This two-ingredient slow cooker salsa chicken recipe is perfect for meal prep!
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Shredded slow cooker chicken MIGHT be one of the greatest meal prep inventions of all time. And this PARTICULAR crock pot chicken recipe needs just two ingredients: boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs, and a big ol’ scoop of your favorite salsa.
And, okay, to call this crock pot salsa chicken a “recipe” is probably a bit generous – more like “put two things in a bowl and wait for a slow cooker to do all the work” – but the real fun comes after the chicken is cooked and you get to work it into a bunch of different meals during the rest of the week. Personal favorites: Enchilada Lasagna, Cilantro Chicken Chopped Salad, Burrito Bowls, ALL OF THE TACOS.
How to serve this salsa chicken:
- Add a handful to tacos, fajitas, quesadillas, or burritos
- Make a burrito bowl or taco salad with shredded chicken, lettuce, cilantro, bell pepper, black beans, and corn.
- Toast a dinner roll or burger bun, top with a scoop of chicken, some fresh arugula, and a dollop of plain Greek yogurt or sour cream. Done aaaaaand delicious.
- Toss into your favorite mac and cheese!
Can you freeze this salsa chicken?
Yes – absolutely! Let chicken cool completely, and store in an airtight container in the freezer for 3-4 months without losing flavor. You can also store extra shredded chicken in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.
PLEASE NOTE: If you want to make shredded chicken with an Instant Pot, you WILL need liquid in the bowl to allow the pot to come to pressure. We recommend using the slow cooker setting if you’d like to use an Instant Pot here, or finding a recipe that has been specifically developed for the instant pot!
VIDEO: HOW TO MAKE SALSA SLOW COOKER CHICKEN (WITH FOUR VARIATIONS!)
An easy slow cooker salsa chicken recipe – perfect for meal prep and busy weeknights!
- 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 4 large chicken breasts)
- 1 cup of your favorite salsa
- Toss chicken and salsa together in a slow cooker.
- Cook on low for 6-8 hours until chicken is tender and cooked through.
- Remove lid and let chicken cool for 10 minutes or so before shredding (so we don’t burn ourselves!)
- Use two forks to shred the chicken right in the crockpot. The chicken will absorb any liquid in the pot as you shred it – no need to drain any of the liquid.
- Serve immediately or let chicken cool completely before transferring to airtight containers. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days or in the freezer for 3-4 months.
Chicken cuts: We use boneless, skinless chicken breasts in this recipe, but you can also use boneless skinless chicken thighs or bone-in chicken if you prefer. Always make sure your chicken is cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees for safety.
To scale this recipe for a crowd, use as many chicken breasts as you like – just plan to use about 1/4 cup of salsa per chicken breast. With more chicken, you may also have to extend the cook time – so keep an eye on it and make sure to test the internal temperature before serving.
Freezing and storing shredded chicken. This chicken will last 3-4 days in an airtight container in the fridge or 3-4 months in the freezer without losing flavor. You can freeze in portion sized helpings or a larger container – just remove the chicken to the fridge the day before you plan to use it so it can defrost.
In a hurry? Cook chicken on high heat (instead of low) for 3-4 hours. The chicken will typically be cooked through after 3 hours, but the additional hour of cooking time makes it much easier to shred.
Keywords: crockpot, meal planning, meal prep