Green chile chicken enchilada soup is savory, mildly spicy and packed with flavor. It's so easy to make in a slow cooker - and so pretty with all the toppings - that you'll want to mix up a batch for a party or just for the family at home.
Can soup work as a toddler food?
In this case, yes! This is one of my grandson’s favorite meals at 16 months old. He is still mostly self-feeding - I mean with fingers, not fork. So foods can’t be too soft or he will reject the texture. He doesn’t always like chicken, either.
He very enthusiastically eats the beans and chunks of chicken from this soup, though. The enchilada sauce or green salsa give lots of flavor without making it too spicy for him. The individual beans are manageable but not mushy. And everybody else in the family just enjoys the meal as a soup with lots of toppings.
The toddler version of the soup is quite simple as you can see below, though we usually serve it to him with less broth.
What is an enchilada, anyway?
According to Wikipedia, an enchilada is a corn tortilla rolled around a filling and covered with a savory sauce. Clearly this isn't that! Even in my Green-Chile Enchilada Casserole I've gotten too lazy to roll the enchiladas, but layer them instead.
In soup recipes like this one, the filling and sauce have become the soup, and the tortillas have become optional. This recipe is very similar to my delicious tortilla soup, but grain-free. It's naturally gluten-free, thickened by the starch from the black beans.
I want to thank my blogger friend Morgan at Just What We Eat for the inspiration for this recipe. Every recipe she publishes just looks scrumptious and since they are all gluten-free I rarely need to make changes.
I couldn’t resist making a couple of tweaks, of course, which were to:
- Use the Instant Pot rather than my crock pot (because I wanted the saute feature)
- Double the quantity of beans
- Because I forgot Enchilada sauce at the store, use green chile salsa - a great accident! I just happened to have Safeway's salsa but if I'd planned it in advance I would use Frontera Gourmet (see my Amazon links!).
The Instant Pot is perfect for cooking beans
Being able to cook my own beans was one reason I invested in an Instant Pot. I buy my beans in bulk and cook them before adding them to a chosen a recipe. Especially with chickpeas, it's great!
If you haven't tried cooking beans with your Instant Pot, see the note below for simple directions for black beans.
Using the Instant Pot as a slow cooker
Some cooks consider using the Instant Pot as a slow cooker a bit of a waste of technology. However, with the IP you have the saute feature, which means you don't need a separate pan to slightly brown your onions and garlic. Sauteing the onions and garlic for a dish develops so much flavor compared to stirring them into the pot raw!
Once the soup is finished and you have ladled it into bowls, the adults can garnish to their heart's content.
What toppings work best on Green Chile Chicken Enchilada Soup?
Standard toppings are tomatoes, fresh feta (dairy or non), and avocado at least. I sometimes add the cilantro myself and sometimes place it on the table - I understand it tastes soapy to some people, so I leave it on the side if we are having guests.
And we also enjoyed it with chia-flax corn chips - so not grain-free for those eaters. Yum!
I shared this recipe on the Grand Social Link Party #411 at Grandma's Briefs!
Did you make this recipe? Leave me a comment below and share your impressions!
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Slow Cooker Green Chile Chicken Enchilada Soup – Gluten Free
- 2 teaspoons coconut oil
- 1 medium red onion chopped
- 2-3 cloves of garlic minced
- 8-10 ounces medium green chile salsa or 1 15-ounce can green Enchilada Sauce
- 2 15- ounce cans black beans or 2 cups dry black beans, cooked, see note
- 1 14- ounce can diced tomatoes
- 4 ounces mild diced green chiles optional if you use the salsa rather than sauce
- 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
- 1 small lime juiced
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 2 teaspoons ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 ½ pounds of chicken breast
- Using the saute setting, heat the coconut oil in the Instant Pot.
- Add the onions and cook for 3 to 4 minutes until coated with oil and slightly golden.
- Stir in the garlic and saute briefly, just until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Add all of the remaining ingredients except the chicken and stir to combine.
- Place the chicken breasts gently into the mixture until they are just covered.
- Slow-cook on medium for 5½ hours until chicken is cooked all the way through but still tender.
- Remove chicken to a plate.
- Pull chicken into shreds or chunks with two forks and return it to the soup. Stir and adjust the seasonings.
- We like to heat the soup for ten minutes or so more to let the seasonings "settle" into the soup and check again.
- Then serve with your favorite toppings, such as chopped tomatoes, avocados, feta cheese and cilantro. Include chips for crunch.
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