Easy taco soup (Instant Pot + slow cooker directions)

This easy taco soup recipe comes together in minutes, is inexpensive, and makes a great freezer meal. Cooked on the stove, in the slow cooker, or in your Instant Pot…it’s the perfect weeknight meal.This easy taco soup recipe comes together in minutes, is inexpensive, and makes a great freezer meal. Cooked on the stove, in the slow cooker, or in your Instant Pot...it's the perfect weeknight meal.I know. It’s July and I’m posting a soup recipe. What am I thinking? Here’s the deal…this is one of the only soups I still make in the summertime because it’s so quick and easy, and something about the Mexican flavors makes it feel like it belongs in the heat. Plus, if you make it in the Instant Pot, you avoid heating up your house…which I’m avoiding at all costs these days.

This soup has been a favorite of mine for years. As in…I’ve been making it ever since I was a poor college student in a dinner group with my roommates. We were queens of easy, inexpensive meals back then–and I’m still a fan of meals that come together with minimal effort.

Although the recipe has gone through several incarnations over the last decade–like using my own spice mixture and adding green chiles for a little extra kick of flavor–the basic concept is the same. Dump a bunch of ingredients into a pot of some kind, let the flavors simmer and meld, and serve with your favorite taco toppings. It may look like a long ingredient list, but it really only take a few minutes to open cans, dump everything in, and walk away while it cooks.

As I prepare for baby number three’s arrival and looking at the beginning of the school year (and baseball practices/games that go along with it), I’ve been on the hunt for simple and easy meals to get a healthy, delicious meal on the table for my family with minimal effort. This taco soup fits the bill perfectly.

I’ve made it on the stove, in my slow cooker, and I even recently figured out how to do it (easy!) in my Instant Pot. All three work great!

I got one of those newfangled Instant Pots during Black Friday last year (my Crock Pot died the day before Thanksgiving, giving me an excuse to upgrade)…and I’ve made it a goal to at least cook one new recipe a month in it.This easy taco soup recipe comes together in minutes, is inexpensive, and makes a great freezer meal. Cooked on the stove, in the slow cooker, or in your Instant Pot...it's the perfect weeknight meal.After seven months, I’m really getting the hang of it, and I’m beginning to realize why people rave about them so much. It’s amazing the quality of flavor you can get so quickly. You would swear the soup had been simmering for hours, when in reality it’s just been pressure cooking for 7 minutes.

However you cook it, give this soup a try. It’s a great weeknight meal to have in your arsenal for the upcoming school year.

Enjoy!

Easy Taco Soup

Notes: One thing that really takes this soup from simply yummy to downright delicious is making homemade tortilla strips. Chips work fine when you’re in a hurry, but it’s easy to cut some corn tortillas into thin strips for frying in oil…or check out this recipe for BAKED tortilla strips. YUM!

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 1 (15 oz.) can petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 (15 oz.) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (15 oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (15 oz.) can corn, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (4 oz.) can diced green chiles
  • 2 (15 oz.) cans beef broth, low sodium
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano

Toppings: limes, shredded cheese, sour cream, olives, avocado, tortilla strips (or crushed chips)

Directions:

Stovetop:

  1. Brown the ground beef together with the onion in a large stock pot or dutch oven.
  2. Add kidney beans, black beans, corn, chiles, tomatoes, beef broth, and spices to the pot.
  3. Bring to a low boil, reduce heat, and allow soup to simmer for 15-20 minutes.
  4. Dish into bowls and serve with a squeeze of fresh lime juice and your choice of toppings.

Instant Pot:

  1. Turn Instant Pot on to saute setting to brown beef and onion. Drain grease if needed.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients to the pot, then switch to manual mode. Cook on high pressure for 7 minutes.
  3. Quick release when timer goes off and top with lime and toppings as described above.

Slow Cooker:

  1. Brown the ground beef together with the onion in a large stock pot or dutch oven.
  2. Drain, and transfer meat/onion mixture to slow cooker.
  3. Add all other ingredients, and cook on HIGH for 2 hours, or LOW for 4 hours.
  4. Dish into bowls and serve with a squeeze of fresh lime juice and your choice of toppings.

Freezer Instructions:

  1. Brown the ground beef and onion together in a pot. Drain grease.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients to the pot, and mix everything together.
  3. Divide into two gallon freezer bags and put in the freezer (I suggest laying the bags flat on a shelf or cookie sheet for best results).
  4. To reheat, dump contents of bag into a pot & simmer for 15-20 minutes, microwave in a large bowl, or slow cook for a couple hours until heated through. Top with desired garnishes & dig in!

Source: The Many Little Joys (I’ve been making & adapting this recipe since I was a poor college student…and it’s still a favorite!)

This easy taco soup recipe comes together in minutes, is inexpensive, and makes a great freezer meal. Cooked on the stove, in the slow cooker, or in your Instant Pot...it's the perfect weeknight meal.

Want more easy kid-pleasing weeknight meals? Try these:

23 thoughts on “Easy taco soup (Instant Pot + slow cooker directions)

  1. I LOOOOVE taco soup! and I extra love that you’ve adapted it for the instant pot! I just pinned this to attempt later! 🙂 Fellow IP user over here!

    1. Aren’t Instant Pots great? It definitely took me a little getting used to, but I’m gaining confidence and momentum now as an IP user. 🙂

  2. You make me want to get an Instant Pot! I do have a slow cooker and love tasty and easy meals like this for busy mom days. I love your tip of freezing in gallon zip lock bags. What a space saver! I will making this and freezing some, for sure!

    1. I pretty much always freeze anything I can in a zip lock because I only have my normal side-by-side freezer for storage. Just make sure you get good quality bags…otherwise it can be messy when you’re thawing.

    1. You’re welcome, Angela. I’m still pretty new to the Instant Pot world, so I’m trying to help our other newbies with meals that I’ve found that work really well.

    1. That’s why I like it, too. It’s one of those meals that everyone can enjoy because you can put on or leave off whatever toppings you want.

    1. Thanks, Jennifer. For me, the addition of the green chiles was a game changer in the flavor dept that finally gave this soup the status it needed to be share-worthy. I hope you enjoy it!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *