Beef, Black Bean and Rice Albóndiga Soup, photo by Sonia Mendez GarciaPhoto by Sonia Mendez Garcia

Beef, Black Bean and Rice Albóndiga Soup

Cuisine: Latin
Servings: 6 servings

Do you know how you start off making one recipe and it turns into something more delicious than you expected? That’s exactly what happened when I made this albóndiga soup.

I had some defrosted ground beef but I knew I didn't want to make burgers again. And since it had been extremely cold, I just wanted to eat soup every day! Albóndiga soup is one of my absolute favorites and I thought… Hmm, what if I throw in some black beans?? It would have to be good. As I went along and started adding the spices, I realized it had a lot of the same ingredients as when I make beef chili. It turned out to be the best chili soup with meatballs I could have imagined!

Ingredients

  • For the Albóndigas
  • 1 pound ground beef 80/20
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried onions or shallots
  • 1/2 cup jasmine rice
  • 1/2 cup black beans drained and rinsed
  • 1 egg
  • For the Soup Base
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium white onion diced
  • 1 serrano pepper minced
  • 1 green bell pepper diced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 Roma tomatoes diced
  • 1/3 cup cilantro chopped
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 6 cups low-sodium beef broth
  • 2 cups tomatoes crushed
  • 1 tablespoon chile ancho powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon tomato bouillon granules (I use Knorr brand)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • salt to taste
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • tablespoons worcestershire sauce
  • 1 cup black beans canned, drained and rinsed
  • For the Garnishes
  • Fried tortilla strips
  • Guacamole or avocado slices
  • Lime wedges

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Directions

  1. Start by combining all of the ingredients for the albóndigas, in the order listed. Using your hands, form 18 meatballs and transfer to a plate. Cover with plastic wrap and chill until ready to use.
  2. Preheat 2 tablespoons of olive oil to medium heat in a large, heavy pot for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the onions, serrano and green bell pepper. Season lightly with a pinch of salt and pepper. Cook for 5 to 6 minutes. Add the garlic, cilantro, and Roma tomatoes. Cook for another minute.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients for the soup base, minus the black beans. Stir well to combine, taste for salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat just slightly. Carefully add the albóndigas to the soup, stir gently. Cover and simmer for 35 to 40 minutes. During the last 10 minutes of cooking time, add in the remaining black beans. Cook for just another few minutes. Serve right away, garnish with fried tortilla strips, guacamole, and lime wedges. Yields up to 6 hearty servings or 8 as a starter.Add the remaining ingredients for the soup base, minus the black beans. Stir well to combine, taste for salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat just slightly. Carefully add the albóndigas to the soup, stir gently. Cover and simmer for 35 to 40 minutes. During the last 10 minutes of cooking time, add in the remaining black beans. Cook for just another few minutes. Serve right away, garnish with fried tortilla strips, guacamole, and lime wedges. Yields up to 6 hearty servings or 8 as a starter.
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