Mexican Noodle Soup
Homemade sopa de fideo (noodle soup) is one of my favorite dishes. This is Mexican lunchtime comfort food in the way that grilled cheese and tomato soup is in the U.S. Think warm fuzzies in a bowl. Every kid in Mexico grows up on it and everyone, young and old, still eats it regularly as part of the typical comida.
How to Make Sopa de Fideo
Make it from scratch. It’s worth the small bit of extra effort for the authentic flavor. Many cooks take shortcuts – I’ll admit it. I do too at times – by using tomato and chicken bouillon or canned tomatoes instead of real chicken broth and pureed tomatoes.
Using powdered bouillon makes an acceptable version, but, it doesn’t make your heart happy in the same way as the real deal does. Make it from scratch and you’ll see what I mean.
Gather Your Ingredients
You’ll need an 8 oz. package of fideos, which are thin Mexican style noodles used to prepare this soup. You can substitute thin spaghetti, vermicelli noodles, or angel hair pasta broken into 1″ pieces if you are unable to find fideos.
You will also need
- 2 plum tomatoes
- ¼ white onion
- 1 clove of garlic
- 8 cups of homemade chicken broth
- Vegetable oil
- 4 limes for garnish
Preparing the Soup
Cut the tomatoes in half and remove the seeds. Puree the tomatoes, onion, and garlic in your blender and set aside. This is what the pureed mixture will look like.
Fry the Fideo Noodles
Preheat 3 tbsp. of vegetable oil to medium-hot. Add the noodles and stir to coat with oil. Continue stirring until the fideo pasta has turned golden brown and a few strands have turned deep brown. Browning the noodles adds depth of flavor to the soup.
Assemble the Soup
Strain the pureed tomatoes, onion, and garlic into the browned noodles.
Pour in the chicken or vegetable broth and stir.
Bring the soup to a boil.
Cover and reduce to low heat. Cook for 10 minutes.
Your perfectly cooked sopa de fideo is now ready to serve. Be sure to adjust the salt to taste.
Serving Your Sopa
Serve your sopa with a couple of lime halves. A squirt of lime juice brings the flavors together. A spoonful of diced avocado or a pinch of queso fresco are nice touches to finish your fideo soup.
Traditional Mexican Sopa de Fideo Recipe
- Kitchen knife
- Cutting board
- High sided skillet or medium soup pot
- Kitchen spoon
- 8 ounce package of “fideo” noodles thin spaghetti, vermicelli, or angel hair pasta work well
- 2 plum tomatoes Roma tomatoes
- 1 clove garlic
- ¼ medium white onion
- ¼ ground cumin optional to add to broth
- ½ tsp. Mexican oregano optional to add to broth
- 4 limes
- 1 ripe avocado sliced thin optional for garnish
- 8 cups homemade chicken broth
- 3 tbsp. vegetable oil or olive oil
- Salt to taste about 1tsp. will be needed depending on the chicken broth you use
- Cut the tomatoes in half and remove the seeds. Puree the tomatoes, onion, and garlic and set aside.
- Preheat 3 tbsp. of vegetable oil to medium-hot. Add the noodles and stir to coat with oil. Continue stirring until the noodles have started to brown.
- Strain the pureed tomatoes, onion, and garlic into the noodles. Notice the color of the noodles. Some of them should be very brown. The browned noodles add depth of flavor to the soup.
- Add the chicken broth and stir.
- Bring the soup to a boil. Cover and reduce to low heat. Cook for 10 minutes.
- Check the salt and adjust to taste before serving.
- Serve your soup with a couple of lime halves. A squirt of lime brings the flavors together. A little chopped avocado is a nice touch.
- You can use thin spaghetti, vermicelli noodles, or angel hair pasta broken into 1″ pieces if you are unable to find “fideos”
- Substitute canned low-sodium chicken broth if you don’t have homemade.
- You can also use vegetable broth if you want a vegetarian / vegan soup.
- You can make an even quicker version of this soup by using ½ cup tomato paste and 8 cups water instead of using the tomato and onion and chicken broth.
- You can 2 tablespoons of chopped avocado and a spoonful of queso fresco to each bowl as a nice garnish.
Thank you so much for sharing the recipe, I know it’s a simple but my Mami recently passed away and now it’s just me and my sister cooking for my Apa. My mom always cooked and we did try to learn but only my sister got the cooking skills. I can barely make a fried egg. I wanted to make something today for him and this recipe was a success! Thank You!
Douglas Cullen says
That’s probably the most beautiful comment we have ever received. Thanks for sharing!
Lauren Riggs says
We eat this at least once every few weeks, and your recipe is wonderful! I end up having to put in a bit of tomato paste usually, and some chicken broth into the blender mix in order to get anything to go through our fine mesh strainer.
I love this soup! Perfect when you’re feeling a bit under the weather.
I haven’t tried this recipe BUT it helped me see how I finally improved my Mexican rice a few days ago. (I’m Hispanic and live 1,000 miles from Texas where my family is. It gets harder to remember if I don’t make it for a while.) so, using real tomatoes really HELPS, yes!! Thank you!! Frying a little in the first step and using real tomatoes is the absolutely the basis of making the best home made rice/Fideo/etc! Thank you for refreshing my memories. ;)
Michelle Hubert says
Amazing recipe!!! I did add a can of tomato paste to it as well (I didn’t feel like it was tomato-ey enough) and I did end up adding a little cumin in as well, but otherwise didn’t change the basic recipe!
I mixed in some cooked ground beef, cooked diced carrots, and cooked onions in the finished product before topping it with lime, cilantro, and avacado, and oh my word… it was to die for!! Thank you for this recipe!
P.s. This definitely makes a very soupy fideo (which I like) but maybe cut down on the broth if you don’t like it as soupy.
Teresa Dekle says
I added caramelize onion and yellow bell pepper. Also added red pepper flakes It was amazing!
This was a good, loved the flavor. My mom’s version is made with beef. She would cook a chuck roast with onions, tomatoes, black pepper & garlic and beef bouillon in a pressure cooker. She would cook it for 1-1/2 hours. Cool the meat and shred it.
Keep that delicious broth. Take the vegetables and put in a blender until smooth. Put back into the beef broth. Add 2 diced tomatoes, 1 onion and 4 fresh cloves of garlic. Cook in the broth. Reserve 1 cup of the broth. In the meantime fry up Fideo with oil until turns golden brown. Add to the broth. Let simmer for 30 minutes. My mom shreds the chuck roast and in a frying pan add 2 tablespoon of Canola oil and fry with 2 tomatoes and 1 onions chopped fine. Add to the shredded beef. Once all
is sautéed add The cup of broth and put in with shredded beef. Summer on low for about 40 minutes or until the beef has soften and vegetables
Are done. Add 1 teaspoon of pepper and salt. I like to add about 1 cup of the shredded beef to the Fideo. It’s so good. The rest of the shredded beef you can make burritos, tacos or anything you like.
A very true recipe. The simplicity of this soup is what makes it special. So comforting. Food memories.
Tried it.. but didn’t like it! Found this recipe and was on spot! Loved it
T Downs says
Loved this!! I couldn’t find fideo, but the pic reminded me of the noodles in the “No Chicken Noodle” soup packs we buy so those were a great substitute minus the seasoning packs (we used 2 packs of the noodles from them because we like ours extra noodle-y lol). Great flavor and perfect for a cold/rainy day or when you feel under the weather. Thanks for the recipe!!
We love sopa de fideo in our house and I think you are spot on with your recommendation to make the broth from scratch! It is certainly extra special that way! Thanks for the recipe and tips!
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