Tinga de Pollo Tacos

Tinga de Pollo Tacos are the answer to shake up your next Taco Tuesday.  Why just stick to ground beef when there are so many other tasty, creative options to eat in a taco?  Tinga de Pollo literally translates to shredded or torn chicken.  This is an easy weeknight meal that comes together with some help from your slow cooker…dinner is done!

Again with my love of Mexican food…I know, I might have a problem.  But it is all just so good!  The other thing I love about a meal like this is that once you prepare the meat, your kids or guests can build their own with their favorite toppings.  I prefer shredded cheese, pico de gallo, thinly sliced radishes for a little crunch, freshly chopped cilantro and a squeeze of lime.  You can also add diced avocados, sour cream or another type of salsa…sky’s the limit.

A quick tip to elevate this dish from the ordinary is to fry your corn tortillas into taco shells for serving.  You just add enough vegetable oil to cover the bottom of a skillet, heat to medium high and fry each tortilla for about 15-20 seconds per side until golden brown.  Then, you can serve them flat, tostada-style, or form them into a taco shape as I did.  If you’re going to shape them, you need to do it after you drain them quickly on a paper towel of the oil, but while they’re still warm.  An easy added touch that adds delicious flavor!

If you have leftovers, they are great on a salad the next day for a light, healthy, tasty lunch or you can freeze them for a quick reheat meal.  Oh’ I would be remiss if I didn’t suggest adding them to a plate of nachos…boom!  Another tip is to use half boneless, skinless chicken breasts and half boneless, skinless chicken thighs.  The dark meat keeps them very moist and juicy, plus it will add flavor!

Tinga de Pollo

Tinga de Pollo Tacos are the answer to shake up your next Taco Tuesday. Why just stick to ground beef when there are so many other tasty, creative options to eat in a taco? Tinga de Pollo literally translates to shredded or torn chicken. This is an easy weeknight meal that comes together with some help from your slow cooker...dinner is done!
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 3 hrs
Total Time 3 hrs 30 mins
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 6 people

Ingredients
  

  • 3 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • Kosher Salt & Pepper to taste
  • 1 Tablespoon Ground Cumin
  • 1 Tablespoon Ground Corriander
  • 1 Tablespoon Dried Oregano
  • 2 Tablespoons EVOO
  • 28 oz. canned diced San Marzano Tomatoes
  • 2 Tablespoons chipotle in adobo diced in sauce
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 Yellow Onion thinly sliced
  • 1 Tablespoon Sugar
  • 1 Bay Leaf
  • 1/2 cup Chicken Stock
  • 20 corn torillas for frying and/or serving

Instructions
 

  • Pat chicken dry and sprinkle liberally with kosher salt and pepper, cumin, coriander and oregano.
  • Add about 2 Tablespoons EVOO to a large dutch oven. Brown chicken on both sides in batches and set aside, about 4 minutes per side over med-med/high heat.
  • Remove all chicken to a plate, it will only be browned, not cooked through. Add tomatoes to the same pot, chipotle in adobo, garlic, salt and pepper, simmer and scrape up browned bits from the bottom of the pot to incorporate into the sauce. Simmer for about 20 minutes. Add to a blender and blend the sauce until smooth.
  • Meanwhile, add another 2 Tbs. of EVOO to the dutch oven and add the thinly sliced onions and some salt. Sweat them until translucent but not browned, about 7 minutes.
  • Add the blended tomato sauce to the onions, 1 Tablespoon sugar, bay leaf, chicken stock and a sprinkle of kosher salt. Stir to combine and bring heat back up to a simmer.
  • Add chicken back to the pot and nestle in the sauce. The tops should be showing and not covered.
  • Cook for about 1-1/2 hours until chicken is very tender. If you use chicken breasts instead, you will only need to cook for about 30 minutes or it will get overdone and stringy. Remove chicken to get it all shredded, using 2 forks and place back in the pot. It will hold until you're ready to serve. Top with your favorite taco toppings!

Notes

Toppings: shredded iceberg lettuce, grated cheese, sour cream, cilantro, lime, avocado.

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