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A bowl of Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup topped with crispy tortillas and garnished with avocados, cheese, jalapenos, and cilantro.
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5 from 93 ratings

Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup

This Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup recipe is easy to make on the stove top or the Crock Pot. Make it with fresh, leftover, or rotisserie chicken. Cheddar and Cream Cheese add a hint of creamy indulgence!


  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, diced
  • 1 Tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 15 oz. can corn, drained
  • 1 10 oz. can Rotel diced tomatoes with green chilies, undrained
  • 1 15 oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 5 cups chicken broth
  • 2 small boneless skinless chicken breasts, or 2 cups shredded chicken
  • 1 pinch Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1-2 teaspoons hot sauce
  • 1 oz. packet taco seasoning, equal to 3 Tbsp.
  • 1 ½ cups cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1/3 cup cream cheese, softened


  • Heat 2 Tbsp. butter over medium heat and add the diced onions and peppers. Sauté for 4 minutes, then add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute.
  • Add all remaining ingredients EXCEPT for the cheddar cheese, cream cheese, and garnish ingredients. I also recommend starting with 2 Tbsp. of Taco Seasoning and add more to taste toward the end if preferred. (I end up using all of it.)
  • Let the soup gradually come to a gentle bubble, partially covered. If the chicken boils rapidly, it becomes tough. Cooking it slowly keeps it nice and juicy.
  • Remove the chicken after 20-25 minutes, once cooked through. (Timing depends on the thickness of the chicken.) Use 2 forks to shred, then return to the soup.
  • Reduce heat to low and gradually sprinkle in the shredded cheese and softened cream cheese. Stir until smooth and creamy.
  • Taste and add any additional seasonings as needed. Garnish and serve!



PRO Tips
  • Optional garnishes include: Diced avocado, sour cream, jalapenos, shredded cheese, and cilantro.
  • 2 cups rotisserie or leftover chicken may be used instead of chicken breasts. You can add it when the uncooked chicken breast would be added and simmer for 15 minutes to let the flavors blend, but no need to bring it to a boil.
  • The cheeses melt much creamier and smoother if they’re near room temperature when added.
  • Make sure the base isn't too hot when the cheese is added or the dairy will separate and the consistency will be grainy.
  • 1 ½ cups frozen or fresh corn may be used instead of canned corn.

Crock Pot Method
  • Soften onions, peppers, and garlic in butter on the stovetop. Transfer to Slow Cooker along with all remaining ingredients except for the shredded cheese, cream cheese, and garnishes.
  • Cook on low for 6 hours. (I recommend low heat to keep the chicken juicy and tender. Cooking it over higher heat makes it tougher. If necessary, it can be cooked for 4 hours on high.)
  • Remove chicken and use 2 forks to shred. Return it to the Crock Pot.
  • Turn off heat. Gradually mix in the cheddar and cream cheeses and stir to incorporate.

Frying Tortilla Strips (For Garnishing):
  • Cut corn or flour tortillas into strips.
  • Heat vegetable or canola oil over medium-high heat in a high-walled skillet. Use just enough oil to submerge the tortilla strips.
  • Fry the strips in batches until crisp and slightly browned. Remove and set on paper towels, sprinkle with salt.

Nutrition information is an estimate and is per cup. There are 13 cups in this recipe.


Calories: 204kcal, Carbohydrates: 17g, Protein: 13g, Fat: 10g, Saturated Fat: 5g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 41mg, Sodium: 785mg, Potassium: 390mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 627IU, Vitamin C: 15mg, Calcium: 133mg, Iron: 2mg
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