For those who know me personally, you know that my life has gone from zero to 180 in just the last few weeks. Well, okay, with five kids maybe I was never at zero, but comparatively speaking it certainly feels that way. This week I spent five days at my kids school subbing for a 2nd grade teacher out with pneumonia. Unfortunately, the principal side-effect to being in a confined space with more than a dozen seven year olds this time of the year is being exposed to and potentially succumbing to major germ overload. By Wednesday I was starting to feel it, by Thursday I was fighting illness full force and praying that I would be able to make it through Friday. Not only did I make it through my day, I also stepped in for a 3rd grade teacher and worked with her afterschool kids through a scrapbooking project then was requested to chaperone and gladly joined in on the 5th grade bowling party from 5:30-7:30 this evening. So for 12 hours straight, I managed to teach, lead and supervise students of all levels. And you know what? I had a blast!
Needless to say though, I am pooped.
Regardless of my exhaustion, I still had 7 other people to feed and keep happy on a nightly basis. With fall blissfully upon us, chilly evenings coupled with a cold skirmishing its way into my sinus cavities, a nice hot bowl of soup seemed to offer the most ideal solution.
Every mother, every person really, needs that one go-to recipe for those nights when you have no energy to fix a meal, have no desire (or ability) to order fast food (after seeing this article, I am unsure if I would want to even if I could) yet is filled with nutrition and positively delicious to boot.
The basis for this recipe came to me from a woman I attended church with in California. For several weeks after having back surgery, nearly three years ago, I was blessed to have meals brought to my home which made certain my family was taken care of when I could not provide. Since this time, I have perfected this recipe to meet the dietary needs of my family in full (including mild adjustments required to keep it gluten free) and I still find that no matter how often I make this, we enjoy it just as much today as we did the first time we tasted it years ago.
As you can see, this soup is loaded with bright, beautiful vegetables contrasted with nutritious black beans and topped with just a smidge of dairy free cheese. But do you know what the best part of this recipe is? The five minute prep time.
That’s right, five minutes. And frankly, that’s being generous. Still, given the gourmet quality of this soup, your family will be none the wiser. Sit back, savor and enjoy!
Note: this recipe makes 10-12 generous servings and can easily be cut in ½ for your smaller family.
Easy Tortilla Soup (Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Soy Free)
2- 32 oz containers Gluten Free, MSG Free Chicken Stock
2 lb Diced Pre-cooked Chicken (those pesky left-over’s are perfect for this!)
1- 16 oz can unseasoned Black Beans
1.5 c frozen or 1- 16 oz can Corn (salt-free)
1.5 c frozen or 1- 16 oz can Green Beans (salt-free)
2- 10 oz cans Diced Tomatoes &Green Chilies or 1- 16 oz jar Chunky Salsa
1-2 c Crushed Corn Tortilla Chips
In large stock pot heat stock, chicken, black beans, corn, green beans and tomatoes or salsa together, stirring occasionally until rolling boil has been achieved. Immediately before serving, top each bowl with desired amount of cheese and crushed tortilla chips. Serve and enjoy!
It is important to wait until immediately before serving to sprinkle the tortilla chips on as they will quickly become soggy bits in the hot broth of this soup. Avocado is also a wonderful addition to this soup, though I was half way through my bowl before I stopped to think about adding some to this batch (an immediate side-effect of my groggy state of being I’m sure). ..Still, this soup is just as gourmet without the creamy green addition!
The ingredients in this soup happen to be key elements to our food storage, meaning I always have what I need on hand. Truly this makes for the perfect go-to recipe for my family; I hope you find it quickly to be one of yours as well.
Have a great week!