soups salad + sides

chicken tortilla soup

My crockpot is one of the most important kitchen items I own. When I was first in the market for a crockpot I came across the exact same year, make, and model as the one I had grown up watching my mom use. It’s ugly, clunky and cooks a helluva meal every time. I didn’t hesitate. I scooped it up for pennies at a thrift store, replaced the plug, and have never had a single regret. (Don’t mind the missing knob on the front. It still turns!) 

Crockpots make cooking a cinch, especially on those days you don’t feel like cooking… Like weekends! Weekends are meant for easy living. It’s a time to rejuvenate and relax with those you love, around a table, around a movie, and – now with warmer weather making its way into our lives – around a picnic spread. 

This particular soup is great for the transition from winter to spring. It’s warm and filling, but not overly indulgent and heavy. The bit of spicy kick can be tapered to your liking and adds a fresh heat to the meal. 

The best part: set it and forget it! 

Toss the ingredient in your crockpot on a Sunday morning, set it on low, and go about your business. Whether you’re around the house for chores or out-n-about having adventures all day long, when it’s finally time to snuggle up with your honey bunny in the evening, your delicious soup will be awaiting your arrival. 

Bon appétit!


serves 6 - 8

2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breast

1 can black beans, drained + rinsed

1 can fire-roasted tomatoes

1 medium red onion, chopped

1 packet taco seasoning

1 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper


32 oz (1 qt) chicken stock

1 can golden sweet corn

1/2 c cilantro, chopped plus more for garnishing

half a lime, juiced 

crushed tortilla chips

shredded cheese

sour cream 


Cut the chicken into smaller pieces. Add chicken, beans, tomatoes, onion, taco seasoning, and cayenne pepper to a crockpot. Pour in chicken stock. Add a few cranks of s+p and turn the crockpot to high heat. Cook for 4 hours (or 8 hours on low). 

With a large knife and fork, shred the chicken while in the crockpot. It should fall apart easily since it’s been cooking nice and slowly for so long. 

Add sweet corn and cilantro. Let cook for another 30 minutes. 

To serve, ladle soup into a bowl and top with a squeeze of fresh lime juice, crushed tortilla chips, shredded cheese, sour cream, and chopped cilantro.