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How to Make Caldo De Pollo (Mexican Chicken Soup)

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Hey there!

I’m a seasoned home cook passionate about Mexican cuisine. Today, I’m thrilled to guide you in making Caldo de Pollo, a hearty Mexican chicken soup.

With a recipe perfected over the years, we’ll choose the best chicken, simmer it into a flavorful broth, and add a healthy mix of veggies.

Get ready to create a warming dish that feeds the soul.

Let’s dive into the art of making this hearty chicken broth together!

Chef’s Insight into the Art of Caldo De Pollo

As a seasoned chef, I’ve found that the art of making Caldo De Pollo isn’t just about following a recipe; it’s about understanding the balance of flavors and the importance of quality ingredients.

Each ingredient plays a crucial role, from the chicken that provides a deep, rich base to the veggies that add a fresh, hearty element. The spices, too, must be carefully selected and added to taste; a pinch of too much or too little can throw off the entire dish.

It’s also critical to give the soup ample time to simmer, allowing the flavors to meld together beautifully. And remember, top-notch ingredients are key. Quality chicken and fresh vegetables truly make all the difference.

It’s these details that transform a simple soup into a culinary masterpiece.

Necessary Ingredients

To make a hearty Caldo De Pollo, you’ll need several key ingredients. Start with chicken; I prefer using a mix of boneless, skinless chicken breasts and thighs. For vegetables, you’ll need carrots, celery, onions, corn on the cob, chayote, potatoes, zucchini, cabbage, and green beans.

Spices play a big role too. Salt, pepper, chicken bouillon, oregano, garlic, and cilantro give the soup its distinctive flavor. You’ll also need chicken broth and water for the base.

Lastly, don’t forget the garnish! Lime wedges and avocados add a fresh touch that really enhances the flavor. Now that we’ve got our ingredients ready, we’re set to start cooking our delicious soup.

Step-by-Step Recipe

After gathering all the necessary ingredients, I’m now ready to guide you through the step-by-step process of making this delicious soup.

First, I boil the chicken in a mix of water and broth until it’s tender enough to shred.

After removing the chicken, I throw in the veggies and spices, letting them simmer in the aromatic broth.

Once they’re tender, I add the shredded chicken back into the pot, letting everything mingle and enhance each other’s flavors.

The result is a rich, savory soup brimming with the comforting flavors of home.

And voila! You’ve just made a delicious pot of this traditional Mexican chicken soup.

Now, let’s move on to some tips and serving suggestions to truly elevate your soup experience.

Tips and serving suggestions

While we’ve covered the basics of making this flavorful chicken concoction, let’s now delve into some tips and serving suggestions that can truly elevate your soup experience.

First off, don’t be afraid to play with the ingredients. If you’ve got other vegetables at hand, toss them in. The more, the heartier!

Secondly, a squeeze of fresh lime just before serving adds a tangy twist. For an extra layer of flavor, I love garnishing with fresh cilantro.

If you’re making a big batch, this soup freezes beautifully for future meals. Just be sure to cool it properly before freezing.

And when you’re ready to serve, a side of warm, crusty bread or steamed rice makes for a comforting, well-rounded meal.

Enjoy your homemade Caldo De Pollo!

Storing and Reheating

Since we’ve talked about making the soup and serving it, let’s now tackle how you can store and reheat it.

For storing, ensure the soup’s cooled down before transferring it to an airtight container. This can safely sit in your fridge for about three to four days. If you want to store it for a longer period, freeze it. It’ll keep well for up to three months.

Now, reheating is straightforward. If frozen, allow it to thaw overnight in the fridge. Then, simply reheat it on the stovetop over medium heat or pop it in the microwave. Remember to stir occasionally to ensure even heating.

There, you’ve got your Caldo De Pollo, hot and ready, anytime you want it!

Community Feedback and Variations

Drawing on the experiences of our home cooks, I’ve seen a myriad of delicious variations and tips come up in the community discussions about Caldo De Pollo.

  1. Some cooks prefer using whole chicken, while others swear by the unique flavor of chicken thighs.
  2. A wide variety of vegetables are also used, with some adding chayote or even bell peppers to the mix.
  3. The spice level is a personal preference, with some adding a hefty dose of jalapenos, while others keep it mild with just a touch of black pepper.
  4. Serving suggestions also varied greatly, with some preferring to enjoy their soup with a side of tortillas, while others loved it with a squeeze of lime.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Are Some Common Substitutes for Ingredients That May Not Be Easily Available?

When I can’t find certain ingredients, I get creative with substitutes. If chayote isn’t available, I use squash. No chicken bouillon? A mix of salt, pepper, and herbs can work. If I’m out of fresh cilantro, dried cilantro or even parsley can save the day. Instead of fresh lime, bottled lime juice or even a splash of vinegar provide that tangy kick.

How Can I Make the Caldo De Pollo Vegetarian-Friendly While Still Keeping the Rich Flavors?

To it make a vegetarian-friendly, I’d swap out the chicken for hearty veggies like squash, mushrooms, or beans, which can give a rich flavor and texture. Instead of chicken broth, I’d use vegetable broth and maybe add some nutritional yeast for a deeper flavor.

I’d keep the traditional spices and add more garlic and cilantro. It won’t be exactly the same, but it’ll still be a warm, comforting soup.

What Is the History and Cultural Significance of Caldo De Pollo in Mexican Cuisine?

The dish holds a cherished place in Mexican cuisine. It’s a comfort food, often served in homes and traditional eateries.

This hearty soup’s history traces back to ancient Mexico, reflecting the country’s agricultural abundance. A symbol of familial warmth and hospitality, it’s often prepared for loved ones during recovery or cold weather.

Its cultural significance lies in its simplicity, nutritional value, and the communal experience of sharing a pot of soulful, homemade soup.

Are There Any Specific Types of Chicken Cuts That Work Best for Caldo De Pollo, or Can Any Part of the Chicken Be Used?

In my experience, any part of the chicken can be used for this soup. However, I’ve found bone-in, skin-on cuts like thighs or drumsticks add more flavor to the broth.

I’ve also used boneless, skinless chicken breasts for a leaner option. It’s really up to personal preference and dietary needs.

Just remember, the key is slow-cooking to extract all the delicious flavors.

Can Caldo De Pollo Be Made in a Slow Cooker or Pressure Cooker? if So, How Should the Recipe Be Adjusted?

Absolutely. I’ve made the savory chicken soup in both a slow cooker and a pressure cooker.

For a slow cooker, just dump everything in and cook on low for around 8 hours.

For a pressure cooker, you’ll need to reduce the cooking time significantly—about 30 minutes should do it.

Savoring Every Spoonful

And there you have it, my cherished Caldo de Pollo recipe.

I’m certain this nourishing, flavorful soup will warm your heart and delight your taste buds.

It’s not just a meal; it’s a taste of Mexican tradition and a labor of love.

Don’t forget, cooking is an art, so feel free to add your own twists.

Enjoy this culinary journey, and remember, the secret to great cooking is patience, passion, and a dash of creativity.

Happy cooking!

Caldo de Pollo

Adam K.
Discover the heartwarming flavors of Mexico with our authentic Caldo De Pollo recipe, a nourishing blend of tender chicken, fresh vegetables, and aromatic herbs that promises to comfort and satisfy.
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Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Course Main Course, Soup
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 4
Calories 200 kcal


  • 2 lbs of chicken parts legs, breasts, and thighs work well
  • 8 cups of water or enough to cover the chicken
  • 2 teaspoons of salt adjust to taste
  • 1 medium onion quartered
  • 4 cloves of garlic minced
  • 2 medium carrots peeled and sliced
  • 2 medium zucchinis sliced
  • 3 medium potatoes quartered
  • 2 ears of corn husked and cut into thirds
  • 1/2 head of cabbage chopped
  • 1/2 cup of chopped cilantro
  • 2 limes cut into wedges for serving
  • 1 jalapeño sliced (optional for added heat)
  • Avocado slices and tortilla strips for garnish optional


  • Prepare the chicken: In a large pot, place the chicken parts and cover with about 8 cups of water. Add a teaspoon of salt. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to low, and simmer for about 20–25 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.
  • Skim the Foam: As the chicken cooks, skim off any foam that rises to the surface to ensure a clear broth.
  • Add Aromatics: Add the quartered onion and minced garlic to the pot. Continue to simmer for another 10 minutes to allow the flavors to blend.
  • Vegetables: Add the carrots, potatoes, and corn to the pot. Let the soup simmer for another 10 minutes.
  • Final Vegetables: Add the zucchini and cabbage. Simmer the soup until the vegetables are tender, about 10–15 more minutes.
  • Season: Remove the chicken pieces, shred them, discarding any bones and skin, and return the shredded chicken to the pot. Stir in the chopped cilantro and additional salt to taste.
  • Serve: Serve hot in bowls, with lime wedges, sliced jalapeños, avocado, and tortilla strips if desired.


  • Chicken: You can use bone-in chicken for a richer broth. If you prefer, you can also use boneless, skinless chicken for ease of preparation.
  • Broth: For an even deeper flavor, you can use chicken stock instead of water.
  • Vegetables: Feel free to add or substitute vegetables according to your preference or seasonality.
  • Spices: To enhance the flavor, consider adding spices such as cumin, coriander, or a bay leaf.


Calories: 200kcalCarbohydrates: 20gProtein: 17gFat: 4gSodium: 600mgFiber: 4gSugar: 5g
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