Spicy Southwestern Chicken Soup

We are not on a diet, per se, but we are making a concious effort to cut calories in general. Replacing a larger dinner with a flavorful low-calorie soup once or twice a week is a satisfying way to do so without feeling deprived. This particular soup is perfect because it is not high in calories,  tastes great, and is chocked full of protein.

Spicy Southwestern Chicken Soup

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 bell pepper, chopped (green or red)
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
8 cups chicken broth
2 cups cooked chicken, shredded or cubed
1 cup frozen corn
1 14.5 ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 15 ounce can diced tomatoes (I like petite diced)
1 zucchini, chopped
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped, plus additional for garnish
crispy tortilla strips for garnish (optional)
crumbled queso fresco (or feta) (optional)
lime wedges (optional)

Heat a soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil and then the onions, garlic, bell pepper, and jalapeno. Saute until the vegetables are tender, then add the chili powder, cumin, salt and black pepper. Continue to saute until spices are fragrant, about 30 seconds. Next, add the broth, chicken, corn, black beans, tomatoes, and zucchini.  Bring to a boil and then reduced heat to medium. Simmer for 10 minutes. Add cilantro and serve. To serve, ladle soup into bowls, top with additional fresh cilantro, crispy tortilla strips, queso fresco, and a wedge of lime.


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