This taco soup recipe is hearty, healthy, and ready in under 1 hour! Made with ground beef, taco seasoning, canned beans, corn, bell peppers, and other veggies, it’s perfect served with your favorite taco toppings and tortilla chips for a little crunch.
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This is one of my favorite weeknight dinners because it uses so many easy and staple pantry ingredients. I love to make this when I’m in a dinner rut and am scrounging my pantry for ideas of what to make.
You get all the best taco flavors without the mess, and it’s great for reheating and enjoying throughout the week.
Plus my toddler loves it, which means this recipe is pretty much on repeat.
Taco Soup Ingredients
- Ground beef: I like to use lean ground beef, but you can also use ground turkey or even ground chicken.
- Peppers: Any color bell pepper works well. I like to use red or orange to add some bright color. I also used an Anaheim pepper to add a little more flavor.
- Onion and garlic: Staple ingredients that add a great base.
- Spices: This taco seasoning spice blend is made from ancho chili powder, chili powder, oregano, cumin, paprika, and salt.
- Diced tomatoes: You’ll need a large 28-ounce can of diced tomatoes.
- Beans: I used a mixture of canned pinto and black beans, but you can use any beans you prefer. Make sure not to drain and rinse the beans. The liquid the beans are in add a ton of flavor as well as help to thicken the soup!
- Corn: Corn adds a subtle sweetness and can be used frozen or canned.
- Lime: I love to add lime juice to add brightness before serving and cut the hearty flavors.
- Cilantro: Top it off with chopped cilantro or omit if you prefer.
How to Make Taco Soup
Step 1: Cook the bell peppers, onion, Anaheim pepper, and garlic in a little olive oil over medium-high heat for 10 minutes until softened.
Step 2: Add the ground beef, chili powder, ancho chili powder, salt, ground cumin, paprika, and oregano and cook for 5 to 6 minutes until the meat has browned.
Step 3: Once the meat has browned, add the corn, black beans and pinto beans (including all the liquid from the cans), and diced tomatoes. Give it a good stir to combine all the ingredients. Cover, reduce the heat to low, and cook for 20 minutes.
Step 4: Remove the pot from the heat and stir in some lime juice and cilantro. Serve immediately and top your bowl with lots of shredded cheese, sour cream, and plenty of tortilla chips!
The Best Toppings
- Tortilla chips: crushed or whole for added crunch!
- Cheese: shredded cheddar, Monterey Jack, or any cheese you prefer
- Sour cream: Mexican crema or plain Greek yogurt are also great options
- Avocado: diced or sliced for extra creaminess
- Jalapeños: fresh or pickled for more spice
- Cilantro: chopped or whole leaves for added flavor
- Lime juice: freshly squeezed for brightness and acidity
- Don’t drain and rinse the canned beans. The liquid the beans are in add a ton of flavor to the soup and helps to thicken it!
- If your ground beef releases a lot of fat, feel free to drain some of it if you prefer.
- This recipe makes a big batch so you can have leftovers. If you’re cooking for one and don’t think you’ll eat the entire batch within a week, you can also freeze it!
Taco Soup Variations
- Beans: Switch up the types of beans you use. Black beans, pinto beans, kidney beans, white beans, and even chickpeas – they’ll all work!
- Spice level: Add a little more heat to this dish by using a couple of jalapeños instead of the Anaheim pepper. You could also add a few dashes of cayenne pepper instead.
- Meat: Don’t have ground beef? Substitute it with ground turkey or ground chicken.
Storing and Freezing
Taco soup can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week or frozen for up to 2 months.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes. You can easily substitute ground turkey or chicken if you prefer. Follow the directions accordingly.
For a thicker taco soup, cook for an additional 10-15 minutes uncovered until it reaches your desired consistency.
Yes. If using store-bought seasoning, you’ll need about 3 tablespoons. Be sure to omit the ancho chili powder, chili powder, oregano, cumin, and paprika, and only use salt as needed.