Salsa Chicken (Instant Pot, Slow Cooker, Oven, & Freezer Instructions)

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Salsa Chicken is one of those recipes that probably appears in some form on like every blog you read! Everyone has their own favorite ingredients, spice blend, and cooking method, resulting in about a million versions of this floating around the world wide web!

I don't claim that this is the best version out there, but it's MY favorite one, and I hope you love it too! Don't worry -- if you don't have an instant pot, you can make this in your slow cooker or even in the oven!

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The first version of this I ever made called for chicken, a jar of salsa, and a packet of store-bought taco seasoning! My neighbor in our NJ apartment building introduced me to it, and I was immediately won over by both the simplicity of it AND the delicious tacos it produced! Since then, I have made my own versions countless times! I also have a Green Chile Chicken version which features diced green chiles and green salsa (swooooon!).

My favorite thing about this recipe is that you can doctor it up however you want... feeling like black beans? Throw em in! Are you a huge cilantro fan? YES, add it. In more of a green salsa mood than red? Go green. Or get crazy and do halfsies. Add cayenne and jalapenos if you're feeling spicy. Change this baby to your heart's content and you will never get bored with Taco Tuesday!

Perfect in tacos, burrito bowls, scrambled eggs, over baked potatoes, and whatever else you can dream up.


Salsa Chicken

[Whole30 - Paleo - Gluten Free - Grain Free - Dairy Free]

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Ingredients:

3 lbs chicken (I recommend 1.5 lbs each of boneless skinless breasts and boneless skinless thighs)

1 16oz jar of salsa of your choice (I used ChiChi's Medium Cilantro)

1 Tbsp cumin

1 Tbsp chili powder

juice of 2 limes

 

Instructions:

Instant Pot

  1. Combine all ingredients in Instant Pot insert.
  2. Seal the Instant Pot and ensure the valve is set to "sealing."
  3. Set to high pressure, Manual setting, for 9 minutes (assuming you've used half breasts and half thighs) -- 8 min if you use all breasts, 10 min if you use all thighs!
  4. Manually release the steam (I always put a towel over the valve so chicken juice and salsa doesn't splatter everywhere).
  5. Shred chicken using two forks (or in your Kitchenaid mixer!), then re-combine with the salsa and juices in the crock pot.
  6. Serve with all the fixin's and enjoy!
     

Crock Pot

  1. Combine all ingredients in crock pot insert.
  2. Cook for 2-3 hours on high or 4-6 hours on low.
  3. Shred chicken using two forks (or in your Kitchenaid mixer!), then re-combine with the salsa and juices in the crock pot.
  4. Serve with all the fixin's and enjoy!


Oven

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. In a 9x13 cake pan or large casserole dish, add all ingredients.
  3. Bake for 25-30 minutes, then cut into the thickest piece of chicken you see to check if it has cooked through (or, if using a meat thermometer, you're looking for an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
  4. Remove from oven, shred chicken using two forks (or in your Kitchenaid mixer!), then re-combine with the salsa and juices in the casserole dish.
  5. Serve with all the fixin's and enjoy!


To Freeze & Cook Later

  1. Combine all ingredients in a gallon-sized zip top bag or plastic freezer safe container.
  2. Lay flat and freeze.
  3. When ready to cook, thaw overnight in refrigerator.
  4. Cook per method of your choice (above).
  5. Serve with all the fixin's and enjoy!
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