Since moving to Portland, I have been absolutely overwhelmed by the number of amazing restaurants here. There are so many that it’s pretty much impossible for me to try all of them, especially because I keep wanting to go back to the same three or four restaurants over and over. 🙂 I love that there’s such an emphasis on local, hand-crafted, sustainably sourced, high-quality food. It’s awesome! And yet… sometimes I long for some of those chain restaurants we used to go to. Their food may not be the freshest or healthiest, but they’re the places we went as dumb newlyweds. We have memories there. And sometimes, you just really REALLY need a bowl of Chili’s chicken enchilada soup. Am I right?
Since the nearest Chili’s to me is something like six hours away, the only solution was to make it myself! Full confession: this soup calls for Velveeta cheese. It’s not something I regularly buy (in fact, I think this may be the first time in fourteen years of marriage?), but I got a block of Velveeta free with a coupon from the grocery store recently, and it felt like fate. If you’re not a Velveeta fan, I don’t really know what to tell you. It’s a pretty crucial ingredient for this soup, so you may want to just try a different recipe. All that being said, this soup is fantastic! It’s so creamy, cheesy, and smooth. I added some beans and diced tomatoes to give the soup a little more texture, and I loved it that way. I topped mine with sour cream, diced tomatoes, and tortilla strips, and it tasted just like that Chili’s soup I love. It’s probably not the healthiest soup I’ve ever made, but it was perfect for satisfying my craving, and the whole family loved it!
Chicken Enchilada Soup
6 cups chicken broth
1 (10 ounce) can red enchilada sauce
1 cup masa harina
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
3 cups chopped cooked chicken
1 (15 ounce) can great northern beans
1 (15 ounce) can diced tomatoes
12 ounces Velveeta cheese, cut into cubes
for serving: tortilla strips, sour cream, chopped tomatoes, grated cheese, etc.
In a large pot, whisk together the chicken broth, enchilada sauce, masa marina, salt, garlic powder, chili powder, and cumin. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat. Stir in the chicken, beans, tomatoes, and Velveeta. Cook 15-20 minutes, stirring frequently, until the Velveeta is completely melted and the soup is slightly thickened. Serve hot topped with tortilla strips and sour cream.