Best Ever Vegetarian Tortilla Soup

Charring vegetables under the broiler is the secret for creating a smoky, flavorful broth for this best ever vegetarian tortilla soup. Serve topped with all the delicious things! 

Quickie post for y’all today.  Scott and I are exploring the Yellowstone wilderness this week.  

I’m hesitant to refer to any of my creations as “the best ever.”  Considering I’m a home cook and not a trained chef, I doubt anything coming out of my kitchen deserves that designation, despite what my husband tells me in his feeble attempts to butter me up.

But this tortilla soup, man it is good! I admit, it's probably not the best tortilla soup ever, but it’s certainly the best one I’ve ever had. And I've eaten my fair share of tortilla soup. The trick is charring the vegetables, which adds a smoky flavor to the broth.

Back next week!  That is, if we don't get eaten by a bears.....

Sidebar: I wrote that last week half jokingly. Within our first hour of being here, we had a close encounter of the bear plus three cubs kind.  It was simultaneously the most adorable and most terrifying moment of my life.

Best Ever Vegetarian Tortilla Soup

Serves 4


  • 2 cloves garlic, unpeeled
  • 1 onion, peeled and quartered
  • 1 fresh hatch chili or poblano
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 sprigs cilantro
  • 28-ounce can fire roasted tomatoes
  • 6 stone ground corn tortillas, cut into strips
  • For serving: chopped or thinly sliced radish, roasted chili, feta/queso blanco, avocado, lime,


  1. Turn on the broiler. Spread garlic, onion, and chili on a baking sheet and broil until onion and garlic are charred and pepper is charred on all sides. You may have to take the garlic out early. Remove onion to blender, let garlic cool a bit before peeling and adding to the blender. Place chili in a bowl topped with plastic wrap and let sit to cool while preparing other ingredients.
  2. Add the tomatoes and cilantro to the garlic and onion to the food processor and puree until smooth.
  3. In a large saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon oil. Add the tomato puree and cook for a couple minutes. Reduce the heat to low and cook until it thickens and reduces slightly, about 10 minutes. Add 4 cups stock. Season with salt and pepper, cover and simmer 15 minutes.
  4. While the soup is cooking, heat the remaining tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet on medium high heat. Add the tortilla strips and fry until browned and crispy, about 2-3 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate.
  5. Carefully peel the skins off the chili, Cut the stem off and remove the seeds. Carefully cut into thin slivers.
  6. Divide the soup between 4 bowls. Garnish as desired with