Loaded with tomatoes, black beans, corn, and shredded chicken, this Instant Pot chicken tortilla soup is delightfully hearty and satisfying. It’s an easy one-pot meal filled with rich, warm flavors and spices that’ll carry you through those chilly autumn and winter months, making it an instant hit with everyone in your family.
🍗 What Makes This Recipe So Good
- Chicken tortilla soup is undeniably delicious in its own right, but there’s something about making it in an Instant Pot that makes it taste even better. The pressure cooking method does kind of force all the ingredients to meld together, and much faster than on the stovetop. The ingredients do deserve some recognition, though. Garlic and onions, crushed tomatoes, chili powder, cumin, oregano, black beans, corn, green chiles, chicken, sour cream. Every bite is guaranteed full of flavor.
- Prep for this recipe is super easy. There’s really not much you have to do in advance. Slice a chicken breast in half. Chop an onion. Set the sour cream out on the counter. Rinse the black beans. Cook some corn kernels. Easy!
- It’s a one-pot meal. Need I say more? If you’re new to 40 Aprons, welcome! I’m Cheryl, and I’m a big fan of one-pot meals, one-pan meals, skillet meals, whatever means I don’t have to use (and clean) a hundred dishes and utensils. I call them my “one-dish wonders” and I’ve developed quite a few, so be sure to check them all out!
👩🏼🍳 Chef’s Tips
- Cold dairy can curdle or separate when it’s added to hot liquids because the temperature shock makes it warm up too quickly. Since the sour cream is the very last ingredient added, it could easily make or break your entire batch of Instant Pot chicken tortilla soup. Let it come to room temperature before adding it to the mixture, and don’t just dump it in there! Be sure to let the soup and the Instant Pot cool a little first.
- I recommend using a low-sodium chicken stock so you can really control the saltiness of the soup. When I make it myself, I use regular chicken stock, but I know some people are sensitive to salt or have dietary needs that require low-sodium meals. For really flavorful, nutrient-rich Instant Pot chicken tortilla soup, use a homemade bone broth instead! It’s super easy to do, and you can make your bone broth in the Instant Pot, the Crockpot, or on the stove.
- Deglazing the Instant Pot before pressure cooking isn’t just important – it’s mandatory. When you stir in the chicken stock, be sure to scrape the bottom of the Instant Pot insert with your spoon or silicone spatula. If there are any pieces of sautéed onion or garlic stuck to the bottom of the insert, you have to scrape them up or they’ll cause a burn notice that stops the cooking process.
♨️ Check Out Some of Our Favorite Instant Pot Recipes
- Instant Pot Chicken Teriyaki
- Cheesy Instant Pot Potatoes
- Instant Pot French Onion Soup
- Instant Pot Chicken Carnitas
- Southern Instant Pot Collard Greens
- Instant Pot Mississippi Pot Roast
- 3-Ingredient Instant Pot Salsa Chicken
- Instant Pot Chicken and Noodles
- 19 Instant Pot Thanksgiving Recipes
- The Best EVER Instant Pot Black Eyed Peas
- Instant Pot Lobster Tails
For the Instant Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup
- 1 tablespoon olive oil or neutral oil of choice
- 1 medium white onion chopped, approximately 1 cup
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
- 1 14-ounce can low-sodium chicken stock
- 2 large boneless, skinless chicken breast cutlets approximately 4–5 ounces each
- 1 15-ounce can black beans rinsed well, drained
- 1 cup whole corn kernels cooked as desired
- 2 4-ounce cans chopped green chiles
- ½ cup full-fat sour cream at room temperature
- salt to taste
Serving Suggestions (All Optional)
- ½ cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
- 2 medium avocados approximately 5 ounces each; peeled, pit removed, sliced
- ½ cup crushed tortilla chips or tortilla chip strips
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- 2 tablespoons chopped green onions
- 6-quart Instant Pot
- Large wooden spoon
- Cutting board
- 2 forks see Notes
- Set Instant Pot to Sauté on Normal mode. Drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil across bottom surface of Instant Pot insert, then heat oil until shimmery.
- When oil is hot, add 1 medium white onion and 3 cloves garlic. Stir to incorporate, then sauté, stirring occasionally, approximately 5 minutes or until onions have softened.
- Add 1 teaspoon cumin, 2 teaspoons chili powder, and 1 teaspoon dried oregano and stir until well incorporated.
- Pour in 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes and 1 14-ounce can low-sodium chicken stock. Stir to incorporate, making sure to scrape bottom of insert to loosen any garlic or onions that may have stuck to pot.
- Add 2 large boneless, skinless chicken breast cutlets to Instant Pot and gently stir to incorporate.
- Secure lid on Instant Pot with vent in Sealing position. Set Instant Pot to Manual High Pressure and set cook time to 18 minutes. Instant Pot will pressurize, then cook time will begin.
- Once 18-minute cook time has ended, Natural Release pressure 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, carefully Quick Release any remaining pressure, then remove lid and set aside. Use caution – any escaping steam will be very hot.
- Set Instant Pot to Sauté on Less mode. Transfer chicken from Instant Pot to cutting board and set aside.
- Add 1 15-ounce can black beans, 1 cup whole corn kernels, and 2 4-ounce cans chopped green chiles to Instant Pot. Stir to incorporate, then simmer mixture 10 minutes.
- While mixture simmers, use 2 forks to shred chicken into pieces of preferred size. See Notes for alternate shredding methods.
- After 10 minutes, turn off Instant Pot and let cool slightly. Add ½ cup full-fat sour cream to soup and stir until sour cream is fully incorporated.
- Return shredded chicken to pot, then taste soup and add salt or adjust cumin, chili powder, or oregano as desired.
- Ladle soup into serving bowls. Top each serving with Monterey Jack cheese, avocado slices, crushed tortilla chips, chopped cilantro, and/or chopped green onions if desired. Serve warm.
- Chicken Cutlets: Use 1 large boneless, skinless chicken breast and slice it in half horizontally to create two evenly-sized, evenly-thick chicken cutlets. If needed, pound cutlets into even thicknesses using a rolling pin or meat mallet. Make sure they’re roughly the same size and thickness so they cook at the same speed.
- Sour Cream: Feel free to use Greek yogurt instead if you prefer it.
- Make it Dairy Free: Use a dairy-free sour cream. Top the soup with dairy-free shredded cheese, or omit the cheese topping entirely.
- Make it Whole30/Paleo: Use my recipe for Whole30 Instant Pot Chicken Tortilla-Less Soup.
Methods for Shredding Chicken
- Shred by Hand (Pulled Chicken): Using your hands/fingers, pull the chicken apart until completely shredded. Pieces can be as big or as small as you like.
- Shred with Two Forks: Use one fork to steady the chicken while shredding the chicken with another fork. Work in small, short strokes, moving forks away from each other.
- Shred with Hand Mixer: Break the chicken into manageable chunks and place them in a large bowl. Use the standard attachments on your mixer and set mixer to a medium speed. Mix until chicken is completely shredded.
- Shred with Stand Mixer: Use the standard paddle attachment and mix on medium-low speed until chicken chunks are completely shredded.
- Shred with Food Processor: Break up the cooked chicken breasts into chunks first, and work in multiple batches. Add chicken to food processor and use the plastic dough blade attachment to avoid your chicken turning to mush. Process for 30 seconds or until uniformly shredded. Repeat until all chicken is shredded.
Number of total servings shown is approximate. Actual number of servings will depend on your preferred portion sizes.
Nutritional values shown are general guidelines and reflect information for 1 serving using the ingredients listed, not including any optional ingredients. Actual macros may vary slightly depending on specific brands and types of ingredients used.
To determine the weight of one serving, prepare the recipe as instructed. Weigh the finished recipe, then divide the weight of the finished recipe (not including the weight of the container the food is in) by the desired number of servings. Result will be the weight of one serving.