Turkey Tortilla Soup with Black Bean Salsa

Turkey Tortilla Soup with Black Bean Soup

Is there anything more comforting than a bowl of soup when you don't feel good? When I was a kid, my mom used to make turkey soup out of Thanksgiving and Christmas leftovers, putting quarts away into the freezer for use throughout the year.

It's been a stressful week. Between my insomnia and my husband's sick-but-not-quite malaise, I think it's time for a bowl of comfort. This soup perfectly fit the bill; it's filling, nicely spicy, thick and delicious.

This recipe originally called for 4 cups of chicken stock and could be prepared in about 30 minutes. We picked up a smoked turkey drumstick at the store the other day and decided to make smoked turkey stock from it for the base.

Turkey Tortilla Soup with Black Bean Salsa [printable recipe]

Adapted from Cuisine at Home's Cuisine Tonight special issue
Makes about 8 cups

  • 4 cups Smoked Turkey Stock or chicken stock
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 3 6" corn tortillas, cut into 1" x 2" strips
  • 1 can diced tomatoes with chiles
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne
  • 2 cups cooked turkey or chicken, shredded or diced
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen corn kernels
  • 1/2 cup cream, or in a pinch, buttermilk
  • 1 cup Monterey Jack or other mild cheese, shredded
  • 1 lime's worth of lime juice
  • 1 recipe Black Bean Salsa (follows)
  • sour cream

Saute onion and garlic in a 2.5qt pot over medium-high heat. Add tortillas and continue to cook until softened, about 2 minutes.

Add tomatoes, broth and spices, then bring to a boil. Remove, let stand for 5 minutes before pureeing with an immersion blender.

Stir in shredded meat, corn and cream and return to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer, allow to simmer until soup begins to thicken, about 5 minutes. Stir in cheese, melt. Add lime juice and taste, adjusting salt and pepper if necessary.

Add in black bean salsa and sour cream to your taste.


  1. If you don't have an immersion blender, puree the soup in batches using a blender or food processor. Be careful not to overfill and watch out for steam.

. . . .

Smoked Turkey Stock [printable recipe]

Makes about 8 cups

  • 1 smoked turkey drumstick, skin on
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 tbsp oregano
  • 1 tbsp basil
  • 1 tsp black pepper (if whole, place into cheesecloth sachet for easy removal)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3.5 - 4 quarts water

Bring all ingredients to a boil in a 5 or 6 qt stock pot. Reduce to a simmer and simmer for 2 hours. Remove turkey leg and strip off meat. Add back the bone and meat, discarding inedible bits. Continue to simmer for another hour. Let cool, strain out leaves, bone and meat.

Reserve meat and 4 cups stock for Turkey Tortilla Soup. Thoroughly chill remainder, skim off any fat, and freeze in portions for later use.

. . . .

This salsa was a hard one for me to make today. I was out of all of the fresh ingredients for salsa: fresh tomatoes, cilantro and peppers with only just enough red onion to squeak by. If you're also in a pinch, try using about half a can of diced tomatoes with chipotle chiles or other peppers. While the salsa would be better with cilantro, it isn't the end of the world to leave it out.

Black Bean Salsa [printable recipe]

Adapted from Cuisine at Home's Cuisine Tonight special issue

  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded, diced OR 1/2 can diced tomatoes with chipotle
  • 1/2 cup red onion, sliced
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 jalapeno, seeded and minced (omit if using canned tomatoes with chiles)
  • 1 lime's worth of lime juice
  • salt, pepper

Combine all, tossing well. Chill until ready to use.