The weather is getting cooler (unless you’re in Southern California where it was 90 degrees yesterday…I’m ready for FALL!), which makes for perfect soup weather. This soup starts with poached chicken and chicken stock, adds diced tomatoes for depth of flavor, peppers and onions for color (and ups the veg factor) and spices to round it out. You could also grill the chicken. This is also a one-pot meal so there’s easy clean-up. There are so many options for this dish that can cut the prep time down to almost nothing:
- use store-bought rotisserie chicken
- use prepared chicken stock
- substitute any other cooked meat you have (beef, pork, etc)
Ingredients for Southwest Chicken Soup
- 1 pound (454 g) chicken breasts
- 2 bell peppers, any color
- 1 large onion
- 32 oz (946 mL) chicken stock
- 1 can (14 oz, 414 mL) diced tomatoes
- 1 can (4 oz, 118 mL) diced green chilis (these are usually mild…you could use jalapeño for more heat)
- 2 tsp (4 g) ground cumin
- 2 tsp (4 g) smoked paprika
- Salt and pepper to season
*if poaching the chicken breasts you may want to season the water with a generous pinch each of: peppercorns, cumin seeds, coriander seeds and salt
Directions for Southwest Chicken Soup
1. To poach the chicken: Add the meat to a large cooking pot in one layer. Add water (and spices if you want) until the meat is covered by about 1/2″ of liquid. Bring the pot to a boil, reduce to a gentle simmer (think a bubble here and there escaping) and cover. Let cook for 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and let sit for 15 minutes longer. Remove the meat, pour off the water and let cool while you prepare the rest of the ingredients. Shred once cool enough to handle.
2. Dice the peppers and onion. Add to the pot with a spoonful of cooking fat (your choice…coconut oil, butter, bacon fat, etc), and cook until the veg are softened and a bit browned.
3. Pour the chicken stock, diced tomatoes and diced chilis into the pot.
4. Add the cumin and paprika. Taste and add salt and pepper if needed (this will depend on if you used low-salt stock and/or personal preference).
5. Add the shredded chicken to the pot and heat through.
6. Serve with a chopped cilantro, sliced avocado, a sprinkle of pumpkin seeds, etc.
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