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Albondigas Soup is a classic Mexican meatball soup that’s hearty and full of wonderful flavor and warmth. Seasoned meatballs are dropped into a bubbling tomato-based soup with sautéed onion, carrot, celery, potatoes, and zucchini for any easy, comforting meal that’s a must-try.

top view of a white bowl with handles that has Mexican meatball soup that is tomato based
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We love meatball soup, and this Mexican version, Albondigas Soup, is our new favorite! It not only tastes so good, but it’s also so satisfying because it’s filled with protein and major veggie goodness all made in a tomato-based sauce. Plus, everything gets cooked in one pot, and this is pretty much a complete meal on its own, no need to cook extra sides! However, I’m sure no one will object to some crusty bread or rolls to sop up the delicious broth!

Looking for other meatball recipes? Try our Italian Baked Turkey Meatballs, Easy Italian Wedding Soup , or these Healthy Turkey Meatballs in Curry Sauce.

Why you will love this recipe

  • So delicious! Albondigas Soup is made with seasoned meatballs, a good mix of vegetables and a flavorful broth that includes tomato sauce, salsa and beef stock. The flavor is absolutely incredible and will be a hit with your whole family!
  • Easy to make: This soup is easy to make and great for prepping ahead or freezing for later.
  • Good for you: Filled with wholesome and filling ingredients, it’s protein-rich, full of fiber, and packed with veggies for extra nutrients. It’s hearty and healthy all at the same time.
Spoon in a bowl of Albondigas Soup with meatballs and veggies.

Ingredients needed

Don’t let the length of the ingredients list for this Albondigas Soup recipe intimidate you! They are all common ingredients. You probably already have many of these staples in your kitchen! Here’s everything you’ll need:

  • Beef: We like to use lean ground beef because it’s not too greasy, yet still has plenty of flavor.
  • Breadcrumbs: Serves as a binder for the meatballs and also makes them perfectly moist. Use gluten-free bread crumbs, as desired.
  • Egg: Will help to bind all of the meatball ingredients together.
  • Garlic: Added to the meatballs and also sautéed with the veggies for delicious savory flavor.
  • Herbs: Fresh cilantro and parsley add freshness and extra flavor to the beef.
  • Seasonings: Ground cumin, smoked paprika, kosher salt and ground black pepper season the meatballs with a classic Mexican taste.
  • Olive oil: For cooking the vegetables.
  • Onion: Dice the onion into small pieces.
  • Carrot: When slicing your carrots, make sure to cut them up into pieces that are similar in size, so they will cook evenly.
  • Celery: Diced celery will provide extra texture and a little crunch.
  • Potatoes: Chop your potatoes into similar-sized pieces, so that they cook evenly. You can peel them or leave them unpeeled.
  • Zucchini: No need to peel the zucchini for this recipe! Just cut it up into half moon shaped pieces.
  • Tomato sauce: The base of the soup along with salsa and beef stock.
  • Salsa: Use your favorite mild salsa to add plenty of zesty flavor.
  • Beef broth: Or beef stock will give the soup the perfect consistency and bring in a lot of flavor.
Raw beef, breadcrumbs, salsa, spices, herbs, potatoes and onion all divided into small portions.

How to make Mexican Albondigas Soup

  1. Make the meatballs: To a large bowl add all the ingredients for the meatballs. Mix very well to combine, then form into 1 tablespoon per meatball. You should get around 26-28 meatballs.
  1. Sauté the veggies: To make the soup, heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium-high heat. Sauté the onion, carrot, celery and garlic for 5 minutes.
  2. Make the soup: Stir in the potato, zucchini, tomato sauce, salsa and stock. Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer.
  3. Add meatballs and simmer: Carefully add the meatballs with a slotted spoon. Simmer the soup for 20-30 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender and meatballs are cooked.

Expert tips

  • Meatball size: Use a scoop to make 1 tablespoon size meatballs. This size is large enough, so they don’t get lost in the soup and they don’t become dry while cooking.
  • Heat level: We’re using mild salsa for the base of the soup, so this recipe is very mild. If you’d like to spice it up a bit, feel free to use medium or even hot salsa. You could also sauté a minced jalapeño with the veggies, and add a dash of cayenne pepper to the spices.
  • Serving: This soup is a complete meal on its own, but it’s also great served with crusty bread, a large fresh green salad, or tortilla chips and salsa or guacamole.

Frequently asked questions

What is albondigas soup made of?

Albondigas soup is a traditional Mexican soup with a tomato base. It is made with seasoned meatballs and vegetables.

How do you keep albondigas from falling apart?

Gently drop the meatballs into the broth, and then avoid stirring them too much right at first. When they are still raw they can easily break apart if stirred. Let them simmer for about five minutes before gently stirring.

Why is my albondiga soup so greasy?

To avoid the soup from becoming overly greasy, we recommend lean ground beef. If the meat has too much fat, it is going to cook off into the broth. Use 96% lean ground beef, which is plenty flavorful but less greasy.

top view of a bowl that has Mexican meatball soup

Variations

We love this recipe as-is, but it’s also really easy to substitute different ingredients and customize the flavors. Here are some options:

  • Protein: If you’d rather not use ground beef, try ground chicken, ground turkey or ground pork.
  • Vegetables: You can add other veggies to the mix such as green beans, spinach or corn.
  • Toppings: This soup is great with Mexican toppings such as sliced avocado, diced tomatoes, a sprinkle of fresh cilantro, a dollop of sour cream, and a squeeze of fresh lime juice.
  • Herbs: Many recipes include minced fresh mint in the meatballs, we didn’t here, but you can certainly add 2 tablespoons of minced fresh mint along with the fresh parsley and cilantro.

Storage recommendations

This Mexican Meatball Soup recipe is great as leftovers and it tastes even better the next day! You can even double the recipe, and freeze half to eat several months later.

  • Storing in the refrigerator: Once the soup has cooled, transfer it to an airtight container. It will last in your fridge for about 3-5 days.
  • To freeze: Once completely cool, place it in a freezer ziplock bag or airtight container, and label it with the date. Leave a small amount of room for it to expand as it freezes. It will keep in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • To reheat: If frozen, thaw overnight in the fridge. Reheat over low heat on the stovetop or in 30 second intervals in the microwave.
Spoon in a bowl of Albondigas Soup.

More delicious soup recipes

Ladling meatball soup out of a soup pot.

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5 from 1 vote

Albondigas Soup (Mexican meatball soup)

By: Rena
Servings: 8 servings
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Total: 45 minutes
top view of a white bowl with handles that has Mexican meatball soup that is tomato based
Albondigas Soup is a classic Mexican meatball soup that’s hearty and full of wonderful flavor and warmth. Seasoned meatballs are dropped into a bubbling tomato-based soup with sautéed onion, carrot, celery, potatoes and zucchini for any easy, comforting meal that’s a must try.

Ingredients

For the meatballs

  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1/2 cup plain bread crumbs
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp fine kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp fine ground black pepper

For the soup

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 large carrot, sliced
  • 2-3 celery stalks, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 medium potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 small zucchini, cut into half moons
  • 1 (15 oz) can tomato sauce
  • 2 cups mild salsa sauce
  • 4 cups beef stock

Instructions

  • To a large bowl add all the ingredients for the meatballs. Mix very well to combine, then form into 1 tablespoon per meatball. You should get around 26-28 meatballs.
  • To make the soup, heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium-high heat. Sauté the onion, carrot, celery and garlic for 5 minutes.
  • Stir in the potato, zucchini, tomato sauce, salsa and stock. Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer.
  • Carefully add the meatballs with a slotted spoon. Simmer the soup for 20-30 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender and meatballs are cooked.

Notes

Albondigas Soup is great as leftovers, it tastes even better the next day! You can even double the recipe, and freeze half to eat several months later.
  • Storing in the refrigerator: Once the soup has cooled, transfer it to an airtight container. It will last in your fridge for about 3-5 days.
  • To freeze: Once completely cool, place it in a freezer ziplock bag or airtight container, and label it with the date. Leave a small amount of room for it to expand as it freezes. It will be kept in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • To reheat: If frozen, thaw overnight in the fridge. Reheat over low heat on the stovetop or in 30-second intervals in the microwave.

Nutrition

Serving: 1servingCalories: 237kcalCarbohydrates: 24gProtein: 19gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0.2gCholesterol: 58mgSodium: 874mgPotassium: 1034mgFiber: 4gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 2220IUVitamin C: 23mgCalcium: 69mgIron: 3mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: Mexican
Tried this recipe?Mention @healthyfitnessmeals or tag #healthyfitnessmeals!

About Rena Awada

Hi, I’m Rena! Welcome to my blog. I am here to help you prepare delicious, light, fresh meals that your whole family will love!

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5 from 1 vote

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