Last Updated on October 6, 2021 by Anne-Marie
This easy slow cooker Mexican shredded chicken recipe is perfect for a busy weeknight dinner. Use shredded chicken in tacos, burritos, or bowls.
Why this recipe works
Slow cooker Mexican shredded chicken is a terrific dish for entertaining since it's super simple to make.
You also have the option of preparing it the night before, the morning of, or four hours before your party or that night's dinner.
How to cook Slow Cooker Mexican Shredded Chicken
This Mexican shredded chicken dish has great flavor. It'll soon become one of your favorite recipes!
1. Prepare your crock. You can spray it with cooking spray so nothing sticks.
Or line it with a slow cooker liner for easy clean-up. They're such a time saver!
2. Place the skinless chicken breasts at the bottom of the crock.
Can you use boneless skinless chicken thighs? Sure! While not as lean, they'll work just as well.
3. Pour the cans of RO*TEL tomatoes, crushed pineapple with juice, drained corn, drained and rinsed black beans, and salt on top of the chicken breasts.
4. Using a large spoon, carefully mix ingredients together. Make sure to leave the chicken on the bottom.
You can also mix the tomatoes, pineapple, beans, etc. in a small bowl and pour it on top of the chicken. But this way, you don't have an extra dish to wash.
5. Cook on High for 4 to 6 hours or on Low for 6 to 8 hours. Use whatever cooking time works for your dinner or party plans.
6. While the chicken cooks, prepare your rice and toppings.
7. When the chicken is cooked through, remove all the ingredients from the slow cooker. Strain the liquid from the crock and set it aside for later use.
8. Shred chicken with a fork. Place everything back into the slow cooker and mix thoroughly.
9. Taste the chicken. If it seems dry, add some of the liquid you set aside. Taste again until you're satisfied. Toss any remaining liquid.
10. Serve with toppings. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Can I prepare this the night before?
Sure! You can put all the ingredients together in your crockpot. Cover and place it in the refrigerator.
Depending on when you need to have it done for dinner or a party, you can start cooking it first thing in the morning or not until the afternoon.
Tips for making slow cooker shredded chicken
Slow cooker size: This Slow Cooker Mexican Shredded Chicken recipe requires a six-quart slow cooker and has just enough room to spare.
If you don't have a six-quart slow cooker, I suggest dividing the food evenly into two smaller slow cookers.
Diced tomatoes: I specified RO*TEL Hot Diced Tomatoes and Habaneros and RO*TEL Mexican Style Diced Tomatoes with Lime Juice and Cilantro.
You can substitute a store brand of mild diced tomatoes with green chilies for the hot diced tomatoes if you'd like a little less heat or can't find these types of RO*TEL.
Rice: Make brown rice in a rice cooker. That way it can stay warm throughout your party or dinner when serving this recipe for shredded Mexican chicken.
If you're not into brown rice, using white rice in this recipe is OK, too.
Serving suggestions for slow cooker Mexican chicken
Normally, slow cooker shredded Mexican chicken can be served as a shredded chicken burrito recipe or an easy shredded chicken taco recipe.
Just put out taco shells, soft tacos, or large tortillas for burritos. Include your favorite salsa and other toppings. It's a fun dish for Cinco de Mayo or summer parties.
However, I find that tacos and burritos can be a bit messy, especially when people are trying to mingle or watch a game on TV.
Instead, I love serving this as brown rice burrito bowls. Just layer the rice, the crockpot Mexican chicken, then all the toppings.
What type of toppings should you serve with Mexican chicken?
After adding the chicken and brown rice, you add your favorite toppings such as:
- Mexican style shredded cheese
- sliced or diced avocado
- chopped onion
- green chilies
- a dollop of sour cream or Greek yogurt
- taco sauce
- homemade salsa
- Mexican hot sauce
Then add a few squeezes of fresh lemon or lime juice.
How to use leftover shredded slow cooker chicken
Leftover crockpot Mexican shredded chicken can be served in sandwich wraps.
Or mix in a little mayo and served it as an easy chicken salad sandwich.
Finally, you can always use it to make chicken tacos! Serve them with cilantro lime rice or restaurant-style Quick Mexican Rice Recipe, and refried beans.
Can I freeze shredded Mexican chicken?
Of course, you can! Use a freezer-safe container that you can label and date.
Thaw the frozen slow cooker Mexican chicken in the refrigerator and reheat in the microwave.
More chicken recipes for dinner
There's nothing better than chicken for dinner! Check out these easy chicken recipes:
Got an Instant Pot? Then try these pressure cooker recipes:
- Easy Instant Pot Chicken Thighs Recipe with Honey Garlic Sauce
- Instant Pot Whole Chicken Recipe
- Instant Pot Orange Chicken Recipe
- Instant Pot Pulled BBQ Chicken
More slow cooker chicken recipes
Looking for another chicken crock-pot slow cooker recipe? You'll love this Crockpot BBQ Chicken Recipe!
Serve Slow Cooker Buffalo Chicken Sliders at parties. Kids also love sliders for dinner.
Love shredded chicken? Try this Crock Pot Crack Chicken Recipe on hamburger buns or low-carb wraps.
Check out this Slow Cooker Chicken Adobo Recipe with Quinoa, too. You can also serve the chicken adobo on rice.
- Cooking spray or liners
- 5 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 2 10-ounce cans RO*TEL Mexican Style Diced Tomatoes with Lime Juice and Cilantro
- 2 10-ounce cans RO*TEL Hot Diced Tomatoes and Habaneros
- 1 20-ounce can crushed pineapple with 100% juice
- 2 15.25-ounce cans sweet golden whole kernel corn, drained
- 2 15-ounce cans black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 tablespoon sea salt
For serving as Mexican shredded chicken bowls
- Brown rice
- Mexican style shredded cheese
- avocado, sliced
- hot sauce
- onions, chopped
- lemon and limes, sliced
- Spray the inside of the crock with cooking spray. Or line with a slow cooker liner. Place the chicken breasts at the bottom of the crock.
- Place the RO*TEL tomatoes, crushed pineapple with juice, drained corn, drained and rinsed black beans, and sea salt on top of chicken breasts. Using a large spoon, carefully mix ingredients except for the chicken, which should be left on the bottom.
- Cover and place on High for 4 to 6 hours or on Low for 6 to 8 hours.
- An hour before the chicken will be ready, make enough rice to serve 10-12 people.
- When chicken is easily shredded with a fork, remove all ingredients with tongs and a slotted spoon. There will a lot of liquid in the crock, so you'll need to strain it. Set the liquid aside temporarily.
- Shred the chicken with a fork and place all the food back into the slow cooker. Mix all the ingredients until they're thoroughly incorporated. Place your slow cooker on the low heat setting, if it has one. If not, turn it off and unplug it.
- Taste the shredded Mexican chicken. If it's dry, add back some of the liquid you removed and taste again until you're satisfied. Toss any remaining liquid.
- To serve, place brown rice in a bowl, put some of the shredded chicken on top, then add toppings such as shredded cheese, avocado, chopped onion, hot sauce, and a squeeze of lemon or lime. Enjoy!
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 517Total Fat: 11gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 163mgSodium: 819mgCarbohydrates: 37gFiber: 10gSugar: 13gProtein: 67g
Nutritional information is automatically calculated per the ingredients list. Serving size may not be accurate. Please double-check with your preferred nutritional app for the most accurate information.