Southwest Chicken Soup Chilis Copycat


Chilis Southwest Chicken Soup

Chilis Southwest Chicken Soup is a delicious bowl of soup you can enjoy. And now with our copycat recipe you can easily make this soup anytime you have a craving. We are so excited to share our copycat recipe with you because it is so easy to make and it tastes fabulous. If you were looking for an easy bowl of soup to make, this one is definitely one you should try. Let’s look at the ingredients you will need below. 

southwest chicken soup chilis very close up

Make Chili’s Southwest Chicken Soup with Easy to Find Ingredients

Key Ingredients

Oil. Oil is used to help cook the chicken and help prevent it from sticking to your pan. You can use a variety of oils, including olive oil, avocado oil, canola oil, or vegetable oil. You will just need a little bit to help cook the chicken. 

Chicken. You can use your favorite cut of chicken. The most common type to use is boneless skinless chicken breast, or if you are a dark meat lover, you could use chicken thighs and remove the bone and skin, or you could even use leg quarters, and remove the bone and skin. 

Onion. We recommend using a yellow onion or white onion for this soup recipe. 

Garlic. You can use fresh garlic cloves, or you can choose to use pre-minced garlic. Either way, you’ll want to make sure your garlic is minced before adding it to the soup. 

Celery. We recommend including finely diced celery to the soup. However, if you do not like celery, this ingredient may be optional if you choose to leave it out. 

Peppers. We like to include a mixture of peppers in the soup. We recommend including red, orange, yellow, and green peppers in the soup. 

Chicken broth. You can use chicken broth or chicken stock for this recipe. This will be the base of your soup. 

Tomato paste. We like to use tomato paste to help thicken the soup. You can pick tomato paste up at your local grocery store in a small can, or if you are feeling adventurous, you can make your own tomato paste using a concentrated amount of tomatoes. 

Peppers in adobo sauce. In most local grocery stores, you can find chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. For this recipe, we are just going to use a little bit of this, but it does help to add a delicious flavor to your recipe. 

Green chilies. Diced canned green chilies help to add some color and flavor to your soup. This ingredient is optional, but we do recommend including it for the best overall flavor.

If you are having trouble finding it, or simply want to skip it, you can increase the number of regular peppers included to make up for skipping this ingredient. 

Diced tomatoes. Using a can of diced tomatoes will help your soup turn out fabulous. Although you can dice your own tomatoes, you can also pick them up in a can at your local grocery store.

If you choose to dice your own tomatoes, you want to be sure to remove the skin before adding them to your soup. 

Navy beans. Navy beans help to add flavor and substance to your soup. We like to use navy beans in this recipe, however, if you want you can substitute them with white hominy.

Seasonings.  You can choose to season the soup entirely to your taste preferences. But we are going to show you our favorite way to season this recipe, and feel free to adjust it as you prefer.

Our favorite seasonings to include are garlic salt, cumin, chili powder, paprika, and seasoning salt. 

Corn tortillas. Now you can use soft corn tortillas and deep fry them on your own to make corn tortilla chips to top your soup.

Or you can simply purchase some corn tortilla chips from the grocery store and then on top of your soup for decoration. 

Shredded cheese. You can use your favorite kind of shredded cheese to top off the soup as it is served.

Our favorite is to use includes Mexican blend, mozzarella, or Parmesan cheese. Feel free to use whatever you like the best. 

southwest chicken soup chilis whole bowl

How to Make Chili’s Southwest Chicken Soup

To make our copycat recipe for Chili’s Southwest Chicken Soup, you will want to start off by taking a large pot and placing it over medium-high heat. 

Add a little bit of water to the bottom of your pan. Season your chicken if desired, and pat it with oil. Add the chicken to your pot, cover, and cook until your chicken reaches the internal temperature of 165°F. 

When your chicken is fully cooked, cut or shred the chicken into bite-size pieces. 

To the pan add your finely diced onion, minced garlic, chopped celery, and chopped peppers. Drizzle with additional oil if desired. Cook over medium heat until the onions are translucent. 

Into the pan add chicken broth and tomato paste. Stir to combine, then cover and bring your mixture to a simmer over medium-high heat. 

Once your soup is at a low simmer, add your adobo sauce, green chilies, diced tomatoes, navy beans, and your desired seasonings. Stir to combine, then continue over medium-low heat until your mixture is warmed through and at a low simmer. Your soup is now ready to serve. 

When you are ready to serve your soup, dish up each bowl, then tap each serving bowl with corn tortillas and shredded cheese. Serve right away and enjoy! 

Tips and Tricks

Heavy Duty Pot. When making this soup, we would recommend using a heavy-duty pot, that is thick, or even a pot such as a cast-iron Dutch oven or enamel Dutch oven works well.  

Chicken. It comes to the chicken included in the soup, you can use pre-cooked chicken, you could pick up a whole chicken at places such as Sam’s Club or Costco and simply cut it and include it in your soup.

Or you could cook your own chicken breasts, or chicken thighs, or even chicken leg quarters. Simply be sure that you remove any bone or skin from the chicken before it is added to your soup.

Dicing Up Vegetables. Our preference for the soup is that all of the vegetables be chopped into very fine pieces. Of course, you may prefer your vegetables to be larger and that is fine.

Go ahead and prepare your soup to your preference. Just please know that you will need to include the cooking time so that your vegetables have time to fully cook before serving your soup.  

southwest chicken soup chilis zoomed


Southwest Chicken Soup Leftovers

Room temperature. Chili’s Southwest Chicken Soup should not be left at room temperature for any longer than two hours when your room temperature is between 40°F and 90°F before it goes bad.

To be safe, you will want to store the soup in the fridge for later enjoyment.

Refrigerator. This southwest chicken soup can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 3 to 4 days before it goes bad. 

In the freezer. You can also freeze any leftover Chili’s Southwest Chicken Soup if desired.

To freeze it, allow it cool to room temperature, then transfer the soup to a plastic freezer bag or airtight container. Seal the container or freezer bag securely, then place it into the freezer for up to three months. 

Freezer Meal Instructions

You can also prepare our copycat Southwest Chicken Soup like Chili’s as a freezer meal if desired.

To prepare the soup in advance, you will simply want to follow the instructions above, then once the soup is fully prepared, allow it to cool to room temperature before transferring it to a plastic freezer bag, or freezer-safe airtight container.

Seal the soup securely before placing it into the freezer for up to three months.

southwest chicken soup chilis from the side

How To Reheat Chicken Soup

Two main ways you can reheat leftover copycat Chili’s Southwest Chicken Soup. Those two ways include in the microwave and on the stovetop. Let’s look at these two ways below. 

In the microwave. The reheat leftover soup in the microwave, your first want to transfer the soup to a microwave-safe bowl.

We recommend covering the bowl with a damp paper towel and then microwaving the soup from one to two minutes. The goal is just to microwave the soup until it has warmed through. Then you are ready to serve and enjoy. 

On the stovetop. Another way you can reheat your leftover soup is in a pot on the stovetop. This way works great if you are reheating a lot of soup rather than just one bowl full.

Pour the soup into a thick pot, then place over medium heat. If desired, cover the pan with a lid. Warm over medium heat until the soup is warmed through, then serve and enjoy. 


One of the great things about this soup recipe as that many different ingredients may be substituted. In the ingredient list above we have given a few different ideas for ingredients that can be substituted if desired.

Navy beans. These beans can be substituted with white hominy if desired. White hominy is a type of Mexican corn that can be found in dried or canned. If you are not able to find this, you can simply use the navy beans. 

Chicken. You can use any cuts of chicken that you desire. You can use pre-cooked chicken, or you can cook the chicken on your own. If you really want to you can also substitute the chicken with another type of meat, or leave the meat out entirely. 

Peppers. We recommend including a variety of peppers. This ranges from green peppers, red, orange, and yellow.

We have also recommended that you include diced green chilies as well.

However, if you prefer to use other types of peppers, such as jalapeños, or sweet peppers, feel free to do so. 

southwest chicken soup chilis close up


This soup recipe can easily be changed simply by adding or subtracting ingredients as desired. We recommend making this soup with a chicken broth or chicken stock base and adding tomato paste and diced tomatoes making it have a chicken and tomato base to the soup.

However, if you prefer you could use only chicken stock as the base. Feel free to add or subtract ingredients as your taste preference dictates. 

What to Serve with Southwest Chicken Soup

Although there are many good side dishes that you could serve alongside this delicious Southwest Chicken Soup Chili’s, here are a few of our favorites.  


Can you make this in the slow cooker or Instant Pot?

Absolutely! For a slow cooker, we recommend that you sauté the vegetables before adding them into the slow cooker and pre-cook the chicken.

Otherwise, it can easily be prepared in your crockpot. You could also easily make this soup in your instant pot if you wish. 

How long ahead of time can the Southwest Chicken Chili be made?

That depends on how you wish to store the soup. If you are making the soup the day of, it can be fully prepared, and stored in the fridge then reheated on the stovetop shortly before you are ready to serve. 

You could also make the soup in advance and keep it in the fridge for up to 3 to 4 days. Or if you really want to make it further ahead of time, you can store the soup in your freezer for up to three months. 

Chili’s Southwest Chicken Soup

Making a copycat recipe for Chili’s Southwest Chicken Soup is a very easy recipe to make at home, and it will provide a satisfying bowl of soup. If you are looking for a delicious comfort meal, be sure to try out our tasty soup recipe. We hope that you enjoy it!

For more posts like this one, follow us on PinterestFacebookInstagram and YouTube.

PIN for Later!

southwest chicken soup chilis pinterest

Southwest Chicken Soup Chilis Copycat Recipe

Photo of author
Faith is the resident baking expert of this sister duo, and first started baking at age ten when she learned to make chocolate chip cookies on her own. From there she went on to have her own night of the week to make dinner for the whole family. She is excited to share amazing recipes and a love of food, and help you become kitchen smart!

Leave a Comment

Recipe Rating