Chili’s Chicken Enchilada Soup

Chili’s Chicken Enchilada Soup has been a long time favorite recipe here at CopyKat. Years ago this soup was made from scratch in the restaurant. In recent years, this soup is made in a large central kitchen and reheated in the restaurant. While the soup is still remarkably tasty in the restaurant, I think it misses the chunkiness and homemade flavor it used to have. This soup has more texture and is filled with more vegetables and meat than the restaurant equivalent.
I use processed American cheese in this recipe. I believe this is an underrated cheese because it melts so well and has a pronounced cheese flavor. I do not recommend using Velveeta for this because I think the flavor of Velveeta can take over in the soup. Store-brand cheese works extremely well. Normally you might buy processed American cheese in slices, but you can also buy it in a chunk in the delis in most grocery stores. If you don’t want to unwrap multiple pieces of cheese, walk over to your deli counter and purchase some of this cheese at your local deli counter.

Chili's Chicken Enchilada Soup

  • Author:
  • Recipe Type: Copycat Restaurant Recipes, CopyKat Recipes, Soup Recipes
  • Prep time:10 minutes
  • Cook time:15 minutes
  • Serves: 10

This soup makes a hearty meal and is so tasty!

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup chicken base
  • 3 cup diced yellow onions (about 3 medium onions)
  • 2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 cups masa harina
  • 4 quarts water
  • 2 cups crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 pound processed American cheese, cut in small cubes
  • 3 pounds diced cooked chicken (you can use 2 rotisserie chickens)

Instructions

Instructions

In a large pot, combine the oil, chicken base, onions, cumin, chili powder, granulated garlic, and cayenne. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. In a pitcher or large measuring cup, combine the masa harina with 1 quart of the water. Stir until all lumps dissolve. Add to the onions and bring to a boil. Once it starts to bubble, cook for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring constantly. (This will eliminate any raw taste from the masa harina.) Stir in the remaining 3 quarts water and the tomatoes. Let the soup return to a boil, stirring occasionally.

Add the cheese. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the cheese melts. Add the chicken and heat through.

Note

Please note that you must incorporate in the masa harina into the water completely first. If you add the masa harina into the soup directly, it will be difficult to blend in and may be lumpy. If you feel 2 cups masa harina is too much, I have made the soup with 1 1/2 cups with good results.

Print Recipe
  • Lou Dog

    When using any recipe it is always a good Idea to tweak it to your liking. I did add more spices. I also used an immersion blender to make soup creamy and not chunky as Chili’s is creamy. Then I added chicken. Topped it with shredded cheese (not listed here) and fried tortilla strips. Total time is about 45 min though. Totally worth it.

    • stephaniemanley

      They have changed their recipe in recent years. I know now the soup isn’t made in the restaurant anymore. When they stopped making it there the texture changed completely.

  • Darren Becker

    No way would they use the Horrible American Cheese

    • stephaniemanley

      I am very sorry you feel that way. American cheese is good cheese, it melts wonderfully, and sometimes its really the best ingredient to use when you want a certain type of melt.

  • Erin

    A few things I changed: I used chicken broth (2 qts) and canned Rotel. Also instead of velveeta, I use the jarred queso cheese (2-15oz jars) and I left out the polenta. Super good, nice and thick.

    • stephaniemanley

      Great changes. I appreciate your tips.

  • Cheryl

    Made this for dinner tonight and had to tweak it a lil for added flavor I added a large can of green chili enchilada sauce, and regular enchilada sauce, next time I might try making it in the crock pot to let all the flavor’s meld better, I also added more cheese and spices to get the flavor right will defiantly make again!

    • stephaniemanley

      I never thought about adding a can of enchilada sauce. Thank you for your suggestion.

    • Michaelsgreatchef

      good idea using enchilada sauce…I’ll try it next time

      • stephaniemanley

        Using the enchilada sauce as a soup base sounds pretty much amazing anyway. I appreciate the suggestion.

  • cheryl

    Is it ok to substitute onion w/ minced dried onion? we don’t like the onions!

    • stephaniemanley

      If you don’t like onions, leave the onions out.

      • cheryl

        ok I just figured it might make a difference on flavor but my husband hates onion but sometime I can use the dried or powder type!

        • stephaniemanley

          It will change the flavor, yes. If you hate them, I wouldn’t add them.

  • cheryl

    I was wondering if the chicken base called for in the recipe needs to be added to water first before adding to the soup or just 1/4 cup of the chicken base, I’ve never made this before and want to get it right if I can! ?

    • stephaniemanley

      Add the base as paste. You have plenty of liquid in there already.

      • cheryl

        Ok so I don’t have to mix the Base w/ water first? I was a lil confused when reading the directions on the Superior Touch Chicken base jar I have. Thank you if you have any other tips please let me know I love the Chili’s chicken enchilada soup and would love to be able to make it at home!

        • stephaniemanley

          If I am making a soup, I don’t mix the base first. This is my personal choice, and the way I wrote the recipe. If you dilute it and then only add 1/4 cup I don’t think the flavor will be there.

          • cheryl

            ok Cool thanks for the help!

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

    • stephaniemanley

      I hope you enjoyed the soup.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.

  • Tinna

    oh I also added shredded Mexican cheese and crumbled corn chips.