Slow Cooker Green Salsa Chicken
Published Oct 19, 2020•Updated Mar 13, 2022
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Slow Cooker Green Salsa Chicken is one of those dishes that has endless possibilities. Use the tender shredded chicken in quesadillas, tacos, nachos, fajita soup. This is my latest favorite way to make it, and it barely needs a recipe – just chicken with green salsa (salsa verde) and a few seasonings to make it a weeknight favorite.
Greetings from the beach! We spent all weekend driving out to North Carolina and are now all set up to learn and play in a rented house for the next couple of weeks. Frank and I figured that if we are all already remote learning and working, we might as well do it from somewhere new! We just got in last night, but I can already tell that the change of scene and the chance to roam on the beach in will be good for everyone. Here’s our slightly crazy setup this morning….
It’s the low season here so most of our favorite restaurants are closed and we’ll be cooking lots of dinners in. And dinners will be as simple as they can be. Now, you guys know me and Tex Mex. My basic weeknight motto is, when in doubt, make tacos. (Or burrito bowls or taco casserole.)
Or put out some baked potatoes and taco toppings and let the everyone DIY their own dinner.
If I’m feeling a bit more organized in the morning, I’ll put everything in the slow cooker to simmer all day. Chicken with some salsa over top is a classic set-it-and-forget-it slow cooker meal, and this recipe is just a twist. Salsa Verde / Green Salsa gives the chicken a fresh tart flavor with some honey, lime juice, and chopped cilantro to brighten the flavors right at the end. I like to add corn and black beans for a bit more substance and flavor, but those are totally optional.
- Salsa Verde (green salsa) – Find this in the international aisle (or near the chips). Just like red salsa, salsa verde comes in different spice levels, so be sure to grab mild, medium, or hot based on your preference.
- Chicken Thighs – Chicken breast works just fine too.
- Cumin, Salt, Black Pepper – For seasoning.
- Honey, Cilantro, Lime Juice – Stir these and some more salsa verde into the finished dish to add bright, fresh flavor.
- Black Beans and Corn – These are totally optional. They add flavor and substance if you’re planning to use the chicken in enchiladas, quesadillas, or layered in a casserole. If you want to use the chicken in tacos or burritos, you might prefer just to skip the beans and corn so you can add other toppings later.
How to Make Green Salsa Chicken
- Cook chicken in the slow cooker with the first portion of green salsa and some seasoning on low for 4 to 5 hours. (This initial portion of green salsa will flavor the chicken and keep it moist while cooking.)
- Remove chicken and shred or chop. Drain all of the liquid / salsa verde out of the slow cooker.
- Return shredded chicken to the bowl of the slow cooker and stir in some more salsa verde, honey, cilantro, lime juice. Add black beans and corn if you’d like.
Why Add Salsa in Two Portions?
When making saucy slow cooker meals, like Salsa Chicken, it’s a good idea to use two portions of salsa. The first portion flavors the chicken as it cooks, but the flavors will become muted, especially if the chicken releases a lot of moisture. The second portion of salsa is stirred into the finished, shredded chicken to add back in lots of that fresh salsa flavor.
This is the same method I use with BBQ Pulled Chicken (slow cooker and Instant Pot).
More No-Prep Slow Cooker Meals
- Slow Cooker Hawaiian Chicken
- Slow Cooker Chicken Carnitas
- Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Soup
- Slow Cooker Taco Meat
- Slow Cooker Three Bean Taco Soup
- Slow Cooker Black Bean Soup
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Slow Cooker Green Salsa Chicken
- 4-quart or 6-quart Slow Cooker
- 1 1/4 cups Salsa Verde, divided
- 2 lbs Boneless, Skinless Chicken Thighs
- 1 tsp Kosher Salt
- 1/2 tsp Ground Cumin
- 1/4 tsp Black Pepper
- 2 Tbsp Honey
- 1 15 oz can Black Beans, drained and rinsed (see note)
- 1 cup Frozen Corn (see note)
- 2 Tbsp Cilantro, chopped (optional)
- 1 Tbsp Lime Juice
- In the bowl of a 4 or 6 quart slow cooker, pour 1 cup salsa. Add chicken on top, pressing them down to nestle in the salsa. Season the top of the chicken with salt, ground cumin, and black pepper.
- Cook on low for 4 to 5 hours (Note: it’s okay if the slow cooker switches to warm for another 3 to 4 hours after initial cook time.)
- Remove chicken from slow cooker and shred or chop. Drain any excess liquid from the slow cooker.
- Return shredded chicken to the slow cooker and combine with 1/4 cup salsa, honey, black beans, corn, cilantro, and lime juice.
- Taste and season with some additional salt and pepper, if needed. Leave the chicken in the slow cooker on the warm setting until ready to serve.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.
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