Slow Cooker Cilantro Lime Chicken is a no-fail dinner recipe, great any night of the week. Tender, flavorful chicken is slow-cooked in a zingy, delicious sauce! Enjoy the juicy chicken with rice or shred it and wrap into a tortilla. All done in your slow cooker, so less effort and clean-up for you!
Do you know those recipes in your dinner rotation that never fail? Cilantro Lime Chicken made in the slow cooker is one of those recipes for me. It takes almost no time to prep this easy dinner and my crock pot does all the work! The end result is a spicy (feel free to keep it on the mild side, if you’d like!), flavorful meal with the most tender chicken my teeth have ever met.
The first time I made this meal I could not believe that my fork (no knife required!) was easily cutting into a piece of chicken like it was butter. No lie, it’s really that tender. (Recipe adapted from this one over at All Recipes.) Add this recipe to your dinner rotation pronto. I promise you’ll keep it around! This is a GREAT recipe, tried and tested approximately 9,000 times in our home.
HOW TO MAKE CILANTRO LIME CHICKEN
Aside from the ridiculously tender chicken, the ease of preparing Cilantro Lime Chicken is my favorite thing about this recipe. Follow these simple instructions for a delicious, no-fail, easy meal!
- In a slow cooker, mix together salsa, lime juice, cilantro, taco seasoning and jalapenos (if using). Add 6 boneless skinless chicken breasts and coat with the salsa mixture.
- Cook on low heat for 6 hours, or high heat for 3 hours (low and slow is definitely recommended). After the chicken is cooked, serve with rice and with salsa mixture spooned over top, or shred it and use as a taco filling!
- Grate lime zest over the top of the meal just before serving it. I love the flavor this tiny little step adds!
- The sauce in this recipe can also be used as a chicken marinade if you would rather grill chicken on a lovely summer day. Marinate the chicken for a minimum of 30 minutes and up to 24 hours. Cook for 6 minutes on each side, or until the breast is cooked in the centers.
- If you want to know exactly what is inside your taco seasoning, make your own! This is my go-to taco seasoning recipe and I never buy store-bought anymore.
- For a creamier sauce, add 1/4 cup sour cream to the sauce mixture before cooking.
- Add the chicken to the slow cooker in pieces rather than adding whole breasts so the meat will be ready to eat when time is up!
CAN I OMIT THE JALAPENO PEPPERS FROM THIS RECIPE?
Of course! There is plenty of room to turn up the heat on this recipe, if that’s your thing, and it it also easy enough to keep it on the mild side. Tailor it to your liking!
HOW TO CHOP JALAPENOS
Chop the jalapeno in half and remove the seeds, then you can dice or slice your jalapeno. However if you want more heat, then you can leave some seeds in. The heat from jalapenos is stored in the oil of the skin and the seeds so be sure to wear gloves!
HOW SHOULD I SERVE CILANTRO LIME CHICKEN?
Serve the chicken with the salsa mixture spooned over the top, all over a bed of white, brown or Spanish rice (or go no rice!). If you’re feeling crazy, throw a dollop of sour cream on top with some crushed tortilla chips and extra cilantro.
Or grab two forks and start shredding! Add the shredded chicken to a tortilla or turn it into a delicious taco salad. Don’t forget to spoon the sauce over the top. It is so bold and delicious. Sprinkle red pepper flakes over the top just before serving for an added zing!
OTHER USES FOR TACO SEASONING
If you have extra taco seasoning on hand and you want to use it up, here are some other recipe ideas to throw it into!
- Stir it into any creamy dip (yum).
- Really, you could add it to just about any meat-based meal to transform it into a tasty, spicy food. I’m thinking meatballs, burgers or even chicken.
- Use it as a rub on your next Rotisserie chicken or batch of ribs!
- Add it to salad dressing for an extra zing.
DELICIOUS USES FOR RICE
If you have extra rice hanging around your fridge after making this recipe, here are a few other ways to enjoy rice!
- Sprinkle in some chopped fresh cilantro and mix with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and juice from 1 lime. No need for Chipotle!
- Serve underneath a heaping scoop of Hoisin Chicken Rice Bowls, Orange Chicken or Mongolian Beef. DELISH!
- Serve alongside Instant Pot Chicken for the perfect complete meal.
- Add it to a skillet or wok, along with eggs, peas, carrots and soy sauce to create a delicious fried rice.
- Go simple and serve with a few pats of butter or olive oil. Stir until the butter has melted.
- Mix together with salsa, black beans, lime juice and chopped avocado. Add shredded chicken for a meaty dish!
WHAT TO SERVE AT A PARTY
I LOVE party food, so you have come to the right place if you are looking for recipes to make for your next gathering. Cilantro Lime Chicken is a great dish to bring to parties, but here are some other options for you that will be easy, delicious and crowd-pleasing!
- Fruit Pizza – The classic, crowd-pleasing Fruit Pizza has a cookie dough crust, dreamy cream cheese frosting and a colorful top layer of fruit and a tasty glaze. Great appetizer/dessert for parties of any kind, any time of the year!
- Taco Ranch Pasta Salad – This delicious pasta salad gets totally devoured at gatherings, no matter the season.
- Sausage Cheese Dip – Sausage Cheese Dip is easy to make (let your crockpot do the work for you!), cheesy, flavorful and totally irresistible! Serve as an appetizer at your next party and it won’t last long. Only 6 ingredients required for this delicious party food!
- 7-Layer Taco Dip – This is the best 7-Layer Taco Dip you’ll ever meet! It’s the perfect appetizer and party food and it is always the first thing to get devoured.
- Crockpot Meatballs – These require only a few ingredients with only a few minutes of prep. They are SO EASY to make, totally packed with delicious flavor and great for game-day parties or holidays. Let your slow cooker do all of the work for you!
- Spinach Artichoke Dip – This hot Spinach Artichoke Dip is a party staple! People always get excited about this dip and its so easy to make! It’s a filling, cheesy snack or appetizer that you can put on pita squares, crackers or chips. Let your slow cooker do all of the work for you!
BEST RECIPES TO MAKE IN A SLOW COOKER
Here are a few of my other favorite EASY crockpot creations! Enjoy, friends!
Enjoy this dinner favorite, my friends! Thank you for being here!
Slow Cooker Cilantro Lime Chicken
- Slow Cooker
- 24 oz medium salsa
- 1 lime juice
- 1/4 cup cilantro fresh, chopped
- 1.25 oz taco seasoning or 2 TBSP homemade taco seasoning
- 2 jalapeno peppers finely chopped (optional)
- 6 chicken breasts boneless, thawed
- In a slow cooker, mix together the salsa, lime juice, cilantro, taco seasoning and jalapenos (if using). Add the chicken and coat with the salsa mixture.
- Cook on Low heat for 6 hours, or High heat for 3 hours. Serve chicken with rice and with salsa mixture spooned over top, or shred and use as a taco filling!