Crock-Pot Meal: Chicken Chili

Last week in the midst of unpacking, I decided I was tired of the same ol’ quick and easy dinner (i.e. bean & cheese tacos, sandwiches). I had already unpacked my crockpot which I’ve probably only used a few times before and decided I wanted a crockpot meal. I wanted to throw stuff in the pot, walk away, continue unpacking and come back in the evening with a hot meal waiting for me. Mission accomplished.

I am sure you have all experienced the feeling before. Wanting a hot meal without having to work to get it? If you know what I mean, then you might want to invest in a crockpot. I can honestly say I lack experience using it, but think I will branch out more, maybe try a roast chicken next!

So back to this meal, I decided on chicken chili (it’s not as thick as some chili but not quite as thin as a soup) because I had all the ingredients that I thought would work. It ended up being a darn good week night meal. Luckily we had already done one shopping trip so I literally threw this together in minutes. I really didn’t realize how easy this crock pot can be!

The only step you have to do is take the chicken out after about 4 hours, shred it and throw it back in the pot. You could probably wait even longer if needed.

Stir that chicken back in and let it continue to simmer.

You seriously can’t beat having a hot meal by doing nothing at all. Now this recipe calls for quite a few canned items so this is the perfect meal for someone who 1) wants a hot meal on the table for dinner but doesn’t have the time to do any prep work and/or 2) doesn’t have a lot of fresh ingredients on hand. I made sure to use a few low sodium cans to keep the overall salt content down.

I randomly bought thinly sliced chicken breasts and they worked wonderfully, although regular chicken breast would be fine too. I made some cornbread to go along with it and it was a filling, balanced meal. Whether or not it was because we had been lacking real food around here, my husband and I loved it. I look forward to making it again!

Crock-Pot Chicken Chili


1 small onion, diced
1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes with basil, oregano & garlic, no added salt, with juices
1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes with green chilis, with juices
1 (15 ounce) can black beans, low sodium, drained and rinsed
1 (15 ounce) can chili beans, drained slightly
1 cup water
1 cup frozen corn
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
1/2 package taco seasoning
1 lb thinly sliced chicken breasts

Toppings: shredded cheese, low-fat sour cream, chopped cilantro


1. Mix all ingredients in slow cooker (onion through taco seasoning). Place chicken breasts on top, covering slightly with chili mixture.
2. Cook for 4-5 hours on low. Remove chicken breasts, shred. Add chicken back to slow cooker and cook additional 1-2 hours. Ladle into bowls and serve with cheese, sour cream and cilantro. Serves 6.

Recipe from Nutritious Eats

COOK’S NOTES: Always compare brands/types of food to find the lower sodium option. Even within the same brand there can be differences depending on style. For example, the mild taco seasoning had 390 mg per serving and the original had 580 mg per serving. Huge difference so pay attention to those labels when you shop! Taste it in the end, if too salty add more water, corn or anything else that doesn’t have salt. If not salty enough (for example if you use all low sodium canned products), just add some salt.

Nutritious Eats Benefits: low fat, high fiber, lycopene, protein, vitamin A and C.

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  1. jess says

    I just made this tonight and it turned out wonderful! Thanks a ton for such a great recipe. Do you happen to know the calorie count for this? Thanks again!

    • Melanie Flinn, MS, RD says

      Hi Jess,
      I am so glad you liked it. I just realized I never responded to this- so sorry! Due to the time-consuming nature of entering in recipes for nutrient analysis, I don’t have the calorie info. There are several recipe analysis programs free online you can look at if you want to do it yourself. Just enter in every single ingredient with amounts used and make sure to divide by the number of the servings you got out of the chili (or the amount stated in the recipe). There are several out there- just google “recipe analysis”…Calorie Count & Fit Watch are two I’ve played with recently. Thanks for visiting the blog and letting me know how the chili turned out! I appreciate it!

  2. Jessie Bryant says

    Just made this tonight. Very yummy, good flavors and simple. I did find mine had too much water in it even after 8 hrs of cooking. Made for more of a stew rather than a chili. Still good but I would probably go for half the amount of water next time. Thanks!

    • Melanie Flinn, MS, RD says

      Jessie- Thanks so much for letting me know how it turned out! Yes, I guess it is more in between a soup and a chili. Glad it tasted good though.

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