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The Perfect Winter Crockpot Dinner – Homemade Chicken Tortilla Soup

Snow Winter in the Ozarks 3

Once the cold weather descended upon us last week, a cooking mood took hold. I was craving hearty, filling comfort foods. Thus, I began scouring my soup recipes. Is your recipe box like mine? I have many tried and true recipes I can create knowing my family will enjoy. Then I have the new to me recipes, you know the ones you’ve pulled from old magazines or someone has lovingly passed along to you. I decide to try a new-to-me-recipe. Then after a quick glance at the recipe, I knew I didn’t have all the fresh ingredients the original recipe called for so I decided to do a bit of roughing it and pulling it all together with the items I had on hand or out-right substituting a few ingredients. You know what. My Chicken Tortilla Soup turned out fine and hit the spot on a cold day here in the Ozark’s.

tortilla  santa fe  soup 2

Chicken Tortilla Soup Ingredients: Keep in mind this recipe is all about using the ingredients you have on hand in YOUR kitchen, so think outside the box

2 thawed boneless chicken breasts. However, you can certainly use a precooked roasted chicken or leftovers.

1 tsp Chili Powder, maybe a bit more.

1/2 tsp Garlic Powder or 1 clove of crushed and chopped garlic

1/2 tsp Salt

Black Pepper

Olive Oil to coat the skillet before placing the chicken in to cook.

I rinsed and patted dry my chicken breasts, then sprinkled the above ingredient over both sides. Then coat the bottom of your skillet with a thin layer of olive oil and bring oil in the pan to a medium heat. Once the pan is warm I added my chicken and then placed the lid on the pan. Allow the chicken to cook through and don’t forget to turn to brown on both sides.

Once the chicken is cooked through, turn the pan off and remove the chicken to a plate to cool so you can shred or chop into bite-size pieces.

Now place the same skillet back on the stove at med heat.

Add in the following ingredients:

1 can of Rotel Diced Tomatoes and Green Chilies

1 can of Chicken Stock

2 or 3 good dollops of Tomato Paste

A hand full of diced peppers 1/2 cup or so, depending upon if your family likes peppers.

3/4 cup or heaping hand full of chopped onion. If you don’t have fresh use dehydrated onions.

1 clove minced and chopped garlic or use dehydrated garlic.

1 can of beans, rinsed. It called for black beans but I used pinto beans and I’m sure white beans would be great.

I added in 1 can of drained baby corn or sweet corn.

3 or 4 tablespoons of cornmeal. Don’t have corn meal, do you have a box of cornbread mix? Add the cornmeal to a small bowl with a 1/2 cup of water and lit sit for just a few moments, then add into the soup pan.

Add in 3-4 cups of water. I like my soup thicker so I add my water in slowly as needed so I don’t create a soup so thin you need a straw.

Now add in your shredded or diced chicken.

Give it a good stir and place the lid on and turn the heat down to medium-low to a simmer and turn into yummy goodness for about 30 minutes. Then remove the lid and simmer on low for another 30 minutes and make sure you stir as well as check the liquid consistency, you may need to add more water. Also, make sure you taste test often to ensure you have the correct amount of spices, salt, pepper, chili powder, etc.

**Note this recipe can be made in the crock pot as well. Place all of the ingredients into the crockpot starting with the wet ingredients into bottom of the crockpot.

Once the aroma is driving everyone crazy it’s time to ladle into a soup bowl and top off with your favorite topping such as tortilla strips, cheese, sour cream, olives.

I didn’t have packaged tortillas on hand that day, so… I used the next best thing. I used my tortilla strips salad topping to top off my soup and it worked like a charm.

tortilla  santa fe  soup 1

Seriously this didn’t last long, what we didn’t finish for dinner, my son in law took home with him.

tortilla  santa fe  soup bowl

Does our family have a favorite comfort food you prepare in the winter months? Let me know in the comments below.

The only thing missing was a warm homemade cinnamon roll. That’s ok my hips didn’t need it anyway.

Let winter begin!

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