Mexican Turkey Meatball Soup Recipe
This hearty, healthy one-pot meal starts by making Mexican-inspired turkey meatballs with ground turkey, rice, onion, cilantro, garlic, cumin, and chili powder. The meatballs are simmered in chicken broth along with carrots, zucchini, and tomatoes until moist and tender. Add a dash of hot sauce at the end for a little heat, and serve this soup with warm tortillas or tortilla chips for a filling meal.
For the meatballs:
- 1 pound ground turkey
- 1/2 medium white or yellow onion, finely chopped
- 1/3 cup uncooked long-grain white rice
- 1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 2 medium garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
For the soup:
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1/2 medium white or yellow onion, medium dice
- 1 medium garlic clove, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus more as needed
- 3/4 teaspoon chili powder
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
- 8 cups (2 quarts) low-sodium chicken broth or stock
- 2 medium carrots, large dice
- 2 medium Roma tomatoes, cored and large dice
- 2 medium zucchini, large dice
- 1 teaspoon Mexican-style hot sauce, such as Cholula or Tapatío, plus more as needed
- Coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
- Tortilla chips or warmed tortillas
- Using your hands, combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl and place in the refrigerator.
For the soup:
- Heat the oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat until shimmering. Add the onion, garlic, measured salt, chili powder, and cumin and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion has softened, about 5 minutes.
- Increase the heat to high, add the broth or stock, stir to combine, and bring to a simmer. Meanwhile, form the meatballs: Fill a small bowl with water. Roll the meat mixture into 1-1/4-inch balls (about 1 heaping tablespoon each), wetting your hands as necessary to keep the mixture from sticking. Place the meatballs on a baking sheet.
- Add the carrots and tomatoes to the broth, stir to combine, and return to a simmer. Add the meatballs, evenly placing them around the pot (no need to stir), and return to a simmer. Reduce the heat to medium low and cover the pot with a tightfitting lid. Cook until the rice and the meatballs are cooked through, about 20 minutes.
- Add the zucchini, stir to combine, and simmer uncovered until the zucchini is crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat, add the measured hot sauce, and stir to combine. Taste and season with additional salt and hot sauce as needed. Serve with the cilantro, tortilla chips or tortillas, and extra hot sauce on the side.