Taco Soup


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Taco soup is a cozy and delicious way to enjoy your favorite taco flavors during soup season. Made with ground beef, a variety of beans and vegetables, and flavored with taco seasoning, it’s a great one-pot meal that’s guaranteed to be a family favorite! 

Bowls of tacos soup
Photo: Gayle McLeod

This easy taco soup recipe is yet another hearty and nourishing soup to add to your list this fall and winter. It’s a bit more soupy than my classic beef chili (though just as hearty) and loaded with vegetables and robust flavor, similar to my lentil soup

Think of it as a wonderful Taco Tuesday meal with the perfect amount of spices but without the need to fuss with taco shells. It’s a definite winner! I also recommend going the extra step and adding a few extra toppings like cilantro,  jalapeño, and Cotija cheese. It helps to give you that full taco experience!

Ingredients for taco soup


  • Ground Beef: You can choose whichever kind of ground beef you like for this soup. But I typically prefer one that’s a bit on the leaner side so there’s not too much fat to drain.
  • Vegetables: For fresh produce, you’ll need an onion and a green bell pepper. For canned items, you’ll need sweet corn and diced tomatoes.
  • Beans: A mix of black beans and kidney beans are my go-to’s. But you could also use pinto beans if you prefer. Also, make sure you drain and rinse them. Canned veggies, especially beans, have been sitting in a saltwater solution to preserve them. By rinsing them, you can reduce the sodium level by about 40%.
  • Tomato Paste: A spoonful of tomato paste goes a long way in adding depth to the broth!
  • Diced Green Chiles: Don’t worry, these green chiles aren’t super hot, but they do add a tangy, slightly sweet flavor, with a hint of heat.
  • Taco Seasoning: Skip any store-bought packets, because this homemade taco seasoning is way better. Plus, it’s really easy to make and you can store it away for future dinners like my taco salad or taco stuffed zucchini boats!
  • Water: I’m using water as the base for the broth, but you could also use beef broth for a richer flavor.

Find the printable recipe with measurements below


Cook the ground beef. In a large pot over medium heat, cook the ground beef until browned, then drain any fat that’s left over. 

Cooking ground beef in a pot

Cook the first set of veggies. Add the diced onion, bell pepper, taco seasoning, and tomato paste to the pot. Stir it all together for 2 minutes until the onion becomes translucent and the mixture smells fragrant.

Ground beef and vegetables in a pot

Add the rest of the veggies and boil. Add the black beans, kidney beans, corn, diced tomatoes, green chilies, and water. Bring the soup to a boil, cover, and cook for 20 minutes. Keep on reading for ways to top off your soup!

Cooking beans and meat in a pot


Can I make taco soup in a slow cooker or crockpot?

Yes, you can use either! I make this taco soup in a large pot on the stove (as it only takes 30 minutes). But if you prefer to use a slow cooker or crockpot to “set it and forget it” you could do so.

What toppings can I add to taco soup?

When it comes to toppings, get creative! Add some diced avocado, jalapenos, cilantro, and a sprinkle of Cotija cheese. You could also add a dollop of sour cream or a dollop of my dairy-free cashew sour cream.

What do you eat with taco soup?

I personally don’t eat anything else with this since it’s pretty filling. But if you want a little something on the side, tortilla chips with guacamole and pico de gallo never fail! You could also add some cilantro lime rice into your soup to make it even heartier. 

A pot of taco soup


  • To store for the week: Any leftovers will keep in the fridge for 4 to 5 days in an airtight container. Perfect to enjoy throughout the week!
  • To freeze for later: You can store this in a freezer-safe container or pour it into a silicone freezing tray for pre-made servings. It will last for up to 3 months in the freezer.
  • For reheating: If you’re reheating a single serving, microwave it for 2 to 3 minutes until warmed through. If you’re reheating an entire batch, it’s easier to warm it up on the stove in a large pot.
A white pot with taco soup


I’ve got plenty of other soup recipes and chili recipes for you to enjoy during cold weather days. Here are a few of my favorites that I come back to again and again. 

  • Turkey Chili: For a slightly healthier chili, this ground turkey version hits the spot. 
  • Cabbage Soup: It’s a good idea to always have a frozen batch of this healthy cabbage soup on hand!
  • White Chicken Chili: This is the perfect way to switch up your usual chili meal with shredded chicken and various other flavors. 
  • Black Bean Soup: This is for all the black bean lovers out there!

I hope you love this taco soup as much as I do! If you make it, I’d love to hear what you think of this recipe in the comment box below. Your review will help other readers!

A bowl of taco soup with avocado

Taco Soup

4.98 from 45 votes
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 25 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
Servings: 5 servings
Author: Lisa Bryan


This taco soup recipe is guaranteed to be a family favorite — loaded with ground beef, a variety of beans and vegetables, and flavored with the best homemade taco seasoning. Watch the video below to see how easily this comes together!



  • 1 pound ground beef
  • ½ large onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 recipe taco seasoning, or 2 tablespoons if you've made a large batch
  • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15-ounce) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15-ounce) can canned sweet corn, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15-ounce) can canned diced tomatoes
  • 1 (4-ounce) can canned diced green chilies
  • 3 cups water

optional toppings

  • avocado
  • jalapeno peppers
  • cilantro
  • cotija cheese (or other cheese)
  • sour cream


  • Cook the ground beef. In a large pot over medium heat, cook the ground beef until browned. Drain any leftover fat.
    Cooked ground beef in a pot
  • Cook the first set of vegetables. Add the diced onion, bell pepper, taco seasoning, and tomato paste to the pot. Stir and sweat the ingredients together for 1 to 2 minutes.
    Seasoned ground beef in a pot
  • Add the remaining vegetables and simmer. Add the black beans, kidney beans, corn, diced tomatoes, green chilies, and water. Bring the soup to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook for 20 minutes.
    Cooking taco soup in a pot
  • Serve it up. To serve, ladle the taco soup into bowls and add your favorite taco toppings.
    A white bowl of taco soup

Lisa’s Tips

  • For a meatless Monday or vegetarian/vegan option: Replace the ground beef with quinoa.
  • If you’re making this in a slow cooker: Add all of the ingredients to a slow cooker and cook on low for 6 hours (or more) or high for 4 hours.


Calories: 476kcal | Carbohydrates: 58g | Protein: 36g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 59mg | Sodium: 448mg | Potassium: 1285mg | Fiber: 16g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 260IU | Vitamin C: 34mg | Calcium: 96mg | Iron: 8mg
Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: taco soup, taco soup recipe
Did you make this recipe?Mention @downshiftology or tag #downshiftology!

Originally posted August 2017, but updated to include new photos and information.

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About the author

Lisa Bryan

Lisa is a bestselling cookbook author, recipe developer, and YouTuber (with over 2.5 million subscribers) living in sunny Southern California. She started Downshiftology in 2014, and is passionate about making healthy food with fresh, simple and seasonal ingredients.

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Recipe Rating


  1. You have some of the best recipes, and I want to try some of them. I’m going to make the taco soup but use chicken, I don’t eat beef. Keep up the good work.

  2. I have so many GI issues and am a picky eater but this soup is AMAZING and feels good on my stomach. It’s rare I find something I like and can digest so this is a new favorite. Not to mention that I am busy and need quick easy recipes, and this is one of them! My boyfriend avoids red meats so I substituted with ground turkey and it was just as good! Thanks for sharing your recipe!

  3. This soup is my all time favorite soup! I have made it several times and it’s always a hit! My husband can only eat chicken for a meat right now because of a health issue, so I substituted 2 shredded chicken breasts for the ground beef. It was delicious! Thank you for giving us clean, healthy recipes Lisa❣️5 stars

  4. I made this delicious taco soup for my family last night. They devoured it! This is just one of my favorite recipes from Lisa.5 stars