It’s soup time! Soup weather is the best weather, do you agree? Soup is one of my favorite things to cook because it’s easy and filling, and can most of the time be made in just a few minutes. Homemade Cafe Rio Chicken Tortilla Soup is one of our favorites!

Homemade Cafe Rio Chicken Tortilla Soup
Homemade Cafe Rio Chicken Tortilla Soup

I love the flavors in Cafe Rio’s Chicken Tortilla Soup. It’s packed with veggies and chicken and is made with a simple chicken broth base. The tomatoes in the Rotel give this soup a nice flavor as well. I experimented with lots of white chili, and tortilla soup recipes (also using Cafe Rio’s soup as a model) before finding the perfect combo for this Homemade Cafe Rio Chicken Tortilla Soup.  If you love the flavor of Cafe Rio’s soup,  add a scoop of guac to this recipe  just before serving. Do not make this soup unless you have grated cheese and tortilla chips to pile on top of the soup!  That’s the only way to eat it, in my opinion. Oh, and a  squeeze of fresh lime!

Homemade Cafe Rio Chicken Tortilla Soup

Making this soup is so simple and stands alone as the perfect main dish on a cold evening, or is also perfect as a side dish for a Mexican style meal! One recipe serves 8 as a main dish.

If you serve this as a side dish, it will serve approximately 12  in small bowls. I love to serve this with a simple cheesy quesadilla or chips, guac and salsa. I  don’t know a single person who doesn’t love this soup. My grandkids eat it often, and my daughter Corrine loves to make it because it’s a quick and easy dinner after a busy day of work!

Homemade Cafe Rio Chicken Tortilla Soup

Interested in making more copycat Cafe Rio recipes?

Mexican Chicken Tortilla Soup

5 from 10 votes
Author: Si Foster
Course: main
Cuisine: Mexican
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 8 people


  • 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 chicken breast halves, skinless, boneless
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 whole large sweet onion, chopped, about 2 cups
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped carrots
  • 1 4 oz can chopped mild green chilies
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 can Rotel brand tomato, lime juice and cilantro
  • 1 14 oz can small white beans
  • 1 quart chicken broth
  • 3 teaspoons chicken flavoring , I use Knorr Brand or Better than Bullion or bullion granules or cubes may be used
  • 1-2 cups frozen corn
  • 1 fresh lime, juice
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped

Serve with guac, sour cream, grated cheese and tortilla chips.


    • Heat olive oil in pan over medium heat. Add chicken and cook until light brown on both sides, about 2 minutes per side.  Season with salt and pepper while cooking. 
    • Add 3 cups cold water to pan, cover and simmer chicken on medium high heat until cooked through, about 8  minutes. Remove chicken and set aside.
    • In same pan, add onion,carrots, chilies, garlic, cumin and Rotel to juices, and add enough broth from carton until vegetables are covered. Simmer for about 10 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. 
    • Chop the chicken. Add chicken, beans, corn and fresh lime juice to vegetable mixture in pan with remaining broth. If additional chicken flavor is needed, add some chicken flavoring to taste. Salt and Pepper. Garnish with fresh cilantro.
    • Serve with tortilla chips, guac, grated cheese, sour cream. 

    Did you make this recipe?

    Be sure to leave a comment and give this recipe a rating, letting me know how you liked it. I’d love to see a photo, tag @abountifulkitchen on Instagram!