King Ranch Chicken Soup – Keto Recipe

by Irena

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This cheesy keto chicken soup is so thick and creamy. All the best flavors from King Ranch Chicken in a hearty slow cooker soup recipe.

Titled image of Keto King Ranch chicken soup in a white bowl with a colourful striped napkin beside it

The chilly weather approaches, and you need this King Ranch Chicken Soup recipe in your life. It is so rich and cheesy and creamy, and bursting with spicy Tex-Mex flavors. And so easy to make in your slow cooker!

It’s not quite a “dump-and-run” recipe but it’s close. That’s my own personal term for recipes where you simply pop everything into your crockpot and walk away, and dinner is done. I love those recipes… who doesn’t?

In this recipe, you have the extra step of cooking the garlic in butter and then making in into a thickened soup base. But the results are spectacular so I wouldn’t change a thing!

What is King Ranch Chicken Soup?

You might well be asking yourself what King Ranch Chicken is. I was too, when I started seeing posts for it on Pinterest. From what I could see, it looked like a very tasty, albeit carb-a-licious, chicken casserole.

Upon a little investigation, I found that it is indeed a chicken casserole, and it takes its name from the largest ranch in the US. It’s a Tex-Mex style casserole with tomatoes, cream of mushroom soup, and cream of chicken soup.

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I also spotted a number of King Ranch Soup recipes, like this one, and realized that they would be easy, and delicious, to keto-fy.

Most of these soup recipes take quite a bit of flour whisked into the butter, to create a roux. A roux like this helps thicken the broth, but that’s not really an option for keto.

So I used some cream cheese and some glucomannan to thicken the broth, for a super rich, hearty keto chicken soup.

Top down photo of King Ranch Chicken Soup in a white bowl with handles.

How to make Keto King Ranch Chicken Soup

Easy, fun, and delicious. Let’s get started!

  1. Use boneless skinless thighs, or breasts if you prefer. You can even do this soup with frozen chicken – simply add 30 minutes to the cooking time.
  2. Use fresh tomatoes if you can, as they are slightly lower in carbs than canned. I used fresh tomatoes from my garden.
  3. De-seed your jalapeño, if you like milder soup. I always leave the seeds in for more heat.
  4. Cook the garlic in the butter, then add the spices and cook for another minute or so. Then stir in the broth.
  5. Thicken the broth with glucomannan or xanthan gum. My preference for a recipe like this is glucomannan because it is easier to whisk in and becomes much less gloppy.
  6. Pour the sauce over the other ingredients and turn on your slow cooker! Once it’s done cooking, remove the chicken and shred it. Add the cheeses to the slow cooker and blend, then add the chicken back in.

Ta-da! You are now about to enjoy some deliciously spicy Keto King Ranch Chicken Soup.

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A ladle scooping keto cheesy chicken soup out of a white bowl.

Can you make this soup in an Instant Pot or on the stove?

This recipe is easily adapted for Instant Pot or stovetop.

For an Instant Pot, I would follow the same process and cook on high for 30 minutes or so. Let the pressure release naturally before opening the lid.

For the stove, I would start with Step 2 in a large saucepan or stockpot. Then I would add the chicken, tomatoes, and jalapeno right into that same pot and cook it that way.

Bring it to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook until the chicken is tender, about 30 minutes. Proceed with Step 5 as directed.

A spoon digging into slow cooker King Ranch Chicken Soup

More keto chicken soup recipes

Top down photo of King Ranch Chicken Soup in a white bowl with handles.

Keto King Ranch Chicken Soup

This cheesy keto chicken soup is so thick and creamy. All the best flavors from King Ranch Chicken in a hearty slow cooker soup recipe.


Course: Soup

Cuisine: American

Keyword: king ranch chicken soup, slow cooker chicken soup

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 3 hours

Total Time: 3 hours 15 minutes

Servings: 8 servings

Calories: 414kcal


  • 1 ½ lb boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 cup diced tomatoes
  • 1 large jalapeno, diced (more if you want it spicier)
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¾ teaspoon pepper
  • ¾ teaspoon glucomannan (optional, thickens the soup)
  • 2 cups cheddar or colby jack, shredded
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, cut into chunks


  • Add the chicken, tomatoes, and jalapenos to a 5 or 6 quart slow cooker.

  • In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Once melted, add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the chili powder and cumin and cook another minute. Stir in all the chicken broth and bring to a boil.

  • Remove from heat and stir in the salt and pepper, and the glucomannan if using, to thicken the sauce. Pour over the chicken in the slow cooker.

  • Set the slow cooker to high for 3 hours or low for 6 hours.

  • When the time is up, remove the chicken to a plate. Add the shredded cheese and the cream cheese to the slow cooker and replace the lid. Let melt 10 minutes, then use an immersion blender to blend everything together.

  • Shred the chicken with two forks and stir back into the soup. Serve hot with chopped tomatoes, cilantro, and additional cheese, as desired.

Nutrition Facts

Keto King Ranch Chicken Soup

Amount Per Serving (1 cup)

Calories 414
Calories from Fat 260

% Daily Value*

Fat 28.9g44%

Carbohydrates 3.6g1%

Fiber 0.7g3%

Protein 27.1g54%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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