Mexican Soups & Stews

Filled with earthy chiles, slow-braised meats, and beans aplenty, our favorite soups and stews from south of the border

Some say the soul of Mexico is in the soups of the streets and the markets. These recipes represent some of the best bowls to be found south of the border—be they streetwise, hearth-made, or fine dining variations. Whether classic comfort food or a modern take from one of the Latin culinary world's leading chefs, there is a warming restorative here to suit any taste. From a creamy chilled avocado soup to a bright and sour Lime Soup, all the way to earthy, slow-cooked stews of tender beans and succulent meats, it's time to say Olé to soup night!

For more on Mexico's brothy wonders, see: Soup Country
For more authentic Mexican recipes, such as enchiladas, tacos, salsas, and desserts, see: 50 Authentic Mexican Recipes

Mexican Chicken Tortilla Soup (Sopa Azteca)
Mexican Chicken Tortilla Soup (Sopa Azteca)
This simple pasilla chile- and tomato-based soup is ladled onto tortilla chips and topped with creamy avocado, jack cheese, and tangy Mexican crema. Get the recipe for Mexican Chicken Tortilla Soup (Sopa Azteca) »Farideh Sadeghin
Fava Bean Soup (Sopa de Habas)
Fava Bean Soup (Sopa de Habas)
This Mexican soup gets its flavor from an aromatic base of tomatoes, garlic, and onions—called a recado—that is puréed and fried before the beans go into the pot.Todd Coleman
Jalisco-Style Goat Stew (Goat Birria)
Jalisco-Style Goat Stew (Goat Birria)
A low-and-slow cooking technique used for this birria, which colloquially means "a mess," ensures that the meat is fork-tender and the tomatillo broth infused with a rich, meaty flavor. Swap pork for goat, if you prefer. Get the recipe for Jalisco-Style Goat Stew (Goat Birria) »Dylan + Jeni
Pork in Red Chile Sauce (Asado de Bodas)
Pork in Red Chile Sauce (Asado de Bodas)
This sumptuous stew—often served at Mexican weddings (its name translates to Wedding Roast)—makes a satisfying supper when paired with Mexican rice, pinto beans, and tortillas.Todd Coleman
Potato and Leek Soup (Sopa de Poro y Papa)
Potato and Leek Soup (Sopa de Poro y Papa)
This creamy, rich soup is a favorite in Mexico City. In summer it's usually chilled like a vichyssoise, but it's also served hot, especially in the cooler months.James Oseland
Blackened Chile–Chocolate Soup (Chile Ancho Sopa de Chocolate)
Blackened Chile–Chocolate Soup (Chile Ancho Sopa de Chocolate)
Inspired by Mexico's robust moles, this smooth soup—made with blackened peppers, onions, and tomatoes, and enriched with semisweet chocolate—is served with an array of garnishes.Yossy Arefi
Beef and Guajillo Chile Stew (Caldo de Res)
Beef and Guajillo Chile Stew (Caldo de Res)
Infused with smoky guajillo chiles, this nourishing, slow-cooked stew can be made made with various tough cuts of beef, but we found oxtails to be the most flavorful choice. Served with rice, this dish is a favorite meal across Mexico.Todd Coleman
Rebocado (Pork Neck and Purslane Stew)
Rebocado (Pork Neck and Purslane Stew)
This slow-cooked stew of pork, chiles, and peppery purslane is best eaten with warm flour tortillas.Todd Coleman
Pork Ribs in Tomatillo Sauce (Costillas de Puerco en Salsa Verde)
Pork Ribs in Tomatillo Sauce (Costillas de Puerco en Salsa Verde)
A spicy, fruity tomatillo sauce offsets the richness of bone-in pork ribs in this luscious dish from the state of Puebla.Todd Coleman
Chicken and Potato Stew (Guisada al Pollo)
Chicken and Potato Stew (Guisada al Pollo)
Hearty and filling, this easy chicken stew gets its signature smoky flavor from chipotles in adobo.Todd Coleman
Frijolles de Olla (Stewed "Pot" Beans)
Frijolles de Olla (Stewed "Pot" Beans)
These stewed pinto beans can be eaten with tortillas for a light meal, or as a side dish for many roasted or grilled meats.Penny de los Santos
Stewed Beans With Pico de Gallo (Frijoles de la Olla)
Stewed Beans With Pico de Gallo (Frijoles de la Olla)
A fresh tomato and jalapeño salsa tops tender soupy pinto beans in this hearty Mexican dish; serve it with warm tortillas and crumbled cotija cheese.Todd Coleman
Black Bean Soup (Sopa de Frijol)
Black Bean Soup (Sopa de Frijol)
This long-simmered soup matches spiced black beans with a roasted tomato puree.James Oseland
Sopa de Fideo (Mexican Noodle Soup)
Sopa de Fideo (Mexican Noodle Soup)
The thin vermicelli-like noodles called fideos add starch and body to this elemental tomato soup from Patricia Quintana, chef-owner of Izote restaurant in Mexico City.Todd Coleman
Chilled Avocado Soup (Sopa Fria de Aguacate)
Chilled Avocado Soup (Sopa Fria de Aguacate)
Brightened with chiles and lime juice, this silky avocado soup gets an added dose of richness from heavy cream.James Oseland
Lime Soup (Sopa de Lima)
Lime Soup (Sopa de Lima)
Similar to tortilla soup, this version is sour from lots of whole limes in the broth and garnish; roasted habañero chiles add smoky heat to this bright soup.James Oseland
Tortilla Soup (Sopa de Tortilla)
Tortilla Soup (Sopa de Tortilla)
This inventive take on tortilla soup from celebrated Mexican chef Martha Ortiz is garnished with silky goat cheese and crispy pork rinds.James Oseland
Ancho Chile Soup with Avocado, Crema, and Chile Pasilla (Sopa de Chile Ancho)
Ancho Chile Soup with Avocado, Crema, and Chile Pasilla (Sopa de Chile Ancho)
The heat of this deep-red ancho chile soup and its pasilla chile garnish is balanced by the addition of cooling crema and thinly sliced avocado.James Oseland
Squash Blossom Soup (Caldo Xochitl con Flor de Calabaza)
Squash Blossom Soup (Caldo Xochitl con Flor de Calabaza)
Mexico's soups are famous for their freshness and simplicity. This one marries delicate squash blossoms with chiles, queso fresco, and shredded chicken in an enriched chicken broth.James Oseland
Poblano Chile Soup (Sopa de Chile Poblano)
Poblano Chile Soup (Sopa de Chile Poblano)
Sweet roasted poblano chiles add smoky depth to this soup made with spinach and enriched with cream.James Oseland
Nopales and Tomatillo Stew (Sopa de Nopal)
Nopales (Cactus) and Tomatillo Stew (Sopa de Nopal)
This cactus, tomatillo, and potato stew from Mexico City home cook Susana Rangel Gutierrez is flavored with crisp pork rinds, which add robust depth and crunch.Ingalls Photography
Mexican Beef Stew
Mexican Beef Stew
On the Isthmus, it is still the custom to cook the meat from an entire cow overnight in jarros, which are large ceramic pots, in backyard ovens. The result of the long, slow-cooking process is a meltingly tender stew of meat and vegetables, best scooped up with tortillas.Laurie Smith