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Chicken taco on a white plate with a fresh cherry tomato garnish

Shredded Chicken Tacos

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Shake up your taco menu with smoky Shredded Chicken Tacos! An easy skillet dinner packed full of flavor with your favorite taco toppings.

These Mexican Chicken Tacos are made with an out-of-the-ordinary homemade Chicken Taco Seasoning AKA no packets in sight!

Overhead view of a plate of chicken tacos with a red handle fork

Why You Should Make Chicken Tacos

  • They’re a tasty change of pace from ordinary ground beef tacos.
  • Chicken tacos are leaner and healthier when made at home.
  • You can pair these tacos with your favorite toppings!

When you hear the words, “Mom, you can make these again?” you know you have an excellent recipe.  Cook’s Country doesn’t disappoint, but this recipe gave me pause.  Chicken tacos with Worcestershire, orange juice, and mustard?  It didn’t sound very appealing.  But I had an open can of chipotle chilies in the fridge that needed to be utilized, so I gave these a shot. My verdict was simple and tasty…you can’t beat that!

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do You Cook Chicken for Tacos?

In this recipes, the chicken is cooked in a skillet with garlic, cilantro and other flavorings. But your chicken can be seasoned, then grilled or baked before being shredded for tacos. Leftover chicken can also be used, but the best results will be by cooking the meat with flavorful ingredients so the chicken can absorb the seasonings.

How to Shred Chicken for Tacos?

I use my clean hands to pull apart the chicken into bite sized pieces, but some prefer using two forks to shred it. There’s also an easy mixer method. Use warm chicken and the paddle attachment of your stand mixer. On one of the lowest speeds, mix for 30-60 seconds, watching carefully until the chicken is shredded.

Are Chicken Tacos Healthy?

The chicken filling is probably less caloric than ground beef taco filling, but the toppings can change all that. If you want healthy tacos, try whole wheat tortillas or lettuce wraps and avoid higher calorie toppings like cheese, sour cream and guacamole. Fill with vegetables like bell peppers, lettuce, and chopped tomatoes.

Serving platter with bowl of shredded chicken, tortillas and toppings with a cilantro garnish

How to Make Chicken Tacos

  1. Make the flavorful sauce in which to cook the chicken.
  2. Add chicken, cover and simmer, flipping at least once.
  3. When cooked through, remove and let rest under foil.
  4. Reduce the sauce and add mustard.
  5. Shred the chicken and add back to the pan with more cilantro and salt and pepper as needed.
  6. Serve with tortillas and favorite fillings

Ingredient Notes:

  • Kitchen Staples – Butter, Garlic, Dijon Mustard, Salt and freshly ground Black Pepper
  • Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts – remove any tendons. See tips above on how to shred chicken.
  • Chipotle Chiles in Adobo Sauce – Adds the spicy, smokey undertones. Found in small cans with other Tex-Mex foods at the grocery store
  • Orange Juice – Freshly squeezed is not necessary, I use store-bought
  • Worcestershire Sauce – Provides umami or the savory “5th core taste category.”
  • Flour Tortillas – May use any kind of tortillas or taco shells
  • Fresh Cilantro – A major flavor in these tacos. If cilantro tastes soapy to you, this isn’t the recipe you want to use.


Chicken taco on a white plate with a fresh cherry tomato garnish

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This recipe was first shared in May 2011. Photos and text were updated in 2021.

Chicken taco on a white plate with a fresh cherry tomato garnish

The Recipe: Shredded Chicken Tacos

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 large cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons minced chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce 
  • 3/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 12 6-inch flour tortillas
  • Optional toppings: sauteed bell peppers, guacamole or sliced avocados, diced tomatoes, shredded lettuce, sour cream, grated cheddar cheese

Instructions

    Optional fillings: sauteed bell peppers, guacamole, diced tomatoes, shredded lettuce, sour cream, grated cheddar cheese

    Melt butter in a large skillet.  Add garlic and chipotle and cook briefly.  Stir in orange juice, Worcestershire, and 1/2 cup cilantro.  Bring to boil and add chicken.  Cover and simmer till chicken is cooked through, flipping at least once.  Remove to plate and cover with foil.


    Reduce the sauce to about 1/4 cup.  Turn off the burner and add mustard.  Shred chicken and return to pan.  Add remaining cilantro and salt and pepper to taste and toss the chicken in sauce. Serve with tortillas and any optional fillings.

Notes

Adapted from Cook's Country

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6

Serving Size:

2 tacos

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 622Total Fat: 23gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 84mgSodium: 780mgCarbohydrates: 66gFiber: 8gSugar: 6gProtein: 37g

Thatskinnychickcanbake.com occasionally offers nutritional information for recipes contained on this site. This information is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate only. This information comes from online calculators. Although thatskinnychickcanbake.com attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased can change the nutritional information in any given recipe. Also, many recipes on thatskinnychickcanbake.com recommend toppings, which may or may not be listed as optional and nutritional information for these added toppings is not listed. Other factors may change the nutritional information such as when the salt amount is listed “to taste,” it is not calculated into the recipe as the amount will vary. Also, different online calculators can provide different results. To obtain the most accurate representation of the nutritional information in any given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe. You are solely responsible for ensuring that any nutritional information obtained is accurate.

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