Paleo Chicken Tortilla Soup

By Linda Wagner March 27, 2015

It’s been pretty chilly here and I’ve had this relentless craving for chicken tortilla soup! I cleaned up the traditional recipe so this one is gluten free, dairy free, low carb, low cal, low fat and paleo.

It is very clean, very healthy and VERY delicious! You will absolutely LOVE this recipe, GUARANTEED!

I’ve been wanting to talk about dairy and its effect on the body. I have recently removed almost 100% of the dairy from my diet and feel so much better for it. I eliminated cow dairy from my diet long ago but have since been a self proclaimed goat cheese junkie! I could tell that my body wasn’t functioning optimally and so I did a little experiment and cut ALL DAIRY out of my diet to see if I would notice any difference. I definitely did!

Shawn Johnson's the body department - Paleo Chicken Tortilla Soup
Here are four BIG reasons to cut dairy out of your diet:

Cancer Prevention. From “Prostate, breast, and ovarian cancers have been linked to dairy consumption. And, if you’ve read The China Study, you’re aware of the link between casein (the main protein in milk) and cancer. If not, READ it! Dr. T. Colin Campbell, professor emeritus of nutritional biochemistry at Cornell University and author of The China Study, says casein is one of the most significant cancer promoters ever discovered. Think about how often children are pushed to drink milk. Childhood diets rich in dairy products are associated with cancer in adulthood.

Milk depletes the calcium from your bones. From “Many scientific studies have shown an assortment of detrimental health effects directly linked to milk consumption. And the most surprising link is that not only do we barely absorb the calcium in cow’s milk (especially if pasteurized), but to make matters worse, it actually increases calcium loss from the bones. What an irony this is! Here’s how it happens. Like all animal protein, milk acidifies the body pH which in turn triggers a biological correction. You see, calcium is an excellent acid neutralizer and the biggest storage of calcium in the body is – you guessed it… in the bones. So the very same calcium that our bones need to stay strong is utilized to neutralize the acidifying effect of milk. Once calcium is pulled out of the bones, it leaves the body via the urine, so that the surprising net result after this is an actual calcium deficit. Knowing this, you’ll understand why statistics show that countries with the lowest consumption of dairy products also have the lowest fracture incidence in their population.”

Plant based calcium is more readily absorbed. There are numerous plant foods that supply calcium with the essential co-factors, synergists, and essential transported needed to fully absorb and utilize the calcium. Kale, sesame seeds, broccoli, oranges (did you know one navel orange provides 60 mg of calcium?!), almonds, salmon, arugula, and sunflower seeds are all rich in calcium!

Heart Disease. from “All that cheese and milk (and other dairy products) pack a wallop of cholesterol and saturated fat to one’s diet. A low-fat plant-based diet has been shown not only to prevent heart disease, but also reverse it. And, before you think low-fat dairy is okay, it has been linked not only to increases in allergies, but also type 1 (childhood-onset) diabetes.”

So do a little experiment on yourself and see if you notice a difference by removing dairy from your diet. In just one month I noticed an increase in energy, more easily maintained weight, clearer skin, better digestion, less mucous, easier menstrual cycles, and less little aches and pains. Removing dairy from your diet doesn’t necessarily mean you can NEVER EVER have it again it just means that it’s no longer a staple in your diet or a food group that you have often.

Shawn Johnson's the body department - Paleo Chicken Tortilla Soup

-2 large chicken breasts, skin removed and cut into 1/2 inch strips
-1 28oz can of diced tomatoes
-32 ounces organic chicken broth
-1 sweet onion, diced
-2 jalepenos, de-seeded and diced
-2 cups of shredded carrots
-2 cups chopped celery
-1 bunch of cilantro chopped fine
-4 cloves of garlic, minced – I always use one of these
-2 Tbs tomato paste
-1 tsp chili powder
-1 tsp cumin
-Sea salt & fresh cracked pepper (to taste)
-olive oil
-1-2 cups water

1. In a crockpot or large dutch oven over med-high heat, place a dash of olive oil and about 1/4 cup chicken broth. Add onions, garlic, jalapeno, sea salt and pepper and cook until soft, adding more broth as needed.

2. Then add all of your remaining ingredients and enough water to fill to the top of your pot. Cover and let cook on low for about 2 hrs, adjusting salt & pepper as needed.

3. Once the chicken is fully cooked, you should be able to shred it very easily. I simply used the back of a wooden spoon and pressed the cooked chicken against the side of the pot. You could also use a fork or tongs to break the chicken apart and into shreds.

4. Top with avocado slices and fresh cilantro. Enjoy!

This is an easy one-pot meal that’s loaded with veggies, low in fat, and full of flavor! You don’t need to add cheese or tortilla strips the soup is full of flavor on it’s own!

*This post was originally published on Be sure to visit Linda’s site for more great recipes and tips!

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