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+ servings

Slow Cooker Creamy Southwest Chicken

10 minutes of prep time is all you need to make this Slow Cooker or Instant Pot Creamy Southwest Chicken. The creamy sauce is filled with spices and a bit of tangy lime.

Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Diet GlutenFreeDiet
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 6 hours
Total Time 6 hours 10 minutes
Servings 5 servings
Calories 379 kcal
Author Amy Rains


  • 1.5 lbs boneless chicken thighs or breasts
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 red bell peppers sliced
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1 tbsp arrowroot starch*
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 1/2 cup coconut cream or coconut milk full fat
  • Fresh cilantro to garnish
  • Salt and pepper to taste


For the Slow Cooker:

  1. Begin by heating a large skillet to medium high heat. Use a non-stick spray or olive oil to lightly grease the pan.
  2. In a small bowl, mix together all spices. Rub each chicken breast or thigh on both sides with rub. Place each piece of chicken on to the pan, and sear for 1-2 minutes per side (inside will be raw).
  3. Bring chicken to the slow cooker, top with chicken broth and lime juice. Place peppers on top of chicken. Cook on low for 4-6 hours or until chicken is very tender. Mix together arrowroot with water, and add to the chicken broth mixture, if your mixture is extra runny feel free to add in another tbsp of arrowroot. Also add in coconut cream or milk. Cook on low for another 15-20 minutes until mixture is thickened and creamy.
  4. Serve hot on top of vegetable noodles, rice, potatoes, or pasta.

For the Instant Pot:

  1. Select the saute function on your Instant Pot and let your pot get hot.
  2. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix together the spices. Rub the chicken with the spice mixture. Reserve any extra spices.
  3. Coat the bottom of your Instant Pot with oil, and add chicken. Cook chicken on each side for only a minute or 2, to seal in the spices. Select cancel.
  4. Place chicken broth, lime juice, any leftover spices, and peppers on top of the chicken. Secure the lid.
  5. Select manual, and cook on high pressure for 7 minutes. Once cooking is complete, use a quick release using a towel to cover the vent to prevent a mess. Make sure to completely let out the steam.
  6. Open the lid, pour in coconut cream or milk. Mix together the water and arrowroot starch, and add to thicken the sauce. If you want an even thicker sauce, add in another tbsp of arrowroot.
  7. Salt to taste, add in any additional lime juice for more flavor.
  8. Garnish with cilantro and serve over rice, cauliflower rice, vegetable noodles, or pasta.

Recipe Notes

*arrowroot starch is a thickening agent that can be found in most health food sections of your grocery store.
**Use only the full fat coconut cream or milk (can be found in the Asian section of your grocery store). If not following a dairy-free diet, half and half can be substituted.

Nutrition Facts
Slow Cooker Creamy Southwest Chicken
Amount Per Serving
Calories 379 Calories from Fat 252
% Daily Value*
Fat 28g43%
Saturated Fat 10g63%
Cholesterol 133mg44%
Sodium 775mg34%
Potassium 547mg16%
Carbohydrates 8g3%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 23g46%
Vitamin A 2600IU52%
Vitamin C 68.6mg83%
Calcium 32mg3%
Iron 2.7mg15%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.