This Salsa Chicken Stew is a great easy stew that can hit the spot on a cold day. I love the flavors of this one and that most of the ingredients I already usually have on hand. I love that it is Whole30, Paleo, gluten-free, dairy-free, and naturally egg-free and nut-free. Includes crockpot and instant pot variations!
This stew only takes 10 minutes to put together. I love how short and easy the prep time is! A great one to throw into the Instant Pot before piano lessons or a Zoom call and have ready by dinner time. Or, prep it in the morning in the slow cooker and have it waiting when you get home from work!
Shredding Chicken Hack
The chicken breast cook whole in this Salsa Chicken Stew. When the soup is done, you shred the chicken and put them back into the stew. But, I was so over shredding chicken with two forks.
The solution? Using your hand mixer or standing mixer! Place cooked chicken breasts into a bowl. Insert mixer blade(s) and cover the mixer with a towel. The towel helps prevent bits of chicken from flying onto your kitchen backsplash (person experience, haha!). Then, mix on a low-medium speed until shredded. Don’t over mix, or you will have tiny chicken bits. But, otherwise it’s the easiest way to shred chicken quickly! You can see a video of how to do this on Instagram here.
Tips and Tricks
- Adjust the heat level by adding mild, medium, or hot salsa — or your favorite Whole30-compatible hot sauce!
- Russet Potatoes or Sweet Potatoes both work great in this recipe. Experiment to discover your favorite flavor profile.
- Top with fresh cubed avocado and roasted pepitas to add a touch of creaminess and crunch.
I love a soup that is easy to make AND budget-friendly. And this Salsa Chicken Stew is exactly that! Because it is built around pantry staples, dried spices instead of fresh, and potatoes it is more affordable than many stews. The cost per serving for this stew is $1.61. See below for a breakdown of the cost per serving. Additionally, please note the disclaimer on the sourcing of my prices and ingredients.
Ingredients for Salsa Chicken Stew
- Boneless skinless chicken breast
- Ground Cumin
- Salt + Pepper
- Salsa – I use a red tomato-based picante type salsa, versus a pico de Gallo. Something basic like Pace Chunky Salsa is fine or most red salsas at Trader Joe’s. I don’t recommend a green salsa for this recipe.
- Minced Garlic
- Potatoes – We love this recipe with sweet potatoes! The flavor of the sweet potatoes mixes really nicely with this stew. And also, if you don’t love sweet potatoes, you can also use an equal amount of peeled and diced Russet potatoes.
- Red bell pepper – Freshly chopped or jarred both works great. I usually find the freshly chopped to be more affordable, but the jarred red pepper can be an easy pantry option.
Other Soups you May Love:
Salsa Chicken Stew (with InstantPot & Crockpot options)
- 2 lbs. boneless chicken breasts
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 1/2 cups chicken broth or bone broth
- 1 cup salsa
- 3 cloves minced garlic OR 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 lbs. potatoes, cut into 1" chunks We love orange-fleshed sweet potatoes, but can also use russet potatoes
- 1 cup red bell pepper, diced OR 1 cup jarred roasted red pepper
- 1/3 c. loosely packed fresh cilantro finely chopped
- Trim chicken breasts and cut into strips.
- In a small bowl, combine cumin, salt, pepper, paprika, broth, salsa, and garlic.
- On the bottom of a 5-6 quart slow cooker or large instant pot, place chopped potatoes. Place chicken and diced red pepper on top of potatoes and pour broth mixture over chicken.
- Cover slow cooker with lid and cook on low 8 hours or on high 4 hours. Or seal instant pot and cook on Stew for 25 minutes. Once done, manually release steam released if using instant pot, stir in cilantro and break up chicken as desired (we like large chunks, but shredded works too!). Serve and enjoy!
Also, if not on a Whole30, this pairs great with my Paleo Cornbread Muffins!