Chicken Tortilla Soup: Caregiverlist Recipe of the Week

A chilly fall afternoon calls for a nice warm cup of soup. Some store bought canned soup can be surprisingly high in both sodium and fat content, but homemade soup allows senior caregivers the ability to control all of the ingredients. Our Chicken Tortilla Soup comes together in a medley of several types of vegetables, low sodium chicken broth and black beans for a delicious but surprisingly nutritious dinner. 

Ingredients
1 fresh tomato
1 fresh green pepper
1 fresh red pepper
1 small white onion
1 tablespoons olive oil
10 cups low sodium chicken broth
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
3 limes
1 single use packet taco seasoning
1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast
1 avocado
Low fat shredded Mexican cheese mix
Low fat sour cream
Tortilla chips or strips, optional

Directions
Chop the tomato, red pepper, green pepper and onion into small pieces. Spread one tablespoon of olive oil over the bottom of your pot and add the vegetable medley. Sauté until the vegetables are cooked. Add chicken broth and taco seasoning mix to the pot and stir. Bring the broth to a boil then drop uncooked chicken breasts into the pot, cover and simmer. Allow the chicken breasts half an hour to cook then pull them carefully out of the soup. Place the cooked chicken breasts on a plate and shred using two forks pulling in opposite directions. Add shredded chicken breast back to the pot then squeeze the lime juice into the soup. Stir then serve. Garnish with low fat sour cream, low fat Mexican cheese mix and chopped avocado to taste. Eat with tortilla chips or add tortilla strips to the soup if desired.  

Caregivers and their senior clients can customize the recipe based on their personal tastes. Almost any favorite taco topping can be incorporated. Add brown rice if you'd like more fiber full carbohydrates, substitute kidney beans instead of black beans or add garlic and jalapenos for a stronger flavor. The result is a dish with a much lower sodium count than canned soup with fresher ingredients and low fat dairy products keeping the overall unsaturated fat content low. 

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