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Albondigas Soup is made with beef and rice meatballs, carrots, potatoes, and zucchini in a rich tomato broth. Packed with flavor, this simple Albondigas Soup recipe will quickly become a family favorite.
If comfort food is your thing, you have to try this soup! It’s warm and satisfying and packed with flavor. Serve it as an appetizer course before another traditional Mexican dish like Chicken with Mole Sauce or Green Chile Chicken Tamales. Or serve it as the main dish with some Mexican Rice and Homemade Flour Tortillas on the side.
The first time I tried Albondigas Soup was at a little Mexican restaurant in Arizona, just north of the Mexican border. It was a little spicy, so flavorful, and was so rich and comforting. I fell in love.
Since then I have ordered it whenever I had the chance. Living in Southern California we’ve got some pretty spectacular Mexican food, but nothing has tasted the same as that first bowl. I decided I needed to learn how to make it at home, so I researched recipes and finally asked a friend how her Mexican-native family made it. This is her recipe for Mexican Meatball Soup (Albondigas).
There are two parts to this recipe – meatballs and broth.
Broth: The broth is made with chicken broth or beef broth, crushed tomatoes, carrots, potatoes, and zucchini. You can add minced cilantro to the soup if you like, and lime to brighten the flavor.
Albondigas Soup is similar to an Italian Wedding Soup, where the meatballs and broth are cooked together to make the meat super tender and for the best flavor.
Make Ahead: You can make Albondigas Soup a couple of days in advance, and store it, tightly covered (or even in the soup pot), in the refrigerator. To serve, bring to a simmer on the stovetop until everything is warmed through.
Storage: Cool soup completely, then store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. Reheating on the stovetop is recommended, but you can also use the microwave.
Freezing: Cool completely, then store in airtight, freezer-safe containers or freezer bags for up to 6 months. Thaw in the refrigerator, then reheat on the stovetop (recommended) or in the microwave.
If you are worried about your meatballs falling apart, using cooked rice will help. As the raw rice cooks, it expands, which can cause the meatballs to break apart. It doesn’t happen to me all the time, but it has happened. Instead of ¼ cup of raw rice, use ½ cup of cooked rice.
This soup has tender meatballs made with ground beef, rice, onions, garlic, an egg, cumin, and oregano. The broth is simple and made with chicken broth, crushed tomatoes, carrots, potatoes, and zucchini. Sometimes carrots or celery are added, and occasionally you’ll find some jalapeno added for heat. Cilantro or lime juice are usually added at the end.
You can! Just add all of the ingredients to your crockpot and cook on low for 4 hours. Taste and add salt and pepper at the end.