Easy Crock Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup is packed with tender chicken, beans, and vegetables, all in a spicy broth. Not only is it delicious, but it is also healthy.
One of the best healthy crock pot soups you can make. It will fit a healthy diet like a low-calorie or low-fat diet or even a low-carb keto diet and low-sodium diets.
Let your crock pot do the work with this "dump and go" recipe with only 10 minutes of active time with these easy step-by-step photo instructions that use everyday ingredients you probably already have at home.
Great flavor and tenderness that everybody will love. This is the perfect weeknight dinner recipe.
Check out some other delicious crock pot soup recipes, like Broccoli Cheese Soup, French Onion Soup, Healthy Chicken Vegetable Soup and Chicken Parmesan Soup. And check out Our Best Soup Recipes.
- Chicken—skinless boneless chicken breasts or thighs
- Diced tomatoes
- Chicken broth
- Vegetables—celery, corn, black beans
- Aromatics—onion and garlic
- Pantry ingredients—cumin, chili powder, salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper (optional)
- Tortillas—if making tortilla chips
👨🍳How to Make Crock Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup
- Prep the onion and celery.
- Trim chicken breasts, leave them whole to shred near the end of cooking or cube them.
- Add all ingredients except tortillas to a crock pot.
- Cook for 6 hours on low.
Can I add other ingredients?
This is soup, so put in what you want or have, and it will be good
You can add other vegetables like bell pepper or zucchini. You can add different or more beans, like kidney or white beans but rinse first.
♨️What is Chicken Tortilla Soup?
It is a spicy chicken broth with tender chicken, tomatoes, beans, and other veggies like corn, celery, and onion. Usually served with a variety of nacho toppings and some tortilla strips.
All this makes a healthy, low-fat soup loaded with vegetables and meat that will warm you on a cold day.
Sure, trim the raw chicken breast or thighs. If they are very thick, cut them in half. Add them to the crock pot with all the other ingredients.
About one hour before the end of cooking, take the chicken out of the crock pot, shred chicken with forks, and place it back in the crock pot, then finish cooking.
Yes. You can cut down the cooking time some. At 3 hours, add your pre-cooked chicken. Cook for an hour to add the great taste, and you are done.
There are options.
1) If you know that you want a thicker soup, use less chicken broth. Use half and add some at the end if needed.
2) Add 2-3 tablespoons of cornstarch to ¼ cup of cold water and stir until smooth to make a slurry. Mix into the crock pot about 1 hour before done cooking. You can repeat it in 30 minutes if needed.
3) Some recommend adding bits of tortilla chips or tortillas, but I have not tested this—it should work.
The RoTel provides a lot of spicing here. The heat level is about 3/10. RoTel comes in hotter versions if you want more heat, and there is an option for some cayenne pepper or add minced jalapeno pepper.
To make it milder, replace the RoTel with a can of diced tomatoes but drain first. The Rotel also has green chilis; you may want to add a small can to retain that taste.
Absolutely. It is low-fat, low-calorie, and low-sodium. It is high in good quality protein and packed with vegetables.
Pick low-sodium products and rinse beans to keep the low salt status. Also, be careful with the added toppings and side dishes.
🍽️Serving and storage of leftovers
Serve topped with toasted tortilla strips and other nacho toppings like cheese, avocados, cilantro, jalapenos, and sour cream. Use what you love.
I have included instructions to make your own tortilla strips, but you can usually buy them premade in the salad dressing area at the supermarket.
Side dishes are usually minimal since the soup is a fairly complete meal but try some cornbread, cornmeal biscuits, or chips and salsa.
Storage and reheating of leftover soup
Good in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Good sealed well in the freezer for 3-4 months.
To reheat, thaw in the refrigerator overnight if frozen, then reheat on the stovetop over medium heat.
This recipe is listed in these categories. See them for more similar recipes.
🖼️Step-by-Step Photo Instructions
I suggest skinless boneless chicken breast, but thighs would be fine.
Chop one medium onion and a couple of celery ribs.
Trim 2 medium-sized skinless boneless chicken breasts. Leave them whole to shred later, or you may cut them into bite-size pieces. If leaving whole but very large, cut in half to aid cooking.
In a 4-quart or bigger crock pot, add veggies, one 10 oz can RoTel (Diced Tomatoes with Green Chilies), one 14 oz can diced tomatoes, 1 cup frozen corn, one 14.5 oz can black beans rinsed, 2 cloves crushed garlic, two 14 oz cans lower-sodium chicken broth, 1 teaspoon cumin, 1 teaspoon chili powder, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon pepper, and ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional).
Add the prepared chicken to the pot. If whole, remove them with one hour left in cooking, and shred, replace into the crock pot.
Cook for 5-6 hours on low until the chicken is done and the vegetables are tender.
Optional—Make your tortilla strips.5-6
While the soup is cooking, make some tortilla strips for topping — Preheat oven to 375°. Thinly slice up 3-4 flour tortillas.
Spread the tortilla strips in a baking pan with a heavy coat of PAM cooking spray. Give the strips a light spray of PAM, and bake until golden brown. It takes about 10-15 minutes. This will vary some by your tortillas and the oven, so watch it.
Crock Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup
- 2 skinless boneless chicken breasts - or thighs
- 1 onion - medium
- 2 ribs celery
- 10 oz RoTel - Diced tomatoes with Green Chilies
- 14 oz diced tomatoes
- 1 cup frozen corn - or 1 can corn drained. White corn preferred.
- 14 oz black beans - rinsed and drained
- 2 cloves garlic - crushed
- 28 oz lower sodium chicken broth
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon salt - to taste
- ½ teaspoon pepper - to taste
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper - optional
- Chop one medium onion and a couple of celery ribs.
- Trim 2 medium-sized skinless boneless chicken breasts. Leave them whole to shred later, or you may cut them into bite-size pieces. If leaving whole but very large, cut in half to aid cooking.
- In a 4-quart or bigger crock pot, add veggies, one 10 oz can RoTel (Diced Tomatoes with Green Chilies), one 14 oz can diced tomatoes, 1 cup frozen corn, one 14.5 oz can black beans rinsed, 2 cloves crushed garlic, two 14 oz cans lower-sodium chicken broth, 1 teaspoon cumin, 1 teaspoon chili powder, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon pepper, and ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional).
- Add the prepared chicken to the pot. If whole, remove them with one hour left in cooking, and shred, replace into the crock pot.
- Cook for 5-6 hours on low until the chicken is cooked and the veggies are tender.
Optional—Make your tortilla strips.
- While the soup is cooking, make some tortilla strips for topping — Preheat oven to 375°. Thinly slice up 3-4 flour tortillas.
- Spread the tortilla strips in a baking pan with a heavy coat of PAM cooking spray. Give the strips a light spray of PAM, and bake until golden brown. It takes about 10-15 minutes. This will vary some by your tortillas and the oven, so watch it.
Your Own Private Notes
- To use whole chicken breasts, remove them from the crock pot and shred them with one hour left in cooking. Then put the chicken back into the cooker for the final hour.
- Chicken breasts shred much better at 165°.
- You may use chicken thighs.
- This needs a 4-quart or larger crock pot. A half recipe will fit in a 3 quart or larger cooker.
- You can use pre-cooked chicken. Decrease the cooking time to 4 hours on low and add the pre-cooked chicken for the last hour.
- A chopped-up green or red bell pepper would be a nice addition.
- If you want a thicker soup, skip a can of broth at the start. You can add some back in near the end.
- We prefer frozen white corn for this recipe.
- If you don’t want the RoTel, use a can of drained diced tomatoes.
- If you want more heat, use a hotter Rotel, a bit of cayenne pepper, or a finely minced jalapeno.
- A serving is about 1 ½ cups.
- It is generally topped with toasted tortilla strips along with other nacho toppings like cheese, avocados, jalapenos, and sour cream. Use what you love.
- Good in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Good sealed well in the freezer for 3-4 months.
To adjust the recipe size:
You may adjust the number of servings in this recipe card under servings. This does the math for the ingredients for you. BUT it does NOT adjust the text of the instructions. So you need to do that yourself.
© 101 Cooking for Two, LLC. All content and photographs are copyright protected by us or our vendors. While we appreciate your sharing our recipes, please realize copying, pasting, or duplicating full recipes to any social media, website, or electronic/printed media is strictly prohibited and a violation of our copyrights.
Editor's Note: Originally Published January 11, 2014. Updated with expanded options, refreshed photos, and a table of contents to help navigation.
This site has tons of great recipes that I make over and over, but this one won't be one of those. The flavor was weird to me. Also, the amount of onion is way too much for this recipe. It overwhelms the dish. The spices need tweaking, but I don't have any suggestions on that. I'll just go back to all of the wonderful recipes on this site and avoid this one in the future. You may like this one though. Maybe it's just me.
Can I add some rice to this soup, and if so when should that be done? Not a lot, but just a little ...
Thanks. Really enjoy your recipes. They are often flexible enuf to go in a slightly different direction, if I wanted to.
Dan Mikesell AKA DrDan
The rice in not something I generally do but I will give it an 80% guess. While long grain rice usually take 15-20 minutes in boiling wate to cook but when you add it, it will cool the crock pot slightly and it wasn't boiling anyway so most likely 20-25 minutes but check it at about 15 minutes and every 5 minutes until done... again just an educated guess.
Report back if you try it.
Absolutely perfect recipe.
Dear Dr. Dan,
How long do you think if cooked on the stove top?
Love your recipes,
Dan Mikesell AKA DrDan
I have no exact answer for you but probably about one hour with a bit of modification.
You need to get the onion and celery cooked first. A Dutch oven with a bit of oil over medium-high heat. Maybe about 8-10 minutes until tender and clearing. Then add everything and bring it to a simmer and cover.
The huge variable will be the chicken. If precooked, you can just simmer for 15-20 minutes, and you are done. If raw, the cooking time will vary by size and thickness of the chicken you choose. It will be about 30-40 minutes (a total guess) if you use the chunks I used in this recipe. You can use whole breasts and cook them, pull them out when they reach 165 and shred, just lots of options, just be sure the chicken reaches 165 if you use raw chicken.
Remember soup tastes better if simmered longer.
So my somewhat educated guess (based on a similar recipe that never got published and I lost somewhere years ago) is the total time of about an hour.
If you do it, please comment back here for others.
Do you add water to this?
Mine looks more like a thick stew after adding all ingredients. Thanks.
Dan Mikesell AKA DrDan
Welcome to the blog.
This is not a really brothy soup. Remember that as it cooks, the chicken and veggies will release some fluid. So if you are nearing the end of cooking and want thinner, add more broth.
Hope that helps.
I would to say I like your recipes.
I have a picky eater. Can I use tomato sauce instead of tomatoes? My daughter will eat anything tomatoy as long as there is no tomato chunks in it.i don't know there is about tomato chunks that she just will not eat.
Dan Mikesell AKA DrDan
I would say yes, it should be fine, but have never done it. You will also not want the RoTel due to the texture and the spicing.
I suggest doing your initial cooking as a half recipe using the sauce to replace the diced tomatoes and rotel.