This spicy shredded chipotle chicken cooks in a crockpot for easy big batch meal prep! You can use it for sandwiches, tacos, salads, and more.Jump to Recipe
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We love a good, easy, hands-off recipe like this crockpot shredded chipotle chicken! There’s nothing better than a big batch protein you can use for virtually any meal – from sandwiches and wraps to tacos, burrito bowls, and salads – especially when it basically cooks itself. Made in a slow cooker, this spicy, saucy chicken recipe is perfect for meal prep.
Shredded Chipotle Chicken Recipe Ingredients
Our crockpot shredded chipotle chicken recipe is fairly straightforward. Here’s what you’ll need to make chipotle chicken at home:
- Chicken breast
- Vegetable oil
- Chipotles in adobo
- Fire roasted crushed tomatoes
- White onion
- Diced green chiles
- Lime juice
- Chipotle powder
We recommend using fresh chicken breast for this recipe, not frozen. Since this shredded chipotle chicken cooks in the slow cooker, any juices or excess liquid from the chicken makes its way into the sauce. We’ve found that with frozen chicken, the sauce becomes too watery during cooking – even if you defrost the chicken ahead of time – and the chicken loses some of its tenderness.
The fire roasted crushed tomatoes give our chipotle chicken an extra spicy kick. If you want to cut down on the heat in this recipe, opt for regular crushed tomatoes instead.
How To Make Crockpot Chipotle Chicken
Slow cooker recipes are the best because you can easily make a big batch of food with very little effort. All you need to make our shredded chipotle chicken is a blender, a large crock pot (5-qt or bigger), and about 10 minutes of hands-on time.
Here’s how to make chipotle chicken in a crock pot:
- Remove the canned chipotles from the adobo sauce and roughly chop them. Then, add them to a blender along with the rest of the adobo sauce.
- Add crushed tomatoes, onion, diced green chiles, lime juice, garlic, salt, and chipotle powder to the blender. Blend until smooth, about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Next, add a thin layer of vegetable oil to the slow cooker (aim for about an eighth-inch of oil). Lay the chicken breast flat on the bottom of the slow cooker.
- Pour the sauce from the blender over the chicken. Cover the slow cooker and cook on HIGH for about 4 hours, or until the chicken is tender.
- Remove the chicken from the sauce and shred with two forks. Return the shredded meat to the crockpot, stirring it back into the sauce until combined.
- Keep warm until ready to serve, or let cool and store in the fridge for later.
It’s important to chop the chipotles before adding them to the blender – they have tough skin and most blenders don’t do a great job of breaking them up. We like to chop them crosswise so that they’re roughly diced.
Crockpot temperatures vary, so keep an eye on your chicken the first time you make this recipe. We highly recommend having a digital meat thermometer like this one handy so you can easily check if the chicken is done cooking.
Crockpot Chipotle Chicken Serving Suggestions
There are so many ways you can serve this shredded chipotle chicken throughout the week:
- Make chipotle chicken sandwiches or wraps with pepper jack cheese and red onion
- Use it in our chipotle chicken melt panini recipe
- Add it to a salad for extra protein
- Serve it in a burrito bowl with rice, beans, peppers, and tomatoes
- Enjoy it over brown rice for a healthy high-protein lunch
- Make chipotle chicken tacos with refried black beans and guacamole
- Add it to these loaded sheet pan nachos for a fun game day snack
- Use it to make a restaurant style quesadilla with cheese, peppers, and onions
Storing & Reheating Shredded Chipotle Chicken
This big batch recipe is perfect for Sunday meal prep – you can make a ton of shredded chipotle chicken and store it away for easy reheating throughout the week.
Store shredded chipotle chicken in the sauce in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Reheat single servings in the microwave for about 1 minute, stirring halfway through, or in a frying pan over medium heat for about 5 minutes.
This saucy chipotle chicken also tastes great cold! Add it to a sub roll or multigrain bread with cheese and red onion for a delicious, easy chipotle chicken sandwich you can take on the go.
Try our recipe for crockpot shredded chipotle chicken and let us know what you think by leaving a rating and a comment. If you love this recipe, check out our other easy slow cooker meals here!
Love this recipe? You may enjoy these recipes, too:
- Slow Cooker Chicken Tinga
- Slow Cooker Chicken Parm (Gluten-Free)
- Chicken Tinga Tostadas
- Salsa Marinated Chicken
- Slow Cooker Carnitas
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Crockpot Shredded Chipotle Chicken
- 7 oz canned chipotles in adobo
- 14.5 oz canned fire roasted crushed tomatoes
- 1 medium white onion quartered
- 4 oz canned diced green chiles
- 1 tbsp lime juice
- 1 tsp minced garlic
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp chipotle powder
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 2 lb chicken breast
- First, remove the chipotles from the adobo sauce and roughly dice them. Then, add them to the blender with the adobo sauce.
- Add the crushed tomatoes, onion, green chiles, lime juice, garlic, salt, and chipotle powder to the blender. Blend until smooth, about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Next, add a thin layer of vegetable oil to the crockpot (aim for about an eighth-inch of oil). Lay the chicken breast flat in the bottom of the crockpot in the oil, then pour the sauce from the blender over the chicken.
- Cover the crockpot and cook on HIGH for about 4 hours, or until the chicken is tender.
- Remove the chicken from the crockpot and shred with two forks. Return the shredded chicken to the crockpot, stirring it back into the sauce until combined.
- Keep warm until ready to serve, or let cool and store in the fridge for up to 5 days.