Slow Cooker Quinoa Tortilla Soup
Slow Cooker Quinoa Tortilla Soup- a healthy meal that’s packed with plant protein and delicious southwestern flavor. Just throw everything into the Crockpot and dinner’s ready when you come home! (vegan + gluten-free)
Slow cookers are my saving grace this time of year. There’s so much to be done with so little time to do it and the cold short days aren’t helping. The last thing I feel like doing when it’s already dark outside is cooking dinner.
On the flip side, I still want a healthy meal without having to waste money eating out. That, my friends, is where the wonderful slow cooker comes into play.
I made this black bean soup a few times earlier in the year and then put my slow cooker away and forgot about it until a few weeks ago. I guess that saying out of sight out of mind really is true, huh?
Anyway, now that I’ve managed to bust it back out let’s talk about the goodness that is quinoa tortilla soup. Outside of chopping veggies and opening a few cans, it’s super simple to make. All you have to do is throw everything into the slow cooker and let it work it’s magic.
Slow Cooker Quinoa Tortilla Soup Ingredients
- Bell Pepper and Jalapeño- Jalapeño is all that spicy so long as you remove the seeds however it is optional and can be replaced with another small bell pepper, if desired.
- Cumin, Chili Powder, Smoked Paprika and Oregano- My go-to spice combination for Mexican-inspired dishes, they add the perfect amount of flavor and mild spice, depending on the chili powder you choose.
- Quinoa- A great source of protein and fiber, the quinoa cooks in the broth absorbing all of the flavors in this dish.
- Diced Tomatoes- Using diced tomatoes adds texture and savory flavor. I prefer fire roasted for this recipe and the kind with chilies added works even better, so long as you don’t mind a little spice.
- Tomato Sauce- We’re using tomato sauce (not marinara) to create a thick tomato base.
- Vegetable Broth- A flavorful broth is key for best results. My favorite is Better Than Bouillon.
- Black Beans- Along with the quinoa, black beans also add protein, fiber and texture.
- Toppings: Feel free to jazz the soup up with your favorite toppings. I like to add tortilla strips (see notes), green onion, avocado, cilantro and fresh lime juice.
If for some reason you don’t have a Crockpot, or you prefer not to use it, you can also make this on the stovetop. I’ve tested it both ways and it turned out great. You can find notes on how to cook it that way in the directions below!
More delicious soups to try:
- Easy Vegetable Minestrone Soup
- The Best Lentil Soup
- Dairy-free Potato Soup
- Creamy Wild Rice Mushroom Soup
- Lemony Lentil and Greens Soup
- Roasted Acorn Squash and Apple Soup
Slow Cooker Quinoa Tortilla Soup
- 1 yellow onion, finely chopped
- 1 red bell pepper, cored and finely chopped
- 2 jalapeños, cored and finely chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons ground chili powder
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
- 1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes
- 15 ounces tomato sauce
- 5 cups vegetable broth
- 1 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed (no salt added)
- suggested toppings, tortilla chips/strips, green onion, cilantro, lime juice, diced avocado
In the Slow Cooker
- Place all of the ingredients (minus the toppings) into 6.5 qt slow cooker on the high setting. Stir together, cover and allow to cook for 6 hours. Keep warm until ready to serve.
- Distribute the soup into separate bowls and serve with desired toppings. Store leftovers in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
On the Stovetop
- In a large pot, warm 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, sprinkle with salt and cook for 3 minutes. Add the peppers, garlic, and seasonings then stir to combine and cook for a few more minutes.
- Pour in the canned tomatoes with their juices, tomato sauce, vegetable broth and water. Bring to a low boil then add the quinoa and cook for about 20 minutes, until quinoa is tender. Add the black beans and cook until heated through. Serve warm with tortilla strips, lime juice, cilantro and/or avocado.