Wanda’s Taco Soup Recipe

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I had a lot of requests for my Taco soup recipe that I talked about a few days ago….. so here is my attempt to write up a recipe that I totally threw together….. please read the note at the bottom of the recipe!  I hope you just experiment and have fun!

Wanda’s Taco Soup

5 quarts of water

½ cup beef soup base (from Costco or Sam’s)

1 can tomato paste

1 ½ lb of lean hamburger

1 med. Onion, chopped

salt                             1 tsp?

pepper                       ½ tsp?

cumin                        1 Tb?

chili powder            2 Tb?

oregano                    2 tsp?

onion powder         1 tsp?

garlic powder         1 tsp?

dash of cayenne

dash of red pepper flakes

1 Tb. corn starch

2 small cans tomato sauce

3 small cans V8 juice (1- 12 oz would work too)

3-4 cups of black beans (2 cans?)

2 cans corn

2 cans of diced tomatoes

In large stock pot, bring water to slight boil…. Dissolve beef soup base, then dissolve tomato paste.  Add diced tomatoes, V8 juice, corn and black beans… simmer.    Brown hamburger in a large skillet.  Add onion and saute together for a few minutes. Season with spices to taste.  Add corn starch and stir through mixture.  Add about ¼ cup water to mixture and let simmer for a few minutes to thicken.  Stir in tomato sauce.  When heated through… stir hamburger mixture into stock pot.   Simmer about 10-20 minutes to let spices take hold.

Serve with garnishes:  Mexican cheese, sour cream, fresh chopped cilantro, and crushed tortilla chips (I use the “Food Should Taste Good” brand, in the black and white bag,  from Costco….. they are the best chips ever!)

Serves:  a LOT!  (approx 12-14 large servings)

This soup actually tastes better a day or two old because the spices are really absorbed into the liquid.  Yum!

NOTE:  other than the list of canned items….. the amounts of the other ingredients are a guess at best.  I just threw it together with out measuring….. using what we had around the house.  I had just cooked up a big batch of black beans and wanted to make some soup with them…. So I did!  It turned out great.  Just adjust spices till the flavors taste good to you…..or use taco seasoning.   I think you could easily switch to a chicken base and use shredded chicken if you prefer.  Also…. Whatever kind of beans tickle your fancy.  Its basically a flavored (beef or chicken) tomato base liquid with all the stuff in there to make it a Mexican flavor.  You could add green chilis, etc..… whatever you like.  Just experiment and have fun!

UPDATE — September 26, 2012

I made this soup for a large party last weekend.  I did a few things different than above.  First of all…. I forgot to put the tomato paste with the hamburger mixture and just put it in the pot with the other tomato products.  I also forgot to add corn starch to the hamburger mixture.  (I actually used ground turkey instead of beef)   It still turned out great.

I also used frozen corn instead of canned…. added quite a bit and then also added two cans of Kidney beans to the mix.  I also added an extra quart of water because I was feeding a big crowd.  And in case you are wondering about the spice amounts…. I pretty much followed what I had suggested above and it worked great.  Just experiment to your taste!

The soup was delicious and a big hit!  It DID simmer for hours because the party was not till late in the evening and the I made the soup in the late afternoon.  I think that’s why it tasted so good at the first serving.  Maybe a slow cook version of this would work too…. but the amounts listed above make a LOT of soup!  You’ll need a big crock pot or reduce the amounts.

Our garnishes were my favorites….. sour cream, Mexican cheese, crushed tortilla chips and a little fresh cilantro.  Go for it and have fun!

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