Before I took the training wheels off my Internet I used to hang out on AOL’s Kitchen Frugality message board. This soup came from one of those fine ladies and has become a standard in our home. Even if you think you can’t boil water, I promise you can make this soup while standing on your head. The recipe, as written, makes 10 one cup servings. If you have a microwave available at work, freeze several portions in individual containers, and enjoy the glare of your jealous co-workers.
I should also note that you don’t have to use the beans listed in the ingredients. Use three cans of what you have on hand: pinto, black, kidney, even navy. If you prefer your soup to be less brothy, simply omit one can of water. My good friend Kendra uses hominy instead of corn, which you may be able to find in the Hispanic / Latino section of your supermarket.
- 1 lb ground beef or pork or turkey (or use lentils)
- 1 onion, roughly chopped
- 1 pkg ranch-style dressing mix or substitute 1 – 2 TBSP homemade ranch dressing mix
- 1 pkg taco seasoning mix or use your own homemade taco seasoning mix
- 2 cans diced tomatoes w/ green chilis (substitute plain tomatoes if family members prefer a mild soup)
- 1 can kidney beans
- 1 can black beans
- 1 can garbanzo beans
- 1 can corn (try cream style) or 2 cups frozen corn
- 2 cans of water
- grated cheese, sour cream, and/or cilantro for garnish
- tortilla chips
Brown the ground beef and drain as much fat as possible. Return it to the pan with the chopped onion over medium low heat, Stir in the two seasoning packets. As soon as the onion is soft add all the remaining ingredients except the garnish and chips.
Simmer for twenty minutes.
Ridiculously simple, no?
Grilled cheese would be another simple addition to round out the meal.