A Cold-Weather Favorite
This slow cooker taco soup with ground beef is one of my favorite recipes to make in the slow cooker, especially in the fall and winter months.
The soup is so hearty and flavorful, and the beef gets so tender over the long hours of cooking. Let it cook all day and it just gets better.
How To Make Taco Soup
Note that you’ll need a few minutes to brown the beef before putting this soup into the slow cooker. Even briefly browning the beef gives it a better texture and flavor in the finished soup, and it also helps render out some of the fat before it goes into the slow cooker.
Since I’m already browning the meat, I also like to cook the onions a little bit. This draws out their sweet flavor.
You can brown the meat and onions a day or two ahead and keep them refrigerated until you’re ready to make the soup..
I love serving this soup with crushed tortilla chips for some crunch and also to complete the “taco” part of the soup. Add a healthy dollop of sour cream and it’s ready to eat!
- Want more spice? Make this soup more (or less!) spicy by adjusting the amount of chili powder. Start with an extra 1/2 teaspoon and work from there. You can also add a minced jalapeno or other spicy fresh chili.
- Make-ahead soup: This soup will last for up to a week in the fridge, so make a big batch for the whole week!
- Freezing this soup: This soup can also be frozen for up to three months. Reheat it over gentle heat on the stovetop or in the microwave. Wait to add things like tortilla chips and avocado slices until you’re ready to serve.
What To Serve With Taco Soup
- Homemade Tortilla Chips
- Homemade Guacamole
- Cilantro Lime Rice
- Yankee Cornbread
- Grilled Mexican Street Corn
This post has been updated. Originally published October 2016.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 pound (450g) lean ground beef
- 1 1/2 cups (180g) diced yellow or red onions
- 2 to 3 cups (475ml to 710ml) chicken or beef broth (use more if you want a thinner soup)
- 1 15-oz. (425g) can diced tomatoes
- 1 15-oz. (425g) can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 15-oz. (425g) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 4-oz. (115g) can chopped green chiles
- 1 1/4 cups (135g) corn kernels, fresh or frozen
- 2 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Tortilla chips, lightly crushed
- Sour cream
- Chopped cilantro
- Finely diced red onion
- Lime juice
- Chopped red onions
- 4-quart or larger slow cooker
1 Brown the beef with the onions (can be done a day or two ahead): Heat the olive oil in a large skillet or sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add beef and onions and cook 2 to 3 minutes, until the ground beef is browned but not completely cooked and the onions are starting to look soft around the edges. Use your spatula to break up the ground beef into smaller pieces as it cooks. Remove from heat and use immediately, or refrigerate for a day or two until needed.
2 Combine the browned beef, onions and the remaining soup ingredients in a slow cooker and stir. Cover and cook on low for 6 to 7 hours. It’s fine if the soup cooks a little longer or the slow cooker switches to the “warm” setting.
3 Serve the soup: Serve soup in bowls and top with crushed tortilla chips, sour cream, cilantro, red onion and lime juice.
This soup will keep refrigerated for 1 week or frozen for up to 3 months.