now I have a new way to use up my leftover Mexican chicken. In the past I’ve used the chicken for rice bowls, salad, taquitos, quesadillas, nachos, and tacos. Now I can add soup to my list, too! I kept the soup pretty simple, but I can see making this again in the future with some corn and black beans added in before the final simmer.

Chicken Enchilada Soup Recipe


2 Tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
4 cloves garlic, minced
5 tomatillos (about 1 lb.), husks and stems removed, and quartered
2 (4 oz. cans) diced green chiles
3 jalapeños, stems removed, seeded and finely chopped
1 tsp salt
4 Cups chicken broth (added 2 cups at a time)
2 Cups leftover shredded Mexican chicken

For topping:
1 Cup cheddar cheese, shredded
6 corn tortillas, sliced into thin strips
corn oil for deep frying the corn tortilla strips


  1. Using a 4-quart pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the chopped onions and cook until tender. Then, add in the minced garlic and cook for an additional minute, or until aromatic.
  2. Pour 2 cups chicken broth into the pot and add in the quartered tomatillos, chopped jalapeños, diced green chiles, and salt. Bring to a boil and let simmer for 15 minutes, or until the tomatillos are tender.
  3. Remove the pot from the heat and use an immersible blender to purée the soup.
  4. Return the pot to the heat and add in the remaining 2 cups of chicken broth and the shredded chicken. Simmer for 15 minutes.
  5. While the soup is simmering, deep fry the corn tortilla strips in hot corn oil (375° F) about 2-3 minutes, or until crispy.
  6. Serve the soup with some cheddar cheese and crispy corn tortilla strips on top.
  7. Makes 4-6 large bowls of soup.

Additional Notes:

  • If you don’t have an immersible blender, you can use a traditional blender to purée the soup. You may want to let the soup cool down a little before pouring into the blender.
  • I used fresh tomatillos, but you can also use canned tomatillos. The canned tomatillos will not need to cook very long, and will purée quite quickly.
  • If you don’t want to fry the tortilla strips, you can simply top the soup with some crushed tortilla chips. Or even just serve the soup with warmed corn tortillas.

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Categories : Recipes, Soup



[…] – Chicken Enchilada Soup I use leftover Mexican chicken, added to a green chile and tomatillo sauce to make this soup. […]


Mmm, this looks packed with flavor! I love the addition of jalapeños too 🙂


looks great!
We like chicken enchilada soup….I use the leftover soup for dip base later on in the week.
I will be trying your recipe some time soon.
Thanks for Sharing


I have never made a Mexican type soup, and I have no idea why. I might give this a try tonight. Thanks for participating in the soup challenge!


I had leftover chicken and broth from last night, so I did give this a try tonight. I omitted the tomatillos and peppers and added sun dried tomatoes from the freezer and a little leftover enchilada sauce. It was great! We loved the tortilla strips, which was new to us. Thanks for your inspiration.


Linda – Glad you tried it. Your version sounds great, too! My kids wouldn’t eat the soup, but they loved the tortilla strips and were sad we ran out. It’s a good thing we did run out, or we would’ve been tempted to cook a whole package of corn tortillas.


Looks delicious. I love chicken enchiladas so can’t see why I wouldn’t love something like this too! Thanks for sharing.


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