Slow Cooker Mexican-Style Chicken Breasts

Chicken in tortillas

Alexandra Grablewski / Photolibrary / Getty Images

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 7 hrs
Total: 7 hrs 15 mins
Servings: 4 servings

Chicken breasts are seasoned with some Mexican-style spices and sweet and hot chile peppers, along with tomatoes and cheese. Serve the slow-cooked chicken shredded or chopped in warm flour tortillas.

Feel free to use boneless chicken thighs in this dish instead of chicken breasts. I add taco seasoning to the chicken for spicy, taco flavor. Or use pepper jack or taco-seasoned shredded cheese.

We've included instructions for a quick and easy homemade salsa and basic fresh guacamole below the recipe.

See the tips and variations for more substitution and flavor ideas.


  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3 to 4 boneless chicken breast halves (without skin, cut into 1-inch pieces)
  • 1/2 cup onion (chopped)
  • 1 green bell pepper (seeded and chopped, or use a red or yellow bell pepper)
  • Optional: 1 to 2 small jalapeno peppers (finely chopped)
  • 3 medium cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 can (4 ounces) mild chile peppers (chopped)
  • 1 can (14 1/2 ounces) Mexican-style, chili style, or fire-roasted diced tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon dried leaf oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 cup shredded Mexican blend of cheeses or cheddar cheese
  • Garnish: salsa (quick recipe for homemade salsa below)
  • Garnish: guacamole (see basic guacamole, below)
  • Garnish: sour cream
  • Garnish: sliced green onions
  • Garnish: diced tomatoes
  • Garnish: shredded lettuce
  • Garnish: sliced ripe olives
  • Garnish: cilantro

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Brown chicken breasts. Remove and drain.

  3. In the same skillet, sauté onion, green bell pepper, garlic, and jalapeno pepper just until tender.

  4. Put the chicken breasts and onion mixture in the slow cooker.

  5. Add mild chile peppers, tomatoes, oregano, and cumin to the slow cooker; stir to combine.

  6. Cover and cook on LOW 6 to 8 hours (HIGH 3 to 4 hours).

  7. Serve with warm flour tortillas, shredded cheese, and salsa, along with your favorite toppings and condiments. Guacamole or sour cream would make a nice garnish with sliced green onions or diced tomatoes.

Quick Salsa: In a bowl, combine 2 cups of diced plum tomatoes with 1/2 cup finely chopped red onion, 1/4 cup of chopped cilantro, 1 clove of garlic, minced, 2 tablespoons of cider vinegar or lime juice, and a dash of sugar, or to taste. Add a few tablespoons of sliced green onions, if desired.

Basic Guacamole: Peel and remove the seeds in 2 medium ripe avocados. Chop the avocado and place in a bowl, mash until smooth. Add 1 tablespoon of lime juice, 1/2 cup of diced plum tomatoes, 2 to 3 tablespoons of finely chopped onion, and salt, to taste.

Tips and Variations

  • Add 2 teaspoons of taco seasoning or burrito seasoning and omit the cumin.

  • Replace all or some of the chicken breasts with boneless chicken thighs.