A few weeks ago it started raining in Nashville and hasn’t stopped, so we now have a small pond in the backyard  that might be able to support life.

One of our neighbors helpfully pointed out that the pond wouldn’t be there if I stopped backing into the yard and parked in the garage. Like a normal person. And I’m all, BUT WHERE WOULD WE KEEP THE BODIES?


But the rain and all that comes with it have given me a sinus infection that’s starting to inhibit my ability to function as a normal person.

So, since I can’t go around town speaking my mind and shaming my mother, I decided to heal myself a truckload of soup.

Not a healthy, restorative, vitamin-packed soup, like a minestrone or a country vegetable. Oh, hell no. It had to be something I could eat with Fritos®.

Preferably while watching “The Biggest Loser.”

Thank God and Mama for trashy-good Taco Soup.

Taco Soup, a tailgating staple at Mom’s, is like chili with palm trees painted on its fingernails. Beef, onions, tomatoes, beans, corn, chiles and magical seasonings. But perhaps the best part is that you’re required by law to serve the Taco Soup on a golden bed of Fritos®, the official snack chip of stuffy noses. Use whatever beans you have in the pantry. Add another can of tomatoes, or finish it with some fresh jalapeno slices or grated habanero cheddar. But don’t leave out the Fritos®.

That’s how people wind up in our garage.

Taco Soup

Rebecca Crump (EzraPoundCake.com)

  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 to 2 diced onions
  • 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 1 (10-ounce) can RO*TEL® diced tomatoes and green chilies
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans black beans
  • 1 (16-ounce) can pinto beans
  • 1 (15 1/4-ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
  • 2 (4 1/2-ounce) cans chopped green chiles
  • 1 (1-ounce) envelope taco seasoning
  • 1 (1-ounce) envelope ranch salad dressing and seasoning mix
  • Garnishes: Corn chips, cheese, sour cream, green onions
  1. In a large skillet, cook beef and onions over medium heat until beef is no longer pink. Drain, using a slotted spoon, as you transfer browned beef and onions to a Dutch oven, stockpot or slow cooker.
  2. Add tomatoes, black beans, pinto beans, corn and green chiles. Stir in the taco seasoning and ranch salad dressing mix.
  3. If you’re cooking on the stove, cover the pot and simmer soup over low heat for 30 minutes up to 1 hour, stirring occasionally. If you’re using a slow cooker, cook on low heat for 6 to 8 hours.
  4. Garnish individual servings with corn chips, cheese, sour cream and green onions, if desired.