Instant Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup is a simple, yet flavorful recipe that delivers restaurant-quality results in under 30 minutes.
When the craving for Tortilla Soup hits, this quick and easy Instant Pot Recipe recipe will satisfy your craving fast! This healthy 30-minute meal is made with affordable, wholesome ingredients yet is loaded with flavor.
Instant Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup is one of the easiest soups to make in the Instant Pot, yet it also happens to be one of the most flavorful!
From the richly seasoned broth to the hearty chicken to the beans and corn, each spoonful of this Instant Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup delivers restaurant-quality taste at home. The Tex-Mex flavors are similar to my recipe Instant Pot Taco Chili, yet instead of being thick like chili, this recipe is made with more broth, to create the consistency of a soup.
Not only is this soup flavorful, but it also couldn't be easier to make. Just like my recipes for Instant Pot Tomato Soup and Instant Pot Lentil Soup, Instant Pot Tortilla Soup is a simple, no-fuss, versatile recipe that is made with basic staples.
And the best part about this tortilla soup? It is ready in less than 30 minutes--talk about winning!
Notes on Ingredients & Modifications
- Chicken: Use either boneless, skinless chicken thighs or chicken breasts for this recipe. I have included the timing for both fresh and frozen chicken.
- Onions and Garlic: I recommend starting this recipe by sauteeing freshly minced onion and garlic for the optimum flavor, but you can opt to skip the step of sauteeing the onion and garlic and instead use a 1 teaspoon each of onion powder and garlic powder to keep this recipe super simple.
- Broth/Stock: Use either store-bought or homemade chicken stock. Low sodium is best to control the level of sodium in the soup.
- Diced Tomatoes: To add another dimension of flavor, use diced tomatoes with green chiles (AKA Rotel Tomatoes), instead of plain diced tomatoes.
- Corn: Frozen corn is optional, but adds a nice sweetness to counteract the mild spiciness of the soup.
- Beans: Use black beans, pinto beans, or a combination of the two in this tortilla soup recipe. If starting with dried beans, use my recipe for Instant Pot Beans BEFORE proceeding with the recipe for the soup.
- Spices: This recipe calls for cumin, paprika, pepper, chili powder, and salt. I typically opt for using 2 teaspoons of homemade taco seasoning instead of the individual spices. Do whatever works best for you.
- Lime: Do NOT overlook the fresh lime, it really adds incredible acidity and balance to the soup and helps the flavors to really pop in your mouth.
- Tortilla Strips: A good tortilla soup needs to be topped with tortilla strips! While you can purchase tortilla strips or use tortilla chips, I have included easy instructions for homemade tortilla strips. You simply need corn tortillas, a bit of oil, salt, and cumin. Super simple and delicious!
- Toppings: In addition to the tortilla strips, this taco tortilla soup is delicious topped as you would classic tacos, with cilantro, shredded cheese, sour cream, avocado, etc.
How to Make Instant Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup
- Turn the Instant Pot to the saute function and add in a bit of oil and let it heat. Once heated, add in 1 small minced onion and saute until it is nice and soft--it only takes a couple of minutes.
- Once the onion has begun to soften, add in the garlic and saute for just 30 seconds. We just want to toast our garlic, not burn it.
- Once the garlic is toasted, turn off the saute function by hitting cancel.
- In order to prevent a burn notice, it is crucial to scrape up any browned bits off the bottom of the inner pot. To do so, add about ½ cup of the chicken stock and use a wooden or metal spatula to scrape off the browned bits off the bottom of the inner pot.
- Add in the remaining stock, along with the seasonings, corn, and beans, and give everything a good stir to combine.
- Nestle the chicken into the broth and then top it with the canned tomatoes.
- Place the lid on the inner pot, seal the lid, and set the cooking time to 9 minutes on high pressure for FRESH chicken or 14 minutes on high pressure for frozen chicken.
- Once the cooking time has elapsed, allow the pressure to release on its own for at least 15 minutes. To do a quick release of pressure would result in tough chicken and a hot liquid spewing all over your kitchen.
- Once the Instant Pot has released pressure, open the lid and remove the chicken to a cutting board. Shred or chop the chicken into bite-sized pieces.
- Add the shredded chicken and juice of the lime into the inner pot and stir everything to incorporate.
- Dish the Chicken Tortilla Soup out into bowls and top as desired with tortilla strips, cheese, avocado, sour cream, etc. However YOU like it!
Homemade Tortilla Strips
You can use packaged tortilla strips or you can quickly prepare your own tortilla strips while the tortilla soup is pressure cooking if desired.
- Cut corn or flour tortillas into ½" strips using a pizza cutter or sharp knife and place the strips on a large baking sheet.
- Spray with olive oil cooking spray, or drizzle with oil, and then season with cumin and salt. Toss together to coat the tortillas with the seasonings and then spread out evenly on the pan.
- Pop the tortilla strips under the broiler for 2-3 minutes, watching closely, so you don't burn them.
- Serve with the prepared tortilla soup.
Leftover Chicken Tortilla Soup, once cooled slightly, can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Alternatively, you can freeze the leftover soup in an airtight freezer-safe container, being sure to leave 1 inch of space for expansion, for up to 3 months. Defrost overnight in the refrigerator and heat before serving.
- Vegan-Friendly/Vegetarian Tortilla Soup: In place of the chicken stock, use vegetable broth. You also will want to omit the chicken and double the number of beans used to bulk up the soup.
- Spicy Tortilla Soup: Add up to one finely minced jalapeno, along with the onion for a spicy version of Instant Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup.
- Speed It Up: If you are really on a time crunch, skip sauteing the onions and garlic. Instead, omit the oil and minced onion from the recipe and add 1 teaspoon of dried onion powder to the inner pot along with the remaining ingredients. Cook as directed.
More Instant Pot Soup Recipes
- Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup
- Instant Pot Potato Soup
- Instant Pot French Onion Soup
- Instant Pot Minestrone Soup
- Instant Pot Vegetable Soup
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If you enjoyed this recipe for Instant Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup, I would love for you to leave a comment and review below.
Instant Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup
Instant Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- ½ small onion minced or 1 teaspoon dried onion powder
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 4 cups low-sodium chicken stock or broth
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 (15oz) can pinto or black beans rinsed and drained
- 2 cups frozen corn kernels optional
- 1 (10oz) can diced tomatoes with green chilies
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs
- Juice of 1 fresh lime
- Optional toppings: tortilla strips, diced avocado, shredded cheese, sour cream, cilantro, etc
- 5 small corn or flour tortillas
- 1 teaspoon oil
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon salt
Chicken Tortilla Soup
- Turn the Instant Pot to the saute function and add in the oil. Once the oil is heated, add in the onion and saute for 3-4 minutes, or until just softened. Add in the garlic and saute for 30 seconds. Turn the Instant Pot off.
- Add in ½ cup of the chicken stock and using a wooden or metal spatula, scrape up any browned bits on the bottom of the inner pot. This will prevent a burn notice.
- Add the remaining chicken stock, along with the seasonings, beans, and corn to the Instant Pot and stir to combine.
- Nestle the chicken into the soup and then top with the diced tomatoes.
- Place the lid on the Instant Pot and be sure the vent knob is closed. Set cook time, using the manual or pressure cook button, for 9 minutes on HIGH PRESSURE for fresh chicken OR 14 minutes on HIGH PRESSURE if the chicken is frozen.
- Once cook time has elapsed, let the pressure release naturally.
- Open Instant Pot and remove chicken and place in a large bowl or on a cutting board and shred or cut the chicken into bite-size bites.
- Mix the chicken back into the Instant Pot with lime juice and stir together.
- Serve with cilantro, cheese, tortilla chips, sour cream, etc.
- Cut the tortillas into ½" strips using a pizza cutter or sharp knife and place the strips on a large baking sheet.
- Toss the tortillas with oil, cumin, and salt and toss to coat. Spread them out in a single layer on the baking sheet.
- Broil for 2-3 minutes per side, watching closely, so as not to burn. Remove from the oven and serve with the soup.