This hearty, flavorful Slow Cooker Chicken Stew has a delicious Mexican-inspired flare to it! Easy to make in your slow cooker (or Instant Pot), it is loaded with protein and veggies. A healthy dinner to come home to any night of the week.

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Overhead on a big bowl of the delicious Mexican Slow Cooker Chicken Stew with avocado, greens and other healthy ingredients on top

Mother Nature finally got the memo that it is indeed fall and she needs to chill out….literally.

It finally feels like fall here in Southern Cali and I enjoying all the cozy sweaters, fuzzy socks, cups of tea and soup recipes that I can before she changes her mind and brings back the heat.

Slow cooker chicken stew

Like this Mexican-Inspired Slow Cooker Chick Stew. I made this little creation on a chilly Sunday when the sun was hiding and our family was all in hibernation mode. It came together on a whim, but when I watched my family lick their bowls clean (the little lady included) I knew it would be a soup that needed to go into our chilly weather dinner rotation.

Can I make it in an Instant Pot?

This slow cooker stew can also be made in your Instant Pot if you are short on time! It’s loaded with protein, veggies and flavorings that have a lovely Mexican flair to them. In fact, it makes for amazing leftovers and is hearty enough to call dinner on the chilliest of evenings.

A ladle full of the delicious Mexican Slow Cooker Chicken Stew with a big pot of it in the background

Want to make sure any spinach leftover after making this Mexican-Inspired Slow Cooker Chicken Stew doesn’t go to waste? Check out my tips & tricks for keeping spinach fresh all week!

Suggested adaptions for making Mexican slow cooker chicken stew

  • Make it in your Instant Pot! I’ve included the directions below after the slow cooker instructions.
  • Make it dairy-free. I used plain yogurt to give this soup a creamy element because we aren’t big coconut people, but if you need to make it dairy-free, simply replace the yogurt with full-fat coconut milk (this also makes it Whole30 and Paleo)
  • Crank up the heat. I made this pretty mild for the sake of making it family-friendly. However, if heat is your thing, increase the amount of chili to fit your personal taste or add a minced jalapeño to the mix!

Want to find out the BEST way to cut bell peppers? Head over to my How To Cut a Bell Pepper…to minimize waste! post!

Other cozy slow cooker recipes you are going to love…

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Closeup on a big bowl of the delicious Mexican Slow Cooker Chicken Stew topped with avocado and other ingredients, with more avocado and greens blurred in the background
Overhead on a big bowl of the delicious Mexican Slow Cooker Chicken Stew with avocado, greens and other healthy ingredients on top
4.92 from 12 votes

Mexican-Inspired Slow Cooker Chicken Stew

Yield: 4 people
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 6 hours
Total Time: 6 hours 10 minutes
Cuisine: Mexican
Course: Main Course
This hearty, flavorful Slow Cooker Chicken Stew has a delicious Mexican inspired flare to it! Easy to make in your slow cooker (or Instant Pot), it is loaded with protein and veggies. A healthy dinner to come home to any night of the week.

Ingredients
 

  • 1 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, deseeded and diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced and to taste
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 1/2 tsp chili powder, or to taste (I made mine relatively mild to make it family-friendly)
  • 1 1/2 tsp oregano, dried
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp salt, or to taste
  • black pepper, to taste
  • 2 cup stock or broth
  • 1 cup full-fat coconut milk, plain yogurt (not greek) can be used if dairy-free isn't needed
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • 1/3 cup fresh cilantro , chopped + extra for garnish
  • 2-3 handfuls baby spinach, roughly chopped
  • avocado, chopped, for garnish

Equipment

  • slow cooker
  • Instant Pot

Instructions
 

Slow Cooker Instructions

  • Optional Step:
    In a skillet, heat oil over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add onions, peppers and garlic. Cook for 4-5 minutes. This will enhance flavor, but is an optional step.
  • Add chicken, oil, onion, peppers, garlic, spices and broth to your slow cooker. Stir to combine
  • Cover and cook until the chicken is cooked through, about 4 hours on HIGH or about 6 hours on LOW (times vary depending on your slow cooker).
  • Once the chicken is done cooking, carefully remove it from the slow cooker. Chop or shred it and return it to the slow cooker.
  • Stir in yogurt (or coconut milk if using), lime juice, cilantro and spinach. Stir to combine and let the spinach wilt in the hot soup for a few minutes.
  • Taste and add extra salt or pepper if desired.
  • Enjoy warm with quinoa, rice or on its own. Top with extra cilantro or avocado, if desired.

Instant Pot Instructions

  • Turn on sauté function on your Instant Pot.
  • Add oil to the pot and let it heat up for a minute or two. Once hot, add onions, peppers and garlic. Cook for 4-5 minutes.
  • Turn off the sauté function and add chicken, spices and broth to your pressure cooker. Stir to combine. Make sure chicken breasts/thighs are in a single layer and not on top of one another.
  • Lock lid into place and be sure to turn the vent valve to ‘Sealing’ position
  • Cook on HIGH pressure for 10 minutes. It will take your Instant Pot about 10 minutes to get up to pressure. Once cook time is done, let the pressure naturally release.
  • Once pressure is done releasing, unlock the lid and carefully remove the chicken. Chop or shred it and return it to the pressure cooker
  • Stir in yogurt (or coconut milk if using), lime juice, cilantro and spinach. Stir to combine and let the spinach wilt in the hot soup for a few minutes.
  • Taste and add extra salt or pepper if desired.
  • Enjoy warm with quinoa, rice or on its own. Top with extra cilantro or avocado, if desired.

Notes

  • Make it in your Instant Pot! I’ve included the directions below after the slow cooker instructions.
  • Make it dairy-free. I used plain yogurt to give this soup a creamy element because we aren’t big coconut people, but if you need to make it dairy-free, simply replace the yogurt with full-fat coconut milk (this also makes it Whole30 and Paleo)
  • Crank up the heat. I made this pretty mild for the sake of making it family-friendly. However, if heat is your thing, increase the amount of chili to fit your personal taste or add a minced jalapeño to the mix!
Calories: 239.41kcal, Carbohydrates: 11.57g, Protein: 27.77g, Fat: 8.99g, Saturated Fat: 2.25g, Cholesterol: 80.54mg, Sodium: 1240.57mg, Potassium: 745.67mg, Fiber: 1.94g, Sugar: 6.54g, Vitamin A: 3131.14IU, Vitamin C: 48.33mg, Calcium: 115.7mg, Iron: 1.91mg