Hearty, brothy and… and all Southern!

At Eatwith, we are celebrating all the dishes that bring us comfort. From a bowl of pasta to a spread of skillet of fried chicken and waffles, these dishes look very different across the world. For Host Christina in Los Angeles, it’s the hearty Southwestern Chicken soup packed with flavor! Here she puts her twist on the classic dish. Read on to follow the recipe and recreate it at home.

This Southwestern Spiced Chicken Soup is everything you need right now: cozy, comforting, and packed with flavor. It’s a hearty mix of chicken, tomato, and avocado, along with spices like smoked paprika, chili, cumin, and coriander.

Host Christina

What is the story behind the dish?

This recipe was born out of me eating a lot of tortilla soup at my favorite Salvadorian-Mexican restaurant. But when I transitioned to being a personal chef, I needed something lower carb, yet satisfying to serve my Los Angeles personal chef clients. So I scrapped the tortillas and bumped up the flavors with tomatoes, avocados, and zesty spices for a decadent dinner or lunch option. One of my clients loved it so much, he had me make it for him every week. I also often make this at home when I need something super flavorful and comforting, no matter what time of year.


  • 1 pound chicken thighs
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 celery ribs, chopped
  • 3 carrots, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1-quart broth or water
  • 2 avocados, cubed
  • 1 28-ounce can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 bunch cilantro, more for garnish (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 lime (or 1 tablespoon lime juice), more for garnish (optional)
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese or a Mexican blend of cheeses (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil


  1. Cube chicken.
  2. Season chicken with one teaspoon each of salt and pepper.
  3. In a soup pot over medium-high heat, brown chicken in olive oil for 5-7 minutes.
  4. Add onion and cook for 5 minutes.
  5. Add spices, carrots, celery, and garlic. Cook for 5 minutes.
  6. Add tomatoes, chicken broth, and bay leaves. Season with 1 teaspoon each of salt and pepper.
  7. Bring soup to a boil, cover, and lower heat to simmer for 20 minutes.
  8. Add avocado, cilantro, and the juice of 1 lime. Simmer for another 5 minutes.
  9. Remove bay leaves and serve. Garnish with cheese, additional cilantro, and lime.

Serve in a bowl and enjoy!

Learn more about host Christina and her experiences in Los Angeles here.