Recipe: Low-Cal Southwestern Chicken Soup

Dinner Recipes, Lunch Recipes, Poultry Recipes, Soups + Stew Recipes


This Southwestern chicken soup recipe is low-cal, easy to make, and a great way to sneak vegetables and fiber into your diet. This soup is in heavy rotation in my household. I often double the batch and make it for a party because it’s such a crowd-please. Or, I stick the extra in the freezer in two- serving size containers for an easy meal another day. 

It’s a healthy gluten-free, dairy-free recipe with a bit of kick and is packed with Southwestern flavors. 

Make this for a quick weeknight meal, fall football party, or for a holiday get-together with friends or family. This recipe has been a favorite at my house with my kids for two decades. Served with shredded cheese, sour cream, sliced jalapeños and tortilla chips- it’s a meal. 


Spices: minced garlic, chili powder, cumin. Salt and pepper to taste. The combinations of these spices will give you a spicy, warming flavor. 

Protein: chicken broth, black beans, shredded rotisserie chicken. If you want to make this vegan, feel free to substitute vegetable broth and skip the rotisserie chicken. I will often add a can of chickpeas to this soup, so that’s another option if you have a can on hand!

Vegetables: pure pumpkin, corn. You can add others if you’re trying to sneak some more vegetables into your diet. Shredded zucchini, diced onion, and sliced bell peppers are all great additions. 

The pumpkin is the secret ingredient for this southwestern chicken soup. It adds so much creaminess and nutrition, but you don’t taste any pumpkin flavor. 

Toppings: fresh cilantro, shredded cheese, sour cream, tortilla chips, sliced jalapeño. Some of these will up the calorie count of your dish, so add them sparingly if you’re trying to keep this meal low-calorie. Greek yogurt is a good substitute for sour cream.  

How To Make Southwestern Chicken Soup

  1. Mix all the spices with a ½ cup of the broth and bring to medium heat on the stove.
  2. Add the rest of the broth.
  3. Add pumpkin and mix it in well with a spatula.
  4. Add remaining ingredients, stir and bring soup to a boil.
  5. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes. Serve the southwestern chicken soup with any of the optional toppings. Enjoy! 

Other Healthy Soup Recipes to Try

Roasted Sweet Potato Soup

Detox Vegetable Soup

Golden Turmeric Chickpea Chicken Soup

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 5 serving(s)


  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 4 cups chicken (or vegetable) broth
  • 1 15-ounce can pure pumpkin
  • 1 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • 1 16-ounce jar salsa
  • Shredded rotisserie chicken (optional)
  • Optional Toppings
  • Shredded cheese
  • Sour cream
  • Tortilla chips
  • Sliced jalapeño


  1. Mix garlic and spices with 1/4 cup broth and bring to medium heat on the stove.
  2. Add the rest of the broth and bring to a simmer.
  3. Add pumpkin and mix well.
  4. Add remaining ingredients, stir and bring soup to a boil.
  5. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes. Serve with toppings.

Nutrition Information Per Serving

Calories: 263

Protein: 13 gram(s)

Fat: 1 gram(s)

Carbohydrates: 34 gram(s)

Fiber: 15 gram(s)

Sugar: 7 gram(s)

Sodium: 436 milligram(s)

Recipe Cuisine: American

From the kitchen of:

Rate this Recipe

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (550 votes, average: 3.79 out of 5)


on November 4, 2022 at 12:01 PM Reply

This is absolutely delicious! My kids never knew it had pumpkin in it. I followed the recipe using about 2 cups of cooked chicken breast. Will be making again soon! (for cooked chicken breast I either simmer on the stovetop in a little water until done, or put in the crockpot on low for a few hours till done.

    on November 10, 2022 at 2:28 PM Reply

    Right! You can't even taste the pumpkin - that's what I love about it! Thanks for your tips on cooking the chicken breast, those are great ideas to try out!

on June 9, 2022 at 7:23 PM Reply

We loved this! I did add a 14oz can of fire-roasted tomatoes and the juice of 1/2 a lime and skipped all the toppings. It was so light and delicious.

on January 4, 2022 at 6:47 PM Reply

About how much chicken do you use?

    on January 5, 2022 at 9:53 AM Reply

    I usually use about 2 cups.

on November 3, 2021 at 11:35 AM Reply

What vegetable could I substitute for the corn since I am not suppose to eat it? This looks absolutely delicious and I am looking forward to trying this recipe. Thank you.

    on November 11, 2021 at 11:48 AM Reply

    you can just skip the corn! it will still be a delicious soup :) enjoy!

on October 12, 2021 at 8:51 PM Reply

Made this tonight, and it was so good! Hit a bit of a snag when neither I nor my husband could get the jars of salsa in the pantry open, but I used some enchilada sauce we had, and all was well. Will make it with salsa next time (provided I can get it open!) to see which way tastes best. Thank you for sharing!

on September 6, 2021 at 3:30 AM Reply

Absolutely delicious. I'm in Sydney Australia and I made a batch of this and used a bit of greek yoghurt as a topping and some corriander. 10/10 delicious. Packed with a variety of flavours, I cooked and mashed my own pumpkin as well. Overall it was a really fast and tasty recipe that's packed with veggies.

on January 18, 2021 at 4:50 PM Reply

This is delicious and simple, thank you. However if you’re really counting calories, this is pretty off, depending upon the size of the chicken used. I had one that yielded a pound of meat, and that brings the calorie count to 523 per serving

on August 31, 2020 at 12:58 PM Reply

What the serving size and amount?

    on September 15, 2020 at 1:22 PM Reply

    We calculated about 5 bowls of soup for this recipe!

on June 4, 2020 at 5:16 PM Reply

I just made this soup for dinner tonight and ill tell ya what, its delicious! I used 2 cans of corn just because i wanted a little more corn in it. I definitely recommend! The only issue was that it definitely needs salt.

on May 25, 2020 at 11:34 AM Reply

Just made this recipe and it is so good! I added extra chili powder because I like spicy food! Definitely will make this again!

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