Crock Pot Ranchero Chicken Recipe

Yields: 4-6 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 4-5 hours on LOW or 2-3 hours on HIGH

Ingredients

Chicken:

  • 1.5 – 2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs

Veggies:

  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced (optional for a kick)

Flavor Base:

  • 1 (10 oz) can diced tomatoes and green chilies (like Rotel), undrained
  • 1 (15 oz) can tomato sauce
  • 1 (1 oz) packet taco seasoning
  • 1 (1 oz) packet dry ranch dressing mix

Liquid:

  • 1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • Garnishes (optional but delicious):
  • Chopped fresh cilantro
  • Shredded cheese (cheddar, Monterey Jack, or Mexican blend)
  • Sour cream
  • Diced avocado

Instructions

  • Prep the crock pot: Lightly spray the inside of your slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray.
  • Add ingredients: Place the chicken in the bottom of the crock pot. Top with the chopped onion, bell pepper, jalapeño (if using), diced tomatoes and green chilies, tomato sauce, taco seasoning, and ranch dressing mix. Pour the chicken broth over everything.
  • Cook: Cover and cook on LOW for 4-5 hours or on HIGH for 2-3 hours, or until the chicken is cooked through and shreds easily with a fork.
  • Shred the chicken: Remove the chicken from the crock pot and shred it using two forks. Return the shredded chicken to the sauce and stir to combine.
  • Season and serve: Taste and add additional salt, pepper, or spices as desired. Let cook an additional 15-20 minutes for flavors to fully blend. Serve hot with your desired toppings.

Serving Suggestions

  • Tacos: Use as a filling for soft or hard shell tacos.
  • Burritos: Roll in large flour tortillas with additional toppings.
  • Salads: Serve the chicken over a bed of greens.
  • Nachos: Pile the Ranchero chicken onto tortilla chips with cheese and other toppings.
  • Quesadillas: Use as filling with plenty of cheese

Tips

  • Make it spicier: Add more jalapeños or a pinch of cayenne pepper for extra heat.
  • Creamy version: Stir in a block of softened cream cheese during the last 30 minutes of cooking for creamy richness.
  • Storing leftovers: Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.

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