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Saturday, February 22, 2020

Family Favorites - February 2020: Gluten-Free Chicken Enchilada Soup (Egg, Fish, Wheat and Nut-Free, Can Be Soy and Milk-Free)

I decided to keep posting a family favorite recipe from the blog (with any adaptions that we use regularly, if applicable) on the fourth Friday or Saturday of every month this year.  This recipe will be one that we make quite often and that we all enjoy greatly.  This post is the second Family Favorites recipe of 2020.

If you have a recipe on your blog that you consider a family favorite that you'd like to share, please comment below with a link to the recipe, and I'll make sure to pop on over and visit your site to check it out (and leave a comment), and hopefully some of my other readers will, too.

This month's Family Favorite recipe is Gluten-Free Chicken Enchilada Soup.  This is a gluten-free version of my original recipe with a few tips added in.

This soup is egg, fish, wheat and nut-free (if all your ingredients are), and can be soy and milk-free (see variations).  We love it because it is hardy, makes a lot (essential when you have teenage boys), is a little spicy, and definitely fits in with our love of Tex-Mex foods.  If you're looking for a bit of Tex-Mex food that takes minimal effort and is also allergy-friendly, give this recipe a try.  It's Soup-erb! (Sorry - I couldn't help making that pun! :D )

Note: The gluten-free flours I recommend do not technically contain soy, but they do contain guar gum and xanthan gum (see "Soy-Free" under variations for more details) which can cause issues for people with soy sensitivities or allergies.  For these reasons, I will not claim that this recipe is soy-free.  I will share a soy-free alternative in variations, though.

Chicken Enchilada Soup

1 - 2 chicken breast, cooked 
(You will need about 1 Cup worth or so.  Nowadays, I normally use 2 chicken breasts, but that definitely isn't necessary.  You can also use dark meat, if you prefer.)

8 to 16 oz. (1 to 2 Cups) gluten-free salsa (any heat)
(We normally use medium or mild heat salsa, but you can use your favorite.  We normally use Aldi's salsa because it fits within our allergen needs, too.)

3 or 4 Cups gluten-free chicken broth/stock
(We highly recommend Pacific brand for a very allergy-friendly soup.  That is the brand we normally use, but we also use Full Circle or Meijer brand because they fit within our dietary needs.  We have used other gluten-free brands, too.  We normally use the 4 Cups of stock, too.)

1 teaspoon dried parsley

4 - 6 Cups diced potatoes
(We normally use red or yellow potatoes and don't peel them, but you can use any type you prefer.  We recommend peeling them if using russet or white type, and leaving the skin on (unless you're really adverse to it) if using red or yellow type.  Peeling, however, is totally optional.  We always use closer to the 6 Cups of potatoes, too.)

3 Tablespoons salted, full-fat butter

1/4 Cup gluten-free flour blend 
(We normally use Pamela's Gluten-Free All Purpose Flour or Namaste Gluten-Free Perfect Flour Blend.)

4 to 8 oz. (1 to 2 Cups) shredded cheese
(We nearly always use extra sharp cheddar and grate our own.  You can use whatever cheese you prefer that fits in your allergen needs that you like on tacos or enchiladas (i.e. Mexican blend, CoJack, Pepper Jack).  We always use the 8 oz. (2 Cups), but we like cheese.)

1 1/2 Cup milk
(We always use whole milk, but you can use whatever you have on hand.)

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
(We always use the 1/2 teaspoon.)

1/4 - 1 Cup sour cream
(We normally use Daisy Brand.  We normally use between 1/2 to 1 Cup sour cream, too.)

1. Shred or chop chicken into bite-sized pieces. (If you have left-over chicken from something, you can use 1 Cup of it here. You could also boil or roast a chicken breast and use that. I have sprinkled a chicken breast with paprika and covered it with about 1/4 Cup water and cooked it in the crock pot for about 2 to 3 hours on High until it is done and then used that in the past.  As I mentioned above, you can also use dark meat.  The choice is yours. :) )

2. Add chopped/shredded chicken, salsa, broth/stock, parsley and potatoes in a large soup pot and bring to a boil, simmering until potatoes are to desired tenderness - generally 20 minutes. (Note: How much salsa you use is according to personal preference, as well as which heat. You can even mix 2 different heats, if you wish.  How many potatoes you use is based on preference.  I normally figure at least 1 large potato or 2 or 3 baby potatoes per person (1 large potato or 2 - 3 baby potatoes normally gives me around 1 Cup of diced potatoes), and let that guide me as to how much to use.  If you find that you'll be using more than 6 Cups of potatoes, you'll want to double the recipe. )

3. In a small skillet, melt the butter and add the gluten-free flour, cooking and stirring it for 3 to 5 minutes or until the mixture is bubbly. (You are making what is called a roux (pronounced "rue") here. You can let it get as dark as you want (the darker it gets, the more nutty the taste), but be careful as to not burn the flour.)

4. Add roux to pot, bring to a boil and cook and stir for 2 minutes.

5. Reduce heat to low and add cheese, milk, salt and pepper, cooking and stirring until the cheese melts.

6. Remove the pot from heat and blend in sour cream.

Note: This recipe yields 2 1/4 quarts or about eight 1 Cup servings.

Variations (Please keep your individual dietary needs in mind when using variations!):

  • Soy-Free: Neither the Pamela's Gluten-Free All Purpose Flour or the Namaste Gluten-Free Perfect Flour Blend that we use claim to contain soy, but Pamela's contains guar gum and Namaste contains xanthan gum, both of which can cause issues with people who have soy sensitivities and allergies.   For these reasons, I will not claim that this recipe is soy-free.  You can use regular flour (if you can have it), corn starch, potato starch, or a soy-free, gluten-free flour of your choice.
  • Milk-Free: Use a dairy-free butter substitute in place of the butter, dairy-free cheese for the regular cheese, dairy-free milk of choice for the regular milk, and dairy-free sour cream to make this recipe.
  • Vegan/Vegetarian: Leave out the chicken, use the milk-free variation above using vegan/vegetarian options, and substitute vegetable stock or a vegan/vegetarian "chicken" broth or bouillon (3 - 4  cubes with 3 - 4 Cups of water) for the chicken stock/broth.  You could even substitute black beans or kidney beans (or another bean of choice that fits with Tex-Mex and your allergen needs) or even mushrooms for the chicken, too.
  • Toppings: This soup is delicious as is, or you can top each individual serving with extra sour cream and parsley, hot sauce, salsa, cheese, avocado, etc. if desired.
  • Bouillon Vs. Broth/Stock: You can substitute 3 - 4 Cups water plus 3 or 4 chicken bouillon cubes for the broth/stock, if desired.

I hope you will give this recipe a try soon and that it becomes a family favorite for you, too!

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