This crock pot chicken enchilada soup is a healthier version of your favorite enchiladas recipe in soup form and with a little help from your crock pot. Are you ready to enjoy this rich and savory take on chicken enchiladas completely guilt-free?
Believe it or not, one of the most popular posts on this here blog is my Shredded Chicken Enchiladas post from way back in the day when I didn’t really follow a clean eating lifestyle. In fact, the only real lifestyle I followed at that time was a tasty food kinda lifestyle.
It wasn’t until a couple years ago, in fact, that Dustin and I started to switch from making our food tasty into making our food tasty AND healthy.
Shockingly, this wasn’t as hard as you might think. <—You can read more on how to do that here.
IS CROCK POT CHICKEN ENCHILADA SOUP HEALTHY?
As much as I love my Shredded Chicken Enchiladas this crock pot chicken enchilada soup recipe is definitely the healthier, but an equally tasty option. Also, you don’t need anything but your slow cooker to prepare it so it’s super mess-free! Follow my tips to enjoy this scrumptious crock pot chicken enchilada soup completely guilt-free:
- Make this soup in the crock pot to release as much flavor as possible while it cooks throughout the day
- Use chicken breast in addition to chicken thighs (to reduce the saturated fat from the thighs)
- Always choose the low sodium option, of both the chicken stock and the canned beans to keep that sodium intake in check
- Going for fresh veggies (in this case tomatoes) over the canned version will also help you stay in that sodium safe zone
- Don’t go overboard with the toppings on your crock pot chicken enchilada soup, especially the shredded jack cheese
It’s funny though (and when I say “funny,” I kinda also mean weird and annoying, to a degree) that some of the most popular recipes on the blog are from waaaaay back when we didn’t focus on healthy eating. Now, that’s not to say that the blog hasn’t had it’s share of healthy, clean-eating recipes go viral, too. In fact, some posts like my Parmesan Zucchini Spears and Banana Ice Cream have been very popular…
Alas, if you go back to the beginnings of this blog, you’ll certainly find bad photographs (sigh) of refined, yet tasty foods.
Over the past couple years, I’ve tried to update a lot of the posts from their former unhealthy-ish form into cleaner recipes, but I haven’t been able to get to all of them. I also want to share new, fun recipes so it’s a give and take of fixing the old with brining in more new, if that makes any sense. #bloggingtroubles
That all being said, these Shredded Chicken Enchiladas are pretty darn great and not a super bad choice if you’re looking for a yummy weeknight dinner 🙂
One way I like to enjoy my healthy eating lifestyle is to make new creative ways to enjoy the flavors of less-than-healthy foods.
Take this crock pot chicken enchilada soup, for example. I take all the yumminess of green chile chicken enchiladas and turn it into a healthy soup. That way, you get the shredded chicken, zesty salsa verde, fresh lime and cilantro, and all the satisfying denseness of an enchilada, without all the guilt-inducing cheese and high-carb tortillas.
Pretty sweet, right?
This technique also works great with protein shakes (like my Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Protein Shake or Pumpkin Cheesecake Smoothie), energy balls (like my Chocolate Brownie Energy Balls), and Ice creams (like my Chocolate Banana Ice Cream, among others) to get that coveted flavor and texture fix without the guilt of eating highly refined and fattening foods.
WHAT TYPE OF CHICKEN TO USE IN CROCK POT CHICKEN ENCHILADA SOUP
While you can definitely use any part of the chicken you have on hand for this chicken enchilada soup recipe, I’ve found that the combination of chicken thighs and breasts brings the best of both worlds. By cooking the chicken breasts in the slow cooker they stay tender and juicy and the chicken thighs give them that extra punch of flavor making this crock pot chicken enchilada soup a great dish to incorporate in your healthy lifestyle.
Plus – is there anything better than a satisfying, hot bowl of deliciousness straight from the slow cooker? I mean — we’re looking at the following with this recipe: (1) it’s a crock pot recipe so that means you hardly had to do anything but wait, (2) it’s a filling bowl of soup <— YUM, and (3) chicken enchiladas!!
Once you’re on the crock pot bandwagon, I’ve got some other yummy soups on the blog, all healthy, that you can make with a slow cooker, too!
BTW this crock pot chicken enchilada soup recipe also uses my 10 Minute Salsa Verde recipe as the yummy green chile base. It takes just 10 minutes (seriously) to make and adds so much flavor to the soup.
Crock Pot Chicken Enchilada Soup
HOW TO FREEZE CROCK POT CHICKEN ENCHILADA SOUP
I love this recipe so much that I intentionally make loads of this chicken enchilada soup so I can enjoy it throughout the week. The soup freezes beautifully and it will just take you a couple of minutes to reheat it. Follow my tips on freezing the crock pot chicken enchilada soup and you’ll have a warm and filling dinner ready in no time!
- First, allow the crock pot chicken enchilada soup to cool completely. You may want to transfer to a large bowl and place in the refrigerator to cool.
- Freeze in either gallon– or quart-sized freezer bags or freezer safe containers for easy thawing and storage.
- Leave enough space at the top of the bag to allow for expansion during freezing. Squeeze as much air as possible out of the top of the bag and seal securely.
- Place the soup-filled freezer bags in the freezer, in a single, flat layer (using a rimmed baking sheet is helpful). Allow to freeze completely. Then, stack them on top of each other or standing side by side.
- Thaw bags of frozen chicken enchilada soup in the refrigerator overnight.
Here’s to yummy soups, easy crock pot recipes, and staying warm over the next 6 weeks of winter!
Make the healthier version of your favorite comfort food in soup form and with a little help from your crock pot. Are you ready to enjoy this rich and savory take on chicken enchiladas completely guilt-free with this crock pot chicken enchilada soup?
- 2 cups salsa verde (see my easy recipe)
- 1 can white beans, low sodium, drained and rinsed
- 1 can black beans, low sodium, drained and rinsed
- 1/2 lb boneless skinless chicken thighs
- 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 2 cups fresh tomatoes, (approx. 2 large tomatoes), diced
- 4 tsp chili powder
- 1 tbsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
- 3 tbsp fresh cilantro
- 2 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 1 cup plain greek yogurt
- Garnish: fresh lime optional, cilantro, shredded jack cheese
Now, cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours or on high for 3-4 hours, or until the chicken is tender and easily shreds.
Remove the chicken from the crockpot and set aside.
Add in plain greek yogurt into the crockpot and stir to combine.
Cover and cook on high for another 15-20 minutes, or until the yogurt melts completely and is easily stirred into the soup.
Shred the chicken with 2 forks and then add back into the soup.
To serve, top with a dollop of greek yogurt, shredded jack cheese, and extra cilantro and don’t forget the lime to squeeze on top.
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