Slow-cooked Mexican Chicken

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This is a standard dish in our house because it is so easy and yummy. My kids even like it! The chicken is cooked slowly in the Crock-Pot, so it falls apart easily with a fork. You can use chicken breasts if you prefer white meat. Or, if you’re interested in saving a little money, you can use chicken thighs. I use boneless chicken so I don’t have to remove the bones later. Use the cooked chicken for a variety of Mexican dishes: tacos, enchiladas, burritos, rice bowls, nachos, etc. We typically have tacos the first night, and then use the leftover chicken for rice bowls or enchiladas later in the week.

Slow-cooked Mexican Chicken


1.5 – 2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts (or boneless chicken thighs)
1 (1.5 oz.) pkg taco seasoning mix (Make sure it’s gluten-free. We use McCormick brand – mild for my kids.)
1 Cup chicken broth or water (Make sure it’s gluten-free. We use Pacific brand.)
1 Cup salsa or picante sauce


  1. Place chicken in a slow-cooker and sprinkle taco seasoning mix on top of chicken. Then, pour on chicken broth and picante sauce. No need to stir.
  2. Cover, and cook on low for 8 hours.
  3. After 8 hours, the chicken is so tender it usually falls apart with a fork. So, use forks to shred, or pull apart, the chicken. Stir it around and let it stay warm in the slow-cooker while you prepare the rest of dinner.

Additional notes:

  • In the picture above, we’ve made tacos with cooked corn tortillas, and filled it with the chicken, lettuce, shredded cheese, sliced black olives and diced avocado. Yum!
  • You can also use the meat for enchiladas, taquitos, salads, and more.

I’m linking this recipe to “What Can I Eat That’s Gluten-Free?” at The Gluten-Free Homemaker. There you will find even more gluten-free meal ideas.



Wow! This sounds great – I can’t wait to try it. I’ve never been to your site before. I found a comment you made on Cafe Mom with this address. You’ve got a lot of good information here. I can’t wait to check in again soon.


Thanks for stopping by. Hope you enjoy the chicken. I’ll be posting some yummy Easter-type recipes soon.


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We’re trying this tonight! My husband keeps complaining that I’m starving him with the delicious smell coming from the crockpot all day. I didn’t have any taco seasoning on hand so I just made up some of my own. I’m so glad I found your site!


Hi there! Just wanted to let you know I referenced your post on my blog.

Thanks for all your great posts!



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This sounds delicious and easy. I’m definitely going to try it. My problem is that my crock pot runs too hot and meat dries out quickly. I’m going to have to get a new one soon. I’d love for you to add this to “What can I eat that’s gluten free?” one week.


Linda – I have a similar problem with my crock pot. You could probably cook yours in 4-6 hours. I have put the chicken in as late as lunchtime, and still had it ready in time for dinner. That’s also why I add the chicken broth. It keeps it nice and moist. After I’ve shredded the chicken, I always put it back into the crock pot and stir it around in the liquid. I’m surprised I haven’t linked it to “What Can I Eat That’s Gluten Free?” I guess I posted it before I found you. :)


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I am so making this next week! I have been looking for easy things to make the week after Thanksgiving since I will be hosting it this year. This is perfect! Trying to decide if I will use it for tacos or chicken enchiladas….


This looks so yummy! This would be great to have as an alternative to ground beef for tacos and enchiladas. I think I’ll try making some and then freezing the extras for quick meals.

Tell me more about rice bowls. You have many yummy recipes here, I’m definitely bookmarking your site as a favorite!


Thanks for stopping by, Julie. Rice bowls are all your favorite taco ingredients, minus the taco shell, on top of rice. For great flavor, you can put the chicken on top of Cilantro Rice. Then, add beans, shredded cheese, avocado, black olives…whatever tastes good to you.


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We tried this today and it was AWESOME! Thank you for a great recipe.


Ted – Thanks for the feedback. It’s always nice to hear when a recipe works good for someone else.


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I have to feed 40 hungry High School football players this Thursday night and I plan on making this recipe for them. I think they will really enjoy this.


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I am trying to access your gluten-free chicken enchilada recipe, but the when I click on the picture to access it, there is an error (not available). Is there another location for this recipe? Thanks!


Misty – Sorry the link didn’t work for you. Try this link
You can also find it at the Recipe Index.


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This sounds absolutely delicious! I’ve just started a Paleo Diet weight loss challenge, and this, over a big bed of lettuce and onions, would be divine. I’ve found a paleo-friendly taco seasoning mix to use, too. Can’t wait to try it out! Thanks a lot. :)


I made this yesterday – my FIRST TIME using a slow cooker – and it was delicious.


Cori – Welcome to the wonderful world of slow-cookers. 😀 Thanks for letting us know that this recipe worked out for you.


I am making this for the second time tonight. I love this recipe. It’s simple and delicious. I like to use a homemade taco seasoning tho. :-) thanks for the awesome recipe


Anna – Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us. I would love to hear what you use for your homemade taco seasoning. Would you mind sharing?


2 tsp. chili powder
1 1/2 tsp. paprika
1 1/2 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. onion powder
3/4 tsp. garlic salt
1/2 tsp. salt
Dash cayenne
Combine all ingredients. Use instead of 1 package taco seasoning mix. If not using entire amount, store tightly covered, in a cool dry place. Makes 3 tablespoons.

Super simple, and was delicious. Plusnit’s easy to make more or less spicy depending on the amount of cayenne. :-)


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My friends and I recently enjoyed your recipe for a fiesta we had! Thanks for sharing!


Thanks, Laura! Glad you enjoyed it.


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Love this recipe! I’ve made it several times now, using a homemade taco seasoning recipe from It’s so easy and delicious! We usually use it the first day for tacos, and then the next day for nachos. Awesome!


So glad you enjoyed it, Jen! I like it on nachos, too. Although, I often make taquitos with the leftovers.


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