Gringo Chicken Soup & Surprises At The Supermarket

Gringo Chicken Soup Sometimes, when you least expect it, a little gem of a recipe comes your way.  Something that makes your life easier (super quick to make) and tastes unbelievably good (like cheesy dip on a spoon).

A few years ago, not long after moving to Illinois, I was grocery shopping and came across one of those tasting tables.  You know the ones.  Store employees cook something with the ingredients at the store and then offer you little samples while handing over a coupon and directing you to the refrigerated case that holds the tofu sausage they are trying to convince you is a good buy.  I am wary of these situations and for good reason. They often are trying to push processed convenience food that I generally avoid.  On this day however, I rounded the corner of the produce department and was immediately assailed by something that really really smelled good.  When I realized it was soup I hesitated, not being the biggest fan, but my growling stomach wouldn’t let me pass it up.  I tried a small spoonful, and then did not pause while a drained my little sample cup.  Goodness, it was yummy.  The funny thing was, it was a promo for salsa.  My new found soup crush was called Gringo Chicken Soup and I walked away from the demo table happily clutching a neon yellow recipe card with the picture of a cowboy in the corner.

I only got about 20 feet though before an ingredient listed stopped me in my tracks.  Velveeta.  There was Velveeta in this soup (*gasp*)!  Just for the record, this ingredient is what has kept me from blogging about this to you before.  I don’t buy Velveeta, an ingredient which calls itself cheese, but is really sooooo not.  I also don’t consider this an arguable point, so don’t bother sending me messages about the value of a processed cheese which does not need to be refrigerated.  This fact totally freaked out my husband when he searched the fridge for quite sometime looking for the cheese for the soup and I pulled it from the pantry.  He was quite disturbed and woke up several times that night in a cold sweat because of it…But anyway, I won’t even make that Velveeta salsa dip stuff that is always at Super Bowl parties.  *shudder*  Uhg.  You have to draw the line somewhere people.
That said, I am going against my better judgement and posting this recipe anyway.  It is really good, super fast, and will warm you up after a day battling the sub-zero weather.  If I ever figure out how to make it just as good without Velveeta, I’ll let you know.
Gringo Chicken SoupOne Year Ago: Midnight Crunchies

Gringo Chicken Soup
Adapted from the people that make Gringo Black Bean & Corn Salsa
This soup is fantastic with cornbread.  We like it with Mini Corn Muffins or Whole Wheat Cornbread.  Crushed up tortilla chips stirred into individual bowls is yummy too.

1 jar of black bean and corn salsa, about 1 1/2 c, whatever heat you like
2 c cooked shredded chicken
2-15 oz cans chicken broth
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 1/2 c frozen corn
1 lb Velveeta, cubed

In a large saucepan stir together the salsa, chicken broth, black beans and corn.  Bring to a simmer and add the Velveeta, keeping the heat at a low simmer and stirring occasionally until the cheese is all melted.  Add the shredded chicken, heat until the whole thing come up to temp and serve.

Note: I don’t like canned vegetables, but a drained can of corn can be substituted for the frozen corn in this recipe if you so desire.  I like to swing by the grocery store and pick up a rotisserie chicken to make this soup with.  I use the dark meat in the soup and the white meat I save and make a small batch of chicken salad with it.  But that is just me…