Taco Soup

I love a hearty soup in the winter. (Those of you in the midwest may be laughing at the term "winter" being used so loosely, but it seems really cold here.) The first time I had taco soup was a few years ago--a photographer that brought lots of business to Rob's photo lab brought in this taco soup one day and it was so good. The other day I made up what I remember of it and it turned out yummy. It is really another version of chili, but whatever. Super easy in the crockpot, but if you use a crockpot you'll need a big one because it makes a lot. I made this recipe and we had it for dinner, I had it for lunch the next day and I brought the rest to a friend who just had a baby and it was plenty. I'm sure it would freeze well for reheating later.

Taco Soup
2 lbs ground beef or turkey
1 large onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
2 packets taco seasoning
1 packet ranch dressing mix
2 T chili powder
2 14.5 oz cans tomato sauce
1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
2 c. salsa
1 can black beans, drained
1 can kidney beans, drained
2 cans pinto beans, drained
2 cans of corn, NOT drained

In a frying pan or the bottom of a soup pot brown the beef or turkey with the onions. Drain well. Add in the garlic and seasonings/spices. Saute a minute or so. If using a crockpot, dump the beef mixture into the crock and add in all other ingredients and cook on high for 4 hours or low 6 hours. OR If using a soup pot add in all other ingredients and simmer on medium/low for an hour. When you check on your soup, if it seems too thick add in a bit of water. Top with shredded cheese and sour cream and crunched tortilla chips.

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