Easy Shredded Chicken Tacos are a quick and healthy dinner for those busy week nights. Prepare it all ahead of time so taco assembly is quick and gets dinner on the table as fast as you can say, "Taco Tuesday".
I have been going the last two weeks not really knowing what day it is. The past two weeks has been Christmas break for my kiddos from school so each day has been a blur of sleeping in ( if you call 6:30 sleeping in), late breakfasts, movies, lots of walks, playing with new toys, working on our latest room to remodel ( no the kitchen is isn't finished...yet), occasional dinners out and staying up late. I feel so disoriented, my kids have been loving it, my husband has still been going to work, and my house is a giant mess.
But now it is back to school in a couple days. Back to a schedule, early bedtimes, early mornings, tv off, more organization and a cleaner house. Well probably not that last part. Who am I kidding? I can't do it all. But what comes with back to school is coming up with quick to prepare and cook meals that my kiddos will love as much as my husband and I. Most days I have plenty of time to plan and prepare dinners, but there are days that I definitely don't have the time and need to come up with something quick that is still really healthy.
We make Mexican food or Mexican inspired food often at my house. Its always quick to prepare and uses lots of fresh flavors and ingredients. Plus we usually make about a gallon of guacamole which, if I let her, my 3 year old would eat all by herself. She is a bonafide guacamole junkie. Tacos are quick to make, but I made them even quicker. With my kitchen aid stand mixer. A mixer isn't just for cookies and cakes. I heard of this trick years ago and the first time I tried it I couldn't believe how easy it was. I shred chicken using my mixer.
Isn't that cool? Takes about one minute to do and is easy to clean up. I HATE shredding chicken with forks, I always end up using my hands and making a huge mess. So there is the chicken tacos and the kitchen aid mixer part of this post ( or is it...the bottom of the post just might have something more about mixers..)
So now its time for the Gif animation. I am all excited about this because I am SO not technical at all. Its amazing I an even publish a blog post. If it wasn't for my amazing friend Heather from Farmgirl Gourmet as my emergency IT help, I would be in a heap of trouble behind the scenes of my blog. So without further adieu I give you my first gif animation: Also known as building a chicken taco in 4 seconds.
Cool, right? Ok maybe I am just easily amused. I am pretty impressed with myself for figuring this out.
- 2lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 1 teaspoon sea salt, divided
- 1 – 15 ounce can organic chopped tomatoes with green chilies (Trader Joes Brand)
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- 6” corn tortilla shells (100% gluten free) and or butter lettuce leaves
- Coconut oil (or olive oil)
- 1 C Salsa (green or red, homemade or store-bought)
- Pickled red onions (I used this recipe here
- Sliced black olives
- Cotija cheese (or other crumbly cheese like Feta)
For the Chicken
- Rinse the chicken breasts and place in a saucepan. Fill with cold water so its 1” over the chicken and place on medium-low heat. Add in ½ teaspoon salt and poach until just done, about 20 minutes. The water will be clear until they are close to being cooked and then it will have a white film on the water. Check the thickest and thinnest breasts by removing them and slicing through their thickest parts. Keep checking every few minutes until they are done. You don’t want to overcook them. Drain the chicken using a colander in the sink and then place the chicken in the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment in place. Season the chicken with the remaining ½ teaspoon of salt, the cumin and ground pepper and add in the can of tomatoes with chilies. Start the mixer and bring up the speed to medium-low and mix until the chicken is shredded, about one minute. If there are still some larger pieces remaining, remove the more shredded chicken and leave the larger pieces and turn the mixer back on for another 30 seconds. Keep chicken warm until ready to assemble. It can be kept in a glass bowl in a low oven, 200 Deg F, if desired.
To assemble: Heat the taco shells with either a little coconut oil or olive oil to make them more pliable. Place about ¼ cup (or 2 ounces) of chicken mixture on the shell and top with a tablespoon or so of salsa, some pickled red onion, a few olive slices, and a tablespoon of crumbled cotija cheese and shredded lettuce.
- These can also be served in lettuce leaves, such as butter lettuce, if going the lower-carb route.
And for the more carb-conscious - use lettuce in place of the tortillas for these easy shredded chicken tacos. My fave to use is butter lettuce.