The Kitchn

Enchilada soup is easy in a slow cooker

thekitchn.comOctober 1, 2013 

Chicken enchilada soup is a thicker, richer cousin of chicken tortilla soup. It’s almost as if you are eating an actual enchilada in a bowl with a spoon.

This soup requires very little prep work for the amount of flavor it yields. I started with the ingredients of my favorite red enchilada sauce as the base. I tossed the sauce into my slow cooker along with corn, beans and chicken thighs, and then left it overnight for the slow cooker to work its magic.

By morning, I had a luscious soup that needed little more than salt and pepper to give it a boost. If you feel like gilding the lily, a splash of heavy cream and a handful of cheddar take it over the top.

I knew the recipe was a keeper when my fiance asked if we could keep a batch in the refrigerator at all times, so he could eat it every day. In my house, that’s the sign of a real winner. This is a dish to return to all fall and winter.

Nealey Dozier is a writer for, a website for food and home cooking.

Slow Cooker Chicken Enchilada Soup Neutral cooking oil, such as canola or safflower 1 medium onion, chopped 1 large jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped 3 cloves garlic, minced 2 tablespoons Mexican-style chile powder 1 tablespoon ground cumin 1 tablespoon sugar 2 ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped 1 (15-ounce) can tomato sauce 2 cups chicken stock, plus more if needed 1 (15-ounce) can yellow corn, drained 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained 2 to 3 pounds chicken thighs, skins removed (see notes) Heavy cream, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper to taste For serving: Grated cheddar, sour cream, tortilla chips and cilantro

HEAT a few tablespoons of oil in a large Dutch oven or skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and jalapeno and cook until softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the garlic, chili powder, cumin and sugar, and stir until fragrant, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, tomato sauce and stock. Season with salt and pepper. Bring to a gentle boil, then transfer to the bowl of a slow cooker.

ADD the corn, beans, and chicken thighs to the slow cooker. Cover and set on low for 6 to 7 hours (or high for 4 hours). Shred the cooked chicken using two forks (if using bone-in thighs, remove the chicken to shred; discard bones and return meat to the soup). Stir in a splash of heavy cream if desired. Season with additional salt, pepper and cayenne to taste.

SERVE with cheddar cheese, sour cream, tortilla chips and cilantro.

NOTES: Use bone-in or boneless, skinless chicken thighs. This recipe can be doubled and frozen for another time. To thaw, transfer to refrigerator overnight or set bag in a stockpot of warm water. Reheat in a saucepan over medium-low heat; season to taste.

Yield: 6 servings.

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