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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 176 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 EACH: chili powder, mustard powder, garlic powder, onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon cumin
  • 1 pinch EACH: cinnamon, cayenne pepper

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
Did you try this recipe?Mention @TheCozyCook on Instagram or tag #thecozycook!

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415 comments on “Chicken Enchilada Soup”

  1. Hi! I love ALL of your recipes! Planning on making this today in the crockpot… do I have to sauté the peppers, onions and garlic before I add them with all the other ingredients into the crockpot? Thank you!!

    • Hey Sarah! I’m so happy that you are loving the recipes!!! 🙂 I apologize for the delay in my response, we haven’t had power in 24 hours, I finally made my way to a hotel and am getting through these now! No need to saute the veggies first for the crock pot method. ❤️

  2. Do you think you could substitute a mole sauce for enchilada?

  3. This recipe is a keeper! Absolutely delicious 😋

  4. Great recipe!  Perfect combination of spices and ingredients!   I had to substitute sour cream for the cream cheese and it was still great!  Can’t wait to make it again!

  5. This was great! I didn’t have chili power so I substituted it with taco seasoning. Turned out awesome!

  6. This was a wonderful soup, I will make this more often

  7. I normally don’t leave reviews, but I had to with this one. Absolutely AMAZING. My family is sick so I made a big pot and delivered it to them. They all LOVED it. My sister and brother in law already asked for more. Thank you so much for sharing. 10 out of 10

    • Hey Savannah!! I am soooo happy that your family loved it, this is my preferred soup when I’m not feeling well, it wakes up my senses and warms me right up! Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a review, I appreciate it SO much!! XOXO -Stephanie 🙂

  8. This would be great with leftover chicken, but it was just as easy to simmer a chicken breast or two in the soup and shred.  Super fast to make and tasted delicious!  I put tortilla strips and a few green onions on top to make it pretty.  Cilantro would be good too.  Delicious.  Thanks, Stephanie!  

  9. This recipe is so good. I also put some Fritos in it as a garnishment 😋

  10. This was a fun recipe to make and the final outcome was great and tasty!  I especially enjoyed the addition of the pinch of cinnamon.  Very good dinner and lots in the freezer for another time.  Thanks!

    • Excellent! I’m so happy that you loved it Louie, I wish had some in my freezer- it never lasts long for me! 🙂 I really appreciate you taking the time to leave a review as well, thank you! 🙂

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