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Authentic Caldo Tlalpeno Soup

This delicious authentic Mexican soup recipe is a joy to make and very enjoyable to eat. Caldo tlalpeno soup is typically Mexican and it is a heavenly combination of chicken, beans, avocado, vegetables, chicken broth and more. The chipotle chili in adobe gives the soup a smoky, fiery flavor and the avocado cools it down a bit, providing a welcome contrast.

The word “tlalpeno” derives from tlalpan, which is an ancient word meaning “on the earth.” Tlalpan is now one of the southern districts in Mexico City where this soup is believed to hail from. The village was pre-Hispanic a long time ago, then was a colonial Spanish agricultural town, before becoming part of Mexico City as the city grew and spread out to encompass the outlying villages. This hearty soup is made with ingredients that the locals would have had access to or grown themselves.

This soup is far more traditional (and nicer tasting) if you make your own chicken broth and that applies to nearly all chicken broth-based soups. You can also double the amount of adobo for a smokier and richer flavor. Sometimes caldo tlalpeno contains rice. If you want to use rice, add arroz dorado, which is rice that, is sautéed until golden brown and then simmered in the chicken broth. This flavor adds a richness to the soup.

Combining chicken with vegetables, beans, herbs and spices, this is sure to be a complete success. The flavor is amazing and this is satisfying and well-rounded enough to be an entrée rather than an appetizer. If you are in the mood for something authentically Mexican, highly flavored and worthy of making, this Tlalpeno soup is sure to hit the spot.

It is filling and hearty enough for the whole family and even the hungriest belly at the table will be satisfied with a bowlful of this, perhaps with tortillas on the side. Once you have made and tasted this, it might well turn out to be your go-to chicken soup recipe whenever you want something warming and delicious.

Traditional Mexican Soup – Caldo Tlalpeno
Summary: Chicken, beans and vegetables combine with avocado, herbs and spices, to make this excellent soup which is rich in vitamins and nutrients, as well as authentic Mexican flavor.
Cuisine: Mexican
Recipe type: Soup
Serves: 4
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
  • 2 quarts chicken broth
  • 1 diced onion
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 chicken breast
  • 1 teaspoon dried epazote
  • 2 peeled, diced carrots
  • 1 tablespoon crushed garlic
  • 1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 avocado, peeled and diced
  • Chipotle chilies in adobo, to taste
  • Salt, to taste
  • Fresh cilantro, for garnish
  1. Put the chicken breast and broth in a large pan and bring the mixture to a simmer.
  2. Skim off any froth that rises to the top.
  3. Add the parsley and simmer the mixture for 15 minutes.
  4. Remove the chicken from the broth and take off the bones and skin.
  5. Shred the chicken and put it to one side. Strain the broth and skim off any fat.
  6. Heat the olive oil in a skillet over a moderate heat.
  7. Add the carrots, onion, and sauté until they start to go brown.
  8. Add the garlic and cook for a further minute.
  9. Add the garbanzos, epazote, and vegetables and bring the soup to a simmer.
  10. Cook it on a low simmer for 30 minutes.
  11. Dice one of the chipotle chilies, add it to the pot with 4 whole chilies, along with a tablespoon of the adobo sauce and the chicken to the soup, and warm it through.
  12. Add salt if necessary. Serve this soup garnished with diced avocado and fresh cilantro.
  13. Make sure there is 1 chipotle chili in each bowl.

Photo Description:

This delicious caldo tlalpeno soup is very colorful, as you can see from the picture, and it makes a hearty and warming lunch or dinner recipe if you fancy something traditionally Mexican. This is a healthy soup, since it is rich in vegetables and the beans are nutritious too. To bulk this soup up more, you could add some rice or potatoes to it. This is not an overly spicy dish but the chipotle chilies in adobo do give this Mexican soup a bit of a kick to liven it up. If you enjoy making Mexican soup recipes, you will love this authentic caldo tlalpeno soup recipe. It is easy to make and has a great flavor.

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Christine Szalay-Kudra

Hi, I'm Christine, and I'm pleased to welcome you to I have endeavored to gather as many delicious South of the border recipes here for you, including Mexican-inspired as well as traditional Mexican, and also some Tex-Mex and Mexican fusion dishes. Food is very important to our family's lives and Mexican food is certainly a favorite around here.

We have everything from appetizers and snacks to soups, drinks, entrées, and much more. You will find everything from mild dishes to super-spicy ones, simple recipes based on fresh ingredients up to more complex ones suitable for a dinner party.

Home cooks just starting out with Mexican cooking tend to be surprised how much of the emphasis is placed on using fresh ingredients and aromatic herbs and spices. Forget the typical ideas about Mexican food being all beans, cheese and beef (that applies a little more to Tex-Mex), take inspiration from authentic Mexican dishes based on fresh ingredients, and inject all your passion into cooking South of the border food, for perfect results every time.

Thanks for visiting,