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How to Make Albondigas Soup

Slofoodgroup Team December 04, 2022

Caldo de Albondigas literally translates to mean meatball soup. Traditionally, the meatballs are prepared with beef and are embellished from the inside-out with rice and fresh mint. This soup is incredibly comforting, with a spiced tomato broth, and as many vegetables as the chef’s heart desires. We love this classic Mexican mainstay with Spanish roots, but this time around, we chose to deconstruct it slightly, adding the rice and mint directly to the broth and lightening the meatballs by swapping the ground beef out for ground turkey. 

Mexican Meatball Soup

Making Caldo de Albondigas From Scratch


For the soup:

  • 4 cloves fresh garlic, sliced
  • 1 small white onion
  • 3 large carrots, cut into ½-inch pieces
  • 3 Yukon gold potatoes, chopped into ¾-inch pieces
  • 1 teaspoon fresh-ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon chipotle powder
  • 1 teaspoon fresh-ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 14-ounce can diced, stewed tomatoes, with juices
  • 1-2 large chayote or zucchini, chopped in ½-inch pieces
  • 1 orange bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 cups beef broth (poultry broth or vegetable broth may also be used for a lighter variation)
  • 2  cups cooked, long grain white rice
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped mint

For the meatballs:

  • ½ small white onion, chopped & sauteéd in 1 ½ tablespoon butter
  • ½ cup fresh, chopped parsley
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon crushed garlic
  • 1 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
  • ½ teaspoon dried Mexican oregano
  • 2 tablespoons masa harina
  • 1 ½ pound ground turkey
  • 1 ½ pound ground pork 
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons mayonaise

For topping: 

  • Avocado
  • Cilantro
  • Créma
  • Lime wedges
  • Corn tortillas or fried tortilla strips


  1. First, make your meatballs by mixing all of the ingredients together.
  2. Drizzle oil on a sheet pan and roll your meatballs into bite-sized balls. 
  3. Place them on the pan, ensuring none of the edges touch each other. 
  4. Place your pan into a preheated oven at 350℉ and bake for 15 minutes. Use a tong to turn them and then cook for an additional 10 minutes. 
  5. While your meatballs are cooking, heat a large pot and drizzle oil to cover the bottom. 
  6. Toss in your chopped onions and allow them to sweat, stirring occasionally, until soft and translucent. 
  7. Add your garlic and carrots and cook for an additional 5 minutes
  8. Stir in the tomatoes, broth, celery, bell pepper, potatoes, herbs, and spices. 
  9. Bring to a boil, turn the heat down to a low simmer, and cover. 
  10. Allow the soup to simmer for 30 minutes. Add the zucchini and cook for an additional 5 minutes. 
  11. To serve, place a scoop of rice and several meatballs into each bowl. Ladle the soup atop of it. Provide a variety of toppings for folks to add to their individual bowls. 

Love soups? Here are four other recipes you are likely to love: 

Vegan Menudo with Morels and Mexican Oregano

Ginger Saffron Chicken Soup

Cream of Wild Mushroom Soup