Food

Easy Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe (Crock Pot Method)

at a glance
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Servings 8 Servings
5 from 1 vote

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This Easy Slow Cooker Tortilla Soup has big flavor and requires little effort. Make it your own with a variety of toppings and freshly pan-fried crispy tortilla strips!

easy slow cooker tortilla soup

Crockpot Tortilla Soup Recipe

This slow cooker tortilla soup is a true dinner winner! During these warmer months, I OFTEN find myself craving tortilla soup. In fact, I’ve been known to order bowl after bowl of it at our favorite San Antonio Tex-Mex restaurants during the cooler months. While the salty chicken broth (with a touch of delicious lime) is incredibly soothing/satisfying, tortilla soup is all about the toppings. Years ago, before I realized that I could truly personalize Paleo, I would only make/order it sans tortillas, sour cream, and cheese. Since then, I’ve found that I tolerate the occasional high-quality dairy well! So, I happily add on a dollop of sour cream and the occasional sprinkle of cheese. I’m also a big fan of THESE grain-free tortillas. To make crunchy tortilla strips, I just cut them into pieces and fried them in a pan with a bit of butter until they were crispy.

Why do they call it Chicken Tortilla Soup?

Good question! The reason this soup is referred to as “chicken tortilla soup” is because chicken is the protein included in the soup, and it’s always topped with crispy tortilla strips — makes sense!

Is Chicken Tortilla Soup good for you?

I think so! If you can tolerate the ingredients, it’s an excellent healthy addition to your cool-weather dinner rotation.

Tortilla Soup Crock Pot Ingredients

  • 3 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs
  • 1 ½ cups of salsa
  • 2 quarts of chicken broth
  • ½ cup of lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons of salt
  • ½ teaspoon of black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons of chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin
  • 2 corn or grain-free tortillas, for garnish
  • 3 tablespoons of butter, to fry the tortilla strips
  • 1 avocado, diced, for garnish
  • 1 fresh jalapeno, thinly sliced, for garnish
  • Cilantro, roughly chopped, for garnish
  • Sour cream, if desired
  • Shredded cheese, if desired

How to Make Chicken Tortilla Soup (Crock Pot Recipe)

  1. Add ingredients to the slow cooker + cook – combine all soup ingredients in the slow cooker. Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6-8 hours.
  2. Shred the chicken – after the soup is finished cooking, remove the chicken and transfer it to a large bowl. Shred the chicken with two forks or with the paddle attachment of a stand mixer. Place the shredded chicken back into the soup. Taste the soup for seasoning and add additional salt, if desired.
  3. Fry the tortilla strips – cut the tortillas into thin strips and heat the butter in a small pan over medium-high heat. Once the butter is bubbling, add the tortilla strips. Cook 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently, until crisp.
  4. Garnish, serve, and enjoy – spoon the soup into bowls and top with tortilla strips and other desired garnishes.

Best Chicken Tortilla Soup Toppings

Top your chicken tortilla soup with any taco toppings that you love! I personally enjoy avocado, cilantro, sour cream, crispy tortilla strips, jalapenos, and a lime wedge. Shredded cheese is a delicious add-on too.

overhead view of easy slow cooker tortilla soup

Crock Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup FAQs

Q What is the difference between enchilada soup and tortilla soup?
A

While the flavor profiles are really similar, tortilla soup is typically made with a thinner broth than enchilada soup (which often includes enchilada sauce). Fun fact: our creamy chicken tortilla soup actually used to be called “enchilada soup” because of its thicker broth!

Q How do I thicken chicken tortilla soup?
A

If you want a thicker soup, you can either add more chicken (or even a can of beans!) to the soup, or you can add a thickening agent like arrowroot starch, masa, or cornstarch.

Q How long does homemade chicken tortilla soup last?
A

Stored in an airtight container, your chicken tortilla soup will stay good in the fridge for up to 5 days! Be sure to wait to top it with tortilla strips until you’re ready to enjoy.

easy slow cooker tortilla soup

If you’re looking for more easy soup and Instant Pot recipes, check out our 10 Best Crockpot Freezer Meals, to make dinner time a cinch!

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Crockpot Chicken Tortilla Soup

By: Cassy Joy Garcia
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 4 hrs
Servings: 8 Servings
This slow cooker tortilla soup is the perfect solution for busy weeknights – the whole family will love it!

Ingredients  

For the Soup:

  • 3 pounds boneless skinless chicken breast or thighs
  • 1.5 cups salsa
  • 2 quarts chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons salt to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin

For the Garnish:

  • 2 Corn or Grain-Free tortillas
  • 3 tablespoons butter ghee, or avocado oil
  • 1 avocado diced
  • 1 fresh jalapeno thinly sliced
  • Cilantro roughly chopped
  • Sour cream if desired
  • Shredded cheese if desired

Instructions

  • Combine all soup ingredients in the slow cooker. Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6-8 hours.
  • After the soup is finished cooking, remove the chicken and transfer it to a large bowl. Shred the chicken with two forks or with the paddle attachment of a stand mixer. Place the shredded chicken back into the soup. Taste soup for seasoning and add additional salt, if desired.
  • Cut the tortillas into thin strips and heat the butter in a small pan over medium-high heat. Once the butter is bubbling, add the tortilla strips. Cook 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently, until crisp.
  • Spoon soup into bowls and top with tortilla strips and other desired garnishes.

Nutrition Information

Nutrition Facts
Crockpot Chicken Tortilla Soup
Amount per Serving
Calories
341
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
13.9
g
21
%
Saturated Fat
 
2.1
g
13
%
Cholesterol
 
129.1
mg
43
%
Sodium
 
1916
mg
83
%
Carbohydrates
 
12.1
g
4
%
Fiber
 
4.1
g
17
%
Sugar
 
3.2
g
4
%
Protein
 
41.7
g
83
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Recipe Notes

  • For Paleo: use grain-free tortillas in place of the corn tortillas
  • For low-carb: omit the tortilla strips
 
  • For the Instant Pot: combine all soup ingredients in the Instant Pot. Cook on high pressure for 12 minutes.
  • For the Stovetop: combine all soup ingredients in a heavy-bottomed pot. Cook over medium/high heat for 45 minutes, or until the chicken easily shreds with a fork.
Meet the Author
Cassy Headshot

Cassy Joy Garcia

HOWDY! I’m Cassy Joy and I am just so happy you’re here. I’m the founder, Editor-in-Chief, and Nutrition Consultant here at Fed and Fit. What started as a food blog back in 2011 has evolved now into so much more.
Get to know Cassy

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Reader Interactions

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    Recipe Rating




  1. Julie says

    Julie —  12/27/2017 At 19:55

    Oh Cassy, this recipe has just won the New Years Eve award – or – i.e. what I’m eating and making for NYE – who wants to go out with a toddler when you could stay home and eat this with movies or ball-drop? Great job! Thank you for sharing!

    • Cassy says

      Cassy —  12/29/2017 At 12:32

      Haha you’re so welcome!!

  2. Cynthia says

    Cynthia —  12/28/2017 At 09:22

    I made it!!! AND I used my slow cooker all by myself (see my insta stories for details) This recipe was so easy to make and delicious to taste!!! Thanks Cassy Joy:)

    • Cassy says

      Cassy —  12/29/2017 At 12:32

      Awesome!!

  3. Annie says

    Annie —  01/11/2018 At 12:31

    Gosh DANG, this recipe was amazing! My husband ate probably 3 bowls. We also tossed the tortilla chips in some Trader Joe’s chili lime salt. It was hard to face plant in to them before the soup was ready! Thanks for another great recipe.

    • Cassy says

      Cassy —  01/17/2018 At 12:38

      I’m so glad y’all liked it!!

  4. Jenny says

    Jenny —  01/12/2018 At 17:27

    So for the instantpot– should we hit the manual button and set it to 60 minutes or the soup button? Does it matter? (Got an IP for Christmas so still getting the hang of it!) I just ask bc it seems like 60 mins is a long time for 3lbs of chicken?
    Pictures are phenomenal though! Looks so delicious!!

    • Cassy says

      Cassy —  01/17/2018 At 12:34

      You can absolutely try for less time! 60 minutes was just the magical time for me. And yes, that’s how it works. You can use both the manual or the soup button and then adjust the time.

  5. Jackie says

    Jackie —  01/21/2018 At 14:54

    This was so simple and so good. I like the idea of a simple soup and adding things after the fact. Thank you.

  6. Jen smith says

    Jen smith —  02/11/2018 At 12:53

    hi. I am looking for nutrition facts? are they available?

  7. CC says

    CC —  01/14/2019 At 12:48

    I am looking forward to trying this recipe. Is there any reason why I couldn’t cook this on ‘low’ for 8 hours (v. 4 on high?) Thanks!

  8. CC says

    CC —  01/17/2019 At 11:33

    I ended up making this in the slow cooker on low for 8 hrs and boy was it delicious. So much flavor from so few, simple ingredients! I also took the time to make the Siete tortilla crisps. We loved them and the leftovers were (surprisingly) still crisp this morning for my lunch! Thanks for this great recipe!

  9. Patricia Faza says

    Patricia Faza —  10/13/2019 At 22:17

    5 stars
    Loved it! My crew couldn’t get enough of it and it was so simple and easy to make. And my picky boyfriend had seconds! It’s because of your new cookbook, “Cook Once, Eat All Week”, that my youngest son has been making dinner for me to enjoy when I get home from work. He’s made 1-4week dinners and btw, all were de-lish. Hope you get your own cooking show. Thanks again

  10. Lori says

    Lori —  11/11/2019 At 14:43

    help with what SALSA to put in if paleo? thank you, sounds yummy and easy.

  11. Loretta says

    Loretta —  11/04/2020 At 14:27

    plain greek yogurt is usually more tolerable than sour cream……

    • Brandi Schilhab says

      Brandi Schilhab —  11/04/2020 At 15:15

      Feel free to use yogurt if that works better for you, Loretta!

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