Soup for dinner has always been tough for me to sell to my husband. In my opinion a nice bowl of soup with a salad is a perfect dinner – especially when the soup has some type of protein. The best part of making soup for dinner, is rarely can 2 people finish a big pot of soup – and I always seem to have enough for leftovers – or better yet, for the freezer.
When my second daughter was born and I was on maternity leave from work, my quest was to fill the freezer with as many dinners as I possibly could. Whenever I made something that I thought would freeze well – I made a lot. When I finally went back to work, the freezer was packed with so much food – I couldn’t even tell what was in there. I realized then that I made a big mistake…I forgot to label the food. I just assumed I would know by looking at the container what was what – but when you have thirty different containers that all look the same, it is hopeless. For the next few months when I would take something out of the freezer for dinner, it was a game – try and figure out what is in there before it thaws. I actually did ok – but I learned my lesson – now I keep a sharpie and labels in the kitchen for this very purpose.
I saw this recipe in Cooking Light, and decided I needed to start filling the freezer again. This soup was delicious – hearty, yet not too heavy – and the avocado/cilantro relish on top was incredible. It gave the soup an intense flavor and creaminess that was perfect. I can’t wait for the second round out of the freezer!
- 2 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon cracked black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon canola oil, divided
- 1 1/4 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch-wide strips
- 2 cups chopped sweet onion
- 1 cup chopped red bell pepper
- 1 cup chopped green bell pepper
- 1 cup chopped yellow bell pepper
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups fresh corn kernels
- 1 (32-ounce) carton fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
- 1 (28-ounce) can fire-roasted crushed tomatoes, undrained
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1/3 cup chopped green onions
- 1 teaspoon grated lime rind
- 3 ounces queso fresco, crumbled
- 1 diced peeled avocado
- Cilantro sprigs (optional)
To prepare spice blend, combine first 6 ingredients in a small bowl.
To prepare soup, heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick saucepan over medium-high heat. Add chicken; sprinkle 1 1/2 tablespoons spice blend over chicken. Sauté 8 minutes or until done; cool. Chop chicken; set aside.
Heat remaining 1 teaspoon oil in pan over medium-high heat; add onion, bell peppers, garlic, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Sprinkle vegetable mixture with remaining spice blend; sauté 8 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir in chicken, corn, broth, and tomatoes; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 15 minutes. Add lime juice.
To prepare relish, combine chopped cilantro and next 4 ingredients (through avocado).
Ladle 1 1/4 cups soup into bowls; top with 1/4 cup relish. Garnish with cilantro sprigs, if desired.
For a printer-friendly version of this recipe, click here: Chili-spiced chicken soup