Every spoonful of this Turkey Taco Soup is brimming with flavor thanks to the ground turkey, beans, corn, and a perfectly seasoned broth. It’s a hearty and filling 30 minute meal!

We also love this Instant Pot taco soup and healthy chicken tortilla soup that are beautifully laced with traditional Mexican flavors!

Turkey taco soup garnished with avocado, cheese, cilantro and lime served in a bowl.

The best thing about this turkey taco soup (besides it being ridiculously tasty) is that it combines my two favorite things, turkey tacos and belly warming soup! It’s a healthy, hearty, and satisfying!

I make taco soup every time I am low on groceries. It’s one of the most requested soups in my house and most popular among the readers turkey soup recipes, along with healthy turkey chili and turkey meatball soup!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Customizable: From the meat, the veggies and the seasonings, use what you have and make it your own.
  • Perfect for meal prep: Makes great leftovers and is freezer-friendly.
  • Quick and easy: It’s a 30 minute one pot meal which makes for the easiest clean up on busy weeknight or lazy weekend!
  • Multiple cooking methods: Below we include instructions how to cook the soup on the stove, in a slow cooker or Instant Pot.
  • Perfect for picky eaters: Everyone loves tacos and cheese, so this soup will be a hit!

Ingredients for Turkey Taco Soup

To make this turkey taco soup recipe, just look inside your pantry and freezer. I bet all ingredients are already there.

Ground turkey coma red kidney beans, tomato sauce, taco seasoning, onion powder, maple syrup, corn, salt and pepper.
  • Meat: I always keep a package of ground turkey in the freezer, so that’s what I used. You can also use ground chicken or ground beef. Keep in mind ground poultry will be a healthier choice among your protein options.
  • Beans: For taco soup, I like to use red kidney beans. You can also use Romano beans, white beans, black beans or even pinto beans. You can also use a combination. Make sure to drain and rinse canned beans, or use home cooked dried beans or Instant Pot red kidney beans.
  • Corn: I use frozen corn, no need to thaw it.
  • Seasonings: Homemade taco seasoning, onion powder, maple syrup or sugar, salt, and pepper. You can use fresh onion, but I like the dump-and-go aspect of this recipe.
  • Liquid: Water or low sodium chicken broth or vegetable broth will result in more flavorful soup.
  • Tomato sauce: Aim for low sodium tomato sauce but if you can’t find one, skip salt and season after cooking, if necessary.
  • Oil: Lean ground turkey doesn’t produce much of its own fat, so the oil is important to avoid sticking it to the bottom of the pot.

How to Make Turkey Taco Soup

Here’s a quick overview how to make turkey taco soup on the stove. You can find full recipe card below.

Step by step process how to make turkey taco soup on the stove.
  • Brown ground turkey: In a Dutch oven or heavy bottom large pot, saute meat for 5 – 7 minutes or until it is in small enough pieces.
  • Season the meat: Add taco seasoning and cook for 1 more minute. The heat brings out the flavors of spices, so give it time to do its thing.
  • Add remaining ingredients: Tomato sauce, beans, corn, onion powder, maple syrup, salt, pepper and water or broth.
  • Simmer soup for 20-60 minutes: A longer simmer time will deepen the flavors, but overall the soup is ready in no time.

Can I Make It in Instant Pot or Slow Cooker?

Sure thing! To make this turkey taco soup in slow cooker, follow the same instructions as the stovetop method but first saute ground turkey in a skillet on the stovetop. Then combine all ingredients in a large crock pot and cook on Low heat for 7 – 8 hours or on High heat for 3 – 4 hours.

As for cooking this soup in electric pressure cooker, I have this Instant Pot taco soup for you. It’s another dump and set 30ish minutes one pot meal that gets a ton of flavor from the pressure cooking process.

Substitutions and Variations

  • Instead of tomato sauce: Use canned diced tomatoes or Rotel with addition of about 3 ounces tomato paste. For some extra taste, throw in some fire roasted tomatoes.
  • For vegetarian option: Swap the meat for 1 cup of rice or other grain like quinoa, barley, or brown rice.
  • Omit the meat and up the vegetables and beans: Veggie options could include carrots, celery, kale, zucchini, cauliflower and eggplant. Cooking time may need to be adjusted when adding vegetables.
  • Other meat: Use ground chicken, ground pork or ground beef instead of ground turkey for an equally flavorful soup.
  • If you like a little heat: Add a dash of hot sauce or some sliced or diced jalapeno to finish it off.
  • For a smoky flavor: Add some smoked paprika or a couple of drops of liquid smoke.
  • Add additional Tex Mex spices: Spices like ground cumin, paprika, and chili powder would taste great and make it a turkey chili taco soup.

Tips for Best Results

  • If using ingredients that are not labeled as low sodium: I highly recommend to skip the salt completely and then season soup after cooking. You might not even need to add any salt!
  • Prep your toppings while soup is cooking: Slice your limes, grate your cheese, crush tortilla chips if you’re not keeping them whole, and slice or dice your avocado and onion.
  • Dried beans tip: I cook and freeze dried beans in batches. I highly recommend you learn how to cook dried beans. You will save a lot of money vs. buying organic BPA-free canned beans.
  • A note about flavor: The longer your turkey taco soup simmers, the more intense the flavors. Also the longer it sits, the better it gets, so don’t forget to save some leftovers for the next day. Slow cooker will really enhance the flavor profile of it as well.
Turkey taco soup garnished with lime, avocado and cilantro served in a bowl with spoon.

What to Serve with Turkey Taco Soup?

Traditionally taco soup is served hot in a bowl garnished with fresh cilantro, sour cream or yogurt, creamy diced avocado, lime, green onion, cheese, and tortilla chips.

Usually we use what we have on hand. Here are the toppings we like:

  • Shredded cheese: Tex Mex cheese, colby jack cheese, cheddar cheese or marble cheese.
  • Fresh herbs: Green onion, chopped red onion, and cilantro pack a punch.
  • For a creamy and citrus combo: Add diced avocado and lime juice, so good together.
  • Crush tortilla chips or leave them whole for scooping up all that good soup.
  • A dollop of plain yogurt or sour cream will give the entire meal a cool creamy balance.
  • Canned diced green chiles or jalapenos for heat.

Potluck style: Turkey taco soup is amazing party food. Bring slow cooker taco soup to the potluck in your crockpot or Instant Pot and keep on warm. Super easy entertaining! You can make a taco soup bar with all the toppings, pour yourself a glass of wine, and watch everyone enjoy serving themselves.

Tex Mex themed dinner: Serve with chicken tacos in Instant Pot and Mexican kale salad if you have extra hungry growing boys like I do!

How to Store and Reheat

Store: keep leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Freeze: Turkey taco soup freezes well. Fully cook, cool completely, and freeze in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Don’t forget to leave some room for expansion!

Reheat: Reheat the desired amount of soup in a small pot by simmering on low heat. Cover and stir occasionally until warmed through.

Turn it into a freezer meal: In a large Ziploc bag, add cooked ground turkey (let it cool first) along with other ingredients, except water, cilantro, and garnishes. Let as much air out as possible, seal and freeze for up to 3 months.

When ready to cook, thaw in the fridge overnight, add to the pot, Instant Pot or slow cooker along with water or broth, and cook as per further instructions plus 1 hour.

This dinner is one of my healthy freezer meals.

FAQs

Can I used diced tomatoes vs. tomato sauce?

You can substitute the tomato sauce for canned tomatoes. If you want it as thick as a sauce you’ll want to add tomato paste along with it. If you’re OK with a thinner consistency, you can just use canned tomatoes.

How do I add additional vegetables to the soup?

Add vegetables along with the rest of ingredients and simmer away.

How do I make this taco soup spicy?

After soup is cooked, add a bit of hot sauce, red pepper flakes or sliced jalapenos with seeds.

Can I use leftover turkey instead of ground turkey?

Yes, to use up your leftover Thanksgiving turkey, just omit sauteing step completely, cook all ingredients for 20-60 minutes, adding about 3-4 cups of shredded leftover turkey during the last 10 minutes of cook time.

More Turkey Soup and Stew Recipes

Also be sure to browse my collection of ground turkey recipes.

More Mexican Soup Recipes to Try

Closeup of turkey taco soup garnished with avocado, cheese and cilantro.
Turkey taco soup with cheese, avocado, cilantro and lime served in a bowl.

Turkey Taco Soup

Stovetop or slow cooker Turkey Taco Soup with ground turkey, beans, corn, and a perfectly seasoned broth. Hearty and filling 30 minute soup.
4.99 from 51 votes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 342
Diet Gluten Free
Prep Time 3 minutes
Cook Time 27 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes

Equipment

Ingredients  

Instructions 

Stovetop Method:

  • Preheat large dutch oven or heavy bottom pot on medium – high heat, swirl a bit of oil to coat, and add ground turkey. Cook for 5 – 7 minutes, stirring occasionally and breaking into pieces.
  • Add taco seasoning and cook for 1 more minute, stirring frequently.
  • Add tomato sauce, beans, corn, onion powder, maple syrup, salt, pepper, water; and stir.
  • Cover, bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 20-60 minutes. Longer cook time means deeper flavors but overall soup is ready fast.

Slow Cooker Method:

  • Preheat large non-stick skillet on medium – high heat, swirl a bit of oil to coat, and add turkey. Cook for 5 – 7 minutes, stirring occasionally and breaking into pieces. Add taco seasoning and cook for 1 more minute, stirring frequently.
  • Transfer to a large slow cooker along with tomato sauce, beans, corn, onion powder, maple syrup, salt, pepper, water or broth and stir. Cover and cook on Low for 7 – 8 hours or on High for 3 – 4 hours.
  • Serving: Serve taco soup hot with cilantro, sour cream or yogurt, lime, avocado, green onion and tortilla chips.

Notes

  • Store: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
  • Freeze: Cook, cool and freeze in an airtight container, leaving some room for expansion, for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight, then reheat on a stovetop on low heat while covered.
  • You might need to use less salt if using regular (not low sodium) tomato sauce.
 

Nutrition

Serving: 2cups | Calories: 342kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 37g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 62mg | Sodium: 789mg | Fiber: 11g | Sugar: 10g
Course: Soup and Stew
Cuisine: Mexican
Author: Olena Osipov
Did you make this recipe?Mention @ifoodreal or tag #ifoodreal!

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About Olena

Welcome! I grew up in Ukraine watching my grandma cook with simple ingredients. I have spent the last 11 years making it my mission to help you cook quick and easy meals for your family!

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    The Taco Soup was so easy and delicious! I added Smokey Cumin, pepper flakes and garlic powder as I’m trying to limit my sodium intake. This recipe is so forgiving and adaptable to whatever you have on hand. Thanks for sharing with us Olena 🥰

  2. 5 stars
    This recipe was quick and easy. I only had 1 lb. of ground turkey so halved the ingredients. I used 1 can diced tomatoes with jalapeños and 1 can tomato sauce and added 1/2 chopped jalapeño. I like spicy. Used 1 can black beans since I didn’t have kidney beans. Should have used 2 cans as one can wasn’t enough. Will definitely make this again in a cold night.

  3. 5 stars
    What a pleasant surprise this soup turned out to be! I was sorta hesitant to try it because I wasn’t sure about a soup that could be as tasty as a taco but I’m definitely glad I tried it! I added some chicken bouillon (Better Than Bouillon) just because I knew that it would give it a bold flavor. Other than that….I followed the recipe completely! Shared some with a friend and she literally gobbled it up! Can’t wait to try it again!!!!

  4. 5 stars
    I made this for lunch today (it was a cold, snowy day here in NJ). I used 93% lean turkey and I added a little extra spices (a little extra taco seasoning, some cumin, paprika, coriander, and salt and pepper). I also had cut up orange, red, and yellow peppers in the freezer that I wanted to use up, so I put a little bit of those in along with a little carrot, celery and onion. I only had one can of tomato sauce so I added that, but then I had some left over petite diced tomatoes that I had used from another recipe, so I just threw them in. And the beans- I only had cannellini (but I figured pinto beans are just pink cannellini anyway). The last thing I did was throw in some chopped cilantro. I added the extra veggies because I like my soups with lots of veggies. Despite all these alterations, the soup came out amazing! My son and I LOVED it. I would totally make this again. We ate it with crumbled up tortilla chips. This recipe is definitely a keeper!

  5. 4 stars
    A delicious soup. I will add more heat next time I make it. I added chopped kale and cherry tomatoes for flavour and nutrition.it is excellent with some cilantro and avocado topping!

  6. 5 stars
    Loved the Ground Turkey Chili. I also used the recipe to make taco seasoning and it all turned out great. Can’t wait to have the leftovers. Definitely a keeper recipe.

  7. I appreciate this very delicious and super easy taco soup that omits the standard packet of Ranch dressing. I never have that on hand and I really don’t like adding it because I don’t know what’s in it.

4.99 from 51 votes (23 ratings without comment)

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