Mexican Chicken Soup

I was at Joe’s Pizza one time and was telling my friend Josh how to make this soup. This guy says to me “You can’t call it Mexican!”

“Why not?” I asked.

“Because that’s racist!” he said.

“What’s racist?”

“Calling it Mexican!”

“Why is that racist?” I asked him.

“Because you can’t just call things Mexican!”

“Ok,” I told him, “but this soup recipe was given to me by a Mexican lady, who came from Mexico, who used to make it for her family in Mexico, and she called it Mexican Chicken Soup. Is that still racist?”

“Maybe!” he said, not as sure as he was before.

That’s not entirely true though, because actually she gave the recipe to my sister, who gave it to me. It’s still good though. Maybe just a little racist too, at least in some people’s opinions, which makes it spicier, I guess? Wait… maybe that’s the part that’s racist.

Admittedly this isn’t the same recipe it used to be. I’ve worked on it, too. Added things like brining the chicken, baking the chicken separately to get a bit of a roasted flavor, or serving it with cotija, sour cream, and tortillas.

And originally it was all canned stuff, it still mostly is, but not entirely now. What really improved it the most, in my opinion, was brining the chicken, and using homemade chicken broth.

By the way, if you’re brining chicken, no matter what you’re brining it for, use pickle juice. In fact, save all your pickle juice, and all the juice from banana peppers and pepperocinis, and mix it all together into a vinegar-pickley-brine jar, and use that whenever you brine chicken.

It’s just better that way. Like life and culture and cuisine, mixing stuff together and working on it usually makes it better than it was before.

This recipe uses pounded brined chicken.

Mexican Chicken Soup

A chicken soup, purportedly Mexican, accused of being delicious
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 45 minutes
Course Soup
Cuisine American, Mexican


  • 1 gallon ziplock
  • 1 Rolling Pin
  • 1 9×11 baking dish
  • 1 soup pot
  • 1 rice pot or rice maker


Pounded, Brined Chicken

  • Prepare 1 recipe of Pounded, Brined Chicken
  • Add Bay leaves optional
  • Add Cumin optional

Soup Ingredients

  • 2 cups rice
  • 2 cans hominy 1 white, 1 yellow, or whatever
  • 3 cans Rotel tomatoes
  • 3 cans Ranch style beans
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • Bay leaves optional
  • 4 cups water


  • Cotija cheese
  • Sour cream
  • Tortilla strips
  • Flour tortillas fried in butter
  • Hot sauce


Prepare the Pounded, Brined Chicken

  • Add the Bay Leaves and Cumin before putting the bag of chicken in the fridge.

Bake the chicken.

  • Preheat the oven to 350.
  • If you brined the chicken, drain it.
  • Place chicken parts in the baking pan.
  • Pour the cans of rotel over the chicken.
  • Add 1/2 cup of chicken broth to the chicken.
  • Bake for 20 minutes or until cooked through.

Make the rice.

  • You don't know how to make rice? Geez.
  • Add the rice to a rice pot.
  • Rinse with water & drain.
  • Add water back to 2x the depth of the rice.
  • Put rice pot on high heat with a loose lid until it boils.
  • Once the water boils, shut off the heat but do not remove the rice pot from the burner and do not remove the lid.
  • Let the rice sit unmolested for 20 mins or so.
  • After 20 mins, remove the lid and stir the rice to break it up.

Make the soup.

  • Ok, you don't have to bake the chicken. You can cook it in the soup. But it's easier to shred if you bake it. And I prefer it shredded.
  • Take the baked chicken mixture out, and either use a potato masher to shred it, or use forks. Or you can use a knife if you insist.
  • Put everything from the chicken baking pan into the cooking pot. All of it, drippings, everything.
  • If you didn't bake the chicken, just put the chicken, cans of rotel, and broth into the cooking pot as-is.
  • Add the rest of the broth and a cup or two of water with the bay leaf and cumin.
  • Bring to a simmer.
  • When simmering, add the hominy and the cans of beans.
  • Let simmer for 10-20 mins, or until preferred consistency.
  • Add rice and stir in.
  • Serve with cotija cheese, sour cream, a few splashes of hot sauce, and tortilla strips or hot flour tortillas pan-fried in butter, or otherwise as preferred .


I like to serve this with Salvadoran sour cream, a few splashes of hot sauce, and cotija cheese.