Slow Cooker Taco Soup

Soup and StewSlow CookerTexMexGluten-Free

This slow cooker taco soup with ground beef is so easy - and SO GOOD! Perfect for busy weeks and flexible cooking times. Simple taco soup ingredients.

Photography Credit: Lisa Lin

A Cold-Weather Favorite

This slow cooker taco soup with ground beef is one of my favorite recipes to make in the slow cooker, especially in the fall and winter months.

The soup is so hearty and flavorful, and the beef gets so tender over the long hours of cooking. Let it cook all day and it just gets better.

Slow Cooker Taco SoupHow To Make Taco Soup

Note that you’ll need a few minutes to brown the beef before putting this soup into the slow cooker. Even briefly browning the beef gives it a better texture and flavor in the finished soup, and it also helps render out some of the fat before it goes into the slow cooker.

Since I’m already browning the meat, I also like to cook the onions a little bit. This draws out their sweet flavor.

You can brown the meat and onions a day or two ahead and keep them refrigerated until you’re ready to make the soup..

I love serving this soup with crushed tortilla chips for some crunch and also to complete the “taco” part of the soup. Add a healthy dollop of sour cream and it’s ready to eat!

Slow Cooker Taco SoupBonus Tips!

  • Want more spice? Make this soup more (or less!) spicy by adjusting the amount of chili powder. Start with an extra 1/2 teaspoon and work from there. You can also add a minced jalapeno or other spicy fresh chili.
  • Make-ahead soup: This soup will last for up to a week in the fridge, so make a big batch for the whole week!
  • Freezing this soup: This soup can also be frozen for up to three months. Reheat it over gentle heat on the stovetop or in the microwave. Wait to add things like tortilla chips and avocado slices until you’re ready to serve.
  • Want to make your beans from scratch? Here’s are to make beans on the stovetop or in a pressure cooker.

What To Serve With Taco Soup

This post has been updated. Originally published October 2016.

Slow Cooker Taco Soup Recipe

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Slow cooker time: 6 to 7 hours


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound (450g) lean ground beef
  • 1 1/2 cups (180g) diced yellow or red onions
  • 2 to 3 cups (475ml to 710ml) chicken or beef broth (use more if you want a thinner soup)
  • 1 15-oz. (425g) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 15-oz. (425g) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 15-oz. (425g) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 4-oz. (115g) can chopped green chiles
  • 1 1/4 cups (135g) corn kernels, fresh or frozen
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt

To serve:

  • Tortilla chips, lightly crushed
  • Sour cream
  • Chopped cilantro
  • Finely diced red onion
  • Lime juice
  • Chopped red onions

Special equipment:


1 Brown the beef with the onions (can be done a day or two ahead): Heat the olive oil in a large skillet or sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add beef and onions and cook 2 to 3 minutes, until the ground beef is browned but not completely cooked and the onions are starting to look soft around the edges. Use your spatula to break up the ground beef into smaller pieces as it cooks. Remove from heat and use immediately, or refrigerate for a day or two until needed.

Slow Cooker Taco Soup

2 Combine the browned beef, onions and the remaining soup ingredients in a slow cooker and stir. Cover and cook on low for 6 to 7 hours. It's fine if the soup cooks a little longer or the slow cooker switches to the "warm" setting.

Slow Cooker Taco Soup

3 Serve the soup: Serve soup in bowls and top with crushed tortilla chips, sour cream, cilantro, red onion and lime juice.

This soup will keep refrigerated for 1 week or frozen for up to 3 months.

Slow Cooker Taco Soup

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Easy Taco Soup in Bowl with Chips and Sour Cream

Lisa Lin

Lisa Lin is the writer and photographer behind Healthy Nibbles & Bits, where she shares simple, gluten-free recipes. She grew up in San Francisco and spent time living in China and Washington, D.C. before moving back to California. Her recipes are often inspired by her time in China and travel throughout Southeast Asia.

More from Lisa

35 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Jan Kolata

    I made this soup tonight, and I am very disappointed with the results. I followed the recipe as it was written, without making any modifications. I didn’t like the way it smelled when it was cooking, and that should’ve been my first clue. I served it to my family, and the consistency looked right, so I became more optimistic. Unfortunately, I hated the taste of the broth. It also had a chemical smell to it. I only took a couple of bites, and I lost my appetite. Strangely enough, my husband liked it, and he ate two huge bowls. As for my teenagers, they ate more of it than I did, but they thought it was only “okay.” (When they like something they devour it.) Later in the evening, they were so hungry, they started eating whatever they could find in the pantry, oatmeal, cereal, pop tarts, etc. I understand, as I am getting hungry. (I will make myself a peanut butter sandwich, even though I have a lot of taco soup leftovers in my fridge.) What a waste of time and money! I will never make this again!


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  2. Destiny

    I’m planning on making this tonight but I’ll be cooking on high instead of low, how long would I cook this for on high?

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  3. Christina

    If serving size is a cup how many servings does this recipe make?

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  4. Arlene

    Excellent! Very easy to make and everyone loved it.


  5. Shirley

    It is almost identical to my soup with a few exceptions. I’ve used my recipe for at least 10 years and love it. I added a second can of tomatoes – the Rotel Mexican tomatoes, a can of sliced black olives (olives are so good for you), an envelope of Ranch dressing mix and one of the toppings I added as optional is shredded Monterrey Jack or Pepper Jack cheese. Keep up the great work.

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Slow Cooker Taco Soup with sour cream and chipsSlow Cooker Taco Soup