Love this easy flavorful recipe that cooks up slowly in the crockpot and yields tender, delicious chicken. You can serve the chicken over Spanish rice or cilantro rice or fill your tacos with this tender chicken. You can customize the heat in this recipe by using spicy or mild salsa and the heat in the seasonings. If you are going the taco route, serve with some fresh guacamole and a black bean corn salad for a delicious meal. You’ll love the smell in your kitchen as the slow cooker does all the work!

This tender chicken is perfect in tacos!
Chicken after 6 hours in the slow cooker

Serves 6


  • 3 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 jalapeño, finely diced
  • 1 cup favorite salsa
  • 1 14.5 oz. can rotel
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder (I love Trader Joe’s chili lime spice)
  • Kosher salt and pepper
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons dry oregano
  • 3 -4 teaspoons favorite taco seasoning
  • 4 teaspoons liquid smoke (optional)
  • 1 cup diced tomato for serving
  • Fresh squeezed lime juice for serving
  • Fresh cilantro, for serving


Pat chicken dry with paper towel and season generously with salt and pepper. If your crockpot has stovetop capacity, place it on medium heat and heat oil and sear thighs on either side for about 4 minutes a side until golden. Alternatively, you can do this in a heavy bottom skillet and transfer chicken to slow cooker. Repeat this process in batches as needed so as not to overcrowd chicken. Add remaining ingredients to crockpot and adjust settings to low and allow to simmer for about 6 hours. Once cooked add fresh lime juice.

Once cooked, shred chicken with two forks. Serve chicken and sauce over rice or with tortillas. Armistice with chopped tomato and fresh cilantro and enjoy!