Mexican Meatball Soup (Caldo de Albóndigas)

Mexican Meatball Soup (Caldo de Albóndigas), a traditional soup with veggies and delicious meatballs in a flavorful broth (Whole30 option).

Mexican Meatball Soup (Caldo de Albondigas) #mexicanmeatballsoup #whole30recipes #caldodealbondigas

Mexican Meatball Soup (Caldo de Albóndigas)

This Mexican Meatball Soup, or caldo de albóndigas, is one of my favorite soups. I learned to make this soup from my mom and she learned to make it from her mom.

This is one of the first things my mom learned to make as a newlywed. At first, she couldn’t get it quite right until my grandmother helped her make it step by step. That’s because, like I’m sure is true for some of your mothers or grandmothers, the measurements consisted of “a little of this,” “a dash of that,” and “about this much.”

Since my mom learned to cook this way, I am so grateful to her for helping me measure the ingredients for her recipes. This has allowed me to better replicate recipes like this one and now also share them with you.

How to Make My Grandmother’s Mexican Meatball Soup

Making the Broth

  • To begin, blend a Roma tomato, a medium clove of garlic, 1/4 of an onion, and 1/2 stalk of celery in a blender or food processor.
    • If you prefer more whole vegetables in your soup, don’t blend the celery. Instead dice it and sauté it with the tomato sauce in the following step.
  • In a deep pot, heat a tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. (Sauté the diced celery here if using.)
  • Add the tomato mixture into the pot. Sauté the sauce for about two minutes.
  • Pour in 4 cups of water and 4 cups of chicken broth into the pot. Bring to a boil. For added flavor, use only chicken broth without the water.

Assembling the Meatballs

  • In a large bowl, add a pound of ground beef, a 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper.
    • My mom’s original recipe also calls for 1/2 teaspoon of chicken bouillon. The chicken bouillon adds extra flavor, however, I prefer to leave it out because it contains MSG. Also, leave it out for a Whole30 version.
    • Mix meatball ingredients and form meatballs about an inch to an inch and a half in diameter (be careful to not overmix the meat). Carefully add them into the boiling broth and let them boil for 10 minutes.
Mexican Meatball Soup #mexicanmeatballsoup

Preparing the Soup

  • While the meatballs are boiling, dice 2-3 carrots at a diagonal. Dice one large potato into cubes about the same size as the carrots. You can choose to do more carrots and potatoes, just note that the ratio of carrots to potatoes should be the same.
  • After the 10 minutes, add the carrots and simmer for another 5 minutes. Then, add the potatoes and 1/3 cup of chopped cilantro. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Finally, let everything simmer until the potatoes are cooked through (another 8-10 minutes).
Carrots and potatoes for Mexican Meatball soup #mexicanmeatballsoup #caldodealbondigas

Mexican Meatball Soup is Ready to Serve

This delicious comfort food is ready to serve! For a Whole30 option, definitely omit the chicken bouillon and use a Whole30 compliant broth. If not on Whole30, this soup goes great served over this Mexican Red Rice and accompanied by warm corn tortillas. Either way, you definitely want to top it off with a little lime juice and salsa.

Click here for this great Jalapeño Salsa that’s delicious with this Mexican Meatball Soup.

Mexican Meatball Soup (Caldo de Albondigas) #mexicanmeatballsoup #whole30recipes #caldodealbondigas

I hope you enjoy!

Please leave me a comment below if you make this or tag me on Instagram @everydaylatina.
Mexican Meatball Soup (Caldo de Albondigas) #mexicanmeatballsoup #whole30recipes #caldodealbondigas
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4.86 from 7 votes

Mexican Meatball Soup (Caldo de Albóndigas)

Mexican Meatball Soup (Caldo de Albóndigas), a traditional soup with veggies and delicious meatballs in a flavorful broth (Whole30 option).
Course Soup
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 6
Author Gemma from Everyday Latina

Ingredients

Broth

  • 1 Roma tomato
  • 1 medium clove of garlic
  • 1/4 white onion
  • 1/2 stalk celery (see recipe)
  • 4 cups water
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

Meatballs

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp chicken bouillon (optional, see notes)

Veggies

  • 2-3 carrots, diced at a diagonal (see notes)
  • 1 potato, cubed (see notes)
  • 1/3 cup chopped cilantro
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Blend the tomato, garlic, onion, and celery in a blender or food processor. If you prefer more whole vegetables in your soup, don’t blend the celery. Instead dice it and sauté it with the tomato sauce in the following step.
  • In a deep pot or dutch oven, heat a tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. (Sauté the diced celery here if using). Pour the tomato sauce mixture into the pot. Sauté the sauce for about two minutes.
  • Pour in 4 cups of water and 4 cups of chicken broth into the pot. Bring to a boil. For added flavor, use 8 cups of chicken broth and no water.
  • With your hands mix the ground beef, with the garlic powder, salt and pepper.
  • Being careful not to overmix the ground beef, form meatballs about an inch to an inch and a half in diameter. Drop them into the boiling broth and let them boil for 10 minutes.
  • After the 10 minutes, add the carrots and simmer for another 5 minutes. Then, add the potatoes and the chopped cilantro. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Let everything simmer a little longer until the potatoes are cooked through (another 8-10 minutes).

Notes

  • You can choose to do more carrots and potatoes, just note that the ratio of carrots to potatoes should be the same.
  • My mom’s original recipe calls for 1/2 teaspoon of chicken bouillon. The chicken bouillon adds extra flavor, however I prefer to leave it out because it contains MSG . Also leave it leave it out for a Whole30 version.
  • For a Whole30 option, definitely omit the chicken bullion and use a Whole30 compliant broth.
  • If you are not on Whole30, this soup goes great over Mexican Red Rice and accompanied by warm corn tortillas. Either way, I recommend topping it off with a little lime juice and this Jalapeño Salsa.

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21 Comments to “Mexican Meatball Soup (Caldo de Albóndigas)”

  1. Kathia

    5 stars
    This is my go to albóndiga soup recipe. I add 2 corns halved and Mexican squash. When I need a little kick I also add smoked paprika to the meatballs.

    Reply
    1. everydaylatina Author

      Hi Jillian, I am so happy to hear that. I have never tried it with chicken, it is good to know it was still good with it. Yes, the lime juice is such a great addition. Thank you for the comment.

      Reply
  2. Amy

    5 stars
    I made this soup tonight and it was delicious…very light, but filling. We also made your salsa recipe to add some extra spice to the soup. It was the perfect dish for this cold CO night. Added bonus, my almost two year old ate every drop of his serving!

    Reply
    1. everydaylatina Author

      Oh, I am so glad!! Yes the salsa goes great with the soup. I especially like to put the salsa on corn tortillas, roll them up and dip them in the warm soup (when we are not on Whole30 that is). I am so happy everyone in the family loved it! Love that you made it!

      Reply

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