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Salsa verde chicken and rice tortilla soup, aka cozy, healthy, happy food… aka my favorite kind of food!!

Salsa Verde Chicken and Rice Tortilla Soup | @hbharvest

Ok, so sorry for that lame first line up there, but you see, I have Asher sitting literally in the same chair with me begging for my attention. We have t-minus two hours until the parents return home and she says we NEED to spend the last two hours of sister-time talking all about her Girl Scout Daisy meeting that she just returned home from.

Oh, and important note, just like her big sister, Asher has declared the Samoa her favorite Girl Scout cookie… with Tagalongs coming in a very tight second. She also says that we must make homemade versions.

I am SO down with that. 🙂

Salsa Verde Chicken and Rice Tortilla Soup | @hbharvest Salsa Verde Chicken and Rice Tortilla Soup | @hbharvest

Quickie post today since I need to spend these last few hours with the little sister before our time is up.

So lets talk Salsa Verde Chicken and Rice Tortilla Soup!!

Oh this soup, it’s kind of my world right now. I’ve been making it weekly all month-long. It’s totally my kind of flavors, my kind of cozy and my perfect blend of everyday healthy. Or mostly healthy since I completely broke down and fried those tortilla strips. You can for sure bake them, but I don’t know, I was just feeling the fried chips for this soup. I can’t lie, the fried ones beat the baked by a land side, you just can’t deny it.

When I set out to create this soup, I knew I wanted something cozy and full of flavor, BUT yet still full of healthy ingredients… plus something that was QUICK. Sometimes you just need a quick soup, you know? Not a soup that needs to simmer all day long or a soup with a billion and one ingredients. Thing is, this can be kind of tricky to accomplish, but umm not with fresh Mexican ingredients.

Basically I let the salsa verde (I used the leftover salsa verde from this recipe, but you can use store-bought) add all the flavor to this soup. I added a few simple seasonings and pretty much called it a day. SO simple and fast, but so so good.

Salsa Verde Chicken and Rice Tortilla Soup | @hbharvest

Salsa Verde Chicken and Rice Tortilla Soup | @hbharvest

I knew I wanted some hearty greens in this soup from the start. Actually, I was originally thinking about calling this a super green chicken tortilla soup, but then it turned out to be kind of a wonky green color so I nixed that. I had a huge bunch of broccoli rabe just sitting in my fridge…wilting…so I used that. It was SO good in this, but you could also use collard greens, kale or even broccoli florets. So basically whatever you have on hand will work. Just make sure it’s hearty and super green! 🙂

And then the rest is very basic. Well, I guess rice isn’t traditionally in chicken tortilla soup, BUT my mom taught me to LOVE rice in soup. Noodles or rice, either works, but for this soup rice works best!! You can make it two ways. Way one, add raw rice to the soup + a little extra water, cover and simmer 25 minutes. This works great, but only if you are eating the soup right away. The first time I made this I made the mistake of letting the rice sit in the soup for an hour and then yup, the rice soaked up all the broth. Then I had soupy rice…which was actually delish, but not what I was going for. Way two, add the already cooked rice to the soup just before serving. Personally, I like this way best, and I seem to always have cooked rice on the ready! 🙂

And that’s it. Quick, yummy tortilla soup, and full of greens. Yes, please!

OH, and of course, don’t forget all the toppings. The toppings are the best!

Salsa Verde Chicken and Rice Tortilla Soup | @hbharvest


Salsa Verde Chicken and Rice Tortilla Soup.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings: 4 Servings
Calories Per Serving: 533 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

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  • In a small bowl, combine the chili powder, cumin, oregano, paprika, brown sugar and a large pinch of salt + pepper.
  • In a large heavy bottom soup pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Sprinkle half the seasoning mixture over the chicken. Once hot, sear the chicken until browned on about sides, about 3 minutes per side. Once the chicken is browned, lower the heat to LOW and slowly pour in the the chicken broth. Add the remaining spice mixture, salsa verde, broccoli rabe or kale and season the soup with salt + pepper. Cover and simmer 25 minutes or until the chicken is tender and cooked through.
  • Meanwhile, heat about an inch of oil in a high sided skillet over medium heat. Once the oil is hot (if it sizzles when a wooden spoon is placed into the oil it is ready) add a few tortillas at a time and fry until golden, about 1 minute for the triangles and 30 seconds for the strips. Remove using a spider spoon and drain on paper towels. Sprinkle generously with salt and lime zest. Repeat with the remaining tortillas.
  • Once the chicken is cooked though, remove the soup from the heat and stir in the rice + fresh cilantro + lime juice.
  • Divide the soup among bowl and top with avocado, a dollop of plain greek yogurt, fresh cilantro, green onion and cheese. Add a large hand full of the tortilla chips. EAT!


*Alternately you can add 1 cup of RAW rice + 2 cups of water to the soup when you add the chicken broth. Allow the rice to cook NO LONGER than 25 minutes. If you let it sit longer, it will soak up all of the broth.

Salsa Verde Chicken and Rice Tortilla Soup | @hbharvest

Soup for all…or maybe just me…with double the chips…and cheese!

Salsa Verde Chicken and Rice Tortilla Soup | @hbharvest

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  1. I made this tonight using your cookbook Half Baked Harvest Super Simple and it calls for uncooked rice. I didn’t cook at all. Pretty big quality control issue – do you have any input?

    1. Hey Jessica,
      So sorry I am unclear here, which recipe did you follow because they are two completely different recipes? Let me know how I can help! xTieghan

  2. Hi, can this made the day before without the rice? What about the lime tortilla chips, can they be made the day before?

    1. Hey Rebecca,
      Yes, both are okay to be made a day in advance. I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan

  3. 5 stars
    This was fantastic, and filling! It totally hit the spot after a weekend of very cold tent camping, it felt like elevated comfort food! Thanks for another amazing recipe and making me love cooking again!

  4. 5 stars
    This was some kind of wonderful!!!!
    My husband loved it! My daughter bought me your cookbook and show me this website, and now we are both obsessed.
    Love, love, love your recipes!!

  5. I got your cookbook for Christmas! Yay! But unfortunately my first recipe to try had issues! ? Apparently I need some help with this recipe. Im making the salsa verde brown rice tortilla soup and got the dreaded “burn” message on my instant pot. I took off mid and stirred it well. Three times this happened. Ugh! It never was able to get to pressure. 🙁 I finally just tossed it in a pot on the stove. We will be having a late dinner. What am I doing wrong?? Thanks!

    1. Hi Summer, honestly that sounds like it is an issue with your Instant Pot. I have never once received the burn message, so I am really not sure how best to advise. The fact that you got the message 3 times makes me think something might be off with your instant pot. Has this happened before?

  6. Made this in the instant pot and it was delicious!! Found this recipe because I was looking to use up some leftover broccoli greens and chard. Used uncooked quinoa instead of rice, and Cookie & Kate’s recipe for easy homemade salsa verde. Put everything in the pot except the cilantro and lime and pressure cooked for 10 min. So easy, yummy, and pretty healthy!! Thanks Tieghan.

  7. 5 stars
    I have made this several times and it is absolutely delicious! Passed the recipe on to a friend’s mom and she said her family begs her to make this soup. Highly recommend!

    1. Wow that is so amazing to hear! I am so glad you and your friends family have been loving this recipe, Katherine! Thank you!

  8. This, by far, is the best chicken soup I have ever had. I love the addition of the kale and the homemade chips are worth it. I cannot wait to prepare this dish for my husband. Thanks!

  9. 5 stars
    Made this tonight and it was next level flavorful!! I’m the type that usually adds more of the spices than a recipe requires… not necessary with this! If you are considering making this.. do it already! I added extra kale because I cleaned too much and ditched the cilantro because after tasting it, I didn’t feel it needed it. The lime juice is essential however! I also baked the tortillas because I’m lazy 🙂 took longer for my chicken breasts to become shred-able but they were large, more like 1.4 lb— took around 40 minutes simmering.

  10. Hands down, the best soup I’ve ever made/tasted!! Absolutely delicious!!!! I used thighs and quinoa.

  11. Loved the soup. It was easy and delicious. BUT….since we didn’t finish it all in one sitting our mistake was adding the rice to the pot. It sucked up all the soup and we had to toss it. Next time, I will add the cooked rice to the serving bowls and label the soup over it. And there will be a next time.

    1. So happy you liked it Karen! Yes it needs to be served over the top if you don’t want it to get soaked up into the rice. Thanks for making it and hope its delicious next time as well!

  12. Made this the other week…Amazing recipe, family loved/great presentation. This is comfort food for me!
    Thank you.

  13. This was so good! I used chard because that’s all I had in the fridge and I was worried that it would mess up the taste, but it didn’t. Added corn and some roasted garlic too, adding this to my recipes folder!

  14. I made this for lunch today, and I think it might be the best thing I have ever made! I’m totally obsessed with it. The flavors are fantastic, it feels so warm and hearty but healthy at the same time, and it was super easy!

    I admit I had planned to be lazy and buy tortilla chips, but I forgot, and decided to try frying the tortillas (my first time frying anything ever!). It was so easy and SO SO GOOD. This is definitely going to be a new staple around here!!

  15. Tried and tested. So good! Can’t wait to try even more or your recipes!
    If you don’t mind me asking, which photo editing software do you use?

  16. OH MY GOODNESS. I must say that, although Tieghan’s recipes never fail to impress, this one nearly takes the cake. Incredibly flavorful, the toppings add an extra layer of depth, and so so easy to make. I recommend it very highly! Thanks for the recipe!

  17. Hi! We made this yesterday for dinner! OH MY WORD – DELICIOUS.

    For some reason I thought it was a slow cooker recipe when I printed it out, but we decided to try it in there anyway and it worked out great! 3.5 hrs on low and the chicken shredded beautifully. We just added the rice right before serving.

    Will definitely be making it again. Thank you 🙂

  18. I love comforting soups like this. The flavors are amazing… and like your mom, mine has always taught me that rice in soup makes the best kind of soup!

  19. Absolutely love how comforting this soup looks. This combo of soup is just so yumm and delish. samoas, the best.

  20. Looking forward to that homemade Samoa recipe sometime soon! 😉 they are undoubtedly the best! This soup is beautiful by the way — just the kind of comfort I need on a winter day like today. 😀

  21. Hi there…recipe says to sprinkle half the spice mixture over the chicken before browning it, but what do you do with the other half of the mixture?

  22. I’m a big fan of salsa verde but have never tried (or even thought of having) it in soup! This soup looks fantastic – and I love that it’s got carbs, veggies, and protein, so it’s a whole meal soup rather than a side dish soup. Yum!

  23. This sounds amazing! Maybe this is a silly question, but do you have to remove the chicken to chop after it’s cooked or does it cook enough to where you can kind of shred it in the pot?

    1. HI! You can shred it in the pot, I just find it easier to remove it, but either way will work. Hope you love this!

      1. Winner winner chicken dinner! I found it easier to shred out of the pot because I don’t like reaching down and missing it. Otherwise, this is totally spot on with flavor. I made a pot tonight and everyone loves it. Thanks!

  24. Wow Tieghan, I don’t think I’ve ever seen such a beautiful looking soup! And I know if it comes from your kitchen, it’s just as tasty!

  25. It’s 25 degrees outside and I had to defrost my car.
    My classroom has not heated up yet and I want this bowl of soup!
    It looks so good and warm and comforting.

  26. I am obsessed with tortilla soup! We made one a while back for our blog, but I think I like yours even more because it has so much green going on! And I love the addition of the rice, such a clever idea.