Chicken Tortilla Soup

The BEST slow cooker chicken tortilla soup is filled with chunks of chicken, beans & corn. It is easy to make and full of flavor!

A classic and popular soup recipe – this chicken tortilla soup is always a hit! Filled with so many great ingredients and being so simple, we love to make this all year long along with our Enchilada Soup and White Chicken Chili.

Chicken tortilla soup in a bowl

THe best & easiest soup!

I’m in Soup Mode right now and taking advantage of this cool weather to try out even more soups. I mean, how can you NOT love them (especially our Chicken & Rice Soup or our Chicken Enchilada Soup)?

Today’s recipe for Chicken Tortilla Soup is so good and simple that we wanted to make sure you could try it too. Being Hispanic, our family loves anything with tortillas, so this recipe was right up our alley.

We ended up topping it off with some homemade tortilla strips and cubed avocado, which made it even that much better! If I’m going to be honest, if a recipe calls for Chicken and Avocados, I pretty much know I’ll love it. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Put it in a soup form, and I love it even more!

Chicken tortilla soup ingredients

How to Make Tortilla Soup

CHICKEN. Cook the chicken and shred (or cube) it – for tips on shredding chicken GO HERE.

COOK. Add all the ingredients (except for cheese, tortilla strips, and avocado) to the crock pot and cook on LOW for 6-8 hours, or HIGH for 3-4.

SERVE. Stir in cheese just before serving.

TORTILLA STRIPS. If you want to make homemade tortilla strips for sprinkling on top, cut corn tortillas into strips with a pizza cutter. You can either flash fry in hot oil, or bake at 425ยฐ for 8-10 minutes turning halfway through.

Aside from the tortilla strips, here are other topping ideas:

  • Diced avocado
  • More shredded cheese
  • Sour Cream
  • Chopped green onions
  • Cilantro
  • Queso fresco
  • Limes

Stovetop Instructions

To make tortilla soup on the stovetop:

  • BOIL. Simply put all the ingredients (minus the cheese and toppings) into a large pot, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes.
  • GARNISH + SERVE. Add cheese just before serving, and top with your favorite toppings!
how to make tortilla soup in a pot

Tips + Storing info

Vegetarian: To make this soup vegetarian, just eliminate the chicken and use vegetable broth instead of chicken stock. For a dairy free version, leave out the cheese and donโ€™t top with sour cream.

Thicken it: Our favorite way to thicken tortilla soup is to use masa harina, which is traditional Mexican flour used to make tortillas. You can whisk a little bit of this in to give it a distinctive flavor and to thicken. If you don’t like the flavor of masa harina, you can use regular flour to thicken the soup.

Make it Creamy: This slow cooker chicken tortilla soup is definitely more on the broth-y side, but can also be made creamy. In the last 30 minutes of cooking in the crock pot, just add 2/3 cup heavy cream and ⅓ cup sour cream, and it will be nice and creamy!

To FREEZE, let the soup cool first, then freeze in an airtight container or freezer bag, making sure you omit the toppings. To reheat, let the soup thaw overnight in the fridge and reheat on the stove or in the microwave.

Chicken Tortilla Soup recipe in bowl with tortilla strips and avocado

For more chicken soup recipes, check out:

Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe

5 from 38 votes
The BEST slow cooker chicken tortilla soup is filled with chunks of chicken, beans & corn. It is easy to make and full of flavor!
Course Main Course, Soup
Cuisine Mexican
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 15 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 288 kcal
Author Lil’ Luna


  • 1 lb chicken breast cooked and shredded
  • 6 c chicken stock
  • 15 oz can corn drained
  • 1 ½ 15 oz can diced tomatoes drained
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • ½ c chopped onion (optional)
  • 1 can black beans drained
  • 1 small can diced green chilis
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • ¼ tsp chili powder
  • 1 ½ tsp salt
  • ¾ tsp pepper
  • monterey jack cheese shredded
  • corn tortillas for homemade tortilla strips – you can use store bought strips
  • cubed avocados for topping


  • Cook and shred (or cube) chicken.
  • Add all the ingredients, except the cheese, corn tortilla strips and avocados to your crock pot. Cook on low for 8 hours (or high for 3-4 hours).
  • Add cheese just before serving, and top each serving with your favorite toppings (we like corn tortilla strips and avocado).
  • To make homemade corn tortilla strips, slice up corn tortillas with a pizza cutter. Flash Fry in hot oil or bake in the oven at 425 for 8-10 minutes turning halfway through. ENJOY!


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About the Author

Kristyn Merkley

My name is Kristyn and Iโ€™m the mom of SIX stinkinโ€™ cute kids and the wife to my smokinโ€™ hot hubby, Lo. My momโ€™s maiden name is Luna, and Iโ€™m one of the many crafty โ€œLilโ€™ Lunasโ€ in the fam. On this site I like to share all things creative - from recipes to home decor to gifts and home decor ideas. Welcome!

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  1. I’m totally in soup mode now too. They’re so yummy. I just made chicken tortilla soup over the weekend. It rocks. Had no avocado to go with it though. Looks delicious!

  2. I am actually making a recipe similar to this this week. I might have to try this variation next time to see which one I like the best!

  3. Oh Kristyn, you can be in soup mode for as long as you want… love it! Can’t wait for the other recipes! (=

  4. I am in the process of making this soup and in the picture it looks like you added black beans but the recipe did not call for them. Just wondered if you forgot to add those or if I should put them in or not! Just wanted to let you know! Thanks! Great recipe!

  5. Hi! I make a soup similar to this in a crockpot, but i don’t cook the chicken before putting it in the crockpot I put it in raw. I cook it on high for 5-6 hours and the chick falls apart itself. Is there a reason to cook the chicken first? just wondering, looks delish!

    1. Whoops – forgot that off the ingredient list but just added it in. Yes, we used one can of black beans, drained. ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Made this tonight and it was super yummy! I changed a few things, like pinto beans instead of black beans, 1/4 cup of tomato paste instead of tomatoes and I had precooked chicken on hand. I also made this in about 45 minutes, so no need for the slow cooker. I browned the onions with the green chilies and spices, added the broth, paste, beans, corn and chicken. Cooked until heated through.
    I also added a 1/3 cup of masa mixed with water at the very end. This made the soup have a wonderful flavor and added to the thickness of it, since my hubby and son do not care for “brothy” soups

  7. Hi, I’m excited to try this recipe. I just wonder since the chicken is already cooked why does it need to cook for 3-4 hours (on high) still. Could you put the chicken in there raw and then just pull it out to shred at the end? Clearly I’m not a cook. Thanks for your help!


    1. I’ve done that each time I cooked my soups. Just pop in two defrosted chicken breasts (large ones, and if they are frozen then when they defrost in soup they will add additional water which you don’t want) and if you cook it on low for 8 hours, check the chicken after 6 hrs and if done, pull it out, shred it with a fork (should pull apart easily) and toss it back into the soup.

  8. Hi there, just made your recipie today and I used diced tomatoes and habanero for extra kick to the soup. They were 10 oz cans so I used two since your two ingredients were mixed. Turned out great. I only wish the chicken stock would be a little bit thicker. Any advice?

    1. Paulina, I didn’t have any diced canned tomato, so I added a large can of crushed tomato. I think that helped to thicken the soup. We also topped it off with a dollop of sour cream, which also added thickness and richness when served. Delish!

  9. 5 stars
    Made your chicken tortilla soup for dinner tonight. SO GOOD!!! I made a couple of minor tweaks because we were snowed in today – I had to add some dried Georgia Flame chile peppers and some pickled poblano & jalapeรฑo peppers from our garden in place of canned chili peppers. I also added a can of crushed tomato in place of the diced because it was on the shelf. I tweaked the spices a bit to taste – added a dash of smoked paprika, a dash of Badia Sazon and some extra cumin. By the time we had dug out and the storm had passed, the soup was ready. We hit the store for the toppings – avocado, diced fresh tomato, low fat monterey jack, diced red onion, tortilla chips and some fresh cilantro. Added a little dollop of sour cream and baby, that was some good eats! Thank you so much for sharing this great recipe! Sue

  10. 5 stars
    Made this soup on Sunday and it was really good, my daughter took it back to school with her. This was a big hit, yesterday made it again but used a large can of crushed tomatoes instead of the diced tomatoes. Totally changed the soup up a bit.

    1. SO glad you guys liked it! I’m curious… which did you like better? The can of crushed tomatoes or the diced tomatoes?

      1. We preferred the crushed tomatoes. There is a difference in the thickness of the broth. The next time I fix this I am going to double the recipe and try one can of diced tomatoes and 2 cans of crushed tomatoes. Also wanted to mentioned that the avocado really topped this soup off, will try sour cream on it.

        Thanks for sharing your recipe.

  11. Hi, I’m planning on making this for my husband n his family, we’re a total of 5, and I was wondering how many servings does this recipe call for?

  12. Yum. I used your recipe as a base and as always I can’t leave anything in the original form. :). I used two cans drained of fire roasted tomatoes and also added cilantro in the mixture. Because of time I pulled apart a rotessiere chicken. Other than that I followed the recipe and it’s delish.

  13. 5 stars
    I just made this for my family. It was very simple, and I had everything on hand. My kids each ate three bowls! Next time I think I might try adding some hominy. I added a dollop of sour cream on top and that, along with the avocados was superb!

    1. YAY!! I’m so glad it was a hit!! It’s one of my favorite soup recipes ever. Thanks for stopping by!! ๐Ÿ˜€

  14. 5 stars
    The first time I made this per the recipe. This time I added a medium can of hominy, and substituted creamed corn. I served it with a mix of pepper jack and sharp cheddar cheeses, then topped it with tortilla crisps, a dollop of sour cream, chopped green onions, and a some diced black olives. Delicious!

    1. Oooh, you modifications sounds delicious!! SO glad it was a hit. Thanks for stopping by and have a great day!

  15. This was so delicious that I featured this recipe on my blog Merry Weather on a list of perfect Autumn recipes!! Thank you so much for creating something so dang delicious!


  16. 5 stars
    I’m commenting years later…..but can I make this in the crockpot? Do I just throw everything in together? And can I cook it on high?

    1. ok made this for cinco de mayo. It was amazing. I threw everything in the crockpot. I added a little more chicken. And used 1 can of diced tomatoes and 1 can of tomato sauce. It was excellent.

    2. Yes, you would throw everything in the crockpot, except the cheese, avocados, and tortilla strips and cook on low for 8 hrs or high 3-4hrs. Add the cheese and toppings to your own individual bowls:)

  17. How many will this recipe serve? I’m having the soup course for our neighborhood Christmas progressive dinner, and this looks delicious.

    1. If you are feeding a neighborhood, I would double the recipe. If you have a huge crowd, you may need to triple. I’m not sure exactly how many it will feed, but when I picture a neighborhood dinner, I think of a lot of people. It just depends on how many. Good luck!

  18. 5 stars
    This recipe is in our regular rotation of soups! The kids all LOVE it, especially with the tortilla strips on top. Though we just fry up flour tortilla strips since that is what we always have on hand.
    I love that the ingredients are all things we always have in our cupboards, it’s quick to put together, and no complaints at the dinner table! As a mom of 4 and a picky husband….thats a win! Thanks for the great recipe ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. That makes me so happy to hear!!! Thank you so much for letting me know! That’s why we love it too ๐Ÿ™‚

  19. 5 stars
    I know this is an old thread but just wanted to let you know I tried this for dinner tonight and it was very good.

    We dropped into the low 80’s today and weathermen said a cold front was going through, so that called for soup ๐Ÿ™‚

    Thanks for the recipe, it will be used more this winter.

  20. 5 stars
    This is my favorite soup recipe that Iโ€™ve made! Thank you so much for sharing! Any tips on freezing and how long does it last in the freezer? Iโ€™m trying to prepare freezer โ€œdumpโ€ meals before baby #4 arrives and would love to have this as one of our meals. TIA.

    1. Yay!! I am so glad you like it! I personally haven’t put it in the freezer, but I am sure it would be fine in there until you need it ๐Ÿ™‚ Just add toppings before serving ๐Ÿ™‚ Good luck with baby #4!

  21. 5 stars
    This ended up being so much better than I expected! The corn adds a great texture to it that makes it filling, but not too dense. Thanks for sharing!

  22. 5 stars
    Tortilla soup is probably my most favorite soup. This is so good and easy to make. I could eat this stuff all year long. Itโ€™s all my favorite things in a soup!

  23. 5 stars
    I could seriously eat this soup in the middle of the summer, that’s how much I love it! Especially topped with avocado. SO good and SO easy!

  24. 5 stars
    This soup was delicious! I loved that I could throw it in the crock pot and it was ready for dinner after a busy afternoon with the kids.

    1. Oh, this is a really yummy soup! I’d love to know what you think of it, when you try it ๐Ÿ™‚ I hope you like it!

    1. This is one of my favorites!! I’d love to know what you think ๐Ÿ™‚ I hope you love it, as much as we do!

    1. I haven’t tried that. I personally would cook it first, because I get paranoid about raw chicken. You could try?

  25. 5 stars
    Delicious chicken tortilla soup! So easy to make as well. Loved it with the onions, and adding sour cream and cheese on top. Delicous! Will be making again for sure!

  26. 5 stars
    This looks delicious! I was curious if the serving size Is 1 CuP, or 1.5cup for the nutritional value info. Thanks!

  27. I donโ€™t have masa to thick this soup. You MENTIONED flour. Do you add the flour directly to the SOUP or make a slury with water? How much flour and or water do you add? Thanks


  29. 5 stars
    This Looks like the perfect mini hot tub for a slice of homemade bread to dive into. hehe. ๐Ÿ™‚ This looks absolutely amazing. ๐Ÿ™‚

  30. 5 stars
    Wonderful recipe! My family loves it as do I. Easy to make & not time consuming. I have even changed some of the ingredients due to likes or what is in my pantry & itโ€™s still delicious. Bon Appetitโ€™

  31. 5 stars
    Best chicken tortilla soup ever!!!!My whole family loves this soup! My daughter wants me to always make this for her!

  32. 5 stars
    Thanks a bunch for this amazing and really delicious chicken tortilla soup recipe! So easy to make as well! Highly recommended!

  33. 5 stars
    Mostly I loved that I had everything on hand to make this soup! It turned out so yummy – there were no leftovers. lol
    My family enjoyed every last drop!

    1. You could use dry black beans if you were planning on cooking them beforehand. I wouldn’t recommend putting them into the soup dry. All the ingredients in the soup are already cooked/ready, so it’s mostly just heating everything through together. Therefore, the beans wouldn’t be soft enough if using dry.