Updated: Feb 2, 2022
October has come and gone, but pumpkin season is far from over. If you, like me, are still embracing all things pumpkin, then boy oh boy do I have a treat for you! No, I’m not sharing another pumpkin bread recipe… but rather an autumn twist on a cozy, classic comfort food. Say hello to my Autumn Chicken Taco Soup.
PUMPKIN to TACO ’bout
There is truly nothing more comforting than a warm bowl of homemade soup on a cold evening. In the fall and winter months, I make soup at least once a week. It’s so just easy to make! AND it’s a great and flavorful way to use up veggies that are past their prime.
Have a lone carrot, a cup of butternut squash, a half can of diced tomatoes, a fourth of an onion, or half a poblano wasting away in the fridge? Soup gives those would-be wasted veggies a purpose. Just *chop chop chop* and add to your favorite vegetable soup, chili, or taco soup. OR make a non-recipe kitchen sink soup with what you have on hand.
I’m all about non-recipe kitchen sink soups to reduce waste, but when I want a really good soup I make my Autumn Chicken Taco Soup. The flavor is out of this world, and the cozy rating is an 11/10. Chicken noodle soup may be the ultimate “sick day” comfort food, but my Autumn Chicken Taco Soup is the ultimate EVERYDAY comfort food.
Pumpkin Spice with a Southwestern Flair
Spicy, flavorful, smooth, nourishing, and comforting are the 5 words that just about sum up this dish. The addition of pumpkin purée gives this soup a smooth texture as well as a nutrient boost. Traditional Mexican pinto beans pack a plant-based protein punch, an energizing carbohydrate kick, and a knockout southwestern flair. Though slightly spicy due to the addition of poblano peppers, hatch green chillies, and traditional Mexican spices, this soup has a citrusy brightness from fresh lime juice that perfectly rounds out the southwestern flavor profile.
This seasonal Autumn Chicken Taco Soup is so good as it, but the addition of plain Greek yogurt, avocado, cilantro, shredded Mexican blend cheese, and tortilla chips to garnish takes this soup to the NEXT LEVEL.
GOURD For You
Pumpkin has so much to give and is WAY more than just the “P” in PSL. Just 1/2 cup of 100% pumpkin puree contains 3 g dietary fiber, 100% the DV for vitamin A, and less than 50 calories. Pumpkin puree is also a good source of vitamin C, B vitamins, and several minerals including potassium and heart-healthy magnesium. Talk about nutrient dense! Adding pumpkin puree to dishes like oatmeal, baked goods, and soups is a great way to boost the fiber content, promoting fullness and bowel regularity, and get your daily dose of vitamin A.
Vitamin A is a fat soluble vitamin found in many yellow-orange and green vegetables and fruits like sweet potatoes, cantaloupe, and spinach. In addition to promoting skin and eye health, vitamin A may play a role in cancer prevention and fighting inflammation.
Add Pumpkin for a Boost of Flavor and Nutrition
This fall fruit (not a typo!) is PUMPKIN else; not only is pumpkin rich in nutrition, but it’s also super versatile. 100% pumpkin puree is not sweet, but can easily be prepared sweet with spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and clove (hello Pumpkin Spice!) or savory with spices like cumin, curry, paprika, turmeric, chili powder, or sage. Try adding pumpkin to dishes you eat often – muffins, soups, hummus, mac’n cheese, you name it! – for a boost of flavor and nutrition.
If you like the flavors in this Autumn Chicken Taco Soup, you'll also like: Curried Sweet Potato Squash Soup, Sweet Potato Enchiladas, Sunny Southwestern Breakfast Sweet Potato, Easy Salmon Tacos with Fresh Mango Lime Salsa
What’s in This Recipe?
Olive oil – contains heart healthy monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs)
Onion – contains the antioxidant quercetin
Poblano pepper – rich in vitamin C, water, and fiber
Canned tomatoes with green chilies – contains the antioxidant lycopene
100% pumpkin puree – contains vitamin A for eye, skin, immune health as well as potassium and vitamin C
Chicken broth – adds flavor and some amino acids (building blocks of proteins)
Yellow corn – contains energizing carbohydrates, fiber, vitamin C, folate, magnesium, and potassium as well as phytonutrients
Herbs and spices – cumin, chili powder, salt, oregano, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, cinnamon, cayenne, turmeric
Pinto beans – complex carbohydrate and plant-based protein, rich in dietary fiber and folate
Chicken – rich in protein, contains iron and several B vitamins
Lime juice – rich in vitamin C
Note: Naturally free of gluten, dairy, nuts, eggs, and fish, this soup is allergen friendly. Follow a vegetarian or vegan diet? No worries! Simply replace the chicken and chicken broth with black beans and vegetable broth to make this pumpkin-y taco soup vegan/vegetarian!
Autumn Chicken Taco Soup
Prep time: 5-10 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes
Total time: 45-50 minutes
1 tbsp. olive oil
1/4 cup white onion, chopped
1/4 cup poblano pepper, cored and chopped
1 can (14.5 oz) petite diced tomatoes with hatch green chilies
1 cup pumpkin puree
3 cup low sodium chicken broth
1 cup yellow corn, canned or cooked
2 tsp. Taco Spice Blend*
1/4 tsp. turmeric
1/4 tsp. chili powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 can (15.5 oz) pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup shredded chicken
1-2 tbsp. fresh lime juice
*Taco Spice Blend:
1 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. oregano
1/4 tsp. onion powder
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. paprika
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
Dash of cayenne (optional, but encouraged)
Plain Greek yogurt
In a large pot, heat the olive oil and sauté the onion for 5 minutes. Add the chopped poblano and continue cooking for 3-4 more minutes.
Next, add the tomatoes and green chillies, pumpkin puree, broth, corn, and spices to the pot.
Once the soup just starts to boil, turn down the heat, cover with the lid, and simmer for 30 minutes.
Remove the lid and add the shredded chicken and pinto beans. Cook for 5 more minutes until the soup returns to a low boil.
Remove from heat, and stir in the lime juice. Garnish as desired.
Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. When you make this Autumn Chicken Taco Soup or any Hope For Balance recipe, tag me at @hope.for.balance and use the hashtag #hopeforbalance for a chance to be featured in my Facebook or IG stories. I LOVE seeing your creations!