Chili’s Chicken Enchilada Soup (Copycat)

Chili’s Chicken Enchilada Soup copycat is creamy, rich, slightly spicy and thick blended together and topped with chunks of chicken breast meat.

Chili's Chicken Enchilada Soup copycat is creamy, rich, slightly spicy and thick blended together and topped with chunks of chicken breast meat.
 Chili’s Chicken Enchilada Soup

Chicken Enchilada Soup is a delicious, easy soup make with some fun and unique ingredients you’ll love! Unlike most Mexican soups this one doesn’t have a whole bunch of vegetables inside.

In fact the only one in there, onions, sort of disappear into the soup as it cooks. It also has a deliciously thick texture that is from something called masa harina.

I have a bag of masa harina I love using for a bunch of different recipes, but the use of it in this recipe to thicken the soup is a less expensive and easier way compared to the boiling of ground corn tortillas that more authentic enchilada soups use.

If you can’d find the masa harina or if you have corn tortillas and want to use them up, add them to your food processor and process them as finely as you can. They will break down fully in the soup.

What is masa harina? Masa harina is made from dried corn which is soaked in lime and water before being ground into flour. It’s commonly used in the making of tortillas.

First things first, the original version of the recipe calls for masa harina, which can be difficult to find if you don’t have any ethnic grocers nearby. I buy this one at my local store but a good online version is this one although admittedly more expensive.

The best copycat Chili's Chicken Enchilada Soup.

Some tips for making this easy enchilada soup:

  • The original calls for Velveeta but I just don’t use Velveeta as a rule (My only processed cheese habits are Cheez Whiz for Philly Cheesesteaks).
  • I use Better than Bouillon instead of chicken stock and amp up the flavor using more than it calls for on the label. This is an easy way to deepen the flavor of your soup.

Slow Cooker Chicken Enchilada Soup Recipe:

Add in all the soup ingredients except for the cream cheese and cheddar cheese. Mix really well and cook on low for 7-8 hours (High for 3-4 hours). In the last hour add in the cream cheese, cheddar cheese and stir well. Serve with the toppings as instructed in the recipe below.

Looking for more soups?

Chili's Chicken Enchilada Soup in one pot in less than an hour. You'll never order it at the restaurant again.

Tools used in the making of this Chili’s Chicken Enchilada Soup:
Chicken Base: I almost never buy boxes of broth because I keep the beef, chicken and vegetable version of this Better Than Bouillon.
Dutch Oven: Great for soups or braised meats and the lid is actually a frying pan.

Pin this recipe now to remember it later

Pin Recipe

Chili's Chicken Enchilada Soup (Copycat)

Chili's Chicken Enchilada Soup copycat is creamy, rich, slightly spicy and thick blended together and topped with chunks of chicken breast meat.
Yield 8 Servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Course Soup
Cuisine American/Mexican
Author Sabrina Snyder

Ingredients
 

CHICKEN ENCHILADA SOUP

  • 1 pound chicken breasts boneless skinless and cut into 1? chunks
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt divided
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 3/4 yellow onion diced (the rest of the onion goes to the topping)
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 garlic clove minced
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup masa harina
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups enchilada sauce or one 12 ounce can
  • 8 ounces cream cheese cheese cut into small cubes
  • 8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese

TOPPINGS

  • 2 roma tomatoes diced
  • 1/4 yellow onion diced
  • 1/2 jalapeno deseeded, deveined and minced
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 pinch coarse ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup cotija cheese crumbles

Instructions

  • In a large dutch oven add the canola oil over medium high heat.
  • Add half the kosher salt to the chicken pieces and add them to the dutch oven.
  • Cook the chicken 3-4 minutes on each side, until just cooked through.
  • Remove the chicken and add in the onions and garlic and lower the heat to medium.
  • Add in the spices and cook for 3-4 minutes until translucent.
  • Add in the chicken broth and whisk.
  • In a large bowl add the masa harina to the water and whisk it together well.
  • Add it into the dutch oven along with the enchilada sauce.
  • Add the chicken back in. Stir well and let simmer for 30-40 minutes on low heat.
  • Add in the cream cheese and cheddar cheese and stir well until melted.
  • Add the topping ingredients, except for the cotija cheese into a bowl together and stir.
  • Top the soup with some of the tomato mixture and some crumbled cheese.

Notes

Adapted from Top Secret Recipes.

Nutrition

Calories: 405kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 101mg | Sodium: 1545mg | Potassium: 474mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 1280IU | Vitamin C: 14.3mg | Calcium: 295mg | Iron: 2.4mg
Keyword: Chili’s Chicken Enchilada Soup (Copycat)
The best copycat Chili's Chicken Enchilada Soup.
Chili's Chicken Enchilada Soup in one pot in less than an hour. You'll never order it at the restaurant again.

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the upcoming cookbook: Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients which is being published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.

Categories

Leave a comment & rating

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Comments

  1. This is AMAZING! I added 20oz of enchilada sauce and it is so close to Chili’s I’m blown away. Only toppings we used were cheese & tortilla strips.

  2. I live in a small town in Canada and was not sure if I could find any so I even made the enchilada sauce.

    I added a bit too much cheddar cheese as the soup was very thick. But nothing a bit of water could not fix.

    I left the cream cheese on the counter for a few hours to soft up. No problems blending it it.

    Served with some crushed nacho chips on top.

    Family Loved it!!

  3. I am Mexican-American, but I was looking for a “gringo style” enchilada soup and found this recipe.
    It’s pretty good!
    I was hesitant to add 8 oz of cream cheese, but it added a great creamy texture. (I microwaved it for 1 minute to make sure it blended into the soup.)
    I made my own enchilada sauce from scratch.
    Very good and simple.
    Thank you.

  4. Absolutely NO flavor! I tried increasing the spices and even added a can of rotel. It did not help. Will have to keep looking.

  5. Nailed it!
    I made this as is, the only change was that I used a little more chicken as we were having it as the main dish and I wanted there to be enough chicken. To those saying that the cream cheese didn’t melt, make sure you don’t use LIGHT cream cheese or it will never melt. That goes for any recipe.
    I also melted it a little in the microwave before adding it and that helped it go in smoother faster.

    To the person who says 8 cups of liquid is too much, I think they may have forgot to add the Masa, as it’s a very thick soup using the 4 cups water, 4 cups broth and 1 cup Masa.

    As a shortcut for the toppings, you can use store bought pico de gallo if you prefer.

    Definitely making again!!

  6. The only things I changed (based on comments) was to double the cumin and chili powder, instead of 8 oz of cream cheese, I used 4 oz cream cheese and 4 oz of velvetta. I only gave it four stars, not because of flavour, but I also found the 4 oz’s of cream cheese did not blend. I had it at room temperature as per comments, however, it still remained pebble like. The flavour is spot on. My family loved it and I will definitely do this again!

  7. Awesome job on the Enchilada soup recipe, you really can’t tell the difference. I worked at Chili’s for 17 years, from a cook to a manager. You nailed it girl.
    Chili’s Chicken Fajitas used to be unbelievable, however they went away from their marinated chicken to a boring all white chicken with almost no seasoning. Back in the 1990’s all chicken that came into the restaurant a ass premeditated. From time to time we had to make our own marinade for the chicken. I use it all the time to make Monterrey Chicken and Mushroom Jack Fajitas. If you want to create some more awesome copycat recipes, hit me back. These are staples in our home and I like to share

    1. I would like to know what seasoning or marinade you put on your mushroom jack fajitas. I used to love them. But now their different.

  8. I found Sabrina’s recipes and have enjoyed making the as are very
    easy to make and the instructions are perfect.

  9. Can anyone scope out the ingredients in the powdered Chili’s seasoning on their chicken bacon ranch enchiladas? We got some served on the side with this order and so good on eggs and …everything! More than just chili powder. Thanks. Love this soup recipe too, can’t wait to try.

      1. hi! if making in the slow cooker – do I cook or brown the chicken at all before putting it in, or does it go in raw? Thanks!

  10. It was delicious. I could have added the whole de-seeded jalapeno though. My mods: I used leftover shredded rotisserie chicken, 4 cups of chicken stock (base version), added only 1 1/2 cup of plain water, 2 cloves (instead of 1) of garlic, a can of black beans, some roasted corn and an extra tbs of chili powder (whoops).

    I had problems getting the cold cream cheese to melt fully, but I’m sure if you nuke it in the microwave (not with the foil) for 30 seconds or so, it would have melted easier.

    BTW- I had to look up masa harina, and it seems to be plain corn meal.

    1. I’m so glad you enjoyed it! I think freezing the soup might change the texture because of the cheeses in it. It may separate upon thawing. I wouldn’t recommend it.

      1. I actually did freeze it. I put it in a crockpot at work on high until it thawed and then on low for about 2 hours. I just stirred several times. Once it gets up to temp, it comes together beautifully and all of my coworkers loved it.

  11. I thought this was way too much liquid for 1 pound of chicken! I made it exactly like the recipe called and it was a little bland and the consistency was too thin. 4 cups chicken broth, 4 cups water, 1 1/2 cup enchilada sauce, just made it too thin. I will make it again, but I’m going to reduce the water amounts by at least two cups! If it starts to thicken too much or the flavors are too strong, I will thin it with chicken broth.

  12. This is easy to follow and DELICIOUS! Thank you for sharing this. My family really enjoys when I make this and so we eat it fairly often 🙂

  13. Yummmm!!!
    First off…I didnt have ALL the ingredients needed to make this soup, but I was TOTALLY craving Chili’s Chicken Enchilada soup! SO….I improvised. It was SO good, I practically had a religious experience! Lol. I cut up a rotisserie chicken from Costco and set it aside. Then I sauteed what little fresh onion I had with some dehydrated onion, and added some garlic and parsley paste along with dried cilantro and Cuban seasoning along with the chili powder and cumin. I added the chicken, and about 1/4 of a cube of cream (cheese) all I had and a cup of sour cream, enxhilada sauce, and the chicken stock made with Better than Boullion. I didn’t have Masa Harina, so I took some Fritos and corn chips, added a bit of corn starch, and ground them up in the food processor, and added them in to the soup mixture. I was literally just sort of tossing things in at this point, not really measuring anything. I let it simmer for a bit and then added the cheddar. It was heavenly. It smelled so good, we couldn’t even wait for it to cook and simmer! We just dove right in. It was perfect! Tastes very much like Chili ‘s version, and is FILLING! Is the perfect level of spice, and makes a considerable amount of soup…..enough to feed a family of 4 adult eaters.

  14. I followed the recipe using exact measurements, and was shocked at how bland and tasteless it was. The cream cheese never completely blended and looked like little pebbles, even after I followed your advice from another post and cut it into small cubes before adding it to the pot, stirring with a whisk. So it was pizza night for us, and about $10 worth of ingredients went down the disposal.

    1. I’m so sorry. It sounds like your cream cheese was too cold when you added it and that didn’t allow it to breakdown and mix properly.

  15. I can’t believe people still use canola oil. Don’t you know that it is poisonous?? All normal vegetable oils are bad but canola is the worst. Use coconut oil instead.

    1. You’d have to drink canola oil in massive quantities (think multiple 55 gallon drums) for it (the “Poison” you are referring to) to even make you sick. Quit spreading rumors without facts to back them up. You’ll be fine using any oil you want. But so you know, coconut oil is in fact a worse choice than canola oil in any recipe as it contains MASSIVE amounts of saturated fat, more than even butter!

  16. This soup is delicious! I accidentally use the hot version of enchilada sauce and it was too spicy, but other than that it was great.

  17. Very flavorful and its a thicker soup that can suffice as a meal. I couldn’t find masa harina so I substituted corn flour but it made for a grittier texture. Still delicious but try to find the real stuff if possible!

  18. Does this recipe use Cheez Wiz or Velveeta?
    It states the original recipe uses Velveeta, but neither cheese is listed on the actual recipe.

    1. I didn’t use either for this recipe. I used cream cheese and sharp cheddar instead of Velveeta. I hope you enjoy it!

      1. Can you replace velveeta cheese with cheese whiz? Do they taste the same? It’s hard to find velveeta in Canada…

  19. There’s no mention of what stage I add the chicken back into the mixture. I added it before the simmering stage, but wanted to know for sure. Thanks!

    1. So sorry about that! Must have had a glitch in the recipe card.
      You’ll want to add the garlic in with the onions.

  20. I had trouble getting the cream cheese to completely melt. Any ideas as to why? I cooked in slow cooker and had on high for the last hour. Still was very good.

    1. Hmm, maybe they needed to be cut into smaller cubes to fully melt. Glad to hear it was still very good!

    2. I had the same issue also in the crockpot. And I did cut it in small chunks. I’m gonna try it in the stove next time and I’ll see if it’s better.

    1. This was delicious & tastes just like the soup at Chili’s, loved it! The mass harina didn’t dissolve all the way & was a little grainy. Followed the recipe with 4 cups water & 1 cup masa combined first before going in the main pot so not sure where I went wrong. Any pointers? I will most definitely be adding this to my favorites list! Thanks so much for posting this!

  21. I have made it twice and will again this week for guests. It is now my favorite soup, knocking down chicken tortilla to second place.

    1. Made exactly as suggested with the exception that I had to use corn tortillas. All I can say is WOW. All my family loved it. I made a double batch and I do not use this statement lightly. If made correctly you will lick the bowl when done. Thank you so much for the work putting this together. Easily five stars. Use quality ingredients and a quality product will emerge. Also the enchilada sauce is a keeper as well.

  22. The article calls for Cheese Wiz, but the directions do not say anything about cheese Wiz. What do I do??

    1. I was just stating that the original calls for Velveeta but I don’t use Velveeta as a rule. I do use Cheez Whiz for Philly Cheesesteaks (another recipe). Sorry for the confusion.

    1. Putting it in a slow cooker will be fine. Just add in all the soup ingredients except for the cream cheese and cheddar cheese. Mix really well and cook on low for 7-8 hours (High for 3-4 hours). In the last hour add in the cream cheese, cheddar cheese and stir well. Serve with the toppings as instructed in the recipe. I hope you enjoy it!

  23. I love eating at Chili’s and I’m all for anything comforting this time of year!  Thanks for another great copycat!