This easy Beef Fajita Soup is the perfect comfort soup on a cool Fall or Winter evening. It is super easy to put together in the Instant Pot or even the Crock Pot and it is a flavorful crowd pleaser.
My version is low-carb and gluten-free, but this recipe is totally adaptable to your liking.
What is Beef Fajita Soup?
An easy Mexican-inspired soup that combines the flavors of those traditional fajitas with flavorful steak, colorful bell peppers, onions, and those wonderful seasonings.
Oh, and let’s not forget the cream and all the delicious cheese. I mean, who wants fajitas without cheese? This soup is great served piping hot and topped with creamy avocado slices and a dollop of sour cream.
Our family loves beef fajitas and with the Fall temperatures slowly making their way to us, I thought why not try them in soup form. I mean soup is perfect for Fall and they usually come together pretty quickly!
Especially when you pair that soup recipe with the glorious Instant Pot. This combo makes for a great family-friendly dinner in under an hour!
The soup came out perfectly and it is so filling and a crowd pleaser for sure. I mean how could it not be with all those amazing ingredients?
I added some cauliflower to bulk my soup up some, and no, that isn’t traditional with fajitas, so you can leave it out if you wish, but it is a great low-carb way to get more veggies in.
You can also swap it out for peeled and diced radishes if you would like, or even potatoes if you aren’t watching your carbs.
What is The Best Beef to Use in Fajita Soup?
Traditionally beef fajitas are made from perfectly grilled skirt steak. Skirt steak is one of the most flavorful cuts of beef, and even though it’s also one of the tougher cuts, it’s still a great steak for grilling or for slow cooking in recipes like this soup.
If you were grilling it, it is best to cook it very quickly and over a super-hot fire. But since we are just going to cut it into slices and add it to our soup, we don’t have to worry about some of that.
Most importantly, skirt steak absolutely must be sliced thinly and always against the grain. This means cutting it widthwise instead of lengthy-wise, so you have shorter pieces.
It is pretty easy to see the lines or “grain” on this type of steak. So just make sure you slice in the opposite way you see those lines running and the meat will be more tender.
This type of steak also works well for long and slow cooking like in a crock pot. The low and slow heat helps break down the fibers in the meat making it more tender to eat when it’s done.
If you don’t have skirt steak or if you want to use a cheaper cut for your budget, you can totally use what you have on hand. Just swap it out for the skirt steak and follow the same cooking directions in the recipe card.
Two great steaks that could be used in place of the skirt steak are sirloin steak and flank steak. These tend to be a little cheaper pricewise than skirt steak, but both are flavorful and would work nicely.
Can I Make Beef Fajita Soup in the Slow Cooker or Crock Pot?
Yes, absolutely you can! This fajita soup is just as delicious when you choose to make it in the crock pot. It will just take longer naturally, but there are just a few extra steps before walking away to let it cook.
To make this Beef Fajita Soup in the crock pot:
- Sauté the thin sliced steak, onion, and bell peppers first before adding them to the Crock Pot. You don’t have to cook them completely just enough to get some color on the beef and to soften the peppers.
- Once you’ve done that, simply add everything (except the cheese and heavy cream) to the Crock Pot. and turn it on low
- Cook on low heat for about 6 to 8 hours, depending on when you plan to eat it. I don’t recommend doing this on high for shorter periods of time as the meat will not be tender enough.
- When ready to serve, remove the Crock Pot lid turn it to keep warm, and add in the heavy cream and cheese. Stir well to combine and melt the cheese.
- Serve hot with toppings like sliced avocado, extra cheese, cilantro, and a squeeze of lime.
What Makes Fajitas Taste So Good?
When it comes to the amazing flavor of fajitas, whether beef or chicken, it is all about the seasonings. Mexican dishes are known for being full of big bold flavors, so they use a ton of spices.
You can totally buy fajita seasoning packets in the store but why would you when you can use fresh spices and mix some up at home yourself?
It is so easy to do, and it is a great way to have a fresh mix whenever you need it. Don’t let it intimidate you because it really is a breeze.
My fajita seasonings typically are always the same. I’m sure they might not be exactly like the ones found in the packages, but they are delicious when all combined. The following spices:
- Chili powder
- Mexican Oregano
- Onion powder
- Garlic powder
- Cayenne pepper
These spices can be mixed together in equal parts to make one seasoning that you can store in an airtight container and pull out when needed.
But if you don’t wait to mix up a large batch then you can use just a little of each to your recipes as I do in this soup. Check out the recipe to see which of these I add and how much I use.
What Are the Best Toppings for Fajitas?
Fajitas are delicious just as they are, and this soup is no different there, but let’s be honest with ourselves. Everything tastes better with more toppings!
Since this soup is basically just fajitas in the broth it would be sad to leave off these delicious toppings that we all use and love. What not make this soup even more delicious?
Here are a few suggestions that our family lovers on our bowls of soup!
- Avocado: just slice a few ripe avocados for a wonderful topping that is rich and creamy. It adds such great flavor and texture to the soup.
- Fresh Cilantro: nothing goes better on fajitas, in my opinion, than some fresh cilantro. It is just a fresh pop for a flavor that really works well with the fattiness from the beef and all that cheese. Of course, if you are one of the unfortunate ones that taste soap in those bright green leaves, you’ll want to use parsley or skip this one altogether.
- Cheese: Who wouldn’t love even more cheese on top of this soup? A nice Monterey Jack or even a spicy Pepper Jack works well with this. Of course, there is always our trusty stand-by cheddar too.
- Sliced Jalapenos: Want to add some extra zip to your Beef Fajita Soup? Then adding a few slices of fresh or even pickled jalapenos is the way to go!
- Mexican Crema or Sour Cream: Sour cream is more commonly found in homes today but if you are lucky enough to have some Mexican Crema in your fridge then definitely drizzle some of that on top of your bowl for a real treat. The best-known Mexican crema is a thick liquid, while sour cream has a denser consistency similar to Greek Yogurt. Either works beautifully as a topper to this soup.
A hearty soup made in the Instant Pot that features all the traditional flavors of beef fajitas. Tender steak, peppers, onions, and a creamy broth. Don't forget the cheese!
- 24 ounces of sliced steak
- 12 ounces of cauliflower florets
- 6 cups of low sodium beef broth
- 2 cups of Monterrey Jack Cheese, shredded
- 1/2 to 1 cup of heavy cream
- 1 medium red onion
- 1 medium red bell pepper
- 1 medium yellow bell pepper
- 1 tablespoon of Avacado oil
- 1 jalapeno, seeded and diced (optional)
- 2 teaspoons of chili powder
- 2 teaspoons of paprika
- 2 teaspoons of ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons of minced garlic
- 1/4-1/2 teaspoons of cayenne pepper for spice (optional)
- 1 teaspoon Mexican oregano
- salt and pepper to taste
- Add the oil to the Instant Pot and press the sauté function. Add the sliced steak to the pot and sauté until it is brown. It doesn't need to be cooked through.
- Toss in the sliced onions, bell peppers, and all the seasonings. Stir and sauté for an additional 3 to 4 minutes.
- Turn off the sauté function and add the beef broth in and place the lid on the Instant Pot. Turn the knob to seal and press the Manual button. Adjust it to 8 minutes. I would do 10 minutes if your steak is thicker slices.
- Once the ten minutes is done, let the steam naturally release for 5 minutes then open the value carefully and release the rest of the pressure.
- Open the lid after all the pressure is released and add in the thawed cauliflower florets and turn the Instant Pot back on Sauté. Let it come to a boil and cook until the cauliflower is tender.
- Lastly, add in the cheese and the heavy cream. Stir well until all the cheese is melted.
- Taste for seasoning and adjust if needed. Serve hot.
Serving Size1.5 cups
Amount Per ServingCalories 414Total Fat 34.5gTrans Fat 0gCholesterol 125mgSodium 634mgCarbohydrates 7.5gNet Carbohydrates 5.7gFiber 1.8gSugar 4gProtein 33g
I am not a nutritionist. If you have strict dietary needs I always recommend using an online nutrition calculator to calculate your totals using your exact brands you're using in this recipe as values may vary per brand.
I am a southern girl through and through that loves to laugh, cook, read and spend time with family. My passions outside of home schooling my son are ministering to those in need and creating art in the kitchen! Every day is an adventure in our little house and I wouldn’t trade it or the chance to share here with you for anything!