Superbowl Sunday is coming up this weekend, and if you’re looking for an easy, crowd-pleasing dish, here’s one you can try for game day. One-pot meals like this are great for crowds because each person can tailor the toppings according to their own tastes, and you can serve it all buffet style.  (See vegetarian option below.)

This soup combines the flavors and textures we all love about tacos, into a hearty soup.  I was inspired to create this dish when I spotted Taco Seasoning Mix on the “new items shelf” at my local TJs.  I’d often wondered why TJ didn’t carry taco seasoning, so when it finally appeared, I had to find a way to use it.  I decided to make a soup rather than regular tacos for two reasons: it’s been raining heavily for weeks, and a soup just felt like the right thing to have for dinner; and also because a soup is easier for my young kids to handle than regular tacos.

I had originally intended to put some jalapeños or chiles into the soup, but decided to wait and see how spicy the taco seasoning was.  Yowza, it has a kick!  The spice level was just perfect for the spice-loving adults at the table, but the kids ended up adding quite a bit of sour cream and yogurt to cut down the heat.  So if you like fiery-hot spices, you could try experimenting with jalapeños or chiles.  But if you prefer mild heat, don’t add any additional spices.

I used chicken, but for a vegetarian version, try substituting Trader Joe’s Chicken-less Strips in the refrigerated section.  It has gotten good reviews, and apparently people really like the flavor AND texture. Please report back and let us know how you like it!

Offer guests any combination of toppings you’d like. I think the one that is mandatory is tortilla chips!

Taco Soup Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 (approx 1.3 lb) pkg boneless chicken breasts or thighs, or 1 pkg Chicken-less Strips (vegan/vegetarian option)
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 pkg Taco Seasoning Mix
  • 1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes
  • 2 (15 oz) cans black beans
  • 1 (15 oz) can corn, or 1 1/2 cups frozen corn
  • 2 cups chicken broth or vegetable broth (optional; omit for a thicker stew)

Your choice of toppings:

Tortilla chips
Fresh cilantro
Sour cream
Shredded cheese
Avocado
Fresh chopped tomatoes
Chopped green onions or red onions
Jalapeños or chiles

Instructions

  1. In a large pot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat.  Cook onions for 5 minutes, or until softened.
  2. Add remaining ingredients and heat to boiling.  Cover, reduce heat to low, and cook for 1 hour.
  3. Remove chicken, shred, and return to pot.  Stir and heat through before serving.

Prep time: 15 minutes
Hands-off cooking time: 1 hour
Serves 6-8

Slow cooker method: Place all ingredients into a crockpot and cook for 5-6 hours on low setting.  Remove chicken, shred, and return to crockpot.  Stir and heat through before serving.