You think Mexican, you think Tortillas (pronounced as Tortias). The cuisine is extensively built around the tortilla, be it corn , flour or wheat tortilla and various dishes are made in various forms using the tortilla. One of their well known soup is of course - the Tortilla Soup. Mostly chunks of non-veg is added along with vegetables simmered in either beef/chicken stock and garnished with avocado and fried tortilla strips with lots of cilantro.

I have made a vegetarian version and since I believe in making everything from scratch for the purpose of eliminating unwanted preservatives, sodiums and sugars, I have not used tinned stuff ( call me paranoid! cos I think I sure am :)). But for a quick meal you can go for tinned ingredients too.

  • Cook time:
  • Prep time:
  • Serves: 2 people
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4-5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, sliced thinly ( use as per hotness level reqd.)
  • 1 tbsp cumin seeds
  • 1 cup corn kernels 1/4 cup cooked Kidney beans , soaked overnight (or use canned kidney beans)
  • 6 medium sized Tomatoes ( or use one can Tomatoes - fire roasted variety is what makes the taste scrumptious )
  • 1 avocado, pitted and sliced into cubes
  • 1-2 corn tortillas , stale works best
  • 5 cups water/ vegetable stock
  • some lime wedges and cilantro for garnish
  • salt and pepper to taste

Cut the tomatoes in half, brush some olive oil and bake in an Oven at 375F for 10-15min until you see liquid starting to ooze out of the tomatoes. Note This step is to be skipped if you are using Canned tomatoes.


Cool them for 2-3 min and then peel the skin from the tomatoes and chop them coarsely.


Next heat some Olive oil in a pan and add the cumin seeds along with onions, garlic and chilli. Saute for 3-4 min.


Then add the corn, tomatoes and kidney beans and cook for another 1 min.


Add the water/stock and simmer for 5-10min with a closed lid. Season with salt and Lots of pepper and in simmer in low heat for another 5min.


Meanwhile cut the corn tortiall in strips ( usually thin, I wanted little bigger :) ).


Note It helps if the tortiallas are dry without any moisture since it helps to reduce Oil intake while frying. But incase of using a relatively fresh tortilla jus bake them for 1-2 min in an oven till it gets dry.7.Fry them in batches in oil till lightly golden.

8. It gets all crunchy.

2 min before serving , add the avocado, tortillas along with cilantro. Hearty meal and this would serve 4.

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2 Member Reviews

By Priya on Mar 26, 2012

I made this recipe the way you have mentioned, but I used both water and vegetable stock and turned out awesome. Whole family enjoyed it and especially kids.. Assumed that having jalapeno peppers and black pepper might make the soup pretty hot n spicy .. nah it was just right there .. Thank you so much for sharing the recipe.. keep on rocking...

By Swami on May 31, 2010

I have made this on several occasions and I am overwhelmed by the fact that they are so easy yet so full of flavors and nourishment,. This is my kids favorite soup.


By Sky North on Oct 22, 2014

It's better made with black beans, white kidney beans or rosecoco beans, not red kidney beans as not really authentic Mexican. Really though you can use a mixture of whatever beans you like. Other than that, this is a good recipe. I like also to stir in some refried beans - rellenos - which will thicken it up if this is what you like. I made this with home made corn totillas. I would suggest if you make with home made ones, just re heat them first then leave to cool before adding, this seems to make then stay in shape and not break up too quickly. The addition of some sour cream, a bit of grated cheese on top and some fresh, chopped coriander (cilantro in the U.S) is really god too, along with some nice roasted green chillis. :wink:

By Soledad Gómez on Dec 5, 2010

Hey, I want to make this today but I have a doubt regarding the beans. Is it 1/4 cup, 1/4 of the package? Is that amount measured before or after cooking? Hope you can guide me around this. This soup looks delicious and I want to make it, even though it's summer over here. Love your blog!

Its 1/4 cup of the cooked Kidney beans. I have likewise updated the post too- thanks for the pointer :)

By Gaya on Jun 8, 2010

made this soup few days back and served it with zucchini crown bread. it was very hearty soup. thanks for this wonderful recipe.

By LG on May 14, 2008

Can I come over to have that soup? I am all drooling here..Good one.

By Lisa on May 13, 2008

I was originally going to submit a tortilla soup for your event, but opted instead for those black bean pastries. A must try this. Much better than the recipe for tortilla soup I had planned.

I'm also a purist in the kitchen. Paranoid perhaps, but food just tastes better when you can control all of the steps.

By Mansi Desai on May 13, 2008

its alwasy so much better to make tortilla soup at home as the one you get in mexican restaurants has fish sauce in it:( your soup looks great DK!

By Madhu on May 13, 2008

Now you have made me drool with your soup recipe DK. God you are very patient to do everything right from the scratch. I also bake the tortillas instead of frying, because I'm addicted to deep fried items. If I deep fry, I won't have any left for the soup.

By Vanamala on May 13, 2008

hmmmmmm lovely tempting. I have one recipe in my mind will try to post it in my blog ASAP :)

By Kalai on May 13, 2008

Beautiful and light soup! Lovely entry, Dhivi. :)

By easycrafts on May 13, 2008

I keep wondering how u manage to cook up delicious food in all cuisines

By Lavi on May 13, 2008

Really a tempting Soup DK.

By bee on May 12, 2008

try cutting them into strips and microwaving them on a plate (turn once) for a minute or two. they turn crunchy and there's no need to fry them.

By bee on May 12, 2008

tell me this: if 'tortilla' is pronounced 'tortiya', how should 'vanilla' be pronounced?

By Divya Vikram on May 12, 2008

love tortilla soup..mouthwatering one

By Uma on May 12, 2008

lovely soup, DK! nice instructions as usual.

By giz on May 12, 2008

Mexican cuisine is not something we see alot of here and the more I see it on the blogs, the more I think I've missed a whole experience. The soup looks so good - I especially like the minimizing the sodium and preservative content. The real meaning of healthy food.

By Seema on May 12, 2008

Soup looks yum!! Liked step by step photos.. great!

By Madhu on May 12, 2008

Roasted tomatoes and spicy soup,I love this kind of soup.
Very delicious DK.

By Sukanya Ramkumar on May 12, 2008

Hi DK...
That was again very excellent recipe.... I love the step by step pic of the recipe... The soup really rocks....YUM!...

By Jamie on May 12, 2008

DK, this looks really yummy! By the way, I have tagged you for a Picture MeMe just incase you wanted to participate!

By Asha on May 12, 2008

Delicious!! I make this too, love the spicy soup. I bake the Tortillas until crisp to add. Not that I am skinny or anything because of "baking"! Hahaha!

By Siri on May 12, 2008

Yum Yumm Yummy.. I was drooling over the soup .. now that the weather is rainy and gloomy, the very mention of 'soup' is making me feel warm and cosy..:D.. Its such a simple soup, will definitely make it..:D