Mexican Meatball Soup | Albondigas Soup

Flavors of Mexican food have already won heart & soul of all across the globe; this easy Mexican meatball soup will only increase that love we have for this amazing cuisine!

Mexican-Meatballs-FQ-3-3757I had made this Mexican delicacy i.e. this tasty Mexican meatball soup during the colder months here in Bangalore, but I am at fault for not sharing it earlier with you all due to unprecedented situations! I am guilty as charged! This Mexican meatball soup was a soul-warming meal perfect for winter months, but if you are a soup lover, you will love it year round just like us! This one is a wholesome meal in itself – with all the beans, corns and soul-satisfying meatballs, I bet you will reward yourself with the most pleasurable meal to remember for a long time! I haven’t yet explored Mexican cuisine deeply, but this lip-smacking meatball soup has definitely won my heart, so much so that now I want to master myself in this century-old flavorful cuisine which has been standing strong against the test of time thanks to its own awesomeness! 

Thanks to my passion for cooking which compelled me to create this food blog, we got to taste as well as make various dishes from many global cuisine which expanded our culinary horizon to a great extent. If not for the blog, I would have definitely been skeptical about my ability to pull off this Mexican meatball soup on my own and must have shied away from trying my hands on it! Making this soup is not difficult at all; it involves few steps which may seem elaborate at first but can be easily pulled off even by the most novice cook! Plus, this Mexican soup is so much customizable that you can add or withdraw any favorite or not-so-favorite items from the ingredients list. If you don’t like red kidney beans, simply don’t add it! Just add corn kernels, peppers of your choice – red, green, yellow or orange – and any other veggie you like. And you are sorted!

Mexican-Meatballs-FQ-2-3765Mexican-Meatballs-FQ-1-3752Let’s talk about the chicken meatballs, shall we? The classic name of Mexican meatball soup is Albondigas Soup which is traditionally made of ground beef. I chose chicken for the obvious reason – our immense love for chicken! If you too intend to use chicken to make your meatball soup, then here are few of my suggestions. Since ground chicken has lesser fat content than ground beef, there is a probability of the meatballs getting dry. You can easily resolve this issue if you use dark chicken meat which is nothing but the chicken thigh meat and then grind them by yourself using your food processor. Chicken thigh meat has much higher fat content than lean chicken breast which will ensure that your chicken meatballs turn out to be juicy, succulent and super-tasty! I have always used skinless chicken thighs and have ground it myself for making my meatballs and have never faced dried, stringy meatball situation so far!

Another good thing about this Mexican meatball soup is that it can instantly become your family favorite! This loaded soup can feed a crowd; hence it is a great dinner option for your guests especially during the chilly winter months of holiday season. Plus, this meatball soup is a perfect make-ahead recipe! You can make the soup a day ahead and keep it refrigerated. Then make the chicken meatballs on the day you intend to serve it and simmer the soup with meatballs for 15 minutes just before serving. This Mexican soup can be served with multiple options for toppings! You can top it up with freshly sliced avocados or some homemade salsa or a dash of hot sauce or a kick of sour cream! Whatever you chose, you are guaranteed to have the most soul-satisfying meal to cherish for a long time to come. My top pick for topping is salsa followed by avocado. That reminds me that I have to perfect my hands on making salsa so that I can share my version of this popular Mexican delicacy very soon! While I do that, you guys enjoy this Mexican meatball soup and don’t forget to let me know how it turned out for you, your family and friends! Enjoy!

Mexican-Meatballs-FQ-4-3760

Mexican Meatball Soup | Albondigas Soup
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Mexican
Serves: 6 Servings
Ingredients
For meatballs:
  • Chicken thighs – 4, skinless & boneless
  • Onion – 1, small, finely minced
  • Egg – 1, large, beaten
  • Cooked rice – ½ cup, lightly mashed
  • Garlic – 6-8 cloves, minced
  • Fresh cilantro – ¼ cup, finely chopped
  • Fresh mint leaves – 2 tbsp, finely chopped
  • Dried oregano – 1 tsp
  • Dried parsley – 2 tsp
  • Chilli powder – 1 tsp
  • Cumin powder (ground cumin) – ½ tsp
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Olive oil – 4 to 6 tbsp for frying

For soup:
  • Olive oil – 4 tbsp
  • Onion – 1, small, finely chopped
  • Garlic – 6-8 cloves, minced
  • Tomatoes – 4, large, chopped
  • Tomato paste – 2 tbsp
  • Jalapeno pepper – 2, sliced
  • Red kidney beans – ½ cup, cooked
  • Corn kernels – ½ cup, boiled
  • Red bell pepper – 1, small, chopped into small pieces
  • Chilli powder – 1 tsp
  • Cumin powder (ground cumin) – 2 tsp
  • Coriander powder (ground coriander) – 1 tsp
  • Dried oregano – 1 tsp
  • Paprika – ½ tsp
  • Chicken stock – 2 cups (or water)
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • Salsa or avocado or sour cream as topping
Instructions
For meatballs:
  1. Chop the chicken thighs into small chunks and add them to a chopper. Process the chicken cubes in the chopper until they are coarsely chopped. Alternatively you can use minced chicken, although I prefer to mince my chicken using an electric chopper.
  2. Take the minced chicken in a large bowl and add the beaten egg along with all other ingredients listed under meatballs except the olive oil. Give a good mix using a light hand or a spatula until all the ingredients are evenly distributed.
  3. Divide the mixture into approximately 40 meatballs of 1 tablespoon size each and place them on a baking sheet lines with parchment paper.
  4. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet and when the oil is hot, add the meatballs one by one and saute them on medium-high heat. If your skillet is not large enough, you may have to do it on batches. Do not overcrowd the skillet as that will steam the meatballs instead of frying them hence turning them soggy.
  5. Once the bottom of the meatballs turn brown, flip them over and saute for another minute or two. We are not cooking them completely at this stage but just sauteeing them to increase their flavor quotient.
  6. Take the meatballs out from the skillet when both the sides have turned brown and put them back on the baking sheet. Set aside.
  7. Now heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onions and cook for about 5 minutes.
  8. Once the onion turns translucent, add the garlic and cook for couple of minutes. Add the chopped tomatoes & sliced jalapenos and saute for 5 minutes until the tomatoes turn soft & mushy.
  9. Then add the tomato paste, chilli powder, cumin powder, coriander powder, dried oregano and paprika. Season with salt & pepper and stir everything to mix well. Saute the spices on medium-high heat until oil starts to release.
  10. Add the cooked/canned kidney beans and boiled corn kernels to the Dutch oven. Give a very good mix. Pour in the chicken stock and bring it to boil.
  11. Now cover the pot and reduce heat to a low simmer and cook for 15-20 minutes. Check and adjust seasoning at this stage to your liking.
  12. Finally add the sautéed meatballs to the soup along with the chopped red bell pepper. Add about a cup or 2 of water if feel the water is absorbed too much and you like a less chunky soup.
  13. Bring the soup to boil, then reduce to a gentle simmer for an additional 12-15 minutes or until meatballs are cooked through.
  14. Your hot and spicy Mexican meatball soup is ready. Ladle the soup into bowls and top with your favorite toppings. Enjoy!

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