When we’re craving a quick and easy soup, we love making this slow cooker chicken tortilla soup. It’s so satisfying to just throw ingredients into a crock pot and walk away. When we return in a few hours, we have a yummy and restaurant style soup ready to devour. It’s hard to not love serving a crowd by making this crock pot chicken tortilla soup.

slow cooker chicken tortilla soup with ladle

Simple and Flavorful Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup

We love flavor and this soup satisfies in so many ways. Not only is it a great soup to make for a crowd, this popular chicken tortilla soup in the slow cooker is loaded with flavor. You can always add as much as you want and honestly, it only gets better with more ingredients. The best part is adding a handful of crushed tortillas in it instead of the traditional soup crackers. The crunchy, salty bites of tortillas with all the healthy ingredients makes the broth extra amazing.

bowl of slow cooker chicken tortilla soup

Video: Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe

Other Ingredients to add to this crock pot chicken tortilla soup

There’s so many delicious ingredients to add to this big bowl of Mexican chicken soup. We have our simple favorites, but it you don’t need to stick by our list. Customize your flavors and textures.

  • Can of drained beans. Add some extra protein with a drained can of black peans, pinto beans or garbanzo beans. These beans add a nice bite and texture. Sure, there’s extra calories in the beans but if you can spare the calories the beans are worth it.
  • Chopped bell peppers add a nice flavor.
  • Add a few chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. These are spicy! So maybe start with 1 and add more later if you want the extra heat. But the smoky flavors of these smoked chipotle peppers are so tasty and flavorful.
  • For a different chili flavor, use canned hatch chiles.
  • Slices of jalapeno are a nice addition to the heat. Yes, you would add a few slices of fresh jalapeno into the broth as it cooks.
  • Another way to adjust the heat and flavor level is to add a squirt or two of hot sauce. Tapatio, Cholula (they have so many great flavors, but the Chipotle is our favorite), or even Sriracha. Yeah, it’s an Asian sauce but it’s full of flavor and umami, which takes this soup to another level.
  • For most savory flavor in the broth, use boneless skinless chicken thighs

Best Tortilla Strips for the soup

We like to use traditional tortilla chips that are crispy, fresh and flavorful. From blue corn chips to flavored chips and strips, there’s lots of yummy options out there. Topping the soup with these tortilla chips or strips is the best part!

bowl of slow cooker chicken tortilla soup

Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup

Check the chicken to make sure it’s cooked to your preference. Chicken thighs cook quicker than chicken breast. And if you’re using chicken breast, make sure it has rib meat removed. Extra large chicken breasts will take about another hour to cook tender.
5 from 2 votes


Soup Ingredients:

  • 1 pound (454 g) uncooked chicken (boneless skinless chicken thighs or breasts)
  • 1/2 medium onion , chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic , minced
  • 1 ear fresh corn , shucked , or 14 oz. canned whole kernel corn (or 1 cup of frozen corn)
  • 3 cups (710 ml) chicken broth
  • 14.5 ounces (411 g) diced or crushed tomatoes
  • 7 ounces (200 g) chopped green chiles (one small can or about 3/4 cup)
  • 2 teaspoons (10 ml) chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons (10 ml) salt (or more to taste after)
  • 2 teaspoons (10 ml) Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons (7.5 ml) ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 ml) smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 ml) black pepper

Topping Ingredients & Suggestions:

  • slightly crushed tortilla chips or tortilla strips
  • fresh lime wedges
  • sliced green onions (optional)
  • fresh minced cilantro (optional)
  • fresh chopped jalapeños (optional)
  • finely sliced cabbage (optional)
  • cheese (optional)
  • hot sauce (optional)
  • sour cream or crema Mexicana (optional)



  • Combine all the soup ingredients in the slow cooker (chicken, onion, garlic, corn, chicken broth, diced or crushed tomatoes, green chiles, chili powder, salt, Worcestershire sauce, cumin, smoked paprika, and black pepper). Gently stir to evenly distribute the ingredients.
    Soup ingredients in slow cooker
  • Cover the soup and cook in the slow cooker on High for 4-5 hours or about 6-7 hours on Low.
    Slow cooker covered with lid
  • Check the chicken and see if it is tender to your liking. If you want it softer, continue to cook until it reaches your preferred tenderness.
    Lifting chicken out of slow cooker
  • Take the chicken out of the slow cooker and cut into cubes or shred with a couple of forks (if you want a shredded chicken texture, you can also shred the chicken in the slow cooker-you don’t have to take it out).
    Cutting the chicken into bite sized pieces
  • Put the cubed or shredded chicken back into the soup in the slow cooker. Stir to distribute the chicken then ladle into soup bowls. Taste the soup for seasoning & add additional salt or other seasonings if desired.
    Using tongs to place chicken back into slow cooker
  • Top the soup with the crushed tortillas or tortilla strips and your favorite toppings. Squeeze some fresh lime juice on top and enjoy!
    Ladling soup out of slow cooker


Nutrition Information per Serving

Calories: 167kcal, Carbohydrates: 13g, Protein: 20g, Fat: 5g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Trans Fat: 0.01g, Cholesterol: 55mg, Sodium: 1592mg, Potassium: 649mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 5g, Vitamin A: 578IU, Vitamin C: 21mg, Calcium: 94mg, Iron: 2mg

Freezing and storing leftover soup

If you can eat this soup within 3 days, then just store it in the fridge. Try to eat it sooner than later because the flavors are so great when it’s fresh. This soup freezes great too and all you need is a freezer safe bowl or container with a lid. You can freeze it for up to 2-3 months. But don’t wait too long after that because the flavors of this slow cooker chicken tortilla soup will get dull and flat.

bowl of slow cooker chicken tortilla soup

History of chicken tortilla soup

This flavorful soup has an interesting story as it’s name was originally “sopas azteca” or soup of the aztecs. The blend of ancient and traditional flavors has helped this soup evolve to it’s popularity today. The broth is as rich as it’s history. Here’s a great article on the history of chicken tortilla soup.