BEST Shredded Chicken Tacos

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5 from 6 votes

Chicken tacos aren’t just for Taco Tuesday! You can’t beat juicy pulled chicken marinaded in smoky, slightly spicy chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. Topped with a creamy yet crunchy avocado, onion and lime topping, you’ll want these tacos every day of the week!

There are three secrets to the best chicken tacos. The first is my juicy baked chicken breasts, marinaded in smoky chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. The second is the amazing avocado topping that’s easy to make and filled with crunchy onion and zesty lime. The final secret is the assembly, wrapped in soft flour tortillas and garnished with salty, crumbly queso fresco and a little cilantro. They’re awesome. Let’s dive into the deliciousness!

Oh and P.S. these Shrimp Tacos are awesome too.

Ingredients for Chicken Tacos

  • Boneless skinless chicken breasts – I find that chicken breasts are the best option for delicious chicken tacos. Baking them with my easy method yields juicy, tender chicken that’s easy to shred and pull.
  • Taco-sized flour tortillas – I love small flour tortillas for these chicken tacos! You can use corn tortillas or a hybrid if preferred. You can also use hard taco shells.
  • Avocados – you’ll need two just-ripe avocados for the deliciously easy avocado topping.
  • Limes – fresh lime zest and juice yield acidity and bright, citrusy undertones.
  • Chipotle peppers in adobo sauce – chipotle peppers in adobo sauce comes in a small can (roughly 7 ounces) in the Mexican foods aisle. Chipotle peppers are smoky and a moderately spicy while the adobo sauce surrounding them is tangy, a bit sweet and spicy. It’s the perfect easy marinade for chicken!
  • Yellow onion – yellow onion is tangy and crunchy, the perfect texture and flavor to mix into creamy avocado!
  • Queso fresco – queso fresco is mild, crumbly and salty, a classic taco garnish! If you can’t find queso fresco, try queso blanco or even ricotta salata (you may need to grate instead of crumble both).
  • Cilantro – cilantro adds freshness and an herbaceous touch. You can also use parsley if you’re not a cilantro fan!
  • Jalapeño (optional) – like spicy food? Seed and core a jalapeño, slice it and add to avocado topping.
Ingredients for Chicken Tacos

How to Make Chicken Tacos

Full instructions in the recipe card; this is just an outline!

  1. Marinate.

    Massage chicken with chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, breaking up the chipotle peppers as you go. Marinate chicken for 30 minutes in the fridge.

  2. Bake.

    Place marinaded chicken on a baking sheet along with smashed chipotle peppers. Sprinkle with salt. Bake at 425 degrees for 17-21 minutes.

  3. Topping.

    While chicken is in the oven, add avocados, onion, lime zest and juice, salt and jalapeño to a bowl. Using the back of a fork to mash avocado to a semi-chunky consistency, mixing in with the other ingredients.

  4. Shred/pull.

    Let chicken rest for 5 minutes before shredding/pulling chicken.

  5. Assemble.

    Assemble tacos by placing some shredded chicken on each tortilla (enough to fill but not overfill your taco). Then add a small scoop of the avocado topping, a pinch of fresh cilantro, and a sprinkle of queso fresco.
    Assemble chicken tacos and serve with more lime wedges.

Tips and Tricks for Chicken Tacos

  • The chicken for these tacos is mild-to-moderately spicy. If you prefer almost-zero heat, don’t mash up the chipotle peppers in your chicken marinade. Simply leave them intact and then remove them before baking the chicken.
  • This avocado topping is onion-forward to add nice crunch and tang! If you prefer less onion, use a small onion instead!
  • You can also use parsley if you’re not a cilantro fan!
  • You’ll be able to make 9-12 small tacos with 1.5-2 pounds of chicken and the above amounts for the topping.
  • Marinate chicken to impart the flavor of the chipotle peppers in adobo sauce on your chicken.
  • Chipotle peppers in adobo sauce comes in a small can (roughly 7 ounces) in the Mexican foods aisle!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What do I serve with chicken tacos?

My favorite side dishes with chicken tacos are salsa and Avocado Salsa, sour cream, Spanish Rice, refried beans, Grilled Corn, Mexican Coleslaw, or Baked Tortilla Chips and salsa!

How do I store leftover chicken tacos?

I recommend storing all ingredients separately so the tacos don’t get soggy (the tortillas at room temp, the chicken in a container in the fridge, and the avocado topping in a container in the fridge). Enjoy within 3 days, keeping in mind that the avocado topping will start to brown. You can combat this with more lime juice or by placing plastic wrap directly on top of the avocado topping.

How do I reheat the chicken for chicken tacos?

Reheat pulled chicken wrapped in foil in a 350 degree oven for 10-20 minutes, or even in the microwave (covered) in increments of 30 seconds!

How much chicken breast do I need for chicken tacos?

You’ll need 1.5-2 pounds of chicken breast for 9-12 tacos. You’ll want to double the recipe for more tacos!

Are these chicken tacos spicy?

This recipe is customizable! The recipe as written is mild-to-moderately spicy. If you prefer only a tiny bit of heat, I recommend leaving the chipotle peppers intact instead of crushing them. Also leave the jalapeño out!

How do I shred chicken?

Shred (AKA pull) chicken by using a fork and knife to pull apart chicken into desired-sized pieces. The chicken should be very juicy and tender, making your job easy!

Other Chicken Recipes You’ll Love!

BEST Shredded Chicken Tacos

Chicken tacos aren’t just for Taco Tuesday! You can’t beat juicy pulled chicken marinaded in smoky, slightly spicy chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. Topped with a creamy yet crunchy avocado, onion and lime topping, you’ll want these tacos every day of the week!
5 from 6 votes
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: summer
Servings: 9 tacos (makes 9-12 small tacos)
Calories: 300kcal
Author: Tastefully Grace

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ – 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 9 – 12 small taco-sized flour tortillas
  • 2 medium just-ripe avocados
  • 2 juicy limes zested and then juiced (plus more wedges for garnish)
  • 1 can chipotle peppers in adobo sauce roughly 7 ounce can
  • 1 medium yellow onion finely chopped
  • Small block queso fresco crumbled
  • Handful of cilantro to garnish
  • Jalapeño diced (optional)
  • Salt to taste

Instructions

  • Place chicken in a gallon Ziploc bag with the chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. Massage chicken, breaking up the chipotle peppers as you go. Let chicken marinate for at least 30 minutes in the fridge.
  • Preheat oven to 425℉. Place marinaded chicken on a baking sheet along with smashed chipotle peppers. Sprinkle with salt. Bake for 17-21 minutes or until the thickest part of the chicken registers at least 165 degrees.
  • While chicken is in the oven, add avocados, onion, lime zest and juice, salt and jalapeño (optional) to a medium bowl. Using the back of a fork to mash avocado to a semi-chunky consistency, mixing in with the other ingredients. Set aside.
  • Let chicken rest for 5 minutes before shredding/pulling chicken.
  • Assemble tacos by placing some shredded chicken on each tortilla (enough to fill but not overfill your tacos). Then add a small scoop of the avocado topping, a pinch of fresh cilantro, and a sprinkle of queso fresco. Serve with more lime wedges.

Video

Notes

  • The chicken for these tacos is mildly (some may say moderately) spicy. If you prefer almost-zero heat, don’t mash up the chipotle peppers in your chicken marinade. Simply leave them intact and then remove them before baking the chicken.
  • Chipotle peppers in adobo sauce comes in a small can (roughly 7 ounces) in the Mexican foods aisle.
  • This avocado topping is onion-forward to add nice crunch and tang! If you prefer less onion, use a small onion instead!
  • You can also use parsley if you’re not a cilantro fan!
  • You’ll be able to make 9-12 small tacos with 1.5-2 pounds of chicken and the above amounts for the topping.
  • The total time above doesn’t include the 30-minute marinading time.

Nutrition

Serving: 1taco | Calories: 300kcal | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 55mg | Sodium: 380mg | Potassium: 579mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 169IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 112mg | Iron: 2mg
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5 from 6 votes (6 ratings without comment)

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