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Crockpot Chicken Quinoa Soup

This Crockpot Chicken Quinoa Soup is nutritious, protein-packed and filling! This soup has quinoa, shredded chicken, lots of veggies, and Italian-inspired herbs.
Course Dinner, Main Course, Soup
Cuisine American
Keyword Crockpot Chicken Quinoa Soup
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 10 minutes
Servings 6 -8 servings
Calories 176kcal
Author Chelsea Lords
Cost $8.28


  • 6 quart slow cooker


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup EACH: diced yellow onion, diced celery, diced carrots
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning blend
  • 2 teaspoons EACH: dried oregano, dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, optional
  • Salt and pepper to taste preference
  • 2 small (~12 ounces or 3/4ths a pound) small boneless skinless chicken breasts, each breast cut into 3-5 pieces
  • 2 cans (14.5 ounces EACH) undrained fire-roasted diced tomatoes
  • 3/4 cup uncooked quinoa (See Note 1)
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Optional: 2 cups coarsely chopped baby spinach
  • For serving: fresh basil, freshly grated Parmesan cheese, crusty bread


  • MIREPOIX: In a cast-iron pot or skillet, heat the 3 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat. Once the oil is shimmering, add in the 1 cup diced onion, 1 cup diced carrots, and 1 cup diced celery. Cook and stir for 7-9 minutes. Add in the 2 teaspoons minced garlic, 1/4 cup tomato paste, 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning, 2 teaspoons dried oregano, 2 teaspoons dried basil, 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme, and 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes if using. Season with salt and pepper. Stir until fragrant and combined, another 1-3 minutes. Transfer all of this mixture to a 6-quart slow cooker.
  • SLOW COOKER: Remove any fat from the chicken breasts, and cut into chunks -- about 3-5 per breast. (This ensures it will cook in the same amount of time.) Place in the slow cooker along with the 2 cans of undrained fire-roasted diced tomatoes, 3/4 cup uncooked quinoa (See Note 1), 2 bay leaves, and 6 cups chicken stock. Stir together.
  • COOK: Cover and cook on high for 3-5 hours or until quinoa has "popped" and chicken shreds easily. I don't recommend cooking on low (See Note 2). Once chicken shreds easily, remove from the slow cooker into a separate bowl or plate and shred with two forks. Return to the soup and stir. Remove bay leaves and discard. If desired, add in 2 cups coarsely chopped baby spinach and stir gently to wilt. Taste soup and season with any additional salt or pepper as needed.
  • SERVE: Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with fresh basil and lots of freshly grated Parmesan cheese. Enjoy with a side of crusty bread.
  • STORAGE: When stored, note that the quinoa will continue to absorb liquid. This soup does not freeze and thaw well.


Note 1: Rinsing quinoa: Quinoa has a naturally occurring coating called saponin, which is bitter. It needs to be rinsed before adding to the soup. Many quinoas are pre-rinsed, so check the package to see if the quinoa has been rinsed. If not, add quinoa to a fine-mesh sieve and rinse it under cold water until the water beneath the sieve runs clear.
Note 2: Soup thickness: When cooked on low, the quinoa finishes a lot quicker than the chicken and veggies. The longer this soup sits or cooks, the more broth that gets absorbed into the quinoa. This makes it heartier and also less broth-y. If you want a more broth-y soup, watch carefully and turn the heat off the slow cooker when it is your desired consistency. Alternatively, add more broth as desired. 


Serving: 8servings | Calories: 176kcal | Carbohydrates: 20.6g | Protein: 7.1g | Fat: 7.7g | Cholesterol: 7.9mg | Sodium: 260.6mg | Fiber: 3.6g | Sugar: 5.3g