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Chicken Enchilada Soup

This Chicken Enchilada Soup can be made on the Stove Top or the Crock Pot and is easy to make with chicken breast, thighs, or leftover chicken! It’s creamy, it’s cheesy, and it’s made with simple ingredients. Perfect for cozy soup weather.

Be sure to try my Chicken Enchiladas, Steak Fajitas, and Chicken Quesadillas next!

A soup pot full of Chicken Enchilada Soup with a spoon in it and cilantro in the background.

Chicken Enchilada Soup

This is definitely one of my favorite cozy soups to make in the Fall and Winter months. It’s fun to play around with different ingredients. I like to UP the spice factor with some spicy cheese and an extra pinch of cayenne, but you can steer clear of spicy ingredients if preferred and just keep it mild.

This is a great recipe to make with chicken breast, chicken thighs, or even leftover chicken. Check out how to make it below and don’t miss my PRO tips below!

How to Make It

See recipe card below this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions.

Note: See notes section of the recipe card for crock pot instructions.

Sauté onions, peppers, and garlic in olive oil/butter until softened. Add seasonings, enchilada sauce, diced tomatoes, black beans, corn, hot sauce, chicken broth, and chicken. 

A soup pot with with ingredients being added to make chicken enchilada soup.

Boil gently for 15-20 minutes. Remove chicken and use 2 forks to shred. Return to soup. Add softened cream cheese and stir to combine.

Shredded chicken on a plate next to a bowl of chicken enchilada soup with cream cheese being added.

Stir in the shredded cheese and serve!

Adding cheese and combining with broth to make chicken enchilada soup.

Pro Tips

Cheese:

  • To soften the cream cheese quickly: Heat 2 cups of water in the microwave. Place cubed cream cheese in the microwave and close the door. Let it soften for 5 minutes.
  • Feel free to spice it up with 1/2 cup Cabot Hot Habanero Cheese or another kind of spicy cheese if you like heat. (This would be in place of the Monterey jack.)
  • Shred the cheese from a block, it will melt and taste much better than packaged shredded cheese.
  • Make sure the base isn’t too hot when the cheese is added or the dairy will separate and the consistency will be grainy.

Chicken:

  • Cooking the chicken: You can let the chicken simmer over very low heat for a longer period of time. This makes the chicken extra juicy and the broth extra flavorful. Bone-in chicken thighs may also be used and create a very flavorful broth. If you plan on simmering for an extended period of time, add the black beans and corn when you remove the chicken from the soup to shred it.
  • Using rotisserie or leftover chicken: 2 cups cooked chicken can also be used. You can add it at the same point as the chicken breast is added in the recipe and simmer for 15 minutes to let the flavors blend, but no need to bring it to a boil.

Enchilada Sauce:

Storage

  • Store in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months. (This soup freezes well!)

A soup pot with Chicken Enchilada Soup and a spoon in it with cilantro on the side.

Tools For This Recipe

(Amazon affiliate links)- Check out all of my kitchen essentials here.

  • 4.5-Quart Dutch Oven– this is the one I use the make this soup.
  • Box Cheese Grater– Shredding from a block tastes and melts much better than packaged cheese.
  • Spice Rack– This is the one I have, it’s a snap to measure out your seasonings quickly and easily. (Big time saver.)
  • Measuring Spoons– I have these magnetic ones which stay nice and organized in my utensil drawer.
  • Pinch Bowls– for measuring out seasonings ahead of time.
  • Soup Ladle
  • 16 oz. storage containers – I use these to store/freeze my soups. They have 8 oz. sizes as well. They’re stackable, leak proof, and dishwasher/microwave safe.

Try These Next

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A green soup pot filled with creamy Chicken Enchilada Soup.

Chicken Enchilada Soup

4.98 from 174 ratings
This EASY Chicken Enchilada Soup recipe can be made on the stove top or in the Crock Pot! Use chicken breast, chicken thighs, or leftover chicken along with simple pantry ingredients.

Ingredients

Seasonings

  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon mustard powder
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon cumin
  • 1 pinch cinnamon
  • 1 pinch cayenne, optional

Soup

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, diced with seeds removed
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 10 oz. red enchilada sauce
  • 10 oz. diced tomatoes with green chilies, undrained
  • 15 oz. black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 15 oz. canned whole kernel corn, drained
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce, optional
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 large boneless skinless chicken breast (or 2 small.), see notes if using cooked chicken
  • 4 oz. cream cheese, cubed and softened
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • ½ cup Monterey Jack cheese, shredded. (Can also use more cheddar.)

Instructions

  • Prep Work: Combine the seasonings and set aside. Take out the cream cheese and allow it to soften. (See notes for a quick way to do that.) Shred cheddar and Monterey jack cheese from a block and set aside.
  • Heat butter and olive oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add the onions and the peppers. Soften for 4 minutes, then add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute.
  • Pat the chicken dry and season each side with salt and pepper. Add it to the soup pot along with all remaining ingredients except for the cream cheese and shredded cheese
  • Bring the soup to a gentle boil and allow the chicken to slowly cook through (a rapid boil will make it tough). About 15-20 minutes. Remove the chicken and use two forks to shred. Return it to the soup.
  • Reduce heat to low. Stir in the softened cream cheese until combined, then stir in the shredded cheese until melted.
  • Taste and add any additional seasonings as needed, then serve!

Notes

Cheese:
  • To soften the cream cheese quickly: Heat 2 cups of water in the microwave. Place cubed cream cheese in the microwave and close the door. Let it soften for 5 minutes.
  • Feel free to spice it up with 1/2 cup Cabot Hot Habanero Cheese or another kind of spicy cheese if you like heat. (This would be in place of the Monterey jack.)
  • Shred the cheese from a block, it will melt and taste much better than packaged shredded cheese.
  • Make sure the base isn't too hot when the cheese is added or the dairy will separate and the consistency will be grainy.

Chicken:
  • Cooking the chicken: You can let the chicken simmer over very low heat for a longer period of time. This makes the chicken extra juicy and the broth extra flavorful. Bone-in chicken thighs may also be used. Any variety of bone-in chicken creates a very flavorful broth as well.
  • If you plan on simmering for an extended period of time, add the black beans and corn when you remove the chicken from the soup to shred it.
  • Using rotisserie or leftover chicken: 2 cups cooked chicken can also be used. You can add it at the same point as the chicken breast is added in the recipe and simmer for 15 minutes to let the flavors blend, but no need to bring it to a boil.

Enchilada Sauce:

Crock Pot Method
  • Place all ingredients in the slow cooker except for the shredded cheese, cream cheese, corn, black beans, and garnishes.
  • Cook on low for 6 hours. 
  • Turn off heat. Remove the chicken, shred it, and add it back to the soup along with the corn and black beans.
  • Gradually mix in the softened cream cheese and shredded cheese and stir to incorporate.
**If using rotisserie/leftover chicken: Add it at the beginning. For even more flavor, leave the meat on the bone (if that’s an option), and then remove the bones at the end! 🙂

Storage
  • Store in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months. (This soup freezes well!)

Nutrition

Calories: 242kcal, Carbohydrates: 23g, Protein: 13g, Fat: 12g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 4g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 36mg, Sodium: 697mg, Potassium: 433mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 5g, Vitamin A: 670IU, Vitamin C: 14mg, Calcium: 154mg, Iron: 2mg
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408 comments on “Chicken Enchilada Soup”

  1. I love this recipe! So many flavors in every spoonful!

  2. Another winner!!! This is delicious and will be added to my soup rotation. Thank you!

    • You’re very welcome Colleen! I’m so happy this is getting added to the rotation. I make it all the time! Thanks so much for the great review❤️

  3. Hi Stephanie, I plan to make this soon and have a dinner around it. What else would you suggest to serve with it to make it a complete meal? I had this at a restaurant last night and it was so good and your recipe looks very similar to what we had.

  4. I have always wanted to make this soup and this recipe was all I wanted it to be. Very flavorful and pretty. My family prefers pinto beans over black, but other than that I followed the recipe. It was great, easy and looked just like the picture. Thank you

  5. Wow this was really good.  I topped mine with sharp cheddar shreds, plant based sour cream, diced green onions, tortilla strips, and a little Cholula.  Excited to have it again for lunch tomorrow and will definitely make again in the future!

  6. Our whole family loves this soup. Great and easy recipe!

  7. Loved this soup! Easy to make and full of flavor. Topped it with cilantro and just a dash of hot sauce. I simmered my chicken in the soup for an hour on low, and it was tender and shredded super easy.

    • Hi Sharra! I’m sooo happy that you loved the soup, nice job simmering the chicken low and slow, that keeps it nice and juicy! Thank you so much for the review!! -Stephanie 🙂

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