Crockpot Salsa Chicken Recipe

This Crockpot Salsa Chicken is quick, healthy, and packed with fall apart tender chicken! This easy weeknight dinner only uses 5 ingredients and has fewer than 200 calories per serving.

Bowl of crockpot salsa chicken held

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    <li class="nav-heading">General</li><li><a class="" href="#ingredients">Ingredients</a></li><li><a class="" href="#how_to_make">How to make</a></li><li><a class="" href="#recipe">Get the recipe</a></li><li class="nav-heading">Frequently Asked Questions</li><li><a class="" href="#how_to_shred_chicken">How to shred chicken</a></li><li><a class="" href="#can_i_use_frozen_chicken">Can I use frozen chicken?</a></li><li><a class="" href="#can_i_use_chicken_thighs">Can I use chicken thighs?</a></li><li><a class="" href="#making_without_a_crockpot">Making without a crockpot</a></li><li><a class="" href="#pairing_suggestions">Pairing suggestions</a></li><li><a class="" href="#how_to_store">How to store</a></li><li><a class="" href="#how_to_reheat">How to reheat</a></li><li><a class="" href="#nutrition_info">Nutrition information</a></li></ul></div>

This crockpot salsa chicken recipe is my go-to when I don’t know what to make for dinner! What’s so great about it, you ask? Well, it’s…

Let’s make some crockpot salsa chicken already!


Only 5 ingredients to make a flavor packed dinner that even the kids will love!

  • Chicken Breast – I use boneless, skinless chicken breasts, because that’s what I always have on hand. Feel free to use boneless, skinless chicken thighs for even juicier chicken!
  • Salsa – use your favorite store-bought salsa! Use mild for the kids or spice it up if you like your food spicy!
  • Chipotle Hot Sauce – adds a smoky flavor with a little heat. Feel free to omit.
  • Taco Seasoning –  use store-bought taco seasoning packets or make this homemade taco seasoning!
  • Water – makes the chicken extra moist without overpowering the flavor of the salsa and taco seasoning.
Pro tip
If you’re using homemade taco seasoning, use about 2-3 tablespoons to substitute for the packet.

How to make

Place ingredients into crockpot, cook, shred, and serve!

  1. Place all of your ingredients into a greased crockpot.
  2. Stir, cover, and cook on HIGH for 4 hours or LOW for 8 hours.
  3. Shred the chicken.
  4. Serve and enjoy!
Pro tip
Want to be extra cautious? When the chicken is done cooking, use a meat thermometer to ensure that the chicken has reached a minimum internal temperature of 165 degrees F.

Bowl of salsa chicken above

How to shred chicken

I find the easiest way to shred the cooked chicken is to use two forks.

Simply hold one fork in each hand then use each them both to pull the chicken apart. You can also hold the chicken down with one fork and use the other to pull the shreds off.

Chicken shreds best when it’s warm so make sure you do it as soon as possible after your chicken is done cooking!

Pro tip
Hate shredding chicken? Place chicken into your stand-mixer with the flat beater attachment. Turn the mixer on low for about 30 seconds, or until shredded.

Can this be made with frozen chicken?

Technically you’re not supposed to cook frozen meats in your crockpot because the meat might not reach a safe internal temperature before it’s contaminated by bacteria.

I’ve heard mixed reviews on this so I recommend using fresh/thawed chicken breasts, but you’ll have to decide for yourself if you’re willing to take the risk.

Can this be made with chicken thighs?

You can absolutely use chicken thighs instead of breasts for this salsa chicken. I recommend using boneless, skinless chicken thighs. Chicken thighs are often cheaper and juicier than chicken breasts, so that’s a double win!

The cook time should stay the same but make sure you check that your meat has reached an internal temperature of 165 degrees F before serving!

Can this be made without a crockpot?

No crockpot? No problem!

  • Preheat oven to 450 degrees F and line a rimmed baking sheet with a silicone baking mat.
  • Drizzle the chicken breasts with olive oil.
  • Evenly coat the breasts with the taco seasoning.
  • Bake 15-20 minutes, or until the chicken has cooked through.
  • Shred the chicken in a large bowl, then stir in the hot sauce and salsa. Add water, if necessary.

(*Not tested.)

What to serve with crockpot salsa chicken

I love to serve this crockpot salsa chicken over rice with a side of black beans, guacamole, queso, and pico de gallo!

You can also add this salsa chicken to SO many different recipes. Here are some of my all-time FAVORITES:

It’s also delicious made into tacos or stuffed into enchiladas!

Bowl of salsa chicken side

How to store

This crockpot salsa chicken can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days or in the freezer for 2-3 months.

If you’re storing it in the freezer, be sure to let it thaw in the fridge for several hours before reheating.

How to reheat crockpot salsa chicken

This salsa chicken can be reheated 3 different ways:

  1. Oven – place in an oven-safe dish, cover with foil, and bake at 425 degrees F for 20 minutes or until the internal temperature is 165ºF.
  2. Microwave – place in microwave-safe container, cover with a damp paper towel, and microwave for 1 minute at a time until warm.
  3. Stovetop – melt butter or heat oil in a pan then add the chicken and heat until it’s reached a temperature of 165ºF.
Pro tip
Add a little extra salsa or chicken broth to prevent the chicken from drying out when reheating!

– Jennifer

Bowl of crockpot salsa chicken


Crockpot Salsa Chicken

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This Crockpot Salsa Chicken is quick, healthy, and packed with fall apart tender chicken! This easy weeknight dinner only uses 5 ingredients and has fewer than 200 calories per serving.
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword crockpot, salsa, shredded chicken
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 10 minutes
Servings 4 people
Calories 179kcal



  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 (16 oz) jar salsa I like Pace Thick & Chunky Salsa
  • 2 tablespoons Tabasco Chipotle Sauce more or less to taste
  • 1 (1.25 oz) packet taco seasoning
  • 1/4 cup water


  • Grease crockpot with cooking spray.
  • Place chicken breasts, salsa, Tabasco, taco seasoning, and water into crockpot.
  • Stir to combine.
  • Cover and cook on HIGH for 4 hours or LOW for 8 hours.
  • Shred chicken with two forks.
  • Taste and re-season, if necessary, and serve*!


*See post for serving suggestions!


Calories: 179kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 1818mg | Potassium: 752mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 1410IU | Vitamin C: 12.4mg | Calcium: 40mg | Iron: 1.5mg

This post was originally published October 1, 2018 and has been updated to provide more detailed content.

The post Crockpot Salsa Chicken Recipe appeared first on Show Me the Yummy.

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