Instant Pot chicken tortilla soup has all the juicy ingredients, warming spices and crunch factor you want from a taco but in a soup form! It’s an unbeatable winner when it comes to record-breaking cook time (10 mins) and skimpy washing up. A speedy and delicious twist on taco night.
Add fish tacos with blackberry chilli lime salsa to your alternative taco repertoire. This huge hit with my family is fresh, flavoursome and off the wall.
Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe
Chicken tortilla soup is a super fun fiesta in a bowl and everyone is invited. Alive with colour, flavour, protein and POW!
Not everyone makes it the same way, so there’s room for variation if you want to put your own stamp on it. My signature is the addition of chorizo sausages. They are packed with sweet pork and smoky paprika and the fat is perfect for sautéing the onion, peppers and garlic. Plus, it brings a natural orange glow.
You can turbo charge yours with more chilli powder, or even use fresh chillies. Mine is balanced for my family’s own taste and leans towards smoky rather than explosive.
I use chicken breast and chicken stock. If you have bone broth, great! And if you prefer thighs, that’s fine too.
I like canned black beans and frozen corn for maximum convenience. I’d also use kidney beans if that was all I had in the cupboard, or fresh corn if there was any in the fridge.
The beauty of this soup lies in its flavour and simplicity! Don’t over think it!
Instant Pot Soup
What an invention! Just when you think soup making couldn’t be easier, boom! Enter the Instant Pot. Instant Pot, aka pressure cooker or slow cooker, means that not only is your meal cooked in one pan, but you don’t even need to stand there at the stove. It’s a time-saving, energy-saving (in more ways than one), easy-to-use miracle machine.
Standing stove-side, this chicken soup recipe would take 45 minutes to cook. Compare that to Instant Pot’s 10 minutes. It’s a revelation for busy people like me. Other super convenient and cosy Instant Pot soups like cheesy potato soup or Thai chicken and rice soup are just as hassle-free.
Homemade Crispy Tortilla
The Mexican equivalent of the French crouton, crispy tortillas bring a pleasing crackle and snap to this lush soup recipe. I don’t know about you, but I find a crunchy tortilla irresistible. Don’t skip them!
I am not keen on frying in my house and actively look for ways to avoid it. To make my crispy tortillas, I cut the soft corn tortillas into quarters, lay them on a baking tray, brush with olive oil and bake in the oven for 10 minutes.
The traditional way to make them for this soup is to shallow fry in oil, but my method is so much easier and gets a similar, healthier crunch. If even that seems a stage too many for such a low-maintenance meal, you can’t judge a store-bought tortilla chip!
Recipe Tips and Notes
- An Instant Pot is a fuss-free, time-friendly soup-making lifesaver! This chicken soup cooks in 10 minutes. It does take the Instant Pot 10-15 minutes to come to pressure and using the natural pressure release adds another 15-20, but this is time well used! I prep my tortillas while the soup is in the pot. And honestly the soup massively benefits from a slow steep while the pressure is releasing. It is perfectly fine to use the manual release if you’re pushed for time though.
- The chorizo-flavoured sausages lay a spicy and smoky foundation for this soup. Chorizo and chicken are a winning combo.
- I’ve used chicken breasts as they are easiest to shred. You could also use boneless thighs if you prefer. Whichever you choose, make sure they are skinless.
- We usually have leftover rice in the fridge and this is a great added extra for making the soup more filling and stretching further. I add one cup of warmed up rice just before serving. It absorbs so much flavour and gives good bite too.
- I’ve baked some soft tortillas for crunch on the side, but fresh floury ones are just as good.
Once you’ve served the soup, everyone can pimp their own. I put a few little bowls out containing:
- Sour cream or Greek yoghurt. A healthy dollop can dampen the chilli factor for those who can’t tolerate it.
- Grated cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese. If you’re a fan of cheese in your taco, why not a sprinkling on your tortilla soup?
- Oil-brushed and baked fresh corn or flour tortillas, or tortilla chips for some croutony-crunch.
- Guacamole. If you have the tortillas, it would be rude not to invite some avo to the party, right?
- Sliced Green Onion for a bit of heat and freshness.
- Cilantro (coriander UK) and lime wedges They give a vivid pop of green and a fresh zing.
- Hunks of fresh sourdough, especially if you skip the rice and tortillas.
Storage and leftovers
Any leftovers will keep covered in the fridge (minus the tortillas) for 2-3 days. The spices will have developed, so you might be wanting that dollop of sour cream now.
This chicken soup is also a good freezer. Again, minus the tortillas, store in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months. When you’re ready for it, thaw in the fridge overnight and then reheat on the hob.
More Mexican recipes to try
- Queso Fundido with Chorizo
- Chicken Chilaquiles with Warm Corn Salsa
- Best Taco Meat Recipe (With Homemade Spice Mix)
- Stuffed Pepper Soup
Instant Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup
- 1 This is an affiliate link.Instant Pot
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 chorizo sausages casings removed
- 1 onion
- 2 bell peppers any colour
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 tbsp cumin
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- ½ tsp oregano
- ½ tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp chipotle paste
- 400g / 14 oz canned chopped tomatoes with juices
- 400g / 14 oz canned black beans
- 165g/1 cup frozen corn or canned corn
- 1 litre / 4 cups chicken stock
- 2 chicken breasts
- 3 small corn tortillas or a handful of tortilla chips
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 cup cooked rice (optional)
- Chop the onion and bell peppers. Set the Instant Pot into a Saute mode and add the olive oil, then bring in the chorizo sausage and break it up into chunks with a spatula, brown until cooked.
- Add the chopped onions and bell peppers and cook until slightly softened for about 5 minutes. If they start to burn, deglaze with ¼ cup of the chicken stock. Then add the minced garlic and all spices listed, stir to coat.
- Pour in the canned tomatoes together with the juices, drained black beans, corn (can be still frozen), 2 whole chicken breasts, chicken stock and 1 tsp of salt.
- Cook on manual at hight pressure for 10 min. Once the time is up, allow for a natural release, which will take between 15-20 minutes. Open the Instant Pot and take out the chicken breasts, shred them with two forks and return to the pot. Stir to combine.
- While the soup is cooking, preheat the oven to 180C/350F, cut the corn tortillas in quarters and toss with the olive oil. Arrange for a baking sheet in a single layer and bake for 10 minutes till crispy. Once done, remove from the baking sheet immediately or they will continue cooking and will burn.
- Serve the soup topped with sliced green onions, sour cream, chopped cilantro (coriander), crispy tortilla and and a scoop of cooked rice if desired.