Easy 1-Hour Pollo Tropical Caribbean Chicken Soup Recipe

Last Updated on December 1, 2022

Today, we recreate the Pollo Tropical Caribbean chicken soup recipe. It still has yuca and plantains, but we’ve added even more savory seasonings!

This recipe is very easy to make and can even be prepared in advance. And, it goes great with garlic bread, cooked rice, and a variety of crunchy snacks.

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What Is In This Pollo Tropical Caribbean Chicken Soup Recipe?

Pollo Tropical is a famous chain restaurant franchise based mainly in the South of Florida. This chain primarily focuses mainly on Latin and Caribbean-inspired food.

Since they have been founded in 1988, they have continuously brought out more and more delicious hearty meals. All of these are loaded with authentic flavors and deliciously balanced textures!

One of the most famous dishes on their menu is the Pollo Tropical Caribbean chicken soup recipe. Today, we will try to recreate it based off their menu description. However, we’ve also taken some inspiration from authentic Caribbean chicken soup recipes.

So, while you’ll recognize many of the elements found in the original Pollo Tropical soup, there will also be other additions. But don’t worry, they all help add more flavor and texture for the better!

So, what exactly goes into the original Pollo Tropical soup recipe? This bowl contains delicious grilled chicken, pieces of corn, yuca (cassava), pumpkin, and plantains. As you can see, this is a lot of ingredients that may not be as easy to find in some areas.

So, while we will be making the recipe in the most authentic way, we’ve also included some substitutions in the tips and tricks section.

In addition, we’ve also added some more tomato flavors that will help enrich the soup. Along with the green bell pepper, it adds color and an earthy rich soup base.

how to make caribbean chicken soup

What You Will Need For My Rich Flavor-Packed Pollo Tropical Caribbean Chicken Soup Recipe

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound chicken breasts, boneless, skinless, sliced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
  • 2 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
  • Sea salt flakes, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 green bell pepper, deseeded and diced
  • 2 cups pumpkin cubes, bite-sized
  • 2 cups yuca cubes, bite-sized
  • 1 can of crushed tomatoes
  • 2-3 cups chicken broth, less sodium
  • 2-3 unripe plantains, peeled and sliced into 1/2-inch chunks
  • Fresh cilantro, chopped for garnish

Equipment

  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Mixing bowls
  • Frying pan
  • Tongs or spatula
  • Paper towels
  • Large pot
  • Mixing spoon
 

Step By Step Instructions

Step 1: Brown the chicken

To start, preheat some olive oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Add some chicken and brown the meat on both sides for about 3-5 minutes each.

Work in small batches to prevent overcrowding the pan. Then, as you finish a batch, remove it from the heat and drain it on a paper towel.

Set all of the cooked chicken aside.

Step 2: Fry the vegetables

Add some olive oil to a large pot over medium-high heat. Then, add the onions and saute them for 3 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger, and spices. Toast them for another minute or two. Mix the ingredients together very well so the flavors distribute evenly.

Then, add the diced green peppers, pumpkin, and yuca. Also, add the browned chicken at this point. Give them a good stir to coat them with the spices and aromatics. Allow them to cook for 2-3 minutes so their flavors are released.

Step 3: Add the liquids and cook the soup

Once your vegetables are cooked, add the crushed canned tomatoes and 2 cups of chicken broth.

Bring the soup to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, reduce the heat and allow the ingredients to simmer for about 10 minutes.

Step 4: Add the plantains

After 10 minutes of cooking, add the sliced plantain pieces to the soup mixture.

Then, leave the soup to continue cooking for another 10-20 minutes. The exact cooking time for this Pollo Tropical Caribbean chicken soup recipe will depend on the size of your cubed vegetables.

Step 5: Serve the Caribbean chicken soup

Before removing the soup from the heat, ensure that all of the ingredients (especially the yuca and pumpkin) are completely cooked.

Once cooked, remove the chicken soup from the heat and allow it to stand for 10 minutes.

Then, serve it with your favorite accompaniment or as-is. Remember to top it off with some fresh chopped cilantro!

Expert Tips And Tricks

  • Here are some easy alternatives for some of the harder-to-find ingredients in this recipe. First, you can replace the yuca root (cassava root) with sweet potato, potato, or chickpeas. Then, the plantains can be replaced with regular unripe bananas.
  • If you want to save a lot of time, you can skip browning the chicken. However, this will cause you to lose some of the meaty sweet flavors. Browning the meat helps release some of its flavors and gives it more color and texture. So, we don’t recommend skipping it, even if it does take longer to make.
  • If you use ripe plantains in this recipe, they only need to cook for 10 minutes. If you use unripe plantains, they need to cook for longer, between 15-20 minutes.
  • However, if you use bananas instead of plantains, you can add them in the last 5 minutes of cooking.
  • If you see that the soup is a little too dry, add more chicken stock. You can also add a lot of stock if you like it saucy.
  • If you don’t love tomato-based soups, you can leave them out completely. Substitute it with more chicken stock so the soup doesn’t become a stew.

Preparations Times And Servings

Preparation Times Cooking Times Servings
20 minutes 30-40 minutes 4-6

Final Thoughts On Our Delicious Pollo Tropical Caribbean Chicken Soup Recipe

We hope that you’ve enjoyed our take on the Pollo Tropical Caribbean chicken soup recipe. It is rich, very hearty, and one of our favorite comfort foods out there!

If you love this recipe, don’t forget to have a look at some other great options on our website. And, if there is something specific you are looking for, don’t hesitate to let us know!

Easy 1-Hour Pollo Tropical Caribbean Chicken Soup Recipe

Easy 1-Hour Pollo Tropical Caribbean Chicken Soup Recipe

aniasvibrantkitchen
Today, we recreate the Pollo Tropical Caribbean chicken soup recipe. It still has yuca and plantains, but we've added even more savory seasonings! This recipe is very easy to make and can even be prepared in advance. And, it goes great with garlic bread, cooked rice, and a variety of crunchy snacks.
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Total Time 1 hr
Course Dinner, Soup
Cuisine American, Caribbean
Servings 6

Equipment

  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Mixing bowls
  • Frying pan
  • Tongs or spatula
  • Paper Towels
  • Large Pot
  • Mixing Spoon

Ingredients
  

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound chicken breasts, boneless, skinless, sliced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
  • 2 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
  • Sea salt flakes, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 green bell pepper, deseeded and diced
  • 2 cups pumpkin cubes, bite-sized
  • 2 cups yuca cubes, bite-sized
  • 1 can of crushed tomatoes
  • 2-3 cups chicken broth, less sodium
  • 2-3 unripe plantains, peeled and sliced into 1/2-inch chunks
  • Fresh cilantro, chopped for garnish

Instructions
 

  • Brown the chicken
    To start, preheat some olive oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Add some chicken and brown the meat on both sides for about 3-5 minutes each.
    Work in small batches to prevent overcrowding the pan. Then, as you finish a batch, remove it from the heat and drain it on a paper towel.
    Set all of the cooked chicken aside.
    3 tablespoons olive oil, 1 pound chicken breasts, boneless, skinless, sliced
  • Fry the vegetables
    Add some olive oil to a large pot over medium-high heat. Then, add the onions and saute them for 3 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger, and spices. Toast them for another minute or two. Mix the ingredients together very well so the flavors distribute evenly.
    Then, add the diced green peppers, pumpkin, and yuca. Also, add the browned chicken at this point. Give them a good stir to coat them with the spices and aromatics. Allow them to cook for 2-3 minutes so their flavors are released.
    3 tablespoons olive oil, 1 large onion, diced, 4 garlic cloves, minced, 1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger, 2 tablespoons ground cumin, 2 teaspoons dried oregano, 1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder, Sea salt flakes, to taste, Freshly ground black pepper, to taste, 1 green bell pepper, deseeded and diced, 2 cups pumpkin cubes, bite-sized, 2 cups yuca cubes, bite-sized
  • Add the liquids and cook the soup
    Once your vegetables are cooked, add the crushed canned tomatoes and 2 cups of chicken broth.
    Bring the soup to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, reduce the heat and allow the ingredients to simmer for about 10 minutes.
    1 can of crushed tomatoes, 2-3 cups chicken broth, less sodium
  • Add the plantains
    After 10 minutes of cooking, add the sliced plantain pieces to the soup mixture.
    Then, leave the soup to continue cooking for another 10-20 minutes. The exact cooking time for this Pollo Tropical Caribbean chicken soup recipe will depend on the size of your cubed vegetables.
    2-3 unripe plantains, peeled and sliced into 1/2-inch chunks
  • Serve the Caribbean chicken soup
    Before removing the soup from the heat, ensure that all of the ingredients (especially the yuca and pumpkin) are completely cooked.
    Once cooked, remove the chicken soup from the heat and allow it to stand for 10 minutes.
    Then, serve it with your favorite accompaniment or as-is. Remember to top it off with some fresh chopped cilantro!
    Fresh cilantro, chopped for garnish

Notes

Here are some easy alternatives for some of the harder-to-find ingredients in this recipe. First, you can replace the yuca root (cassava root) with sweet potato, potato, or chickpeas. Then, the plantains can be replaced with regular unripe bananas.
If you use ripe plantains in this recipe, they only need to cook for 10 minutes. If you use unripe plantains, they need to cook for longer, between 15-20 minutes. However, if you use bananas instead of plantains, you can add them in the last 5 minutes of cooking.
If you don't love tomato-based soups, you can leave them out completely. Substitute it with more chicken stock so the soup doesn't become a stew.
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