Chili-Spiced Chicken Soup with Stoplight Peppers and Avocado Relish


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!


Spice blend:

  • 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

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5 thoughts on “Chili-Spiced Chicken Soup with Stoplight Peppers and Avocado Relish

  1. I saw this soup in Cooking Light and made it for dinners this week. It was fabulous and very hearty. We got 7 servings out of it. We also sprinkled tortilla chips on top of it. It was delish!

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