Shred some chicken breast, it’s time for chicken tacos! Actually, scratch that because you can make this shredded chicken taco recipe with any type of chicken – boneless skinless chicken thighs, bone-in chicken thighs, leftover rotisserie chicken – whatever chicken you have available will work for this easy taco recipe.
All you need to do to make the chicken for tacos is poach the chicken, shred it, then cook it for a few minutes with some beans, spices and fresh tomatoes, tomato sauce or salsa.
Once you’ve got the chicken filling, fill the taco shells or tortillas, put some cheese on top and bake for a few minutes. Top with some pickled jalapenos, avocado or guacamole and dive in. It’s pretty easy and the result is so wonderfully delicious.
Why You’ll Love These Shredded Chicken Tacos
- super tasty
- filling and satisfying
This healthier recipe for chicken tacos is full of protein, fiber and is absolutely delicious! And if you use corn tortillas – it’s also gluten-free.
The chicken filling is great for meal prep too, so that you can store it in the fridge and make these tacos with chicken for an easy dinner whenever you crave tacos during the week.
What Goes Into These Shredded Chicken Tacos
Chicken. As I mentioned, you can use ANY type of shredded chicken for the tacos. The recipe is good with skinless boneless chicken breast, chicken thighs or even rotisserie chicken. The point is to have some shredded chicken ready to use with the tomato sauce and spices.
Tomatoes. I used fresh tomatoes because I had a lot of them and that’s just one thing I like to make when I have lots of fresh tomatoes. You can use tomato sauce, canned tomatoes, even tomato paste or salsa – any tomato-based sauce you like and enjoy will work.
Black beans. This is optional, but I wanted to add some extra protein and fiber. Plus I like beans. You can also go for kidney beans here.
Spices. Cumin, coriander, chili powder and I added some dried oregano.
Herbs. My go-to’s here are cilantro, basil, dill or parsley. I went with cilantro this time, but they all give a nice flavor to the tacos.
Lime or lemon juice and olive oil.
Vegetables. Onion, garlic, some chopped arugula and avocado are going to make it in the tacos too!
Pickled jalapenos! Do not forget these if you like some spice.
Optionally: cheddar or mozzarella cheese
Flour tortillas or taco shells: It’s your choice what type of tortilla you want to use for this recipe
How To Shred The Chicken
Before we start making the tacos, we need to prepare the chicken. To do this:
- add the chicken to a pot and cover with water, add some salt
- bring to a boil and then reduce the heat, cooking for about 12 minutes
- take out the chicken and place on a plate
- grab two forks and shred the chicken into bite-sized pieces by holding it with one fork and pulling pieces off with the other
- congrats! you’ve got shredded chicken!
If using leftover rotisserie chicken, skip over the cooking part and follow the steps starting from placing the chicken on a plate. You can also just use your fingers and wash your hands after, I’m not going to pretend I don’t do that all the time, I actually find it easier. Use the forks, when the meat is too hot though.
How To Make Shredded Chicken Tacos
Now that you’ve got the shredded chicken, it’s time to season it and to make the tacos!
Saute onion and some of the garlic with olive oil, cumin and chili powder in a pan. Stir for about 2-3 minutes or until onions are translucent.
If using fresh tomatoes – mash or blend them, so that you get your tomato sauce. As mentioned – you can also use tomato sauce or salsa.
Add the rinsed and drained black beans, pickled jalapenos and tomatoes to the pan and stir together.
Cook for 4-5 more minutes, then add in the chicken and more garlic. Stir for about 3 more minutes, then add some chopped cilantro on top.
While the chicken is cooking you can also make your favorite avocado sauce. In this case, I made my version of guacamole by mashing an avocado with garlic and lemon juice, then adding some basil, onion, tomatoes, salt and pepper. It was the perfect addition to these tacos, but you can of course use whatever your favorite avocado sauce is.
Once the chicken is done, fill taco shells with the filling, top with pickled jalapenos and cheese of choice. Arrange tacos in a baking tray and bake for about 5-8 minutes at 180C/350F or until cheese is melted. This step is optional – you can definitely just fill tortillas of choice with the chicken and let the shredded cheese melt in there (I like the bread a bit toasted though).
Take out, top with the avocado and enjoy!
If you’re looking for an easy make ahead meal that you will actually want to eat for days in a row, you can double the ingredients for the chicken filling and store in an airtight container in the fridge.
You can use the chicken filling in tacos, burritos, bowls…wherever you desire!
- If you want to make this recipe super easy and reduce cleanup time, don’t bake the tacos. Toast your favoite tortillas in a pan and fill them with the chicken, cheese and avocado.
- Use the filling for quesadillas too, similarly to what I did here.
- You can use the chicken filling on tostadas (especially if someone breaks your taco shells!)
- Serve in healthier bowls with some rice and salad
- Feel free to top tacos with whatever vegetables and sauces you enjoy e.g. lettuce, arugula, sour cream…
More Easy Shredded Chicken Recipes:
- Cheesy Spicy Chicken Quesadilla
- White Chicken and Broccoli Quesadilla
- Parmesan Pesto Chicken Wraps
- 10-Minute Shredded Chicken Macaroni
- Chicken Salad Sandwich Melt
I hope you enjoy these easy shredded chicken tacos for dinner or whenever you decide to make them! Here’s the full recipe for you to save or print out.
For The Chicken Filling
- 360g/12oz shredded chicken
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 2/3 cup tomato sauce
- 1/2 tsp coriander (optional)
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 cup black beans, canned, rinsed and drained
- 1 small onion, thinly chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tbsp chopped pickled jalapenos
- 2 tbsp cilantro
- 1 tbsp lemon or lime juice
- 1 avocado
- 1 small tomato, thinly chopped
- 1/2 small thinly chopped onion
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp thinly chopped basil
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- salt and pepper
- taco shells or tortillas
- pickled jalapenos
- If cooking chicken: add to a pot with salt and water to cover, bring to a boil then reduce heat. Cook for 12 minutes. Take out and shred with two forks holding the chicken with one and pulling with the other into bite-sized pieces.
- Saute onion and 2 garlic cloves with olive oil, cumin, coriander, oregano and chili powder in a pan. Stir for about 2-3 minutes or until the onions are translucent.
- If using fresh tomatoes - mash or blend them, so that you get your tomato sauce. You can also use ready tomato sauce of choice.
- Add the rinsed and drained black beans, pickled jalapenos and tomato sauce to the pan and stir together.
- Cook for 4-5 more minutes, then add in the chicken, lemon juice and the rest of the garlic. Stir for about 3 more minutes, then add some chopped cilantro on top. Add salt and pepper if needed
- While the chicken is cooking make your favorite avocado sauce. In this case, I made my version of guacamole with what I had. Mash the avocado with garlic and lemon juice, then add some basil, onion, tomatoes, salt and pepper.
- Once the chicken is done, fill taco shells or toasted tortillas with the filling. Top with pickled jalapenos and cheese of choice.
- This step is optional: Arrange tacos in a baking tray and bake for about 5-8 minutes at 180C/350F or until cheese is melted.
- You can definitely just fill tortillas of choice with the chicken and let the shredded cheese melt in there (I like the bread a bit toasted though).
- Take out, top with the avocado and enjoy!
Nutrition InformationYield 3 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 536Total Fat 24gSaturated Fat 6gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 15gCholesterol 94mgSodium 1146mgCarbohydrates 43gFiber 14gSugar 6gProtein 41g