Low-fat Chicken Tortilla Soup

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Dear Jeanne,

This soup is so good. Can you make it less fattening? — Julie, San Antonio



1/4 cup oil

1 onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic

2 tablespoons flour

1 packet taco seasoning

3 cans (14 ounces) chicken broth

4 cups half-and-half

1 can (10.75 ounces) cream of chicken soup

1 can (15 ounces) creamed corn

1 cup salsa

6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and shredded

1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

16 ounces tortilla chips

8 ounces shredded Monterey Jack cheese

Additional cilantro, for garnish


Heat the oil, and saute the onion and garlic in it for 5 minutes. Add the flour and cook for 1 minute. Add the taco seasoning, then add the broth and half-and-half. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low. Add the soup, corn, salsa, chicken and cilantro. Bring to a boil and simmer for 15 minutes. To serve, crumble the tortilla chips into 8 bowls, then add the soup. Top the soup with more tortilla chips, the Monterey Jack cheese and the additional cilantro.

Makes 8 servings.


Dear Julie,

This is a different version from the usual chicken-broth-and-tomato-base type, as it has the addition of half-and-half. It will make a nice change from the typical tortilla soup, and it’s delicious! Of course, I added a few vegetables, so I actually made more soup than the original recipe.



8 corn tortillas

1 tablespoon canola oil

1 onion, chopped

5 cups fat-free chicken broth

2 carrots, finely chopped or grated

3 cloves garlic, pressed or minced

2 zucchini, finely chopped or grated

2 cups salsa

2 teaspoons ground cumin

1 tablespoon chili powder

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 cups corn kernels, thawed if frozen

1 1/2 cups cooked black beans

3 tablespoons cornstarch

1/4 cup cold water

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and shredded

1/2 cup cilantro, chopped

4 cups fat-free half-and-half

4 ounces reduced-fat Monterey Jack cheese, grated



1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Slice 6 of the tortillas into 1/4-inch-wide strips. Place on a baking sheet and bake for about 4 minutes; turn and cook another 4 minutes, until crispy. Cool. Cut the remaining two tortillas, then dice the strips so that you have very small squares. Set aside.

2. In a large soup pot, heat the canola oil over medium-high heat, and saute the onion for 4 minutes, adding some of the chicken broth if necessary to avoid scorching. Add the carrots and garlic, and cook for 5 minutes. Add the zucchini and cook another 2 minutes, adding chicken broth as needed. Add the diced tortilla, cover with broth and cook another 2 minutes.

3. Add the rest of the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Add the salsa, cumin, chili powder, black pepper, corn and black beans. Return to a boil.

4. Combine the cornstarch and water, and add to the pot, stirring constantly, until it boils and thickens. Add the chicken and half of the cilantro, and heat through. Add the half-and-half and heat to serving temperature.

5. Serve topped with tortilla strips, the remaining cilantro and the Monterey Jack cheese.

Makes 10 servings.


Each serving contains approximately: Original Recipe: 850 calories; 45 gm fat; 174 mg cholesterol; 1,758 mg sodium; 52 gm carbohydrates; 60 gm protein; 5 gm fiber. Revised Recipe: 335 calories; 5 gm fat; 30 mg cholesterol; 471 mg sodium; 46 gm carbohydrates; 21 gm protein; 8 gm fiber.

By |August 28th, 2013|

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