Crockpot Creamy Chicken Enchilada Soup


I have a love/hate relationship with crockpot cooking.   I  acknowledge that my condo windows might get egged upon admitting this…so let me explain.  The thought of cooking full entrees and whole roasts in a crockpot really grosses me out, so I tend to stay away from that.  But cooking soup and chilis and sauces in a crockpot……..best thing ever!!!  The idea that dinner can be ready when I come home from a long day of shooting or that the house will smell like yummy goodness all day makes me sooooo happy.  And what makes me even MORE happy?? Eating this Creamy Chicken Enchilada Soup.  Oh my gosh is it good….like, go back for 2 of 3 helpings good.  Don’t judge me.  

In order to get softer onions and that cream cheese incorporated into this soup, I start by cooking the onions and garlic in the skillet, followed by adding in the enchilada sauce and (this is KEY!)  room temperature cream cheese.  After that’s out of the way, we can transfer into the crockpot and begin the easy-peasy slow cooking technique that speaks everyone’s love language.  

Creamy Chicken Enchilada Soup
An easy and delicious skillet to crockpot recipe that's perfect for cold days in.
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Ingredients
  1. Crockpot!
  2. 2 cloves garlic
  3. 1/2 of a yellow onion, diced small
  4. 2 decent sized chicken breasts
  5. 2 tsp cumin
  6. 1 tsp chili powder
  7. 1 can black beans, drained
  8. 1 can of red enchilada sauce (10 ounces)
  9. 1 can of fire roasted diced tomatoes (15 ounces)
  10. 1 small can of diced green chilies ( fire roasted is fine, and so is mild or hot)
  11. 2 cups chicken broth
  12. 8 oz cream cheese at room temperature (do NOT use low fat or it will curdle more)
Optional Toppings
  1. Crushed tortilla chips
  2. Avocado slices
  3. sour cream
  4. diced green onions
  5. cilantro
  6. shredded cheddar cheese (or mozzarella, mexican, etc)
Instructions
  1. First, make sure your cream cheese is at room temperature and set aside. In a medium-large skillet, heat a tbsp of olive oil. Add in the diced onions and cook for about 5 minutes on medium heat. Add the garlic and stir. Cook for a few more minutes until the onions are softening.
  2. Add in the enchilada sauce and cream cheese and stir until combined. The cream cheese might clump a bit but this will go away as it cooks longer and melts in the crockpot later.
  3. Transfer this mixture to the crockpot.
  4. Add the beans, chicken broth, fire roasted tomatoes, green chiles, cumin, chili powder and raw chicken breasts to the crockpot. Stir to combine.
  5. Cook on high heat for around 3 hours and then pull the chicken out to shred on a cutting board. (If it's not fully white in the middle, add it back to cook in the pot longer). Shred the chicken and add back to crockpot.
  6. Continue cooking for 1-1.5 hours longer on high.
Meghan Leigh | Photography and Lifestyle | Hinsdale and the greater Chicago area http://meghan-leigh.com/

 No enchilada or tortilla soup is complete without crunchy tortilla chips, sour cream and shredded cheddar, but I like to get a little wild and throw in some cilantro and avocado too.  I almost feel like it would be communist to leave out the toppings.  They’re the essence of the soup!!!! Load up on the toppings….just trust me on this. :)


 

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Basic Invite | Holiday Photo Card Company


I am thrilled to partner with Basic Invite this year to provide my clients with a great company for all of their holiday cards and invitation for Christmas party needs!  They also do birth announcements, all kinds of party invitations, save the dates, wedding invitations, corporate holiday party invitations and so much more.  They have so many unique features and it was such a relief to know that there are other affordable online companies that offer beautiful designs for all of my card needs this year.  

Take a look below at some cards I designed from recent photo shoots of mine!!   I am so in love with these designs!   And can we talk about how attractive my clients are?!?!    :)

My favorite parts: 

-Almost Unlimited Colors(!!!)  -You can customize your text colors to literally almost any color imaginable…..and all on your own!  No more calling customer service or waiting in line for a chat to ask them to adjust it.  It’s so easy and changing the colors on the card will make your card sooo much more unique!  No more feeling embarrassed when your friend sends you her holiday card with the exact. same. design. Ugh….the worst! 

 Custom Samples Basic Invite is one of the few websites that allows customers the ability to order a printed sample of their actual invitation so they can see exactly how it will print as well as feel the paper quality before they ever have to place their final order.  NO more second guessing!!!

Address Capturing Service – Basic Invite offers an address capturing service that allows customers to simply share a link on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or any other form of social media to request their friends and family’s addresses which will be stored in the customer’s account and can then be selected during the design process. Basic Invite offers recipient address printing at no cost on all Christmas card orders.

Over 40 Different Colors of Envelopes – Basic Invite is just as colorful with our envelopes as we are with our invitations. Customers can choose from over 40 different colors when it comes to their envelopes so that they can make their invitation stand out even before it is opened. All of our envelopes are peel and seal so the envelopes can be quickly and securely closed without licking a single one.

Foil – Foil holiday cards are available in gold, silver, and rose gold. (yes, ROSE GOLD- yay!!!!!) Customers can choose flat or raised foil on all of Basic Invite’s foil designs.

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Truffleberry Market Catering | Food Photography


Some days my job consists of repetitively editing blemishes from people’s chins and some days I spend 8 hours scheduling shoots or sending/clearing invoices.  Other days, I get asked to do food photography for the absolute coolest and remarkably talented catering company…..for quite the hot client.  Google.  Ever heard of em?  ;)    That day was awesome.  Like…..really awesome.   

This food you guys…..is insane.  There is no other worthy adjective.  Insane in taste, insane in presentation and absolutely insane in overall creativity.   Check out some of their work below that I was honored to have been able to photograph.  Truffleberry Market, you are my new obsession.  

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Favorite Fall Recipes


Ohhh fall.  My love for you runs deep.  Maybe it’s the change that I love.  Maybe it’s the cozy fall sweaters and hot lattes or maybe it’s the food.   Let’s be honest, everything with me revolves around food.  ;)  I have been sharing with you my favorite recipe finds and new recipes from me for a little over 3  years now, so I have quite the arsenal.  In honor of one of my favorite seasons, I compiled a list of my favorite fall recipes from my blog that I am sharing with you today.   Happy Fall everyone!!

 

– CREAMY BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP WITH CURRY AND COCONUT MILK –

The perfect fall soup

Recipe found here


 – APPLE PIE SMOOTHIE –

Tasty yet healthy.  Oh so good.  

Recipe found here


– SWEET AND SPICY CHILI –

One of my favorite chili recipes, combining my favorite flavor combo- sweet and spicy! 

Recipe found here


 

– APPLE AND GOUDA PANINI WITH ROSEMARY –

Gooey, cheesy, crispy salty perfection.  The ultimate comfort food

Recipe found here


– MEGHAN’S HOT TEA –

The changing of seasons, especially here in Chicago often brings those yucky cold/flu viruses.  Help fight it off with this yummy tea. 

Recipe found here


 

– SPAGHETTI SQUASH WITH PANCETTA, SPINACH AND GOAT CHEESE –

Don’t let the name scare you.  These flavors are INSANE together and the spaghetti squash is such a healthier alternative to regular pasta.

Recipe found here.

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Apple and Gouda Panini with Rosemary


I had high hopes for apple recipes this fall, guys.  HIGH hopes.  This was going to be the year that I finally attempted a pie, a tart or even an easy apple crisp for fall.  (For those who are new here….I’m not much of a baker).  Well, it’s mid October and that just might not happen.  BUT….and this is a big but……I DID default to my happy place and came up with something possibly even better than dessert.  Ladies (and gentlemen?)….I give you an Apple and Gouda Panini with Rosemary.   Think layers of smokey gouda cheese paired with sweet apples on a crispy piece of sourdough bread, buttered to golden heaven.   I’ll give you a second to wipe the drool from your chin.

Every year, I get way too caught up in busy wedding and portrait season to ever enjoy fall.  And it’s my favorite season!!  Can you believe I haven’t been pumpkin picking or to any fall farm of any kind since I was a kid???!   I know….I’ve been missing out.  So I made it my fall goal this year to plan a date with my sister in law (like 2 months in advance) to head up to Wisconsin with the hubby to see our nephew and go to a farm for all of the traditional fall cliché’s…….apple picking, pumpkin picking (like the real kind where you actually get driven out to the field and have to pull the pumpkin off the vines!) hayrides, and my favorite part- the market purchases.  Apple butter and caramel for dayyyyyys please. :)   I came home with a basket full of delicious apples of all kinds and couldn’t wait to dabble into some apple cooking!  It tastes like fall here in the Meghan Leigh kitchen and I hope you like what I came up with!! 

 

Apple and Gouda Panini with Rosemary
Serves 2
The perfect fall panini- Crispy sourdough bread with smokey gouda and crunchy apples topped with rosemary.
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Ingredients
  1. 4 slices of sourdough bread
  2. 1 apple ( use any kind!)
  3. Rosemary
  4. Butter
  5. Gouda Cheese ( slices or shred a block on your own)
Instructions
  1. Butter all four slices of bread. Sprinkle each with rosemary.
  2. Dice your apples into very thin slices or strips and shred your gouda cheese if need be.
  3. Heat a grill pan or skillet on medium/low and place the bread butter-side-down onto the pan just like you're making a grilled cheese.
  4. Top with a layer of gouda, the thin apple pieces and then top with more gouda.
  5. Add the other piece of bread face up and flip the panini until both sides are golden brown and the cheese has melted through.
Notes
  1. If you don't like the crunchiness of the apples in your panini, simply grill the apples in the pan for a few minutes before you start making the panini. They will soften-up and blend in with the gooey cheese more inside if you do this.
Meghan Leigh | Photography and Lifestyle | Hinsdale and the greater Chicago area http://meghan-leigh.com/
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