Mexican Meatball Soup

Pinterest Hidden Image

Mexican meatball soup has that hearty and rustic deliciousness that just puts a smile on near anyone’s face. Chock full of meat and vegetables, it’s a meal unto itself – especially when served with tortilla chips or bread (or atop white rice.) And the spiciness follows through, from meatball to soup base with the ancho pepper powder (or cayenne for those that want spicier) and fresh jalapeño.

Mexican meatball soup
Our Mexican meatball soup, ready to eat with a side of tortilla chips

Want less of a spicy commitment in your version of a Mexican meatball soup? Halve the amount of fresh jalapeño peppers used. You can also substitute out the jalapeños for a less spicy chili or even for bell peppers (if no heat is desired.) The ancho and generic chili powders carry little heat.

Ancho peppers are very mild (1,000 to 1,500 Scoville heat units compared 2,500 to 8,000 SHU for jalapeños). We recommend keeping them in the recipe even if you’re looking to lessen the heat. They provide more a subtle simmer than any fieriness, and their smoky, earthy flavor complements the Tex-Mex flavors in the recipe. They help really bring this Mexican soup to life.

This soup keeps rather well when stored in an airtight container and placed in the refrigerator. So make it on a Sunday to have a few delicious lunches at the ready for the work-week.

See this recipe being made:

Like this soup recipe? You’ll love these too:

  • Mexican Tomato Soup: A touch of lime juice and jalapeño bring the traditional tomato soup to life.
  • Moroccan Harira Soup: So many bold spices here in this lentil soup. Deliciously exotic.
  • Chipotle Carrot Soup: The pairing of earthy sweet carrots with smoky chipotle make this carrot soup a complete winner.

Mexican meatball soup

Mexican Meatball Soup

A hearty, feel-good meal
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Course Soup
Servings 6 servings
Calories 331 kcal


For the Meatballs

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 onion minced
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 1 slice day old bread crumbled
  • 1 tablespoon garlic approx. 2 cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ancho pepper powder or cayenne pepper powder (for a hotter soup)

For the Soup

  • 4 cups water
  • 3 potatoes cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 3 carrots chopped
  • 2 celery stalks chopped
  • 2 to 3 jalapeño peppers diced
  • 2 beef bouillon cubes
  • 1 can stewed tomatoes 14.5 ounce can
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • Pinch of oregano
  • Salt and pepper
  • Hot sauce optional topper
  • Sliced bread or tortilla chips optional side


  • Place all meatball ingredients into a large bowl and mix thoroughly.
  • Shape the ground beef into small meatballs using a teaspoon at a time.
  • Heat the water and add in the bouillon, then bring the water to a boil.
  • Add in the meatballs and cook on boil for 5 minutes.
  • Add in the potatoes, jalapeño pepper, carrots, celery, stewed tomatoes, chili powder and other remaining spices.
  • Reduce the heat to medium and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 45 minutes.
  • Salt and pepper to taste, then serve with sliced bread or tortilla chips on the side.
  • Optional: Add a few dashes of your favorite hot sauce to the top of the soup after plating.


For less spice, remove the ancho chili powder (or cayenne pepper powder) from the meatball recipe.


Calories: 331kcalCarbohydrates: 27gProtein: 19gFat: 17gSaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 81mgSodium: 623mgPotassium: 1000mgFiber: 6gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 5930IUVitamin C: 26.9mgCalcium: 115mgIron: 7.2mg
Keyword Ancho Pepper, Jalapeno Pepper
Did you make this?Mention @PepperScale or tag #PepperScale so we can see what you made!

UPDATE NOTICE: This post was updated on July 21, 2023 to include new content.
Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments