A great dinner idea to take to someone with a new baby or a family friendly meal is this crock pot cafe rio chicken copycat recipe served with cilantro lime rice!
Ok, so if you live in Utah there are probably 3 Mexican fast food chains that you try to copy their chicken or pork. (Mostly the pork, but I’ll do that one later.) This Crock Pot Cafe Rio Chicken Copycat recipe is seriously so good and if you don’t want to do a salad then turn it into a burrito!!
This chicken is one of those life saver crock pot (slow cooker) recipes. Kinda like this regular Crock Pot Chicken. I love that you can throw everything together in less than 5 minutes, let it cook all day and then feel like a hero as you serve it to your family. The only thing you really need to watch out for is how darn much the recipe makes.
Watch the full video here:
Scale that sucker back! It’s too much chicken for just our little family! However, that usually means it’s a great opportunity to invite someone over to surprise a neighbor with dinner. And I’m definitely all about that.
How to Make Cafe Rio Chicken in an Instant Pot
This copycat recipe for cafe rio chicken could totally be made in an instant pot as well. To make chicken in an instant pot just set it to the poultry setting for about 6 minutes, release the pressure and serve! If the breasts are frozen you’ll want to increase the time to 10 minutes.
More Crock Pot Recipes:
- Easy Crock Pot Chicken and Rice
- Slow Cooker Beef Brisket
- Slow Cooker Pumpkin Chili
- Slow Cooker Smothered BBQ Beef
- Crock Pot Roast Chicken
- Slow Cooker Pineapple Mexican Chicken
- Slow Cooker Potato Broccoli Corn Chowder with Bacon
- Sweet and Sour Meatballs in the Slow Cooker
- Asian Sticky Slow Cooker Ribs
- Chili Sauce and Grape Jelly Slow Cooker Meatballs
- Slow Cooker Korean BBQ Beef
- Slow Cooker Garlic Chicken
- Chicken Carnitas
- All our CROCKPOT and SLOW COOKER recipes here!
Crock Pot Cafe Rio Chicken Copycat
Copycat Cafe Rio Chicken Recipe
- 1 Bottle Kraft Zesty Italian Dressing
- 1 Tablespoon Cumin
- 1 Tablespoon Chili Powder
- 3 Cloves of Garlic, minced
- 5 lbs Boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- [For Dressing Recipe]
- [Cilantro Lime Recipe]
- Mix ingredients and pour over chicken in a crock pot and cook on low 4 hours.
- Remove chicken and shred.
- Place back in crock pot for another hour.
- Serve over copycat cilantro lime rice, as a burrito or salad with Cafe Rio Creamy Tomatillo Cilantro Ranch Dressing
Ok I am reading in comments about tortilla strips but not mentioned in the recipe(s) anywhere that’s I can see. Is
Are there other things I am missing
Tortilla strips are a standard topping at Cafe Rio, so that’s why people brought it up. The toppings are totally up to you and what you like! Enjoy!
I am guilty of obsessing over the sweet pork but I didn’t want to buy a bunch of coke for a single recipe, so I went with this one. Yummy! Thanks! Instant pot worked great. I added a smidge more water and had a higher sauce to meat ratio than this but it was just right. Thanks!
Yay Mary!! So glad that you enjoy it!!
I love this recipe, it makes so much. Do you think it would still work if I halved the recipe? Would the time change?
Hey Heidi! Yes it will definitely still work. I would start with 2.5 hours and check it. So glad you enjoy it! It is definitely a recipe for a large crowd! It also freezes great if you want to make a full recipe and then save some of it for later.
I’m surprised that 5 lbs of chicken only serves 6-8 people. Is that correct?
Hi Dee! It depends on how much chicken you put on a the salad. If you go light, you could probably serve 8-10 people.
Have this currently in the crockpot! What kind of tortillas do you use and where do you find the tortilla chip strips?
We love Tortilla Land fresh tortillas that you cook up yourself. The strips we either make on our own or you can get them in the produce section of your grocery store.
Hi, we are looking for a good recipe for cafe rio chicken for our wedding. All of the other recipes I have found have all called for a package of ranch as well but yours doesn’t? Do you know which is the closest to how cafe rio makes it? I don’t eat meat so I have no idea. 😊.
oh dear, I’ve never heard of ranch in it. There’s a ranch dressing that is served over the salad which we have a recipe for, but that is all.
This looks delicious and healthy!
Love this has an easy weeknight dinner meal! Definitely will spice up the work week!
Yes, for sure! Thanks Heather!
Jocelyn (Grandbaby Cakes)
The chicken looks so juicy and flavorful!! Thanks for sharing!!!
Why did the tomatillo dressing recipe get taken down?
Shoot! It disappeared when I updated the recipe. It’s back!
Any idea what size bottle you use of Italian dressing?
Oh, yes I need to add that. 16 Oz bottle! 🙂
It clearly states add ALL ingredients and boil.
when do you add the lime to the cilantro lime rice? it's not one of the ingredients on your list. do you just squeeze it on after it's cooked?
Great recipes! I love tomatillas and can’t wait to try that dressing!!
In case there were any doubts, this is really good. Carrian made it for me once. Delicious!
that looks so good.
and yes, could you email me the america’s test kitchen sugar cookie recipe? i was wondering about that one. also, any good frosting recipes?
This looks so good! I can’t wait to make it. I’ve never found a good Cafe Rio chicken that I like, it seems like everyone else is crazy about the pork. Thanks so much for posting this! I’m suddenly craving Cafe Rio (even if it is only 10 in the morning). I love the blog!
I LOVE ALL YOUR RECIPES!!!!!!! AHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I always “forget” to take pictures because there are hungry people waiting to eat 🙂 I love the sound of this meal, especially the cilantro lime rice!
That sound delicious! I love healthy cooking and recipes, glad I found your blog 🙂