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Albondigas Soup Recipe

Albondigas Soup Recipe: How To Make The Perfect Mexican Dish

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by Helen
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Recipe for making the perfect Mexican Albondiga soup at home.

For over 50 years, my mother has been making Albondigas soup, a traditional Mexican soup made with meatballs (albondigas means “meatballs” in Spanish).  It is our family's version of comfort food.  Albondigas soup is a hearty and filling meal on its own, but it can also be served with various sides to create a more complete meal.  This is a straightforward Albondigas Soup recipe.

Sides for Albondigas Soup

Here are a few ideas:

1. Tortillas: Warm up some homemade tortillas and serve them alongside the soup. You can also use them to make a wrap with some of the soup and vegetables.

2. Guacamole: Avocado is a popular ingredient in Mexican cuisine, so serving some guacamole on the side can be a great addition to the meal. 

3. Chips and Salsa: You can also serve some chips and salsa for a crunchy, flavorful snack that complements the soup.

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What Is Albondigas Soup?

Albondigas soup is a traditional Mexican soup that consists of meatballs (Albondigas in Spanish), vegetables, and a flavorful broth. The meatballs are typically made with ground beef or turkey, rice, and a variety of herbs and spices. The soup is often served with tortillas, guacamole, chips, and salsa. It's a delicious and hearty soup that's perfect for any occasion especially when its cold!

To make a simple soup base, start by sautéing onions and garlic, then add broth and tomatoes. Next, add meatballs made with ground beef or turkey and rice. The meatballs will create additional broth for the soup. Add carrots, green beans, and peas to the soup for more flavor and nutrition.  If you enjoyed this Albondiga Soup Recipe, be sure to check out our Mexican Style Pinto Beans Recipe or our pan seared pork chops recipe.

Ingredients for Meal

Albondigas Soup (Mexican Meatball Soup)

The distinctive flavor of albondigas soup is attributed to all the herbs used in the meatballs.  When I was growing up, my mom never added mint to her recipe, but it is made slightly differently delicious depending on where you are from.  I have tried both with and without mint and enjoy both.

While you can omit the mint, use oregano and fresh cilantro; the soup will be delicious either way.  You may also add or change the vegetables based on what you have on hand or in season.

PREP TIME: 15 mins
COOK TIME: 45 mins
TOTAL TIME: 60 mins
SERVINGS: 6 to 8 servings

If you want to make this soup, using Mexican yerba buena from your garden for the mint instead of peppermint is best.  Add a few extra tablespoons of chopped fresh mint directly to the soup.  If you don't have fresh mint, you can use a couple of teaspoons of dried mint from herbal mint tea.

You can change up the veggies depending on what you have available.  For example, you could add some chopped fresh zucchini or corn.  If you add fresh zucchini from your garden, add them to the soup at the end so they don't get soggy.

If you prefer, you can use ground turkey instead of ground beef.  We do it all the time.

Albondigas Soup Recipe

Albondigas Soup Recipe


  • Two TBSP extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 quarts free-range chicken stock or grass-fed beef stock (what you have on hand)
  • 1 quart water
  • 1/2 cup of tomato sauce
  • 1/2 pound green beans, strings and ends removed, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 1/3 cup white or brown rice
  • 1 pound grass-fed ground beef (what you have on hand)
  • 1/4 cup (loosely packed) chopped fresh yerba buena leaves
  • 1/4 cup (loosely packed) chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, more to your taste preference
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, more to your taste preference 
  • 1 large free-range egg
  • 1 1/2 cups organic frozen or fresh peas
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano or 1 tablespoon fresh chopped oregano
  • 1 dash cayenne, optional
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro


To make the soup base:

1) start by heating the oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot like a Dutch Oven (5-quart) over medium heat. 
2) Add the onion and cook until tender, around 5 minutes. 
3) Then add the garlic and cook for a minute more.
4) Next, pour the stock, water, and tomato sauce and bring it to a boil. 
5) Reduce the heat to a simmer and add the green beans and carrots.

To prepare the meatballs:

6) mix uncooked rice into the meat in a large bowl. 
7) Add spearmint leaves, parsley, salt, and pepper, and finally mix in the raw egg.
8) Form the mixture into 1-inch meatballs.
9) Gently add the meatballs to the simmering soup, one at a time. 

Cover and let simmer for 30 minutes. Towards the end of cooking, add the peas and a few pinches of oregano. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and a dash of cayenne to taste.  

Finally, ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with chopped fresh cilantro.

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16g FAT

Nutrition information is estimated using an ingredient database and may not be exact. When multiple ingredient alternatives are available, the first listed is used. Optional ingredients and garnishes are not accounted for.

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Albondigas Soup Receipe

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