Crockpot Southwest Chicken is a great multipurpose chicken recipe to have tucked up your sleeve. Use the chicken to make burritos, burrito bowls, tacos, tostadas, and more! 

If you like this slow cooker version, be sure to check out these popular southwest chicken and rice bowls!

Southwest chicken and rice in a large white bowl.

As much as I enjoy cooking — I run a recipe blog, after all! — I love when a base recipe can be repurposed throughout the week to create multiple meals.

Take this Crockpot southwest chicken recipe, for example. You can spoon it over rice and garnish it with sour cream and cilantro on day 1, then repurpose the leftovers to make tacos or burritos on day 2, and so on. 

Cook once, eat twice! How great is that? 

Although if I’m being totally honest, I normally don’t enjoy eating leftovers. Hence why I prefer to make “new” dishes with them so it doesn’t feel like I’m eating the same thing over and over again! 

Did I mention how easy this Crockpot chicken recipe is? It’s essentially a slow cooker salsa chicken recipe that’s been loaded up with beans, corn, and bell pepper for even more texture and flavor in every bite.

chicken on a white bowl

Ingredients in Crockpot Southwest Chicken 

If you’re looking for easy Crockpot chicken breast recipes, look no further! This southwest chicken uses mostly canned or frozen ingredients, so you can buy them in advance to keep on hand for busy weeks. 

Here’s what goes into the southwest chicken: 

  • Black beans
  • Chicken broth
  • Diced tomatoes with green chiles
  • Red bell pepper
  • Boneless skinless chicken breasts 
  • Jarred salsa
  • Corn (fresh, frozen, or canned)
  • Spices (salt, pepper, garlic powder, and ground cumin) 

Can I Use Chicken Thighs Instead? 

Yes, you’re welcome to use 1 pound of boneless skinless chicken thighs instead of chicken breasts, if desired. 

Crockpot southwest chicken being ladled out.

How to Make Crockpot Southwest Chicken 

This is one of the easiest Crockpot recipes with chicken you’ll ever make! It’s a simple dump-and-cook recipe that requires zero babysitting. 

Here’s a glance at how the southwest chicken is made: 

  1. Add the beans, broth, tomatoes, peppers, chicken, salsa, corn and seasonings to a slow cooker.
  2. Cover and cook on low for 3-4 hours, or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165°F.
  3. Remove the chicken from the slow cooker and shred with two forks; return it to the slow cooker to heat through.

How to Serve Southwest Chicken 

On this particular day, I spooned the Crockpot southwest chicken over portions of rice and garnished the dish with a dollop of sour cream, fresh cilantro, and a squeeze of lime juice. 

Other ways to serve the chicken include: 

Or, simply serve the shredded salsa chicken with a side of Mexican rice and call it a day! 

An overhead view of a bowl of southwest chicken and rice, garnished with sour cream and fresh cilantro.

Can Southwest Chicken Be Frozen? 

Yes! The cooked and shredded chicken freezes incredibly well. Let it cool to room temperature, then seal inside freezer containers or freezer bags, making sure to press any excess air out first. 

When you’re ready to eat the frozen chicken, thaw overnight in the fridge before reheating gently on the stove. 

Can This Recipe Be Made on the Stovetop? 

Possibly, but I’ve only tested this recipe in my Crockpot as I wanted an easy meal that I could set and forget. 

However, I based this recipe off of my southwest chicken and rice bowls, and I’ve made that recipe on the stove multiple times. 

An overhead view of a bowl of southwest chicken and rice, garnished with sour cream and fresh cilantro.

Tips for the Best Crockpot Chicken 

  • The chicken only needs to cook for 3 to 4 hours on low. Be careful not to overcook it, as that would result in dry, chewy chicken. 
  • I prefer using low-sodium chicken broth and adding additional salt to taste. That way, I can control the amount of salt in the final dish. 
  • I garnished my plate with fresh cilantro, sour cream, and shredded cheese, but lime juice, hot sauce, and crushed tortilla chips would also be excellent additions. 

Looking for More Easy Crockpot Chicken Breast Recipes?


Crockpot Southwest Chicken

Yield: 6
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 15 minutes
Crockpot Southwest Chicken is a multipurpose recipe that can be used to make burritos and burrito bowls, tacos, tostadas, and more! 


  • 2 cans (15 ounces each) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (14.5 ounce) low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 can (14.5 ounce) diced tomatoes with green chiles, undrained
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, (OR boneless skinless chicken thighs)
  • 1 jar (8 ounce) salsa, any kind
  • 1 cup corn, (fresh, frozen or canned)
  • ¾ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¾ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • Chopped fresh cilantro, sour cream, and/or shredded cheese, for topping, if desired



  • Line slow cooker with a slow cooker liner or lightly grease with cooking spray (if desired).
  • Add beans, broth, tomatoes, peppers, chicken, salsa, corn and seasonings to slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 3-4 hours, or until internal temperature of chicken reaches 165°F.
  • Remove chicken from slow cooker and shred with two forks; then return to slow cooker to heat through.
  • Serve with rice, if desired, and top with fresh cilantro, sour cream, or shredded cheese.


  • Place cooled chicken in a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to three months. When ready to serve, thaw in refrigerator overnight.
  • Southwest chicken will last in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to four days.
  • Lightly adapted from my Southwest Chicken and Rice Bowls.
Serving: 1serving, Calories: 252kcal, Carbohydrates: 30g, Protein: 27g, Fat: 3g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 48mg, Sodium: 216mg, Potassium: 873mg, Fiber: 9g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 801IU, Vitamin C: 34mg, Calcium: 56mg, Iron: 3mg
Cuisine: American
Course: Main Course
Author: Gayle
Did you make this recipe?Let me know! Mention @pumpkin_n_spice on Instagram or tag #pumpkin_n_spice.