If you need a new soup recipe to try, this King Ranch Chicken Soup hits the spot! Chicken, seasonings, cheese, and all your other favorite flavors make this a 10/10 dish every time.
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Healthy King Ranch Chicken Soup
This King Ranch Chicken Soup is a spin on the classic and famous casserole dish by the same name! If you’ve never had it before (the horror!!), King Ranch Chicken Casserole is a cheesy chicken casserole. It’s usually spicy, although whether it’s mild or explosive depends on the cook, of course. 😉
King Ranch Casserole is a common Tex-Mex dish … it’s so common that I’m pretty sure it’s at EVERY Texan get-together. It’s both filling and delicious, and I knew it would make a perfect soup, too. This creamy chicken soup recipe has all the same great flavors in a liquid form!
Even though it’s now summer, I look forward to enjoying a warm bowl of soup on a cold night. Who doesn’t?! Of course, you don’t have to wait until winter to enjoy a bowl of this delicious, special soup recipe.
I always love taking old recipes and turning them into something new, like this soup! I hope you enjoy this King Ranch Chicken Soup!
King Ranch Chicken Soup: Ingredients & Equipment
To make this special soup recipe, you’ll need …
- vegetable oil – to saute some of your veggies at the beginning of the recipe.
- onion, celery, garlic, and tomatoes – the base veggies of King Ranch Chicken Soup. The onion and garlic also provide a lot of flavors!
- chicken broth – this is, well, your soup’s liquid! Or the start of it, anyway!!
- chicken – your meat. You’ll want to get boneless chicken breasts and cube them.
- chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper – your spices- they provide a little heat (and a lot of flavors) to your soup.
- green chilies, Tabasco sauce – more flavor and heat for the soup!
- cream cheese, half and half, Velveeta – these provide the cheesy goodness in your King Ranch Chicken Soup. If you’ve had King Ranch Chicken Casserole before (and I’m sure you have), you know EXACTLY what I’m talking about!
- avocado, tomato, red onion, and lime juice – for your avocado and tomato salsa! A perfect topping for a perfect soup.
- crispy tortilla strips – another topping. Optional, but provides a satisfying crunch in King Ranch Soup.
- small bowl – at the beginning of the recipe, you’ll want to put away your salsa in a small bowl to refrigerate until you’re ready to serve the soup.
- soup pot – for mixing and cooking your creamy King Ranch Chicken Soup!
King Ranch Soup: FAQs
About 6-8 bowls depending on how much you give each person (or yourself)!!
A little over an hour. You’ll need to put aside about 45 minutes to cook it, and 20 minutes to prep the ingredients.
Yes! I recommend it since you can get Rotel based on how much heat you like. (For those not in the know, Rotel is canned green chilies and diced tomatoes. You can always go fresh with those veggies, however!)
I prefer to use low-sodium so I don’t have to be nervous that saltiness will overtake the rest of the recipe!
Use jalapenos! And if that’s still not enough, keep the seeds in the jalapenos for a super spicy King Ranch Chicken Soup. You can pump up the heat in this soup to the level you love. You can also add more Tabasco at the table if you have people who enjoy varying degrees of heat so the people who prefer it more mild aren’t overwhelmed with spice or heat! 😉
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For the soup
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 stalk of celery, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 chicken boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite sized cubes
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1 can (15 oz.) crushed tomatoes, undrained
- 1 carton (32 oz.) chicken broth
- 1 can (4.5 oz.) chopped green chilies
- a few shakes of Tabasco (more if you like it hotter)
- 2 cups half and half
- 2 cups (8 oz.) Velveeta cheese, cut into small cubes
- 4 ounces cream cheese, cubed and at room temperature
Topping - Avocado and Tomato Salsa
- 1/2 avocado - cubed
- 1 large Roma tomato - chopped
- 1/4 cup red onion, chopped
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
Additional ingredient for serving
- crispy tortilla strips
- Combine the Avocado and Tomato Salsa topping ingredients in a small bowl and refrigerate until serving time.
- Heat the oil in a soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion, celery, and garlic. Cook until the vegetables begin to soften.
- Add the chicken and sprinkle with chili powder, cumin, salt, and pepper. Cook and stir until the chicken begins to brown and is no longer pink.
- Add the tomatoes, chicken broth, green chilies, and Tabasco. Stir. Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to medium-low and let simmer for 15-20 minutes.
- Add the half and half and Velveeta. Cook and stir until the cheese melts.
- Add the cream cheese and continue to cook and stir until the cream cheese melts and is fully incorporated.
- To serve, ladle the soup into bowls. Top with crispy tortilla strips and a spoon (or two) of the Avocado and Tomato Salsa!
- For the crispy tortilla strips, you can buy them premade or easily make them yourself. Cut flour or corn tortilla into small, thin strips and quickly fry them in oil until crispy. Move them to a paper towel-lined plate to cool.
- If you prefer a spicier soup, add some jalapenos! And if you like it really spicy - keep the seeds and membranes in the jalapenos for a super spicy soup.
- You can also add more Tabasco at the table if you have people who enjoy varying degrees of heat so the people who prefer it more mild aren't overwhelmed with spice or heat! 😉
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Pyrex Glass Mixing Bowl Set (3-Piece)
Silicone Spatula Set of 4
Oversized Cutting Board, 3 Piece, Non-Slip, Extra Large Thick Chopping Boards, Dishwasher Safe, Non-Porous, Set of 3
Chef Knife - 8 Inches
Stainless Steel Measuring Cups - 5 Piece Stackable Measuring Set
Stainless Steel Metal Measuring Spoons, Fits in Spice Jar, Set of 6 with bonus Leveler
Calphalon 5-Piece Nylon Kitchen Cooking Utensil Set
6-Qt. Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 425Total Fat: 27gSaturated Fat: 12gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 102mgSodium: 460mgCarbohydrates: 24gFiber: 2gSugar: 18gProtein: 23g
Please note that the nutritional information listed on this page is an estimation based on the products I used. Ingredients and nutritional information can vary significantly between brands. Always be sure to read labels. Please verify that a recipe fits your needs before using it. Nutrition info may contain errors, so please verify it independently. Likewise, recipes may contain errors, so please use your common sense when following them.
Originally published on August 19, 2013. Updated on June 29, 2022.