Put a new spin on Taco Tuesday with this easy chicken taco soup! With shredded chicken, hearty beans, plenty of veggies, and bold Tex-Mex flavors, you’re going to love this simple slow cooker recipe.
Whenever I can make dinner in my crockpot, I am here for it. Whether it’s Crockpot Sweet Potato & Black Bean Quinoa Chili or Slow Cooker Coconut Quinoa Curry, I love being able to start dinner in the morning and dig in at the end of the day. This chicken taco soup is my current go-to when I want something hearty, satisfying, and flavorful, with practically no effort.
As you’ve probably guessed, chicken taco soup has all the flavor of tacos, but it's served up in a bowl instead of tortillas. In addition to the chicken, I add beans (two varieties!), sweet corn, and lots of vegetables, which makes for a supremely satisfying meal.
And just like tacos, you can add your favorite toppings here and make it your own!
Why You’ll Love This Chicken Taco Soup Recipe
This chicken taco soup is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser! Here's why.
- Zippy Tex-Mex flavors. There’s a reason everyone looks forward to Taco Tuesday! Those bold, Mexican-inspired flavors are impossible to resist. Since this chicken taco soup is cooked in a crockpot, the flavors have lots of time to develop.
- Quick and easy. Okay, so you have to wait for the slow cooker to work its magic before you can eat. But in terms of hands-on time, this recipe comes together with minimal effort. You'll need to sauté the aromatics first, but it’s totally worth it—no crunchy onions in your soup!
- Customizable. You can easily customize this recipe to suit your own tastes. Add extra vegetables, hotter peppers for more of a kick, or leave out the beans and corn for a lower carb version.
What You’ll Need
Here are all of the ingredients you’ll need when making this chicken taco soup. Make sure to check out the recipe card at the bottom of the page to see the exact quantities for each ingredient.
- Onion – Yellow or white are both fine here.
- Garlic – I use 4 cloves, which means there’s a lot of garlic flavor in this recipe.
- Olive oil
- Chicken breasts – Alternatively, if you have leftover roasted, grilled, or baked chicken, you can shred it and add it at the end of the cooking time.
- Black beans
- Pinto beans
- Corn – Use canned, frozen, or fresh.
- Tomato sauce
- Green bell peppers – Green bell peppers have a little more bite than other varieties; for a milder, sweeter pepper, choose red, orange, or yellow.
- Jalapeño peppers – Scrape out the seeds and ribs to control the heat level.
- Chicken broth
- Taco seasoning – Use store-bought or homemade taco seasoning.
Can You Substitute Chicken Thighs for Breasts in a Slow Cooker?
Yes, you can substitute chicken thighs for breasts in a slow cooker if that’s what you prefer or have on hand. Use boneless, skinless chicken thighs.
How to Make Chicken Taco Soup
If you want to get a head start on this recipe (or don’t want to cook in the morning!), sauté the onion and garlic the night before.
- Sweat the aromatics. Sauté the garlic and onion with a tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet set over medium heat. You only need to cook them until the onion is softened and translucent.
- Cook. Add the onions and garlic to the slow cooker with all the other ingredients. Cook on high for 5 hours or on low for 8 hours.
- Shred the chicken. Remove the chicken breasts from the soup and either shred them or break them into chunks.
- Finish. Add the chicken back to the pot and season to taste before serving.
Tips for Success
These hints and tips will help you make sure your slow cooker chicken taco soup turns out perfect:
- Don’t skip the sautéing. If you’ve ever made slow cooker soup and noticed that the onions are still a little bit crunchy even after 8 hours of cooking, you’ll appreciate this added step.
- Be careful with adding salt. Between the taco seasoning and broth, this chicken taco soup will be pretty well-seasoned from the get-go. Don’t add more salt at the end until you give the soup a taste.
- Use gloves when handling the jalapeños. Some jalapeños are spicier than others and if you get some that are extra hot, you’ll be glad you wore gloves. The oil from hot peppers is super hard to wash off!
Don’t be afraid to put your own spin on this recipe! Or try some of these ideas:
- For another layer of flavor, char poblano peppers under the broiler, peel them, and add those to the soup instead of the jalapeños.
- If you’re looking for a vegetarian taco soup, substitute Vegan Sofritas or tempeh for the chicken; add it at the end of the cooking time.
- Add diced zucchini or yellow squash to up the veggie factor in this chicken taco soup.
The best part about having chicken taco soup for dinner is adding garnishes! Here are some of my favorites:
- Lime wedges
- Avocado slices
- Shredded cheese
- Sour cream
- Sliced fresh or pickled jalapeños
- Pickled red onions
- Crispy tortilla strips
How to Store Leftovers
Store chicken taco soup in the refrigerator for up to 4 days in an airtight container. Reheat it on the stovetop or in the microwave until it’s warmed through.
Can I Freeze This Recipe?
Yes, you can freeze this chicken taco soup recipe. Transfer the soup to an airtight container or freezer bag and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw it in the refrigerator and then reheat it according to the instructions above.
More Healthy Soup Recipes
- Vegan Cream of Broccoli Soup
- Tuscan Kale White Bean Soup
- Creamy Mushroom & Wild Rice Soup
- Roasted Butternut Squash Soup Recipe
- Instant Pot Vegan Wild Rice Soup
Chicken Taco Soup
- 1 onion chopped
- 4 garlic cloves chopped
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 chicken breasts (about 550g, 18 ounces)
- 1 14-ounce can black beans drained
- 1 14-ounce can pinto beans drained
- 1 14-ounce can corn drained or 1 cup frozen
- 1 14-ounce can tomato sauce
- 2 green bell peppers diced
- 2 jalapeno peppers diced
- 2 ½ cups chicken broth (20 ounces)
- 2 tablespoons taco seasoning
- Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a pan, add chopped garlic and onion. Saute on medium heat for 2 minutes, until translucent.
- Combine all ingredients in a slow cooker. Stir and cook on high for 5 hours (or 8 hours on low.)
- Remove chicken breasts from the soup. Using 2 forks, break it up into chunks and return to the pot.
- Taste and add more salt if needed.