Easy Weeknight Taco Soup
I love this easy taco soup! This easy weeknight taco soup recipe makes use uses of pantry staples and you can cook it a variety of ways including on the stovetop, in a slow cooker, and in a pressure cooker. Jump to the Easy Weeknight Taco Soup Recipe or read on to see our tips for making it.
Why You Need To Make This Taco Soup
This easy soup is made with ground meat, beans, veggies, homemade taco seasoning, and a secret ingredient for the best, most flavorful soup. I just know that you and your family will love it.
Think of this taco soup as everything we love about taco night made into a healthy, hearty, and delicious soup all made in one pot!
You are looking at about 30 minutes when making it on the stovetop, which makes this perfect for weeknight dinners. You can also use a slow cooker or a pressure cooker to make it, there are instructions below.
The Ingredients You’ll Need
Not only is taco soup easy to make,
Ground meat makes this soup easy and hearty. Use what you love — beef, pork, turkey, and chicken are all excellent options. I love making the soup a little lighter/healthier and use lean ground turkey.
Onions and garlic add lots of flavor to the soup.
Taco seasoning is a must. It is taco soup, after all. The store-bought packets will do in a pinch, but for the tastiest taco soup, make your own seasoning. I promise it’s easy to do. Here’s our recipe for homemade taco seasoning and I’ve also talked about what goes into it below.
Canned tomatoes, canned green chiles, canned beans, and canned or frozen corn add even more flavor and heartiness.
Stock or broth makes up the base. Store-bought will work or you can make your own. Here’s our homemade chicken stock recipe.
Fresh dill is our “secret ingredient.” I know it seems a little odd for a taco-inspired dish, but holy smokes
How to Make it Vegetarian or Vegan
For a vegetarian or vegan taco soup, leave out the ground meat and use vegetable broth — here’s our recipe for homemade veggie broth.
To bulk up the soup a bit, add extra vegetables. I love to add bell peppers, chopped sweet potatoes, and shredded cabbage. I’d brown the veggies a bit before adding the stock and tomatoes for even more
How To Make it on the Stovetop
To make the soup on the stovetop, you’ll need a large soup pot — I like using my Dutch oven. Here are the basic steps for making it:
- Brown ground meat (you can use beef, turkey, chicken or pork) in a bit of oil.
- Move the browned meat to one side of the pot then add chopped onions. Cook the onions until softened.
- Stir in taco seasoning and minced garlic.
- Stir in canned tomatoes, canned green chiles, canned beans, corn kernels, and stock.
- Simmer for 15 to 20 minutes then serve with your favorite taco toppings.
How To Make it in a Slow Cooker
To make the soup in a slow cooker, you’ll need a skillet and a slow cooker. Here are the basic steps for making it:
- Brown ground meat in a bit of oil.
- Move the browned meat to one side of the pot then add chopped onions and cook, stirring around the skillet, until softened.
- Add the browned meat and onions to the slow cooker along with the remaining soup ingredients. Stir.
- Cook on HIGH for 3 to 4 hours or on LOW for 6 to 8 hours.
How to Make it in a Pressure Cooker
To make the soup in a pressure cooker (like an Instant Pot), you’ll only need a pressure cooker. No extra skillets are required! Here are the basic steps for making it:
- Use the “SAUTE” function of your pressure cooker to brown the ground meat in a little oil.
- Move the browned meat to one side of the pot then add chopped onions and cook, stirring around the pot, until softened.
- Add the stock and use a wooden spoon to scrape up any browned or stuck bits at the bottom of the pot.
- Stir in the remaining ingredients.
- Seal the lid, and then cook on high pressure for 10 minutes. Let the pressure naturally release, and then serve.
I Love Using Homemade Taco Seasoning
Just as I mentioned above, store-bought taco seasoning will do the trick, but for the tastiest taco soup, we highly recommend putting together your own seasoning blend.
It’s not difficult to do and you probably have most of what you need in your spice cabinet already. We talk all about why we think our homemade blend is best and our tips for making it in this article.
Here’s a list of the basic spices we use:
- Chili powder — We recommend our homemade chili powder. Your favorite store-bought chili powder works, too.
- Ground cumin — This adds an earthy, smoky flavor. It is common in Tex-Mex, Mexican, and curry recipes.
- Hot smoked paprika — This adds a hot, smoky flavor. Chipotle chile powder is a great alternative.
- Ground coriander — This adds a light, citrus flavor.
- Cayenne pepper — This adds heat. Add as much or little as needed for your desired spice level.
Make Ahead Tips
Whether you make the soup on the stovetop, in a slow cooker, or use your pressure cooker, you can make taco soup well in advance. I actually think it gets better over time!
- Refrigerate the soup, stored in an airtight container, up to four days.
- Freeze the soup, stored in an airtight and freezer safe container, for two to three months.
More Tex-Mex Inspired Recipes
- Crave-Worthy Ground Pork Tacos — These tacos come together fast. You can even make the filling in advance.
- Easy Taco Stuffed Shells — Delicious taco inspired stuffed shells with ground beef, corn, and cheese.
- How to Make the BEST Fajitas — How to make the ultimate, tastiest fajitas with steak, chicken, and shrimp.
- Utterly Delicious Chipotle Bean Chili — Easy and delicious vegetarian bean chili with dried beans or canned.
Easy Weeknight Taco Soup
Taco soup made with ground meat (beef, pork, chicken, and turkey all work), veggies, beans, and a simple homemade taco seasoning has everything we love about taco night made into a healthy, hearty, and delicious soup made in one pot! The dill in the recipe is a substitute to using store-bought Ranch seasoning (a common ingredient in taco soup). It really does make the soup delicious!
You Will NeedTaco Soup
1 pound lean ground meat like beef, turkey, chicken or pork
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
2 tablespoons taco seasoning, see our recipe for homemade taco seasoning
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 (28-ounce) can whole or diced tomatoes
1 (4-ounce) can diced green chiles
2 (15-ounce) cans of beans like black beans, pinto beans or kidney beans
1 cup frozen corn
3 cups beef or chicken stock, see our homemade chicken stock
2 to 3 tablespoons chopped fresh dill, optional
Salt and cayenne pepper or hot sauce, to tasteOptional Toppings
Heat the oil in a large soup pot (or Dutch oven) over medium-high heat. Add the ground meat and cook until browned, about 5 minutes. As the meat cooks, use a wooden spoon to break the meat into crumbles.
Add the onions and cook, stirring them around the pot, until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes.
Stir in the garlic and taco seasoning and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
Add in the tomatoes, chiles, beans, corn, and the stock. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook for 15 to 20 minutes. As the soup simmers, use a wooden spoon to break apart the tomatoes. Stir in the dill.
Taste then adjust with salt and/or cayenne pepper or hot sauce. Serve with your favorite taco toppings.
Adam and Joanne's Tips
- Taco seasoning: You can use store-bought taco seasoning, but we highly recommend making your own. Here’s our recipe for taco seasoning that tastes so much better than store-bought blends.
- Storing/Make-ahead: Refrigerate the soup, stored in an airtight container, up to four days. Freeze the soup, stored in an airtight and freezer safe container, for two to three months.
- Vegetarian or Vegan Taco Soup: Leave out the ground meat and use vegetable broth — here’s our homemade veggie broth recipe. To bulk up the soup a bit, add extra vegetables. I love to add bell peppers, chopped sweet potatoes, and shredded cabbage. I’d brown the veggies a bit before adding the stock and tomatoes for even more flavor.
- Nutrition facts: The nutrition facts provided below are estimates. We have used the USDA database to calculate approximate values.