March 1, 2021

Spicy Vegan Tortilla Soup

This spicy vegan tortilla soup is packed with flavor and comfort! Made with beans, fire roasted tomatoes, and Mexican spices, then served with crispy tortilla strips, it’s hearty enough for a meal and easy enough for a weeknight.

White Wooden Surface Set with Two Bowls of Vegan Tortilla Soup, Cilantro, Spoons, and Baking Sheet of Tortilla Strips

For the longest time I was intrigued by the idea of tortilla soup. I started seeing it pop up on restaurant menus in the 90’s and it sounded so good…with the beans and veggies and spices and of course, those crispy little tortilla strips. Everything except the chicken, which seemed to be a required ingredient.

Well now I know better. Chicken is never a required ingredient! If I can make vegan chicken noodle soup, vegan chicken salad, and vegan chicken nuggets, I can certainly make vegan tortilla soup.

What You’ll Need

Two Bowls of Vegan Tortilla Soup on a White Wooden Surface with Lime Wedges and Bunch of Fresh Cilantro
  • Olive oil. You can use another high-heat oil if you prefer.
  • Onion.
  • Garlic.
  • Jalapeño pepper. Or leave this out for a milder version.
  • Spices. We’re using cumin, oregano, and sweet paprika.
  • Vegetable broth. I used Better Than Bouillon’s roasted vegetable flavor.
  • Fire roasted tomatoes. Plain old diced tomatoes will work too, but using fire roasted will add smoky flavor to the soup, so I highly recommend it.
  • Beans. The recipe calls for a can of pinto beans and a can of black beans, but you can really use whatever you’ve got on hand — kidney, cannellini, navy beans or lentils would all work well.
  • Corn tortillas.
  • Lime juice. Use fresh — it’s so much better than the bottled stuff!
  • Salt & pepper.
  • Additional toppings. I like fresh cilantro and diced avocado on my vegan tortilla soup. Cashew sour cream, shredded vegan cheese, and scallions would all be nice as well.

How to Make Vegan Tortilla Soup

The following is a detailed photo tutorial on how to make this dish. Scroll down if you’d like to skip right to the recipe!

Make the Soup

  • Heat up some olive oil in a large pot. Give it a minute to get hot, then add diced onion. Cook the onion for about 5 minutes, stirring it often, until it begins to soften up.
  • Now add minced garlic, jalapeño pepper, and your spices. Cook everything with the onion for about a minute more, until the mixture becomes very fragrant.
  • Stir in the broth, tomatoes, and beans.
  • Bring the soup to a boil, then lower the heat and let it simmer for about 30 minutes, until the broth reduces a bit and the beans are very tender.
Collage Showing Steps for Making Vegan Tortilla Soup: Sweat Onions, Add Garlic, Jalapeno and Spices, Add Tomatoes, Broth, and Beans, and Simmer
  • Take the soup off of the burner when it’s done simmering, and stir in some lime juice, along with salt and pepper to taste.
Pot of Vegan Tortilla Soup with Cilantro and Baking Sheet of Tortilla Strips in the Background

Make the Tortilla Strips

  • While the soup simmers, heat up the oven and line a baking sheet with some parchment paper.
  • Slice your corn tortillas into narrow strips (about 1/4 to 1/2 inch wide), brush or spritz both sides with oil, and sprinkle them with salt.
  • Pop the baking sheet into the oven and let the strips bake until the become crispy.
Baked Tortilla Strips on Parchment Paper
  • Ladle your soup into bowls and pile on the strips, along with any other topping you like. Dig in!
Close Up of a Bowl of Vegan Tortilla Soup with a Second Bowl and Bunch of Cilantro in the Background

Vegan Tortilla Soup Tips & FAQ

  • Is this soup gluten-free? It is!
  • Shelf life & storage: Store leftover soup in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 4 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Store leftover tortilla strips in a sealed bag or container at room temperature for up to 5 days.
  • For a quick and easy substitution for the tortilla strips, simply buy tortilla chips and break them into small pieces.
  • Want to add some protein to your tortilla soup? Add some pan-fried seitan, soy curls, or vegan sausage (I think Field Roast’s chipotle flavor would work well).
  • Feel free to add extra veggies to your soup! Fresh veggies like cauliflower or asparagus could be added when you’ve got about 15 minutes of simmer time remaining. Thawed frozen corn or peas could be added at the end of cooking.
  • For a milder version of this soup, leave out the jalapeño pepper. For more heat, add your favorite hot sauce to taste.

Like this recipe? If so, be sure to follow me on Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram, or subscribe to my newsletter. And please stop back and leave me a review and rating below if you make it!

Close Up of a Bowl of Vegan Tortilla Soup with a Second Bowl and Bunch of Cilantro in the Background

Spicy Vegan Tortilla Soup

This spicy vegan tortilla soup is packed with flavor and comfort! Made with beans, fire roasted tomatoes, and Mexican spices, then served with crispy tortilla strips, it’s hearty enough for a meal and easy enough for a weeknight.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes

Servings 4
Calories 333 kcal
Author Alissa Saenz

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus a bit more for the tortilla strips
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 (14 ounce or 400 gram) can fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 (14 ounce or 400 gram) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (14 ounce or 400 gram) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 6 corn tortillas
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Toppings of choice, such as diced avocado and fresh cilantro

Instructions

  1. Coat the bottom of a large pot with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and place it over medium heat.

  2. When the oil is hot, add the onion. Cook the onion for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until it becomes soft and translucent.

  3. Stir in the garlic, jalapeño, cumin, oregano, and paprika. Cook everything, stirring constantly, for about 1 minute, until the mixture becomes very fragrant.

  4. Stir in the broth, tomatoes, black beans, and pinto beans. Raise the heat and bring the mixture to a boil.

  5. Lower the heat and allow the soup to simmer for about 30 minutes, until the beans are very tender and the broth reduces a bit. You can add a bit of water if it reduces too much while cooking.

  6. While the soup simmers, preheat the oven to 400°F and line a couple of baking sheets with parchment paper.

  7. Cut your tortillas into narrow strips, about 1/4 to 1/2 inch wide.

  8. Lightly brush or spray both sides of each tortilla strip with oil, then arrange the strips in a single layer on the baking sheets. Sprinkle them with salt.

  9. Place the baking sheets into the oven and bake the strips until crispy and lightly browned, about 10 minutes.

  10. Place the baking sheets on cooling racks and allow the strips to cool when they’re finished baking.

  11. When the soup has finished simmering, remove the pot from heat and season it with the lime juice, along with some salt and pepper to taste.

  12. Ladle the soup into bowls and top it with tortilla strips and any other toppings you choose. Serve.

Nutrition Facts

Spicy Vegan Tortilla Soup

Amount Per Serving (1.5 cups)

Calories 333 Calories from Fat 59

% Daily Value*

Fat 6.6g10%

Saturated Fat 1g5%

Sodium 452mg19%

Potassium 731mg21%

Carbohydrates 53.1g18%

Fiber 15.9g64%

Sugar 4.9g5%

Protein 16.3g33%

Calcium 106mg11%

Iron 4mg22%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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