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Pinto Bean Tortilla Soup

July 1, 2011 by HealthyFamilies BC

Pinto Bean Tortilla Soup

This hearty, warming soup is a delicious way to get some great soluble fiber from beans. It's perfect for a cold Canadian winter weeknight supper. Make the soup on the weekend and reheat it to serve during the week.

Makes 8 servings
Need a rimmed baking sheet and food processor or blender


  • 1 1⁄2 cups dried pinto beans
  • 1 Large onion, cut into 6 wedges
  • 5 plum (Roma) tomatoes, quartered
  • 4 tsp canola oil, divided
  • 4 5-inch (12.5 cm) corn tortillas, divided
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and finely minced
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 cup frozen corn kernels (250 mL)
  • Pinch salt
  • 1⁄2 avocado, chopped
  • 1⁄2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese


1. Place beans in a large bowl and add enough cold water to cover by at least 3 inches (7.5 cm). Cover and let soak overnight. Drain soaked beans and rinse well under cold water. Discard any shriveled beans or those that did not swell.

2. Place beans in a large pot and add enough fresh cold water to cover by 3 inches (7.5 cm). Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 to 35 minutes or until beans are tender. Drain and set aside.

3. Meanwhile, preheat broiler. Place onion and tomatoes on baking sheet and brush with 1 tsp (5 mL) of the oil. Broil, turning every 5 minutes, for about 15 minutes or until charred. Transfer to food processor and process until smooth. Set aside. Reduce oven temperature to 350°F (180°C).

4. Cut tortillas into 2- by 1⁄4-inch (5 by 0.5 cm) strips.

5. In a clean large pot, heat 2 tsp (10 mL) oil over medium heat. Add half the tortilla strips, garlic and jalapeño; sauté for 3 minutes. Stir in cumin and coriander. Add broth and deglaze the pot, scraping up any brown bits stuck to the bottom. Add bay leaf and bring to a boil. Stir in puréed onion mixture and tomato paste; return to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes. Stir in corn and cooked pinto beans; simmer for 10 minutes to blend the flavors.

6. Discard bay leaf.

7. Meanwhile, gently toss the remaining tortilla strips with the remaining oil and the salt. Spread on a baking sheet. Bake for about 10 minutes or until crisp.

8. Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with baked tortilla strips, avocado and cheese.

TIPS: The tomatoes and onions can be broiled up to 1 day in advance. Let cool, cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Nutrients per serving
Calories 257
Fat 7.6 g
Saturated Fat 2.1 g
Sodium 388 mg (16% DV)
Carbohydrate 37 g
Fiber 11 g (44% DV)
Protein 13 g
Calcum 122 mg (11% DV)
Iron 2.8 mg (20% DV)

Diabetes Food Choice Values Per Serving:
1 1/2 Carbohydrate
1 Meat & Alternatives
1 Fat

Reprinted with permission © Cook Great Food. Dietitians of Canada. 2001. Published by Robert Rose Inc. Order at or visit



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