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Slow Cooker Beef Enchilada Soup

It’s no surprise that we love Mexican flavors over here and beef enchilada soup is one of my favorite ways to satisfy enchilada cravings in a lightened-up version! Add enchilada sauce, ground beef, and veggies to the slow cooker for a delicious, creamy soup that works with all the toppings.

Beef enchilada soup in metal bowl topped with chopped cilantro

Versatile soups like this are favorites in my family. We love to each customize our own bowls full of traditional toppings (sour cream, avocado, cheese, etc.), and it’s so easy to heat up the leftovers throughout the week. Plus, adding cream cheese makes the perfect creamy base that will entice even the “no-soup” eaters!

What’s To Love About Beef Enchilada Soup

Instead of the heaviness of a traditional enchilada plate, this soup leaves you feeling full, but not totally stuffed with tortillas, cheese, and all the fixings! As a lighter, more customizable option, it works well for serving the whole family any day of the week.

Also, this recipe is SO simple. Brown the ground beef right before cooking or anytime in advance and toss everything in the slow cooker! Typically, making enchiladas from scratch requires some time for prep and assembly, and this soup alleviates that for a simple meal where the slow cooker does the work for you.

You’ll love that you can adjust the spice or the amount of veggies for this soup as much as you like. And, if you keep some cooked ground beef in your freezer, you can prep beef enchilada soup on a busy morning and let it simmer away in your slow cooker until dinner.

Ingredients Needed 

You probably have most of these ingredients in your pantry already, and if not, they are easy items to pick up at the store and keep on hand.

  • Ground beef – Choose lean ground beef and brown it prior to slow cooking for added flavor and best results.
  • Enchilada sauce – Choose a red enchilada sauce – this will be made from a variety of red chile peppers. Since the sauce is the key to the enchilada soup broth, choose a sauce with quality ingredients and the spice level you prefer.
  • Beef broth – Beef broth adds extra richness to the soup base.
  • Diced tomatoes – Find a canned variety and drain them before adding to the slow cooker. Try fire-roasted canned tomatoes if you like the extra smokiness.
  • Frozen corn – This is such a great addition to keep on hand in your freezer. Use a scoop here and there in all your favorite soups!
  • Cream cheese – Cream cheese is the best creamy (obviously) addition to combine all the tomato-based ingredients and beef flavor. It adds thickness and overall richness to the sauce.
  • Chili powder and salt – Simple seasonings will do since there will already be seasoning included in the enchilada sauce.
  • Crushed tortilla chips  – An optional topping, but a handful of crushed chips (regular, blue corn, multigrain, etc.) adds the best element of crunch to your bowl of soup!
Ground beef, jarred enchilada sauce, bone broth, canned tomatoes, chili powder, cream cheese and frozen corn

How To Make Beef Enchilada Soup In The Slow Cooker

The steps to amazing enchilada flavor in a bowl of soup are about as simple as it gets.

  1. Begin with browning the ground beef in a skillet or multicooker and drain any excess fat. (This step can also be done in advance – store in the fridge or freezer until ready to assemble the soup.)
  2. Add the browned ground beef to the slow cooker.
Ground beef in slow cooker
  1. Add all remaining ingredients to the slow cooker.
  1. Cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 3-4 hours.
White slow cooker filled with beef enchilada soup
  1. Serve a bowl of beef enchilada soup with a handful of crushed tortilla chips over the top. Customize your own bowl with your favorite toppings!
Enchilada soup topped with crushed chips, cilantro in a metal bowls

Recipe Substitutions and Variations

Just like most enchilada plates, you can use just about any meat, veggies, spices, or toppings to make it how you like it!

  • Instead of ground beef, try ground turkey for a lighter option. You can also try chicken breasts added to the slow cooker at the beginning or use precooked and shredded chicken to add in with reduced cooking time.
  • Add as many vegetables as you like to change to add nutrition or make the soup more stew-like. Try diced bell peppers, zucchini or yellow squash, or another popular enchilada combo – spinach and diced mushrooms.
  • In my family, the ones with the lowest spice tolerance win every time so we usually make soups like this fairly mild. But, you can spice it up at the beginning with a medium-to-hot enchilada sauce, an added can of chiles, or just a sprinkle of crushed red pepper in individual bowls.
  • If needed, use a dairy-free cream cheese. Ensure enchilada sauce is gluten-free if needed – some varieties include wheat as a thickener. 

What To Serve With Beef Enchilada Soup

If you’d like some extra sides with your bowl of soup, pair some chips and salsa, and rice and beans. Try a traditional cup of charro beans or also use your slow cooker for flavorful Refried Black Beans with Roasted Garlic. Add a bowl of crunchy homemade tortilla strips if you have a few extra minutes!

I love a good spread of toppings for Mexican soups and stews like this one. Lots of fresh toppings make it easy to please everyone at mealtime! Try some diced avocado, fresh chopped cilantro, or finely chopped jalapeño.

Top with a dollop of sour cream or Greek yogurt and a sprinkle of shredded cheese!

Storing and Reheating

Soup will store in the fridge for up to 3 days and in the freezer for up to 3 months. This is the perfect type of soup to freeze single-serving portions for a quick meal later! When ready to reheat, defrost (if needed) and simmer over the stove.

Beef enchilada soup also tops the list for prep-ahead freezer recipes. Brown the meat, let it completely cool, and assemble all the ingredients in a freezer-safe baggie to cook later. You can store it just like this in the fridge for a couple of days, or place it in the freezer and thaw it to cook when ready.

Enchilada Soup FAQs

  • Is beef enchilada soup spicy? The spice level of this recipe will completely depend on the enchilada sauce you use. You can adjust the spice as much as you like so choose a good enchilada sauce that you love!
  • Can this recipe be made on the stovetop? Yes, you can adjust this recipe to be made on the stovetop instead! Brown the beef, and add all ingredients (except the cream cheese) to a large pot, and turn to medium heat. Reduce to a simmer until all ingredients are heated through and slowly stir in the cream cheese until smooth and well-combined.
  • Can you freeze slow cooker enchilada soup? Yes, you can freeze this soup! Use individual airtight containers or soup cubes to save single-sized portions.
  • What’s the best enchilada sauce to use? This really depends on your preference, but I would choose the one with the highest quality ingredients that you can find. For instance, look for one with minimally processed ingredients and low water content (higher tomato base instead), and be sure to check that it is gluten-free if you need to.
Beef enchilada soup in metal bowl topped with chopped cilantro

Slow Cooker Beef Enchilada Soup

Jennifer Draper
It’s no surprise that we love Mexican flavors over here and beef enchilada soup is one of my favorite ways to satisfy enchilada cravings in a lightened-up version! Add enchilada sauce, ground beef, and veggies to the slow cooker for a delicious, creamy soup that works with all the toppings.
3.92 from 24 votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 15 minutes
Course Main Course, Soup
Cuisine American, Mexican
Servings 4
Calories 350 kcal


  • Skillet
  • slow cooker or multicooker


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 12 oz enchilada sauce
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 14 oz can diced tomatoes drained
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • 2 oz cream cheese
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Crushed tortilla chips optional


  • Brown ground beef in a skillet or multicooker and drain excess fat
  • Add browned ground beef to slow cooker
  • Add all remaining ingredients to slow cooker
  • Cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 3-4 hours
  • Top individual bowls with crushed tortilla chips or toppings as desired


  • Store in the fridge for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Defrost if needed, and reheat over the stove.
  • To prep as a freezer meal, brown the meat, let it cool, and add all ingredients to a freezer-safe bag. Defrost and cook when ready!
  • I cooked this in my 5-quart crock on low for 6 hours.
  • Nutrition calculated without crushed tortilla chips
  • To make homemade tortilla strips:
    • Heat oven to 450 degrees.
    • Cut tortillas into small strips and then cut the strips in half.
    • Toss with olive oil and garlic powder.
    • Place on a baking sheet and bake for 6-8 minutes until crispy and starting to brown.
    • Add a handful of tortilla strips to the top of your bowl!


Calories: 350kcalCarbohydrates: 22gProtein: 29gFat: 17gSaturated Fat: 8gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 88mgSodium: 1746mgPotassium: 765mgFiber: 4gSugar: 9gVitamin A: 1024IUVitamin C: 14mgCalcium: 69mgIron: 5mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @slowcookergourmet or tag #slowcookergourmet!
Important nutritional disclaimer

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  1. 5 stars
    easy and delicious. I added a 4 oz can of diced green chiles and a can of black beans and 1 t of cumin to give it even more flavor and nutrition.

  2. Oh my yum…added a can of black beans, a small can of hot green chili’s, a tsp of cumin. I didn’t even add the broth. a bunch of fried corn tortillas with sour cream and cheese.

  3. 5 stars
    This was very good, I made it on the stove top and simmered it for about an hour. I added a can of black beans drained, topped it with avocado, a dollop of Greek yogurt, a sprinkle of Mexican cheese blend and fresh lime juice! Excellent!

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