This is one of my husband's favorite soups! It's great leftover and freezes very well. If you need a meal to take to someone who's had a baby, is recovering from surgery, etc.--taco soup is an excellent choice. Just throw in a small carton of sour cream, a bag of tortilla chips (we like Garden of Eatin' brand, because they use no genetically modified corn or soy) and some shredded cheese when you make your soup delivery.
Don't get too hung up on the directions. The ingredients are rough estimates. If you like it chunky--use diced tomatoes. If you aren't into the chunks--use petite diced or tomato puree. Add more beans, less beans, different beans, dried and cooked beans, canned beans...whatever! Throw in a can of green chilies to spice it up, if you like. Stretch your meat by only using half a pound and adding some rice. This soup is VERY forgiving. I make it slightly different every time (that's what happens when you don't measure stuff--hahaha!) and it's always a hit. Enjoy!
Serves 5 (2 c. servings)
1 lb. ground beef (or 1/2 lb. beef + 1/2 c. cooked brown rice)
28 oz. diced tomatoes with juice (2 sm. cans or one large can)
1 c. frozen corn (or one can of corn)
1 1/2 c. dried black beans, soaked & cooked (or one can, drained)
1 1/2 c. dried red beans, soaked & cooked (or one can, drained)
2 T. taco seasoning mix (equals one packet of mix)
1 T. Ranch seasoning mix (equals one packet of mix)
3--3 1/2 c. water (I don't measure...I just fill up the tomato cans!)
For topping the soup...use whatever you like!
crushed tortilla chips
To make on stovetop:
Brown ground beef and onion in a medium saucepan (at least 3 qt.) and drain grease. Return beef mixture to same saucepan and add remaining soup ingredients (tomatoes, beans, corn, water, rice--if using, and seasoning mixes). Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer on low for 15-20 min. Serve warm with choice of toppings.
To make in crockpot:
Brown ground beef and onion in a skillet on the stovetop and drain grease. Place beef mixture and all remaining soup ingredients into the crockpot and cook on low for 4-6 hours. Serve warm with choice of toppings.