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Santa Fe Chicken Crock Pot Recipe is a one pot meal perfect for busy weeknights. This meal is loaded with lots of chicken, cheese, tomatoes and more for a dinner everyone will love.

Close up image of santa fe chicken in the crock pot with a wooden spoon.
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Slow Cooker Santa Fe Chicken Recipe:

This recipe is a hit around here and even the kids go crazy over it. The chicken is so tender and the cream cheese and tomatoes have the best flavor.

Lots of beans, corn and more come together to make this meal filling and delicious.  The crock pot does all the work and tastes wonderful from being slow cooked all day.

If your schedule is crazy like mine, give this recipe a try to get dinner on the table with very little work. You are going to love it!

Close up image of santa fe chicken on rice in a white bowl.

Santa Fe Chicken Crock Pot Recipe is so easy!

Toss everything in the slow cooker and come home to dinner ready and waiting. It really is that simple. We love recipes that can cook in the crock pot all day. There is no guessing what is for dinner when it is already done.

Santa Fe Chicken can be eaten so many different ways and that is why I fix it so much. You can shred the chicken or keep the chicken whole, it really is all in your preference.

Crock Pot Recommendation:

If you are needing a good crock pot recommendation, then this is the one we love. The Instant Pot Aura is the one we have been using and love it. It is a multicooker Slow Cooker and it can do so much.

If you have been searching for one that you can can ground your beef in, then this is the one to get. This Aura Crock Pot has saved me so much time being able to do everything in the crock pot. A lot less dishes too.

Close up image of santa fe chicken on rice in a white bowl top with cheese and green onions.

Can you put frozen chicken in the crockpot?

Yes, you absolutely can.  I am terrible at remembering to take the chicken out of the freezer. Just toss the frozen chicken in the crockpot and get ready to enjoy a fabulous dinner.

I use frozen chicken in most of my recipes. No need to thaw it before hand. Just take it out of the freeze, and place in the crock pot with your other ingredients.

Why we love Santa Fe Chicken:

  • Kid-Friendly – My kids love Santa Fe Chicken Recipe. They will even eat the beans that is in this recipe. I think they like it so much because they can either eat as a burrito bowl or as a burrito and I let them choose.
  • Make it different ways – If I am short on time, I can make it in the skillet or the instant pot. But the crock pot is my favorite way to make this recipe.
  • All Ingredients go in the Crock Pot – There is not separate bowl to mix ingredients, you can throw everything in the crock pot and it cooks perfectly.
Ingredients needed - chicken, green chilies and diced tomatoes, black beans, corn, cilantro, minced garlic, taco seasoning, salt and pepper.


  • Chicken Breast
  • Green Chilies and Diced Tomatoes
  • Black Beans
  • Corn
  • Cilantro
  • Minced Garlic
  • Taco Seasoning
  • Salt and Pepper

You only need a few simple ingredients to make such an amazing meal.

How to make Crock Pot Santa Fe Chicken:

  • Add all Ingredients – Mix lightly all the ingredients in a crock pot.
Close up image of the ingredients added to crock pot before being cooked.
  • Cook Ingredients – Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours.
  • Remove Chicken and Place in bowl – Shred the chicken and stir it back into the mixture.
  • Serve and enjoy – Serve over rice or in a tortilla and enjoy.

What to serve with Santa Fe Chicken:

This meal is so versatile. You can enjoy this recipe lots of different ways.

  • Serve it with Cornbread – You can serve it on cornbread and we have a fabulous cornbread recipe here. You are going to love how yummy this is together.
  • Have it with Rice – We have served it over rice and that is one of our favorite ways to enjoy this chicken. Make this meal even easier by learning how to freeze rice. It is so nice to be able to grab the rice from the freezer and dinner really comes together quickly. We do this for lots of meals and it helps put together a quick meal.
  • Serve it with Pasta – Another tasty idea is to use pasta. The creamy sauce and melty cheese taste amazing blended with the pasta. Yum!
  • Make Tacos or Burittos – We have even served this delicious chicken mixture in tacos or burritos. It is so good and one of our favorite ways to eat this meal.
  • Make Queso – We love chips and queso so anytime we make this Santa Fe Chicken recipe, I always make queso and salsa.

Variation Ideas:

  • Make is Creamier – If you like your Santa Fe Chicken creamier, add in some cream cheese.
  • Change the Meat – You can use chicken thighs instead of chicken breast. You can also use chicken tenderloins. We usually whatever we have.
  • Change the Beans – If you don’t like black beans, you can use pinto beans or kidney beans.
  • Try Salsa – I have used salsa instead of rotel and it worked great.
  • Grill Santa Fe Chicken – Put the ingredients in a foil pack and make Foil Pack Santa Fe Chicken. This is the perfect meal for when you don’t want to heat up the kitchen.
  • Make a Salad – Top the Santa Fe Chicken on a some Romain Lettuce for a low carb option.
  • Make it in the Instant Pot – Place ingredients in the instant pot for a quick meal idea.
  • Add in a little spice – If you prefer that this recipe be spicier, then add in medium or hot rotel. We like the extra spice it gives without it being to much.

How to easily shred chicken

You can use 2 forks to shred the chicken but I use a hand mixer to shred the chicken faster. It is so easy and one of my best time saving kitchen tips!

If you are not shredding your chicken this way, you are missing out. It can be done in a fraction of the time by doing it by hand.

Plus, I love the texture of the chicken when you use the hand mixer. One you have shredded the chicken this way, it is so quick and easy.

Close up image of santa fe chicken in the crock pot

Make Santa Fe Chicken Casserole:

We love baking Santa Fe Chicken in a casserole dish or 9-inch pie plate top. Once it is done cooking in the crock pot, dish into a casserole dish to make santa fe chicken casserole.

Place tortilla down in casserole dish then top with chicken mixture. Then cover with second tortilla remaining chicken mixture ¼ cup shredded cheese and remaining tortilla. Then top with tortilla and half the remaining cheese. Top with more cheese and bake at 350 degrees until cheese is melted it is usually less than 30 minutes.

Spoon Santa Fe Chicken over rice for a complete meal.

How to use leftovers:

If you have leftover Santa Fe Chicken here are some of our favorite ways to use them. My family is always surprised that this is actually leftovers, because I really try and change it up.

  • Make a Burrito – This Santa Fe Chicken ingredients make a great burrito or a quesadilla. We love to heat the tortilla on the stove to get it a little crispy and roll up the ingredients and top with cheese.
  • Add Chicken Broth – Adding chicken broth to make a soup is one of my favorite ways to eat Santa Fe Chicken a second time. We love to top with tortilla chips and chips on a cold day.
  • Mix in Vegetables – When I make this a second time, I will add in some chopped zucchini and diced green peppers for a change. I can usually hide these extra vegetables from the kids.
  • Burrito Bowls – We love making burrito bowls with this chicken recipe. We add rice and top with cilantro and cheese. It mixes well together to make the best leftover meal.
Close up image of santa fe chicken in the crock pot with a wooden spoon.

Meal Prep and Freezing Tips:

  • Meal Prep – I like to double this recipe as it is perfect for leftovers. This is one of our favorite recipes to meal prep with. We place ingredients in a large bowl then divide.

    We put the sante fe chicken in a microwave and air tight dish with white, brown or cauliflower rice and you have a perfect lunch the next day.
  • To Freeze – Freeze any leftovers in a freezer safe container. We put about a ⅓ if the chicken mixture in individual containers and freeze.

    When we are ready to serve, we thaw overnight in the refrigerator and then reheat in the microwave. This is a great recipe to freeze.

Make Homemade Taco Seasoning:

We love making Homemade Taco Seasoning. Taco Seasoning is so easy to make and you probably already have all the ingredients to make it. It taste so much better than the packet stuff you buy at the store.

It saves you time and money making it at home. We love it because I know exactly what I am using and how much of it. No adding ingredients that we can’t pronounce.

We love making homemade seasoning. It has become part of our meal prep for the week so I don’t run out.

Close up image of santa fe chicken on rice in a white bowl top with cheese and green onions.

Easy Weeknight Meal:

This Santa Fe Chicken salad recipe is so filling and delicious but not too heavy. The ingredients are easy and you can use what you have. Plus, the slow cooker does all the work.

You can literally toss the ingredients in the slow cooker and come home to dinner ready to enjoy. Make some rice and set out some tortilla and everyone can make their own. It is the best dinner and a recipe we make frequently.

It is also the perfect meal for a crowd. We love making this recipe when friends come over. It is the perfect meal for my friends that are eating low carb or if they are not. We aim to please when we have friends over.

Print this Crock Pot Southwest Chicken Recipe below:

Crockpot Santa Fe Chicken

5 from 19 votes
Dinner is a breeze when you make Crock Pot Santa Fe Chicken Recipe. Loaded with chicken, beans and more, this recipe is simple to make.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 6 hours
Total Time 6 hours 15 minutes
Servings 6
Cuisine Mexican
Course Main Course
Calories 278


  • 3 chicken breasts
  • 2 cans tomatoes with green chiles (10 oz each)
  • 1 can corn (drained)
  • 1 can black beans (15 oz can – rinsed and drained)
  • 2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoon taco seasoning
  • 1/4 cup cilantro (chopped)
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 cup chicken broth
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  • Mix all the ingredients in a crock pot.
  • Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours.
  • Shred the chicken and stir it back into the mixture.
  • Serve over rice or in a tortilla and enjoy!

Recipe Notes

Store the leftovers in an air tight container for up to 5 days. 
You can also add in ½ tsp of Cayenne pepper to add a slight kick to this easy chicken recipe.  

Nutrition Facts

Calories 278kcal, Carbohydrates 31g, Protein 31g, Fat 4g, Saturated Fat 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat 1g, Monounsaturated Fat 1g, Trans Fat 1g, Cholesterol 72mg, Sodium 745mg, Potassium 1014mg, Fiber 7g, Sugar 7g, Vitamin A 501IU, Vitamin C 21mg, Calcium 67mg, Iron 3mg

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More Crock Pot Chicken Recipes:

Dinner is a breeze when you make Crock Pot Santa Fe Chicken Recipe. Loaded with chicken, beans and more, this recipe is simple to make. You will love this easy, healthy slow cooker Santa Fe chicken recipe.  #eatingonadime #crockpotrecipes #slowcookerrecipes #chickenrecipes #healthyrecipes

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About the Author

Hi, I’m Carrie. Welcome to Eating on a Dime!

I’m on a mission to help you cook delicious meals without busting your budget. Together we are going to cook real food… for real families!

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Recipe Rating


  1. Carrie Barnard says:

    Yes you can.

  2. Emily says:

    Can I use frozen chicken with my instant pot?

  3. Carrie Barnard says:

    I would stir it in in the last 30 minutes and allow it to melt. I would use 8oz.

  4. jenna says:

    when would I & how much cream cheese would i add in to make it a little creamier?

  5. Carrie says:

    I used 10 oz cans for this recipe and yes, this is the same as Rotel. Thank you.

  6. Michelle says:

    What size can of diced tomatoes & green chilies? Is this same a “Rotel”?

  7. Carrie says:

    You can just leave it out or maybe try mixing in a cup of heavy whipping cream in the recipe instead.

  8. Kenya says:

    My son hates cream cheese. Is there something else I can use in it’s place?

  9. Teresa L says:

    I’m not a huge fan of cream cheese in large volumes, makes it too twangy for me. Can the amount be decreased or switched to a different cheese? Also your pick shows the chicken being served intact & not shredded. What way would you suggest serving this? (side dish)

  10. Carrie says:

    Leanore – I haven’t made this one in the instant pot yet. I would try cooking it on high pressure for 30 minutes with a quick release. Let me know how it turns out! Thanks.

  11. Leanore says:

    Hello I was curious as to the instapot instructions for this recipe I love my crock pot but it sucks the life out of the meat