Tortilla Soup

First Step...

Machaca Chicken Ingredients

  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breast, leg, or thigh
  • 1/2 cup diced yellow onion
  • 1/2 cup medium diced green bell peppers
  • 1/4 cup roughly chopped cilantro leaves
  • 2 teaspoons oregano leaves
  • I've started using a little epazote maybe a teaspoon, not too much as it's strong. In addition to the rest of the herbs, it lends a really good flavor to the stock
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped garlic
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons white pepper
  • 4 cups water

What To Do With Them...

This machaca-style cooked meat is very versatile, you can use it in tacos, enchiladas, soup, nachos, burritos, etc. Basically a process of braising, all of the ingredients are put together in a large pot and brought slowly to a boil. Then reduce the heat and simmer for 1 to 1 1/2 hours. If you desire you can bake all of this in a covered dish in a 350-degree oven for about 3 hours for the same results. The meat should be tender to the point where it begins to shred when stabbed with a fork. Some of it may require quick chopping.

Next Step...Make the Soup

Make the machaca chicken recipe above before preparing the ingredients for the soup.


  • 1/2 cup each, 1/2 inch diced vegetables: yellow onion, green bell pepper, red bell pepper, and tomato
  • 1/2 cup roasted green chile cut into a small dice
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil plus more for frying
  • 4 cups of the machaca chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped garlic
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 lb machaca chicken
  • White corn tortillas cut into 1/4-inch wide strips
  • Blue corn tortillas cut into 1/4-inch wide strips
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons masa
  • Chopped cilantro leaves as needed
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • salt as needed
  • 1 cup crushed corn tortilla chips
  • 1 ripe avocado sliced

What To Do With Them...

  1. Begin with a large pot, saute the vegetables and chile briefly in about 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil over medium-high heat for 3 to 4 minutes
  2. When the vegetables are limp, add the broth and add garlic and cumin and bring to a boil
  3. Reduce heat and add chicken. Simmer for 10 to 15 minutes
  4. Meanwhile or beforehand, fry the corn tortilla strips in 350º oil for 2 minutes until crispy, then drain well on paper towels
  5. With the cornstarch in a cup-sized container, mix as little cold water as possible to form a thin paste. Bring the soup back up to a boil. Stir with 1 hand and pour the slurry in slowly with the other.
  6. Continue to cook on high heat for a minute, then reduce to low. The soup will look cloudy at first but will clear up and thicken slightly. Do the same with the masa for a nice corn flavor.
  7. Remove from heat, and add cilantro and lime juice
  8. Fill 8 to 12 cups or bowls about 1/4 full of crushed tortilla chips, then ladle the soup on top. Place a handful of strips on top of each, garnish with avocado slices and cilantro and serve