International Recipes and Cooking Around the World

Sopa de Albóndigas

Sopa de Albóndigas (Mexican meatball soup)

(Mexican meatballs in broth)

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Average: 3.6 (21 votes)

Albóndigas is Spanish for "meatballs," and sopa de albóndigas is Mexican meatballs in a bowlful of hot, tomatoey broth. This satisfying soup is a favorite comfort food in Mexico and a great way to warm up a cold day.

4 to 6 servings



  • Ground beef -- 1 pound
  • Cooked rice -- 1/2 cup
  • Minced onion or scallion -- 1/4 cup
  • Egg, beaten -- 1
  • Cilantro or mint, chopped -- 1/2 bunch
  • Garlic, minced -- 2 to 3 cloves
  • Flour -- 1 tablespoon
  • Dried oregano -- 2 teaspoons
  • Salt and pepper -- to taste


  • Oil -- 2 tablespoons
  • Onion, diced -- 1
  • Carrot, diced -- 1
  • Tomato, peeled, seeded and diced -- 1
  • Water or beef broth -- 6 cups
  • Salt and pepper -- to taste


  1. Mix all the ingredients for the meatballs together in a large bowl until smooth. Form into 1-inch balls and set aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and sauté until the onions are translucent, about 3 or 4 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté for another 1 or 2 minutes. Stir in the water or broth, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low.
  3. Drop the meatballs one by one into the simmering stew, stirring gently. Simmer slowly for 20 to 40 minutes.
  4. Serve meatballs in bowls with some of the broth.

Sopa de Albóndigas Variations

  • Use a mixture of ground beef and ground pork for added flavor.
  • Add some minced jalapeño or chipotle pepper to the meatballs for a little spice.
  • Add a couple of tablespoons of raw rice to cook in the broth if you like.
  • Add diced zucchini and bell pepper to the broth, or use other vegetables.
  • Substitute 1/4 cup breadcrumbs or cornmeal for the cooked rice in the meatballs.

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