Caldo de Pollo (Mexican Chicken Soup)

As many of you are probably already aware, I love Mexican food. Heck, I like most all ethnic food that I have ever tried, but Mexican cuisine, and well, Thai, really stand out for me. There is something to be said of its simplicity while at the same time having a very complex flavor. Take for example a basic roasted salsa. Very simple ingredients, but when added to a taco, that taco just got a whole lot brighter. Those are some of the things I love about Mexican food.

I post time and time again on how often I love visiting my local taqueria for a few tacos al pastor, and while I am eating the tacos, I really take interest to what the other locals are eating. Sure, some are eating tortas, or the daily special, but a majority of them are eating bowls of soup with large cuts of tender meats and chunky vegetables, all while having a warm, corn tortilla in the other hand.

Caldo de Pollo Recipe

After my snooping around and quick investigation, I realized that what the local are eating is really just a great chicken soup, with a couple of different ingredients. More rustic if you will, and it was my goal to make it for my family, and am I glad I did.

Let’s get started.

[Print this Recipe]

Ingredients for the chicken broth (caldo):

  • 4 chicken drum sticks, 2 thighs, 4 chicken wings
  • 3 cloves of garlic, lightly smashed
  • 3 large carrots, cleaned, and cut in half
  • 1 large onion, quartered
  • 1 serrano chili, smacked with the back of a knife
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 2 whole bay leaves
  • water, enough to cover all of the ingredients

Add all of the ingredients to a large stock pot, bring to a boil, cover, reduce the heat to a simmer, and let it cook for about two hours. About one hour in, skim the top of any residue, and discard.

Discard all of the chicken and vegetables, filtering it as much as possible. If you can let this cool, and place in the refrigerator overnight, that would be great. This will allow you to easily scrape any of the fat off of the top to have a cleaner broth.

Ingredients for the Soup (sopa):

  • 3 whole boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
  • 4 whole carrots, but into large bite sized pieces
  • 2 whole ears of corn, cleaned and cut into thirds
  • 3 yukon gold or russet potatoes, cleaned and cut into large bite size pieces
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • Fresh cilantro
  • Corn tortillas, warmed

Ingredients for Mexican red rice:

  • 3 whole roma tomatoes
  • 1 cup of long grain rice
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tbsp canola oil

Start by adding the broth back to your soup pot and bring it to a simmer. Add all of the ingredients except the cilantro and corn tortillas. Continue cooking on simmer until the vegetables become tender. This will take about 45-60 minutes.

During this time, make the rice. Add the whole tomatoes, water, and salt to a food processor or blender. Next, heat a medium pot on medium heat. Add the oil and let it warm through. Add in the rice, and stir, coating all of the rice. Continue to do this until the rice turns a light brown color. Add in your tomato water, give a good stir, cover, and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for about 15-20 minutes, or until the rice is nice and fluffy. Once cooked, remove it from the heat.

Sounds like a lot, right? It’s not, trust me.

Now you are ready to serve. To a nice soup bowl, add in about one cup of the rice to the bottom, distribute the chicken and vegetables into the broth, and ladle in the nice broth. Garnish with fresh cilantro and serve with a lime wedge and some nice, warm tortillas.

The simplicity of the ingredients, which are very basic, tend to change with the flavor of a warm, corn tortilla. Those simple things will get you every time. Now I know why the locals are always ordering the caldo de pollo, and the caldo de res. I hope you enjoy.

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Dax Phillips

Thank you for visiting my website. Truly, I do appreciate it. My free time and stress reliever is cooking for my family, friends, and everyone in between. The recipes you find on this site are those that I have either created, been part of, or those that I simply enjoy and have made my own in some shape, form, or other. My focus has always been on comfort food, because at the end of a long work day, you want something comforting. I currently am the father of three children, and married to a wonderful wife of thirteen years. There is nothing fancy with these recipes, just simple, and I will admit, not so simple ingredients, and a simple kitchen corner I can call my own. I learned early on that cooking and bringing family together was very important. After all, this notion of being together at dinner time was instilled early on by my parents. There are many memories of being in the kitchen with my parents, watching them cook, or preparing meals, or those home cooked smells while waiting for dinner. My parents who worked full-time, always had home cooked meals during the week, with the exception of Friday nights where we would enjoy a Wisconsin fish fry, and often on late afternoons on Sunday, where we would order Ann's pizza. I tend to cook by making things up. As a home cook, I think you have to take chances, and add or subtract ingredients that make up a dish, and make them your own. Remember to taste, and taste often. If a dish has potential, try it again, and make it your own. You should also note that I do not count calories, or break down recipes into grams of anything. To me, that's a bit boring. My philosophy is that if the food is good, eat it, and eat it in moderation. Life is just too short not to enjoy good food. Commonly Asked Questions: Can I use your photography/content on my website/blog? Please do not redistribute my photography or recipes without my permission. All of the recipes and photography on this website are my own unless noted, and is subjected to copyright  If you’d like to use a photograph or a recipe, please contact me for permission. Will you review my product/book/site? I am available for recipe development, food photography and/or styling, travel/press events, product reviews, brand promotion/ambassador, and sponsored posts. If you are interested in working with me, or if you have a question/comment regarding a recipe or about my blog, please send me an email.

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